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The Institute for Law Teaching and Learning (ILTL) is committed to serving the needs of full-time and adjunct law teachers from the United States and abroad. We believe that these resources contain ideas and insights appropriate for all law teachers.


Team-based Learning is a learner-centered teaching strategy designed to fully engage students in mastering course knowledge, skills, and values. While Team-Based Learning has been used for over 30 years in 23 countries in a wide range of fields, including business and medicine, very few law professors have been exposed to or adopted Team-Based Learning. The fundamental principle of Team-Based Learning is that together the team achieves more. A course is divided into learning units, and then each unit follows a pattern of students

  1. acquiring basic knowledge,
  2. being assessed and receiving immediate feedback about their mastery of basic knowledge, and
  3. applying that knowledge with their team to significant and challenging problems for the remainder of the unit.

This page contains resources that are helpful to managing a Team-Based Learning classroom, and provides samples for those who are transitioning from a traditional course to a Team-Based format. We highly recommend that those teachers who are transitioning to Team-Based Learning use these documents with the aid of a Team-Based Learning text, such as Team-Based Learning edited by Michaelsen, Knight, and Fink (2002) [see ABC-CLIO website OR] or an article, such as "Team-Based Learning in Law" by Sophie Sparrow and Margaret McCabe.

Forming and Managing Teams


Developing a Skills and Professionalism Curriculum: Process and Product,” 41 University of Toledo Law Review 327 (2010) (co-authored with Earl Martin).

  • Survey of Law School Curricula: 2002-2010(Editor, Catherine L. Carpenter, 2012; see Executive Summary)
    Serving as a follow up to its predecessor, A Survey of Law School Curricula: 1992-2001, the 2010 survey offers comprehensive empirical data on current law school curricula. In addition to tracking curricula trends, the 2010 Survey results reveal a renewed commitment on the part of faculties to review and revise their curricula to produce practice-ready professionals. (Order the book for $49.95 from the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar.)
  • Principles for Enhancing Legal Education(Gerald Hess, Paula Lustbader, Laurie Zimet) (Learn more and watch video)


Institute conferences


A rubric is a set of detailed written criteria used to assess student performance. Some rubrics are very detailed and used to score student performance, others are more generic and can be given to students in advance to show how their work will be evaluated. Rubrics can be used for almost any variety of assessment, including papers, exams, portfolios, clinics, documents, group work, graphics, and presentations. They can be used for formative (ungraded) assessments, as well as summative (graded) assessments and self-assessments.

Feel free to use and modify the sample rubrics below to help your students learn.


Simpson, Sandra L. "Riding the Carousel: Making Assessment a Learning Loop through Continuous Use of Grading Rubrics," 6 Canadian Legal Education Annual Review 35 (2011). [Read full text (1.4 MB PDF)]

Sample Rubrics

Civil Complaint

Client Letter


Legal Skills I

Legal Skills II

Legal Writing

Oral Argument




Writing for Law Practice

Institute for Law Teaching and Learning