Are Online Law Schools a Viable Option to Traditional Brick and Mortar Offline Institutions?

I believe Legal education should be taught to all people in a civilized society even, as early as, elementary school. The Socratic method of learning to think is a valuable tool to enhanced critical thinking. I first started looking into getting a Law Degree to take advantage of my military benefits. Based on my available time to study and the potential of traveling for my work with the Texas National Guard I wanted to find an accredited online law school program that would take my military benefits. The only program available was the Concord online Law school program under the Kaplan University distance learning system.

Concord offered a way for me to get a legal education without breaking the bank and spending all my days and nights on a college campus. Now that I have a wife and 3 children my free time is limited and going back to school was a target of opportunity. The new GI Bill is now available for all Soldiers who served after 9/11 for a specified amount of time in which a percentage of benefits is calculated.

The Concord Law program is backed by the California Bar Association. Graduating from Concord gives you the opportunity to sit for the California bar exam and practice law in California with a Juris Doctorate in 4 years. You also have the opportunity to get an executive level education, which can be achieved in 3 years, concentrated on a specific area of study to enhance your current career focus, like health care or cyber security. A point of emphasis, many states allow a person who has passed a bar exam from any of the 50 states and has practiced in that state for a specific number of years to sit and take the exam in that state. A legal counselor can work on the federal level as long as they have passed a bar exam in any state and have practiced successfully for a specific number of years.

My initial contact with Concord came in the form of an enrollment counselor who walked me through the process of filling out the application at no charge and filling out the personal questionnaire which asked questions about me and why I would be capable of attending the Concord Law school program.

Once complete, the application and questionnaire went to a review board and the final part of the equation was a 15 question timed quiz. The quiz simulated the actual online quizzes that I took during the course work. I had about 25 minutes to answer 15 questions after taking a few hours to read a section of text from one of the contract law text books.

Unlike traditional brick and mortar law school programs around the country Concord uses their strict enrollment review board process to make entry selections and they do not requiring the LSAT. This was a big item for me because I really did not want to spend the time or money to prep and then take the LSAT. I personally am not big on standardized testing.

Once approved by the review board you have to sign up for a VeriSign account and you must use Microsoft explorer exclusively to access the website. Once everything is set up online and ready to go, I was able to log on the virtual classroom that allowed access to my work, the instructors, classmates, administration etc. Navigation was fairly smooth with access to an abundant amount of resources and tools like West Law education resources.

The instructors and faculty were extremely giving and patient and they were very enthusiastic about the successes of the students and the overall successes of the Concord program.


Davies Hall said...

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