1 methodological issuesppt9 2013Methodological Issues in Implementing an Internationalized Curriculum--Five Approaches to Internationalization.
Methodological Issues in Implementing an
Internationalized Curriculum--Five Approaches to
Larry Catá Backer
W. Richard and Mary Eshelman Faculty Scholar & Professor of
Professor of International Affairs
2013-14 Immediate Past Chair University Faculty Senate
Pennsylvania State University
Global Penn State Conference 2013:
Internationalizing the Curriculum
Thick or Thin Internationalization
– We tend to think about internationalization in what I would call
• Thin—moving people into and out of a “home” institution
– I want to consider some of the problems of “thick”
internationalization, sometimes overlooked
• Thick—curriculum, deep institutional integration, globalization versus
– I believe the insights of the struggle for thick internationalization in
law might be of some use beyond professional education.
– My point is simple: the US has seen the rise of multiple and
contradictory tendencies in internationalization that both are
consonant with and also threaten consensus on
• Many law schools are now wrestling with issues relating to
the incorporation of a transnational legal component
– including elements of international, comparative, foreign and
transnational law—within their teaching and scholarship missions.
• These changes mirror discussions within the legal academy
over a move from a “national law practice” to a multi-
jurisdictional practice model of legal education.
– American legal education subject to two
: transnational and outward
– international, comparative, foreign and transnational law
into curriculum as a part of basic legal training of law
– Several models followed
– Uneven application within the 200 US law schools
: domestic and inward
– Carnegie Foundation’s Report, Educating
Lawyers: Preparation for the Profession of Law
– Not universally accepted; greater support by ABA
and judges; less by elite law schools
– Different philosophies of implementation
• These two great reform efforts of the last 20 years have
developed along parallel tracks in substantial isolation.
– This presentation looks at the development of these parallel
discussions of reform of U.S. legal education
• First examine
– Analytical framework (how to assess)
– Disaggregation of FIVE models
• Integration Model
• Aggregation Model
• Segregation Model
• Immersion Model
• Multi-Disciplinary Department Model
More Roadmap. . . Sigh
• Second, examine
– Domestic Practitioner Model
– Internationalization of American Model through
• ABA Consideration of Accreditation of Foreign Law Schools
• Third, Insights; no conclusions
– Except: unless internalized institutionally and
seamlessly, the internationalization project will remain
Internationalist Model Analytical
• What shapes internationalist approaches?
– Identifying stakeholders
– Identifying the goals (comparative, international,
foreign or transnational and for what purpose)
– Internal institutional preferences
– Abilities of the faculty
– Available resources
– Realistic expectations
Driving the Process
• Law School Stakeholders drive the process of
– Faculty, administration, alumni, employers,
government, courts, clients.
– Politics, Money, Vision and Interest Maximization
• The needs and attitudes of each stakeholder and their
relative power will shape internationalization.
• RESULT: Stratification based on preferences, incentives,
rewards and resources.
– Higher ranked and coastal schools more likely to more fully
– High resource schools better able to implement.
– Refocus the educational and research hub of the
law school from the national to the transnational
level to the greatest extent feasible.
• The goal is to produce domestic/international
: may require all faculty to change
approach to teaching and research
• International and transnational issues are segregated
but emphasized among areas of study as one among
equals law—like labor, corporate or tax law.
• Benefit: leverages conventional approaches to law
teaching—no real change of culture.
• Detriment: reinforces conventional framework;
privileges a strictly delimited territorial approach to
– Law school creates an administrative device that serves as the
institutional bases from which all international and transnational
programs can be developed, offered, assessed and participate in the
education and research mission of the law school.
--segregation, acculturation are avoided
--but internationalization is conceded as
something apart from the domestic curriculum
and from law as traditionally understood.
– Current Model: Carnegie Report
• Detach training from university culture
• Practice over theory/policy
• Has segregating effect
– Resources will determine the extent to which the model can be
utilized without affecting academic orientation of modern law
» Poorer, more locally oriented faculties more training oriented
» Wealthier, more transnationally oriented faculty less so
– Two Reports to date:
• American Bar Association, Report of the Special Committee on
International Issues , 2009.
• American Bar Association, Report of Special Committee on
Foreign Law Schools Seeking Approval Under ABA Standards,
July 19, 2010.
– First, the accreditation project should go forward.
– Second, the actual accreditation standards should be reviewed and
revised to avoid any barriers to this geographic expansion.
– Third, a policy statement ought to be drafted to ensure the central
place of American law, the English language, a faculty made up
primarily of recipients of U.S. J.D.s, and an American pedagogy in
these foreign accredited schools.
– Lastly, the Committee recommended to trail run from a model
school that might provide the acceptable template for this form of
expansion. Report, supra, at 8.
Accreditation Plan as Challenge to Global
– Substitutes competition among states for dominance of legal
cultures for building transnational consensus;
– Creates incentives for “creaming” students in the service of foreign
– the teaching of law laced with American ideals and cultures
eventually seeps out of the academic realm and into the realm of
policy makers and judges to be practically implemented, often
substantially changing or subverting national law.
– But large numbers of foreign lawyers in the U.S. system might
change it as well—making it more global than national
Why Should We Care?
• What does internationalization mean
– Stakeholders; who is this for?
– Programs; integrated into curriculum or supplemental
– Objectives; enrichment or core part of field of study
• internalizing internationalization versus exportation of national models
– Bringing international in or exporting national out
– Mediating role of technology based learning
• Competition/complementarity with other models
– Experiental learning; general education “bling”; active learning
– Technology based learning
– Research; labor markets; thick or thin approaches
– There is a tremendous amount of activity in the United States
touching on the internationalization of legal education
– But the activity points in two incompatible directions
– Which will prevail and what the emerging consensus will be remains
to be seen.
• But the choices will affect both U.S. legal education and the way
in which international law and global curricula are developed
both in the United States and abroad.
• Thank you
– Larry Catá Backer, “Internationalizing the American Law School Curriculum (in Light of
the Carnegie Foundation’s Report),” in THE INTERNALIZATION OF LAW AND LEGAL EDUCATION
49-112 (Jan Klabbers and Mortimer Sellers, Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer
Science + Business Media B.V., 2008) (2 IUS GENTIUM: COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVES ON LAW
AND JUSTICE (Mortimer Sellers series ed.) ISBN 978-4020-9493-4; e-ISBN 978-1-4020-
– Larry Catá Backer, Beyond Colonization—Globalization and the Establishment of
Programs of U.S. Legal Education Abroad by Indigenous Institutions, 6 DREXEL LAW
REVIEW – (forthcoming 2013) (with Bret Stancil).
– Larry Catá Backer, Global Law Schools on U.S. Models: Emerging Models of
Consensus-Based Internationalization or Markets-Based Americanization Models of
Global Legal Education, 2 REVISTA DE EDUCACIÓN Y DERECHO/EDUCATION AND LAW REVIEW
(España) 4:1-53 (April-Sept. 2011) (with Bret Stancil).
– Larry Catá Backer, Human Rights and Legal Education in the Western Hemisphere:
Legal Parochialism and Hollow Universalism, 21(1) PENN STATE INTERNATIONAL LAW
REVIEW 115-155 (2002) .