2017/2018 CPLED Program Registration Opens March 1st

 CPLED, LESA Update, News  Comments Off on 2017/2018 CPLED Program Registration Opens March 1st
Feb 222017
 

2017/2018 CPLED ProgramAre you a 3rd year law student, recent graduate, or someone who needs to take the Alberta bar admission course (the CPLED Program)? Or, do you know someone planning to take the CPLED Program next year?

Registration for the 2017/2018 CPLED Program opens on March 1.


Register Online

Students can apply to the CPLED Program before having completed the requirements to be admitted as a student-at-law. If you’re thinking there is a chance you will need to complete the CPLED Program next year, mark March 1 on your calendar – 2017/2018 CPLED. Program registration opens at noon.

About the CPLED Program

The CPLED Program includes 7 online modules and 3 face-to-face sessions. Each face-to-face session is offered at 4 different times. Session enrolment is limited and time preferences are granted on a first-come, first-served basis. Students are encouraged to register early.

More Details

You can view the CPLED Program Key Dates on.lesa.org/keydates for details about when the face-to-face sessions and online modules are running.

The registration deadline is May 31, 2017. Students who do not apply by this date are subject to a non-refundable late filing fee. Head to our CPLED for Students website to find out what to expect from the CPLED Program and for other key information.

If you have any additional questions about the CPLED Program or the registration process, contact LESA’s Student Coordinator, Craig Edhart direct: 780.969.3554 or by email.

We’re looking forward to having you in the 2017/2018 CPLED Program!

2016/2017 CPLED Opportunities

 CPLED, LESA Update, News  Comments Off on 2016/2017 CPLED Opportunities
May 132016
 

2016/2017 CPLED OpportunitiesEach year, LESA partners with experienced legal professionals to host Alberta’s bar admission CPLED Program. We’ve already had more than 335 students apply for the 2016/2017 CPLED year, and we’re still taking applications. Having this many students means we need a lot of support from Alberta’s legal community to help the CPLED Program run smoothly. That’s why today’s blog shares upcoming CPLED opportunities that you can get involved with.

One of the CPLED Program goals is to help students develop entry-level lawyer competencies. As such, LESA recruits facilitators – who provide feedback to students in preparation for their competency evaluations – and evaluators – who grade these final submissions.

The desire to help new, aspiring lawyers develop their competencies is one reason why more seasoned lawyers choose to be a part of the program. If you’re one of those lawyers who wants to give back, you’re in luck – LESA has plenty of CPLED opportunities to fill.

LESA is currently recruiting facilitators and evaluators for both the 7 online modules and the 3 face-to-face sessions that comprise the CPLED program (see the 2016/2017 Key Dates).

Online Modules

Each online module is open for 3 weeks.

Learning Group Facilitators (LGFs) commit about 10–20 hours a week to CPLED while the module is open, including time spent providing feedback on assignments. LGFs monitor the progress of their learning group (usually 18–20 students) and interact with students through an online learning management platform. The responsibilities of LGFs include:

  • preparing for each module;
  • facilitating online discussions;
  • responding to student questions;
  • reviewing weekly student submissions; and
  • providing feedback.

Learning Group Evaluators (LGEs) grade approximately 30–40 competency evaluations (final submissions). LGE duties conclude approximately 2 weeks after a module closes.

Both LGFs and LGEs are provided with mandatory training to explain the duties and expectations of their roles. Additional module-specific LGF training occurs about a week before each module opens.

Face-to-Face Sessions

Each face-to-face session runs over 3 or 4 days in Edmonton and Calgary, and individual volunteers usually commit 1 day of their time to the CPLED Program. LGFs help guide discussion and answer questions on teaching and learning exercise days, and LGEs grade final assessments on competency evaluation days.

LESA provides training materials and a pre-session conference call to ensure that everyone understands their roles and responsibilities.

Apply for CPLED Opportunities

Please note: CPLED facilitators and evaluators must have a minimum 4 years at the bar.

If you would like to get involved, complete the applicable application form(s).

Separate application forms must be completed for face-to-face and online modules. Send all inquiries and application forms to Bronwyn Connolly at bronwyn.connolly@lesa.org.

If you are currently on our face-to-face volunteer list but would no longer like to be contacted, please email Bronwyn Connolly (bronwyn.connolly@lesa.org), and we will remove your name.


