About Our Curriculum
ONU Law engages its students in a rigorous and innovative academic curriculum. Small class sizes enrich the educational experience and allow professors to bring the curriculum alive for students. ONU Law students can choose from a variety of specializations and more than 100 course options while expanding their experiences by studying abroad, participating in Law Review, accepting research and teaching assistantships, participating in pro bono programs, or taking active roles in Moot Court.
ONU Law's curriculum has been developed to teach every student the necessary skills needed to stand out in 21st-century practice. We expect our students to obtain at least seven credit hours of skills courses, which have been specifically designed to provide students with the practical and professional skills needed to practice the law every day. For nearly 45 years, ONU Law has offered guaranteed clinical placement programs to give students the opportunity to delve into their field of choice and learn at the elbow of a seasoned professional. It provides them with the knowledge and expertise for which our graduates and alumni are known.
ONU Law's curriculum begins with a core curriculum in legal theory, which includes work with statutes and administrative regulations. The core curriculum develops students’ legal writing and familiarizes them with principles of accounting and finance that all lawyers need to know. A student completes the core curriculum by the third semester, and the remainder of the student’s time at the college can be spent in meaningful opportunities to develop skills essential to the practice of law.
The school’s mission is to educate and transform students into competent, ethical, professional legal practitioners able to apply their skills and talents in traditional and emerging environments. The law school works diligently to maintain an educational program that prepares students for admission to the bar and effective and responsible participation in the legal profession. Our objectives are to provide students with a foundation in legal reasoning, analysis, and writing; to give them a thorough understanding of the structures and policies of the law; to help them acquire a broad and general understanding of how the law and legal institutions evolve and operate; and to make them aware of the limits of the law and how lawyers can contribute beyond the boundaries of the profession.
The educational program is designed not only to address current and anticipated legal problems, but also to provide students with a substantial opportunity to regularly interact with faculty, to enhance and expand their exposure to professional skills, and to examine a topic of personal interest within a critical, yet collegial, environment. The program offers a traditional, comprehensive curriculum consistent with producing ethical, competent and responsible professionals.
Learning Outcomes and Recommended Performance Criteria:
Learning outcome No. 1
Graduates will demonstrate knowledge of substantive and procedural law.
- Determine which legal issues are presented by factual circumstances
- Articulate the applicable substantive and procedural rules
Learning outcome No. 2
Graduates will demonstrate competence in legal research.
- Identify and accurately implement the fundamental tools of legal research
- Create an effective research plan
- Locate the relevant authorities for a legal issue
- Judge the weight of legal authorities
Learning outcome No. 3
Graduates will demonstrate competence in legal analysis and problem-solving.
- Apply the appropriate legal rules and authorities to facts, including assessing possible counterarguments and likely case outcomes
- Develop potential legal solutions, including consideration of cost and other relevant factors
Learning outcome No. 4
Graduates will demonstrate the ability to communicate effectively, orally and in writing.
- Write legal documents that are clear, well-reasoned, organized, professional in tone, and appropriate to the audience and the circumstances
- Communicate orally on legal topics in a well-reasoned, organized and professional manner that is appropriate to the audience and the circumstances
Learning outcome No. 5
Graduates will demonstrate knowledge and understanding of proper professional and ethical responsibilities to clients and the legal system.
- Identify the rules, laws and other authorities that govern the legal profession
- Recognize professional and ethical dilemmas when presented in actual or hypothetical fact scenarios
- Formulate and articulate appropriate resolutions to professional or ethical dilemmas in an actual or hypothetical fact scenarios
Learning outcome No. 6
Graduates will demonstrate competence in legal practice skills.
- Perform the following legal practice skills using actual or hypothetical-fact scenarios: interviewing, counseling, advocating on behalf of clients, negotiating and drafting legal documents
- Manage complex workflow diligently, reliably and within deadlines
- Collaborate with others in a legal setting
- Identify potential effects on clients and others when formulating legal strategy in actual or hypothetical-fact scenarios