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[Comments added in italic teal]
[The current version of this article may be found at http://www.dla.utexas.edu/depts/philosophy/faculty/leiter/GUIDE.HTM. This is an excerpt from an earlier version that reflects matters from 1997 and before]
Information and Advice for Persons Interested in Teaching Law
Prepared by Brian Leiter
for students and alumni of the University of Texas School of Law
(with advice and input from Dean Michael Sharlot, Associate Dean Cynthia Estlund,
and Professors Jack Getman and Douglas Laycock)
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"One important caveat about these three paths to law teaching. Most law schools are, more than anything else, looking for potential scholars. All of the paths described are thought to be good proxies for identifying those with scholarly potential. But one way to establish one's scholarly potential is by, in fact, publishing scholarly work before looking for a job. Indeed, increasingly, candidates for law teaching already have published one or more articles in law reviews by the time they enter the academic job market. You might think about work you have done in law school--a seminar paper, an independent study, or the like--that might be revised and submitted for publication to law reviews. Don't publish something just for the sake of getting something published however--publishing a piece of shoddy work will hurt more than help. On the other hand, a work you publish does not have to be the single best thing ever written on the subject! Part of the value of having publications to your credit is that it shows you are serious about a career in scholarship."
Also, if you are considering seeking to teach alternative dispute resolution, which many people are who end up on this part of the website, I would seriously suggest that you consider the L.L.M. program at Columbia (University of Missouri)'s law school [these are my comments I've added in teal, in case you were wondering what I meant by the above]. I have yet to see a certificate program that is an adequate substitute (and I taught in one that also offers a masters degree and that I think very well of -- but that I would not recommend as a substitute for an L.L.M.), nor am I that impressed with most of the doctoral programs (though there are three I like, but that is well beyond the scope of this excerpt). For the opinions of the author of the article, from which this short bit was excerpted, visit his page on his web site.
http://www.dla.utexas.edu/depts/philosophy/faculty/leiter/GUIDE.HTM -- for current information.
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"One thing to keep in mind is that candidates for law teaching in certain areas--e.g., constitutional law, jurisprudence--are in over-supply, while candidates in other areas--e.g. real estate law, commercial law, property, intellectual property, alternative dispute resolution, trusts & estates--are often in short supply. You should think about what areas of law you might cultivate as areas of expertise which would make you especially attractive as a candidate for a law teaching position."
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The original essay is quite long and very useful)
For a current view, please visit the originating site: http://www.dla.utexas.edu/depts/philosophy/faculty/leiter/GUIDE.HTM.
In addition, intro.htm can get you started on the other source of useful information on the process.