The Hybrid Online Future of Degree Obtainment
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The William Mitchell College of Law is now in the process of finalizing a new hybrid degree program’s details. William Mitchell College of Law will offer the first American Bar Association-accredited hybrid on-campus/online J.D. program starting in 2015. This hybrid curriculum involves online classes punctuated by intense classroom time.

It is the first of its kind program and will feature two interrelated elements which is intensive, in-person, experiential learning and an online course work that integrates foundational doctrine and skills.

The hybrid program option will be offered alongside with William Mitchell’s 113 year old part time program as well as its 40 year old full time program. The program will not be fully online, but it will involve a lot of e-learning. Ordinarily, the ABA standards require two-thirds of the law-school curriculum to take place in a classroom.


The students who enroll in the new hybrid program will be on campus for at least one week each semester. Students will also be participating in 56 intensive hours of realistic simulations and other coursework. The students will prepare for their on-campus work through an e-learning curriculum designed by William Mitchell faculty to integrate legal doctrine with practical legal skills. In addition, William Mitchell College students will have the opportunity to complete externships in their communities under the supervision of practicing attorneys. This innovative hybrid of on-campus and online learning will provide new access to those searching a rigorous, experiential, ABA-accredited J.D. degree. The new, four-year curriculum, which will be offered as an alternative to the current part-time and full-time programs, will embrace e-learning and make the most of student’s classroom time.

Earlier this month, William Mitchell received a variance from the American Bar Association allowing it to combine its nationally recognized skills-training curriculum with the expanded use of digital technology.

Dean Eric Janus says the goal of this program is to “Think much more creatively about how to get students to become expert practitioners.”

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Image Credit: www.web.wmitchell.edu



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