During latter part of the 20th century lawyers were introduced to the use of technology as an integral part of their practice. The beginning of the 21st century, and especially the during the most recent decade, the pace of the growth of technological applications to law has accelerated tremendously. Social networking, instant communication, access to vast information resources, information capture, automation of lawyering tasks, computer assisted problem solving, technology mediated collaboration, and the use of technology tools for marketing and advocacy are pervasive. This course will focus on the intersection of technology with the practice of law.
Students will explore the many uses of technology in the practice of law. This exploration will include hands-on learning through the actual use of selected technology tools. While the emphasis will be on the positive uses of technology, the risks to the profession and the ethical challenges posed by the use of technology in practice will also be covered. Students will be expected to attend and actively participate in the classroom component, complete hands on learning assignments involving the use of technology by lawyers, and complete a collaborative project relating to the course topic. The projects work will include a presentation to the class using technology aides other than PowerPoint. There will be no final examination. Finally, the Law School Clinic has agreed to allow students in this class to test their creative thinking about the best uses of technology against the actual uses currently in place in the Clinic, leaving open the possibility of adaptation of expanded and enhanced uses of technology by the clinic.