LESA recruits experienced members of the Alberta legal profession as facilitators and evaluators. These individuals are critical to delivering a highly-valued educational experience and defensible, high-stakes competency evaluations. In scheduling facilitators and evaluators, considerations include optimal fit, diversity, program sustainability, and a desire to create a rewarding experience for all involved. LESA strives to consider a mix of demographics, practice areas, practice contexts (e.g. private practice, government, in-house, etc.), firm size, geographical locations, learning styles, experiences, abilities, and perspectives. LESA values the contributions of seasoned LGFs; it also strives to create opportunities for new LGFs. This approach supports long-term sustainability and avoids overburdening a limited subset of individuals.

2015 Reflection and Holiday Closure

 LESA Update  Comments Off on 2015 Reflection and Holiday Closure
Dec 212015
 


In this season of celebration and reflection, we want to take a moment to say thank you to those who have enabled us to serve the educational and professional development needs of Alberta’s legal community.

With the hundreds of volunteers who worked with LESA this year, we have a lot to be thankful for, and we genuinely appreciate the expertise and time our volunteers share with us. We know many of you feel the same way about your colleagues who give back to the profession. Here’s what one volunteer had to say in a recent interview:

I always learn from volunteering with LESA; I always love connecting with the other lawyers who volunteer – and I’m always impressed by how much they do and the energy they have.” – Helen R. Ward, Duncan Craig LLP.

Thanks to the commitment of all our volunteers, 2015 has proved to be an eventful year.

  • We launched the LESA Library – a comprehensive online resource offering you access to Alberta-specific legal content, anytime, anywhere.
  • We held 4 online modules and 3 face-to-face sessions in the CPLED Program, with over 400 students registered in the program.
  • We offered 38 professional development seminars in the past 4 months, including programs for legal support staff, general skills and knowledge programs for all practitioners, and seminars in the areas of business law, family law, litigation, and real estate.

We hope that you’ve enjoyed 2015 as much as we have!

From all of us at the LESA, thank you for your support in 2015! We wish you a happy holiday season and a prosperous new year!

The LESA office closes beginning on December 24, 2015. We return on Monday, January 4, 2016.

We look forward to welcoming you back at LESA in January!

CPLED Program: Tips for Success

 LESA Update  Comments Off on CPLED Program: Tips for Success
Feb 202014
 

The Canadian Centre for Professional Legal Education Program (CPLED Program) is the licensing program of the Law Society of Alberta. It is also offered in Manitoba and Saskatchewan and, from the law societies’ point of view, it is considered a highly valuable and consistent educational experience for students-at-law.

LESA administers the CPLED Program on behalf of the Law Society of Alberta with LESA’s Executive Director Jennifer Flynn directing the CPLED-Alberta Program.

“We realize that this is a challenging time for students, so CPLED has been designed to bridge the gap between law school and the practice of law. Our goal is to provide a highly valued learning experience while at the same time providing a fair, valid, and reliable assessment,” explains Jennifer.

To help students prepare for the CPLED Program, recent graduates Justin Kingston and Marissa Tordoff share their tips for success in this video.

Learn more about the CPLED Program at www.lesa.org.

 

Feature Learning Group Facilitator: Donna Moore

 LESA Update  Comments Off on Feature Learning Group Facilitator: Donna Moore
Feb 182014
 

Donna MooreLearning Group Facilitators (LGFs) and Learning Group Evaluators (LGEs) provide valuable assistance and feedback to articling students in the Canadian Centre for Professional Legal Education (CPLED) Program. Each year, LESA recruits approximately 40 experienced members of the Alberta legal profession to become LGFs/LGEs.

Donna Moore is one of the LGF/LGEs recruited in 2007. She was called to the Bar in Saskatchewan in 1997, in Alberta in 2004 and in British Columbia in 2009, and she currently practises Aboriginal law and litigation at Eagle Law Group near Calgary on the Tsuu T’ina Nation.

Donna decided to volunteer with the CPLED Program after working as a graduate student lecturer and sessional lecturer at the University of Saskatchewan while she was working on a Masters in Sociology and attending the College of Law. She was also a board member of the Public Legal Education Program in Saskatchewan and active in community legal education, so it seemed natural for her to get involved with LESA when she came to Alberta.

“When I moved to Alberta, I started looking around for similar opportunities to share and give back. When a colleague of mine mentioned that the Bar Admission Program (now CPLED Program) was looking for people, I contacted LESA immediately,” shares Donna.

One of the things Donna enjoys most about working with CPLED students is engaging with the learners.

