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Law Office of Ronald David Greenberg

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Experience in legal education:


Should experience be important in education?  Many callings do require a certain amount of experience to qualify one's entering into practice of that calling.

Legal education has been the subject of some criticism.  See, e.g., John J. Farmer, To Practice Law, Apprentice First, N.Y. Times
, Feb. 18, 2013, at A17 (recommending that new lawyers be required to "practice for two years or so under experienced supervision, at reduced hourly rates" similar to, e.g., doctors' residencies.), available athttp://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/25/opinion/starting-out-the-lawyers-apprentice.html?ref=global.

The requirements of different callings vary, but all stipulate standards on education, experience, and examination.   Some examples of various callings are outlined as follows.

Engineers and architects, e.g., set forth requirements to be licensed. The National Society of Professional Engineers has stated that

The language and specific provisions of state engineering licensure laws vary from state to state, but virtually every state law outlines a four-step process under which an applicant who has (1) a four-year engineering degree in a program approved by the state engineering licensure board, (2) four years of qualifying engineering experience, and who successfully completes (3) the eight-hour Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Examination, and (4) the eight- hour Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) Examination will be licensed as a professional engineer. National Society of Professional Engineers, Licensure (2013), http://www.nspe.org/Licensure/HowtoGetLicensed/lic_howto_faq.htm l  


In New York, e.g., its Society of Professional Engineers sets forth the following requirements for licensure: (1) passing the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Exam, which legally certifies the candidate as an "engineer in training" (EIT), or an "engineer intern" (EI); (2) generally, four additional years of experience are required before an EIT or EI is permitted to take the Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) Examination exam; (3) passing the PE exam qualifies the candidate as a licensed professional engineer. The New York State Society of Professional Engineers, Resources: How to Get Licensed (2012), http://www.nysspe.org/displaycommon.cfm?an=1&subarticlenbr=17.  In Texas, e.g., the term "Engineer-in-Training" is defined as “a person certified by the State of Texas as one who is a graduate of an engineering program or related science curriculum approved by the Board and who has passed the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) eight-hour Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) Examination. Individuals who meet the above criteria are eligible to apply for Engineer-in-Training certification. The Engineer-in-Training certification does not entitle an individual to practice as a professional engineer.” Texas Board of Professional Engineers, Certification of Engineer in Training (EIT), http://engineers.texas.gov/lic_eit_exinfo.htm  (last visited Feb. 20, 2013).


Architects, e.g., have an Intern Development Program (IDP), which was created jointly by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) and the American Institute of Architects (AIA). The IDP, developed and administered by NCARB, identifies the “comprehensive experience essential for the independent practice of architecture.”  Each of the 50 states (plus the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) “sets its own education, experience, and examination requirements for initial and reciprocal registration in its jurisdiction,” and every jurisdiction requires that “interns acquire  under the IDP experience under the direct supervision of a registered architect for some period of time.” National Council of Architectural Registration Boards, Intern Development Program, (copyright 2009, updated Feb. 2013), http://ncarb.org/en/Experience-Through-Internships/IDP-2.aspx.


For certified public accountants, e.g., see American Institute of CPAs, Licensure (2013), http://www.aicpa.org/BecomeACPA/Licensure/Pages/default.aspx (“All CPA candidates must pass the Uniform CPA Examination to qualify for a CPA certificate and license (i.e., permit to practice) to practice public accounting. While the exam is the same no matter where it's taken, every state/jurisdiction has its own set of education and experience requirements that individuals must meet.”).


A certified financial planner (CFP), e.g., must meet initial certification requirements (viz., education, examination, experience, and ethics), Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, CFP® CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS (2013), http://www.cfp.net/

Query whether some experience be required of law professors in law schools?  And what of professors in, say, business schools, engineering schools, and other schools?