Student Learning Outcomes and Performance Criteria

Student learning outcomes and performance criteria are the skills students will obtain upon completion of their legal education. Graduates of Lincoln Law School of Sacramento will demonstrate competency in the following areas necessary for admission to the California Bar and effective and ethical participation in the legal profession consistent with an entry-level practitioner.

Assessment of course and program objectives takes place during the program, and various methods are used to measure student success in terms of learning outcomes. Through a direct review of student progress, Lincoln Law School is able to measure individual proficiency and mastery of general learning outcomes, as well as the performance criteria for each specific course. These methods include midterm and final examination, as well as skill level, demonstrated in practice exams. For “skills” classes (Moot Court, Trial Practice, Civil Law Pleading and Practice, Criminal Law Pleading and Practice, etc.), student-learning outcomes are measured through both written assignments and class presentations. Through indirect evidence, Lincoln Law School is able to measure the student’s self-perceptions of their learning and experience with the program and curriculum, including whether student-learning outcomes and performance criteria have been met. The indirect evidence includes anonymous evaluations of each individual course and professor. We continually reassess our student-learning outcomes and performance criteria to ensure an ever-improving legal education.

Student Learning Outcomes and Performance Criteria 

  1. Possess the knowledge and understanding of substantive law and procedure.

Graduates will demonstrate the ability to

  • identify and comprehend the principles of the substantive subjects tested on the California Bar and Multistate Professional Responsibility examinations as well as a variety of elective classes, including the evolution of the law and public policy from which the law is derived;
  • identify and understand the fundamental terms, rules and principles of law including significant alternative formulations such as minority rules; and
  • identify and comprehend the processes of federal and state courts in the United States and the function of precedent.

 

  1. Possess the ability to identify and understand key legal issues.

Graduates will demonstrate the ability to

  • identify each potentially applicable legal theory as it relates to the facts;
  • identify each legal rule relevant to each potentially applicable legal theory; and
  • identify the legally significant facts relating to each applicable legal rule.

 

  1. Possess the ability to conduct legal research.

Graduates will demonstrate the ability to

  • identify and effectively employ the fundamental tools of legal research;
  • design and implement a logical research plan;
  • employ appropriate resources and technologies to retrieve, use, and manage research materials; and
  • distinguish binding from persuasive authorities and assess the weight of authority.

 

 

  1. Apply knowledge and critical thinking skills to perform competent analysis, reasoning and problem solving in a legal context.

Graduates will demonstrate the ability to

  • critically read the applicable authority, including identifying the key rules within each authority;
  • identify those facts in an actual or hypothetical scenario which are legally significant to the application of each potentially relevant legal rule;
  • analogize the facts to and distinguish the facts from those of precedent cases; and
  • draw appropriate conclusions based on the applicable law and facts and evaluate potential counterarguments to predict the likely outcome.

 

  1. Possess communication skills including writing and oral advocacy in a legal context.

Graduates will demonstrate the ability to

  • speak in a clear, concise, well-organized, well-reasoned, and professional manner;
  • speak effectively in both objective and persuasive styles as appropriate to the circumstances;
  • write clear, concise, well-organized, well-reasoned, and professional documents;
  • write effectively in both objective and persuasive styles as appropriate to the circumstances;
  • cite appropriate authority including any relevant contrary authority.

 

  1. Possess the knowledge and understanding of practical skills associated with the practice of law.

Graduates will demonstrate the ability to

  • listen to legal professionals, clients, and others;
  • determine the steps necessary to obtain and investigate facts relevant to their client’s case;
  • identify appropriate methods of both oral and written discovery;
  • understand and apply rules of basic statutory construction; and
  • participate in a mock trial including the preparation of pretrial motions, conducting jury selection, conducting direct and cross-examination, drafting jury instructions, preparing post-trial motions, and employing post-trial remedies.

 

  1. Possess the knowledge, understanding, and appreciation of ethical responsibilities and apply that knowledge to the resolution of ethical and other professional dilemmas.

Graduates will demonstrate the ability to

  • identify and explain the applicable laws and rules governing legal ethics;
  • recognize and identify professional and ethical dilemmas when presented in actual or hypothetical situations;
  • apply knowledge of legal ethics to the representation of clients, performance of duties as an officer of the courts, and resolution of ethical dilemmas; and
  • exercise professional judgment through conduct consistent with the legal profession’s values and standards.