“I see how they explore issues and analysis in different ways. When we introduce ourselves to our learning group at the start of a new module, I ask for a reply with a little bit about them in it. I enjoy hearing about their lives, education, families, children, and articling experiences. Many are happy to share, and I read about long days, triumphs, stresses and new babies. The learners’ ideas, perspectives, and hard work inspire me. I have been doing this for a long time now, and so I get to ‘see’ them develop in their careers, and I am proud of the work CPLED does in shaping excellent lawyers.”

Donna also appreciates the connections and support she gets from the CPLED community.

“CPLED has continually grown and improved since I started as an LGF/LGE, and I am excited for what is yet to come.”

Thank you to Donna Moore and all our LGFs and LGEs who volunteer their time to the CPLED Program.

If you are interested in volunteering as a LGF/LGE, contact Bronwyn Connolly at bronwyn.connolly@lesa.org.

 

Feature Learning Group Facilitator: Donna Hallett

 LESA Update  Comments Off on Feature Learning Group Facilitator: Donna Hallett
Dec 172013
 

cpled-logo2010-newThe Canadian Centre for Professional Legal Education (CPLED) Program delivers pre-call training to articling students each year. A significant portion of the program is delivered online with the assistance and feedback of Learning Group Facilitators (LGFs) and Learning Group Evaluators (LGEs).

Donna Hallett, experienced lawyer and registered collaborative family lawyer at Getz & Associates in the Town of Strathmore, has been an LGF/LGE for approximately 10 years. She initially got involved because she enjoys teaching and wanted to “give back.” In addition, she realized that it was difficult to accommodate a student’s educational needs in a small firm.

“When a colleague mentioned to me that the Bar Admission Program (now CPLED Program) was looking for LGFs, it seemed like a good fit,” explains Donna.

Over the past decade, what Donna has appreciated most about being an LGF is her interaction with students and others involved in the CPLED Program.

“I enjoy contact with students very much, but I also value the opportunity to interact with the rest of the CPLED community, whether that’s administrative staff, program staff, or other LGF/LGEs.  I know I benefit from seeing students develop their skills, and from the discussion boards and conference calls each module.”

It’s because of the dedication and commitment of LGFs and LGEs like Donna Hallett that CPLED students can gain practical experience as lawyers. LESA is grateful for all the LGFs and LGEs who support the CPLED Program with their time and expertise.

If you are interested in becoming an LGF/LGE, contact Bronwyn Connolly at bronwyn.connolly@lesa.org.

 

CPLED Program Learning Group Facilitators and Evaluators: Ensuring Quality Education for Students

 LESA Update  Comments Off on CPLED Program Learning Group Facilitators and Evaluators: Ensuring Quality Education for Students
Oct 232013
 

The Canadian Centre for Professional Legal Education (CPLED) Program is the bar admission course in Alberta, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan. In Alberta, the Legal Education Society of Alberta (LESA) delivers the CPLED program on behalf of the Law Society of Alberta. In order to deliver a highly-valued educational experience and defensible, high-stakes competency evaluations, LESA recruits approximately 40 experienced members of the Alberta legal profession as online Learning Group Facilitators and Evaluators each year.

The facilitators and evaluators who work with learning groups in the online environment are known as “learning group facilitators” or “LGFs” and “learning group evaluators” or “LGEs.”

LGFs make a weekly time commitment of 10 to 20 hours per week for each three-week module to help students understand the materials, assignments, and competency evaluations well enough to be able to successfully demonstrate entry-level competence. Their goal is to engage, guide, and motivate a learning group of approximately 18 to 20 students as well as provide a safe and conducive environment for learning and communication exchange.

Selected LGFs, known as LGEs, also grade the final submissions (competency evaluations) for each online module. The Legal Education Society of Alberta selects qualified LGFs to grade approximately 30-40 competency evaluations at the end of each module. Training is provided.

Arman Chak is an experienced LGF who not only enjoys mentoring CPLED students, but he also loves the engagement that occurs.

“Students sometimes come at legal issues from very different perspectives, and I love that. I want that to happen. I want students to email me; I want students to, in their assignments, write down what they’re thinking. This is the best atmosphere for students to learn in.”

If you are interested in becoming an LGF/LGE, contact Bronwyn Connolly at bronwyn.connolly@lesa.org.

CPLED Competencies: What Entry-Level Lawyers Need to Know

 CPLED, LESA Update  Comments Off on CPLED Competencies: What Entry-Level Lawyers Need to Know
Sep 172013
 

Do you know what competencies students in the CPLED Program are developing? Do you know what entry-level lawyer competencies are being evaluated?

