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JILT 1996 (1) - Newcastle Law School - Comments

The Second BILETA Report
into Information Technology and Legal Education

Comment from
Newcastle Law School

University of Newcastle

The following comments are endorsed by Newcastle Law School, and relate to paragraphs of the Executive Summary.

2.2 Given the report may be used by some who persist in thinking that a law degree is merely a stepping stone to legal practice, it should be made explicit that later careers can include almost anything.

2.4 We can see that to make the trust fund idea attractive to donors the hardware will have to be dedicated to the use of Law Schools. Yet we believe non-dedicated equipment offers the HE community the best value for money. If there is a trust fund, the arrangements need careful drafting so as avoid excluding those schools who have gone down the distributed networking route. Here, any student-side networked PC is potentially usable by any registered student of the University. It is rare to find medical students working on Law Library PCs or law students working on Medical Library PCs, but the fact that they can, and sometimes do, should not mean Newcastle is excluded from the objects of the trust.

2.5 In Newcastle's view the ratio of 10:1 is an inadequate projection for the next five years. The overall ratio here is 8.5:1 now, and will fall to 7.9:1 in the current spending round. We think the target should be 7:1.

2.6 Newcastle reaches that standard now. Perhaps some comment should be made about staff acquiring familiarity with CAL packages. Unless they do, the prospects for integrating CAL into the curriculum are not good.

Date of publication: 7 May 1996

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