Understanding Core Competencies / Skills for Transactional Practice

BRIEF SURVEY

 
As you may know, an ABA task force has recently proposed to establish minimum requirements within ABA-accredited law schools for "experiential" learning curriculum related to building practical skills and competencies. (Similar proposals are percolating up from state bar association task forces as well.) A challenging question in designing these requirements concerns the appropriate definition of what constitute "skills and competencies," particularly for attorneys whose practice is principally "transactional" (in contrast to work that is oriented around litigation).

This survey is meant to gauge what sorts of core competencies established professionals in transactional practice areas consider important, and then to assess how that list squares with the current proposed guidelines. Although largely directed to practicing attorneys, the survey is also open to other professionals who work closely with practicing attorneys in transactional practices (such as bankers, accountants, financial advisers, etc.).

Many thanks for taking the time to fill out this survey. When complete, results of the survey will be made available on the website for the Berkeley Center for Law, Business and the Economy (BCLBE), at http://www.law.berkeley.edu/bclbe.htm.
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1. Are you a licensed attorney?
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2. How long have you been in (or did you) practice?
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3. What type of organization best describes your practice? (You should answer regardless of whether you are a licensed attorney).
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4. Are you a member of the ABA?
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5. In what state(s) are you admitted to legal practice? (Check all that apply)
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6. Are you male or female?
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7. What is your age?
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8. How would you characterize your race/ethnicity?
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9. Measured by numbers of professionals (e.g., practicing attorneys, accountants, financial managers, bankers, etc.), how large is your office? (Count only your local office, even if your firm has many other offices. Please answer this question even if you are not a practicing attorney).
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10. What percentage of your work would you describe as transactional in nature? (You should answer this question even if you are not a practicing attorney)
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11. Of that work that you consider transactional, in which of the following areas do you do significant work? (Check all that apply; please answer even if you are not a practicing attorney)
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12. What is your degree of support for efforts underway at the ABA and other state bar associations to mandate minimum skills / competencies training for law students?
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13. In light of your area of expertise, please evaluate the following list of skills/competencies for new lawyers. Specifically, how important is it for a lawyer to have achieved core competency in each skill in his/her first 2-3 years of practice?
Critically ImportantSomewhat ImportantMarginally ImportantLargely IrrelevantNo View
Accounting / Financial Statement Analysis
Business Strategy
Collaboration
Computer Programming / Architecture (e.g., Predictive Coding)
Conflict Resolution
Client Counseling
Cultural Competency
Document Drafting
Fact Development and Analysis
Financial / Valuation Techniques (e.g., PDV, IRR, CAPM)
Interviewing (e.g., clients, employees, witnesses)
Negotiation
Oral Advocacy
Organizational Behavior
Management of Legal Work
Professional Ethics
Self Evaluation
Spreadsheet Skills (e.g., Excel)
Statistics / Probability
Trial Practice
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14. For the same list of skills/competencies evaluated above, please characterize the setting in which you think each is most effectively taught.
Best taught through classroom lecturesBest taught through participatory simulationsBest taught through "on-the-job" experiencesBest taught through a combination of the above methodsNo View
Accounting / Financial Statement Analysis
Business Strategy
Collaboration
Computer Programming / Architecture (e.g., Predictive Coding)
Conflict Resolution
Client Counseling
Cultural Competency
Document Drafting
Fact Development and Analysis
Financial / Valuation Techniques (e.g., PDV, IRR, CAPM)
Interviewing (e.g., clients, employees, witnesses)
Negotiation
Oral Advocacy
Organizational Behavior
Management of Legal Work
Professional Ethics
Self Evaluation
Spreadsheet Skills (e.g., Excel)
Statistics / Probability
Trial Practice
15. For those who work in Law Firms: Does your firm offer formal training programs (either through a third-party vendor or internal staffing) in skills/competencies similar to those described above?
16. Do you have any other comments or questions about skills / competencies that law schools should concentrate on developing for new transactional attorneys?
THANK YOU For taking this survey. As noted above, the results will be posted on the BCLBE website
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