Tutors lack experience, study finds

ONLY half of the law tutors currently teaching in the UK have two or more years' practical experience in the legal profession, and a vast number of those in the old universities also lack a teaching qualification, a study reveals.

Produced by Anglia Polytechnic University, the report, 'Today's law teachers: lawyers or academics?' says only 14 per cent of law teachers in traditional universities have a teaching qualification, compared with 68 per cent in new institutions.

It shows 53 per cent have a professional legal qualification but of those only 51 per cent have worked in the legal profession for at least two years.

The startling survey, conducted during summer 1994, covers old and new universities, colleges of higher education, and colleges specialising in law vocational courses.

One of the report's authors, Professor Patricia Leighton, says the response to the results will be varied.

“The reaction very much depends on what you see as the function of a degree course,” says Leighton.

“Many people would argue that a degree course is not a period of vocational training and that the Law Society and the Bar have got two years to deal with the vocational aspects of training.”