Law in Action

The Dean's View

"Our rich 'Law in Action' tradition is an important part of who we are and it will remain an important part of who we become."

The University of Wisconsin approach to legal education has been characterized by what we call “law in action.” This means different things to different members of our community. To some, it means scholarship that focuses on how law affects individuals in the real world. To others, it means experiential learning opportunities that provide for hands-on representation of live clients in real-life disputes. Still others might use the concept to encourage students in a large class to think together about how they would counsel a client with a particular problem in light of the applicable legal rule. What all of these approaches have in common is their focus on the way that law affects people and their communities. Our focus on law in action helps our students think about these issues and learn to be more effective and proactive advocates, counselors and advisers.

Our rich "Law in Action" tradition is an important part of who we are and it will remain an important part of who we become. It is still developing after all these years, empowering our graduates to navigate an increasingly complex, competitive, and challenging world. If you'd like to learn more about our legal tradition, the articles listed below will give you a place to start.

Related Articles

  • Paul D. Carrington and Erika King, Law and the Wisconsin Idea, 47 Journal of Legal Education 297 (1997) [pdf]
  • Davis, Kenneth B., Jr., Law in Action. [pdf]
  • W. Scott van Alystyne, Jr., The University of Wisconsin Law School 1868-1968: An Outline History, 1968 Wisconsin Law Review 321. [pdf]
  • John E. Conway, The Law School: Service to the State and Nation, 1968 Wisconsin L. Rev. 345. [pdf]
  • Willard Hurst, Changing Responsibilities of the Law School 1868-1968, 1968 Wisconsin L. Rev. 336. [pdf]
  • Stewart Macaulay, Wisconsin's Legal Tradition, 24 Gargoyle 6-10 (1994) [pdf]

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