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There will be no compulsory four year course introduced in the Law School within the next few years. No decision on an optional course of similar nature will be reached for a year. The Faculty will continue to study the problem.
With these three general prospects, Edmund M. Morgan, acting Dean of the Law School, yesterday discussed the "four year bugaboo" which, with the omnipresent increase in the subject matter of law, increasingly troubles Law School and University heads.
Dean Morgan pointed out that the compulsory course is outlawed for the time by difference of opinion among authorities. Some are holding that all the school proposes to do is to teach men how to be lawyers; these generally argue also that four post-graduate years in this branch are excessive.
Others hold that is the job of the school to teach its students enough on all legal subjects to form a starting basis. They reply that if four and even seven years are not too many in medicine, four are certainly not too many in law.
Under the subject of an optional four year course, administrators confront the problem of reorganizing the first, second, and third year. all are agreed that it is a mistake to consider simply tacking on a fourth year.
A second problem deals with possible reform of college requirements in the direction of three year courses and creation of pre-law courses for undergraduates. For a law school of national scope, such as Harvard, almost all colleges would be forced to introduce such a reform.
"Meanwhile," Dean Morgan points out, "Nowhere except at Minnesota, a school of local scope, has a study run through its list of possibilities. We still need data."
Two other subjects caught the acting dean's attention. He regretted that many Harvard seniors were protesting against the stiffer entrance requirements to be introduced next fall. They probably would have worked harder had they known their college record was to count. Yet in any introduction some are unfortunately caught.
With regard to the Law School library and the new Littauer School, nobody knows how many of the law books would be wanted at some time by the Public Administrators. Conceivably almost all might. As far as the Law School is concerned it cannot well afford to allow its collection to be divided by parting with any of it.
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