Molly Wilson and I are happy to announce our new online video program by the Practising Law Institute (PLI), a leading provider of continuing legal education. Entitled Motivated Reasoning and Legal Ethics, the video takes an interactive approach to the subject. Highlights include simulated scenarios by professional actors addressing the psychological dimensions of fraught ethical situations, such as law firm billing practices and disclosure requirements by prosecutors. Also included are multimedia discussions of some of the most important scientific studies in behavioral science (i.e., Stanley Milgram’s obedience studies and Hasdorf and Cantril’s famous selective perception study about the 1951 Dartmouth-Princeton football game). Viewers are guided through an interactive environment where they are prompted to respond to the material presented.
Law teachers may find the video program useful to introduce core aspects of behavioral legal ethics in courses such Professional Responsibility and Criminal Procedure.
Here is the PLI description:
Why You Should Attend
This online program will use an interactive, video format to demonstrate how motivated reasoning can lead attorneys to act unethically or remain silent in the face of unethical behavior. Furthermore, it will show how even after these ethical lapses, actors often continue to believe that they have done nothing wrong. The course will explain, in detail, what motivated reasoning is, describe and demonstrate the most common social-cognitive biases that comprise motivated reasoning, and provide strategies to help attorneys overcome these biases, so they behave ethically. The Model Rules of Professional Conduct will be mentioned and referred to at times in discussion, scenarios, and examples.
What You Will Learn
After completing the course, participants will be able to:
- Recognize that they are subject to making poor decisions due to motivated reasoning.
- Recognize that they are subject to behaving unethically without intending to do so.
- Identify the most common cognitive biases and social influences that contribute to motivated reasoning.
- Identify common factors that can lead to poor decisions, unethical behaviors, or inaction.
- Implement strategies to address and overcome the factors that could otherwise lead to poor decisions, unethical behavior, or inaction.
- Create an environment where an attorney is more likely to follow the Model Rules of Professional Conduct.
Who Should Attend
This program will be useful to all attorneys in their practice of the law.
NOTE: The list price for the video program is $395. However, law professors and law students can receive FULL SCHOLARSHIPS by providing proof of academic affiliation (scholarships are also available for others, including judges, law clerks and government and non-profit lawyers). The scholarship application is available here.
(update: 9/24/19: The scholarship application can now easily be filled out online, making it much easier to gain access to the video).