Indiana law degree online ought to be the choice of preference. But it faces difficulties from the the powers that be who are more interested in conserving their privilege and less interested in actually helping students.
What do we mean? Indiana requires you to graduate from an ABA-approved law school to take the bar, and that pretty much rules out online schools, whose advantages are obvious.
An Indiana law degree online benefits:
- The poor. Not only students but poor clients. If my law education is affordable, that means I can charge less for my services. The ABA estimates 80% of America’s poor have no access to a lawyer, yet its efforts to address this deficiency are feeble at best.
- The worker who dreams of switching careers. You can study at night, rewind tape, interact with professors and students via email, video-conference and chat.
Who benefits from “barring from the bar” online students?
- Posh law schools
- Law professors who make upwards of $200,000 a year
- Lawyers who have a job and want to limit competition
Applications to traditional law schools have dropped 30% because reduced job opportunities no longer justify uncontrollably high tuitions. Understandably, law schools are doing everything in their power to maintain tuitions high, including limiting student populations and trying to put the brakes on new law school openings, like Indiana Tech.
While law schools scramble to rationalize their privilege (watch Harvard speakers do this in the video), the discussion has essentially been sidelined to open up law education to free competition. Why is the Indiana law degree online barred? A lot of hemming and hawing is going on to answer that.
Under current regulations, you need to explore options:
- Pass the bar in California, which unlike the rest of the nation allows online grads to attempt the bar.
- Then, practice in California. After a few years, you can request to take the bar in Indiana.
- Use your law degree to enhance another professional career (without passing the bar).
- Raise hell with your state bar to overturn the monopoly.
Are law schools in crisis? Well, the world is in crisis. There’s an opportunity to rethink what we’re doing.” — from the video
The video shows a feisty Harvard Law School panel discussion titled “Are Law Schools in Crisis? The New York Times Editorial and its Discontents”
Law School Classes Online have been among the slowest adapters among academic disciplines to embrace emerging technologies in education. But this could still be the best option for you.
There’s a tire-kicking mentality towards distance legal education, ” says John Mayer, excecutive director of CALI, in this 2004 video.
Current ABA regulations permit only 12 units, not all in one semester, none in the first year, to be taught through the distance method for ABA-accredited schools. Thus, Law School Classes Online are limited in most states.
Yes to the bar in California
What does that mean for you? It means that pretty much only in California can you take all your Law School Classes Online, where regulations are less stringent. Other states require you course ABA-accredited schools in order to take the bar.
Such exclusionary policies are currently under review by the American Bar Association, after traditional law schools have seen their applications dive horrendously in 2013.
If you are investigating Law School Classes Online, we recommend you get clear from the school:
- Options for taking the bar upon graduation in your state.
- Reforms likely to occur in your state (check with bar officials).
- Total costs (which likely will be less than one-third traditional law schools).
- Modalities of the classes (asynchronous or synchronous: are they recorded and downloaded at your convenience or are they video-cast live at a set time?)
- Interaction modalities with faculty and with fellow students.
- Type of degree offered and exactly what does it mean in the legal world (some Law School Classes Online offer new degrees that don’t correspond to the traditional Juris Doctor or LL.M.)
- Bar passage rate of previous graduating classes on first try.
- Employment percentage in legal field nine months after graduation.
In this video, the Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI) Conference for Law School Computing Audience: All Technical Level, announces its CODEC initiative to make online courses a reality for many law schools.
Online Law School Classes are growing in popularity, despite the difficulties in many states of being allowed to sit on the bar exam. (The American Bar Association is currently reviewing regulations and may finally grant accreditation to 100% Online Law School Classes, without which many states won’t let you take the test to become a lawyer.)
Here are some advantages to Online Law School Classes:
- Admittance – They’re easier to get in than traditional law schools
- Convenience – You watch the class in your home during your free time. There’s no commute, no need to move-in to your school.
- Affordability – Online Law School Classes are about one-third the cost of brick-and-mortar schools. You won’t have pay for dorm and living expenses beyond your norm.
- Teacher Accessibility – Your online professor may actually be more available than the traditional teacher. Ask your question by email, and he’ll be back to you within 48 hours.
- Interactivity Without Distraction – Chat rooms, skype and email make interaction with fellow students possible. But there’s no campus life distraction of parties.
Online Law School Classes are for dreamers. While the traditional law school tends to reject more than accept applicants (thus they attain prestige by enrolling only the “cream of the crop.”), Online Law School Classes are open for pretty much everybody.
Online Law School Classes are also great for:
- Those who want private practice (since the big law firms go pretty much only for top-tier law school grads.)
- Those who want to compliment their professional career with a law degree.
Check to see if Online Law School Classes are the best option for you. As you research, make sure to ask:
- Total costs of the program
- Options for taking the bar in your state
- Bar passage rates of graduates
- 9-month-after-graduation employment of graduates in law job
This video, the Trials of a Law School Trailer 1, shows the adversity facing traditional law school students. The online school takes less of a sink-or-swim approach to its students.