Legal LEGO: Model Based Computer Assisted Teaching in Evidence Courses

By Schafer, Burkhard; Keppens, Jeroen | Journal of Information, Law and Technology, January 2007 | Go to article overview

Legal LEGO: Model Based Computer Assisted Teaching in Evidence Courses


Schafer, Burkhard, Keppens, Jeroen, Journal of Information, Law and Technology


Contents

Abstract
1. Introduction
 1.1 On the role of evidence scholarship in
 legal education
 1.2 Developing user requirements
2. Judex non calculat--naive physics in the
law curriculum
3. Dead bodies in locked rooms
 3.1 Model-based diagnois
 3.2 From LEGO to Scenario
 3.3 Knowledge base
4. User Interface
 4.1 User input
 4.2 System output
5. Outlook for future work
6. References

ABSTRACT

This paper describes the development of a new approach to the use of ICT for the teaching of courses in the interpretation and evaluation of evidence. It is based on ideas developed for the teaching of science to school children, in particular the importance of models and qualitative reasoning skills. In the first part, we make an analysis of the basis of current research into "evidence scholarship" and the demands such a system would have to meet. In the second part, we introduce the details of such a system that we developed initially to assist police in the interpretation of evidence.

KEYWORDS

ICT, Expert Systems, Evaluation of Evidence, Reasoning

1. INTRODUCTION

This paper introduces a model based approach to the use of ICT for the teaching of evidence evaluation and interpretation. In the first part, we develop a "user requirement" for such a system, arguing first the case for extended teaching of evidence evaluation in law curricula. We then analyse the problems that so far have prevented such courses from becoming a more regular feature of legal education. We conclude that a qualitative reasoning approach to science, which emphasises the importance of concrete models over abstract mathematical formula, is best suited to help lawyers to learn how to interact more efficiently with the relevant experts.

Over the past decade, the use of computer based modelling techniques for science education has been vigorously promoted by the qualitative reasoning group around Ken Forbus (Forbus and Whalley 1994; Forbus 2001; Forbus, Carney, Sherin, and Ureel, 2004). In the second part of the paper, we introduce a program that shares its underlying philosophy with the approaches to computer assisted science teaching proposed by this group. However, our task differs in two crucial aspects from the type of application the qualitative reasoning group had in mind. First, lawyers need not become scientists, but they need improved skills to interact with scientific experts. For this, it is not sufficient to improve their understanding of science, they also need to acquire the skills of re-translating what they learn about science into a format appropriate for legal proceedings. As it is at present not possible to include visual scientific models directly in a court decision, our approach pays more emphasise on the process of verbalising the evaluation of evidence.

Second, lawyers cannot compartmentalise science the way a science curriculum does. In any given court case, scientific evidence from multiple disciplines may play a role. In that respect, their task is even more demanding than that of a single-discipline scientific expert. Teaching the ability to compare evidence across disciplines is therefore more important for lawyers than in depth knowledge of a specific subject.

1.1 ON THE ROLE OF EVIDENCE SCHOLARSHIP IN LEGAL EDUCATION

In legal practice, the overwhelming majority of disputes that ever reach the courts are decided on issues of fact. Many more are aborted before they even reach adjudication, because there is insufficient evidence to pursue the issue further. Prosecutors have to decide if the evidence gathered by the police gives them sufficient chance for success in trial, and in some jurisdictions they will advise the police what further investigations to carry out to make a charge stick. Counsel for the defence, and lawyers representing parties in civil litigation, have to be able to identify from the often confused accounts of their clients what facts they are able to establish. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Legal LEGO: Model Based Computer Assisted Teaching in Evidence Courses
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.