Monthly Archives: August 2019

Teaching Behavioral Legal Ethics: A Blog and Literature Review

As we head into a new semester, I thought it would be a good time to cull from our archives blog posts that are helpful to teaching Behavioral Legal Ethics. Here is my list, with links for those who are interested:

In addition, there is growing scholarship about the pedagogy of Behavioral Legal Ethics. I have started a bibliography, broadening it to include behavioral ethics and psychology/legal education more generally. Here is my initial list (in addition, I would encourage anyone teaching BLE to be familiar with its foundational scholarship, starting with Behavioral Legal Ethics). Please let me know if there are other articles on BLE pedagogy that should be included (I can be reached at teldred@nesl.edu). Thanks!

Behavioral Legal Ethics:

Scholarship Update

New article of interestNancy B. Rapoport & Joseph R. Tiano Jr., Legal Analytics, Social Science, and Legal Fees: Reimagining “Legal Spend” Decisions in an Evolving Industry, 35 Ga. St. U. L. Rev. (2019).

This article, co-authored by Professor Nancy Rapoport, who has written extensively about Behavioral Legal Ethics, discusses “how legal analytics can help law firms and clients understand, monitor, and improve the components that comprise bills for legal fees and expenses.” Part II of the paper surveys some of the behavioral reasons — including anchoring, social pressure and cognitive dissonance — that can influence the costs of legal services. Download it from SSRN here.

Summer Fun with Illusions (and a metaphor to boot!)

As August moves slowly toward the beginning of the school year, I find myself thinking about teaching legal ethics in the new semester.  As I discussed in my paper on the subject, when I teach Behavioral Legal Ethics I start by showing my students a few visual illusions, just to get them thinking about the limits of perception. My favorite, which I show in video form, is the Checker Board Illusion. Here it is for those not familiar with it:

As I was tinkering around with Twitter today, I came across another illusion, which is a must see. I have no idea how it works, but that it does is amazing. Here it is (and quite a metaphor for our times, I might add!):