The Law School is committed to providing academic support services to all students who need them. The 20:1 student-to-faculty ratio in first year Lawyering Seminars and Legal Research courses creates a unique opportunity for skills development through close supervision and frequent feedback. However, recognizing that many students experience difficulty with transition to Law School, we have also developed a comprehensive approach to academic support that emphasizes individual diagnostic assessment and individual or small group work with a faculty member. These academic support services are provided through the Law School's Irene Diamond Professional Skills Center, appropriately located contiguous to the Writing Center. Importantly, they are not an ancillary part of the academic program, but a fully integrated component of the overall curriculum.
Essential to the Law School's curriculum design is our belief that the overall curriculum and our academic support program must address individual learning styles and attempt to accommodate students' differential learning trajectories. We pay special attention to the importance of legal writing skills, and include techniques and support to meet each student's individual needs.
In the second semester of the first year, referrals by course or seminar teachers, as well as exam performance, are used to identify first-year students who might benefit from the individualized and small-group tutoring programs offered by the Skills Center. The Skills Center also offers an additional course designed to enhance analytic, writing, and test-taking skills to those second-year students who have experienced difficulty in their first year. A variety of methodologies, including facilitated study groups and, where necessary, individual tutors, are available to upper level students on academic probation. In addition, the Skills Center faculty provides academic workshops and referral services throughout the three-year program.