In Alberta, the CPLED Program is designed to fulfill the requirements of a competency profile. More than just looking at substantive legal knowledge, CPLED students are also required to demonstrate a wide range of skills including:

  • Ethics and professionalism skills
  • Oral and written communication skills
  • Analytical skills
  • Research skills
  • Client relationship management skills
  • Practice management skills

Students are also expected to successfully perform numerous tasks. These tasks include identifying ethical issues, interviewing a potential client, drafting contracts and pleadings, writing letters to clients, researching legal issues, negotiating resolution of a dispute, and conducting a Chambers application.

To ensure that students achieve these CPLED competencies, they take part in a blended learning environment that includes three face-to-face modules, six online modules, an online Ethics & Professionalism competency evaluation, and an online Trust Accounting self-study course.

After completing each module, students are required take part in a Competency Evaluation which requires them to simulate tasks that are typically encountered at the entry-level practice of law. To be successful, students must obtain a standing of “Competency Demonstrated” (a grade of at least 60 percent) in all ten competency evaluations.

“Our goal is to provide CPLED students with a highly valued learning experience while at the same time providing fair, valid, and reliable assessment that puts everyone on equal playing field,” explains LESA’s Executive Director and Director of CPLED Program Jennifer Flynn.

Hear more about the CPLED Program in this video:

To learn more about the CPLED Program and CPLED competencies, visit www.lesa.org.

 

 

 

Legal Research and Writing: Bridging the Gap from Law School to Practice

 CPLED, LESA Update  Comments Off on Legal Research and Writing: Bridging the Gap from Law School to Practice
Aug 292013
 

p-phThe Legal Research and Writing module is the first online module for CPLED students in the 2013/14 educational year. The session begins on September 5. Thanks to our Learning Group Facilitators, students will have experienced lawyers to guide them through the assignments and help prepare them for their competency evaluations.

One of our Learning Group Facilitators is Carrie Styczen. She was called to the Alberta bar in 1998, and practiced at Thornborough Smeltz Gillis (now Thornborough Smeltz LLP) before taking time off to be a stay-at-home mom. While practicing law, Carrie focused on civil and matrimonial litigation, real estate, and wills and estates work.

Carrie, who has been a Learning Group Facilitator since 2005, believes the Legal Research and Writing module will likely look more familiar to the students than other modules because they are used to conducting legal research from their years in law school.

“What I like about this module is that it acts as a bridge between the academic focus of law school research and the practical aspect of real world legal research,” explains Carrie. “Law school research assignments are designed to foster creative legal thinking and to develop and test the students’ knowledge of the subject matter. In practice, a lawyer conducts research for a specific purpose – to address a client’s specific issue and to assist the lawyer in providing informed and practical recommendations tailored to the client’s circumstance and needs.”

This module, and the CPLED Program in general, helps the students in this transition of melding the academic and the practical, which is necessary to succeed in a career as a practicing lawyer.

Thanks to Carrie Styczen and all the Learning Group Facilitators for their commitment and support of CPLED students.

Questions about the CPLED experience? Contact Student Coordinator Amanda Properzi  at 780-969-0551 or  visit www.lesa.org.

 

What is the CPLED Program?

 CPLED, LESA Update  Comments Off on What is the CPLED Program?
Aug 132013
 

If you are a student-at-law, you have likely heard of the CPLED Program. It stands for the Canadian Centre for Professional Legal Education and is the licensing program of the Law Society of Alberta. It is also offered in Manitoba and Saskatchewan and, from the law societies’ point of view, it is considered a highly valuable and consistent educational experience for students-at-law.

LESA administers the CPLED Program on behalf of the Law Society of Alberta with LESA’s Executive Director Jennifer Flynn directing the CPLED-Alberta Program.

 “We realize that this is a challenging time for students, so CPLED has been designed to bridge the gap between law school and the practice of law. Our goal is to provide a highly valued learning experience while at the same time providing a fair, valid, and reliable assessment,” explains Jennifer.

To prepare students-at-law to practice law in Alberta, the CPLED Program is based on a variety of competencies including:

  • Lawyering skills
  • Practice management skills
  • Ethics and professionalism
  • Legal knowledge

“CPLED is a valuable learning experience because it is emulating the professional experience in that when you go through the CPLED process you’ll learn about: meeting with the client, doing research, and then applying research in a real way,” says Arman Chak, Learning Group Facilitator for the CPLED program.

Justin and Marissa, recent graduates of the CPLED Program, share their perspective.

Visit the LESA website to learn more about the CPLED Program.