Comparative perspectives on teaching foreign students in law: pedagogical, substantive, logistical and conceptual challenges
Legal education has become a global business. Law schools,1 like the universities in which they sit, increasingly compete for foreign or international students.2 This is the case in almost all regions of the world. Yet, it should be noted that this 'globalisation' of law schools is not unique to the twenty-first century. Indeed, the initial critical dissemination of Justinian's Corpus Juris Civilis,3 the origin of the Civil Law tradition, was itself a product of the Northern Italian universities teaching this 'new' law to students from all over Europe in the eleventh and twelfth centuries.4 Similarly, students in the other ancient traditions of the world would also travel to the centres of learning for their studies, whether it was to study Islamic Law, Jewish Law, Confucianism/Chinese Legalism, and closer to our time, Soviet Socialist Law. But it was not just the students who gained. Attracting foreign students was perceived as boosting the reputation and finances of the instructors and their institutions, and perhaps more critically and long-term, teaching those legal approaches to foreign students would propagate the ideas and approaches adopted by that legal system. Similarly today, reputation, finance and the spread of a legal system's approaches are all well served by internationalisation of law schools' student bodies.
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