Osaka University Law School (OULS) is designed to educate professional lawyers. OULS not only provides profound legal instruction to its students, but also educates them for broader attainments in society and culture, strict ethics and rich humanity. OULS emphasizes the training of business lawyers with profound knowledge of culture, society, ethics and humanity.
The increasing number of lawsuits in Japan shows that the Japanese have come to rely on legal procedure to settle their disputes as much as the Americans. In addition, the complexity and diversity of these actions necessitate legal professionals playing an important role. Despite the increasing demand, lawyers who have enough ability and expert knowledge are in short supply, and such shortage has caused delays in many suits. To supply sufficient quantity and quality of legal specialists to meet the diversifying demands of the society, Osaka University Law School (OULS) is designed to educate professional lawyers.
Since its establishment in 2004, OULS has not only provided profound legal instruction to its students, but also educated them for broader attainments in society and culture, strict ethics and rich humanity. The number accepted each year is 80. A part of them belong to a 3-year study course while those who have already earned the law degree belong to a 2-year course. For admission, there is no restriction on age, profession, and knowledge of law. Whether an applicant has graduated from the Law Faculty or not, any university graduate can apply for admission.
The curriculum is composed of four courses: “Basic Law Courses”, “Basic Courses in Legal Practice”, “Fundamental Legal Study and Adjacent Courses”, “Advanced Courses”. The “Basic Law Courses” provide students with the fundamentals of law, such as constitutional law, administrative law, civil law, criminal law, commercial law, civil procedure law, and criminal procedure law. The “Advanced Courses” and the “Fundamental Legal Study and Adjacent Courses” give students diverse knowledge, which has not been covered by the “Basic Law Courses”. The “Basic Courses in Legal Practice” are designed to put the theory into practical use. Students can study each category systematically. Moreover, the curriculum, throughout the study of the basic subjects, is well designed to provide enough legal knowledge to those who study law for the first time. Subsequently, abundant practical education will improve the student’s legal skills.
The most noteworthy characteristics of the curriculum of OULS are the following: All lessons are conducted by the Socratic Method in small classes. Basically, all classes are limited to less than 50 students. These classes are not simply one-way lectures, but interactive discussions between professors and students (Socratic Method). Therefore, our lessons have high efficacy in legal training. Besides, in order to introduce the latest outcomes of study into the education, OULS cooperates with the Graduate School of Law and Politics of Osaka University and Osaka School of International Public Policy. OULS emphasizes the training of business lawyers. Taking advantage of the geographic feature of being located in one of the most prosperous commercial areas in Japan, the School arranges various subjects requiring solution of legal matters, which occur during the foundation, operation, and dissolution of a corporation; for example, corporate law, tax law, law on corporate reorganization, intellectual property law, and international transaction law. In addition, to satisfy the demands of a “legal-oriented” society, OULS encourages students to acquire professional knowledge. In order to provide practical training, the School has internship programs in law firms or in legal departments of corporations.
Outside the classroom, ALEC—Center of OULS (Advanced Legal Education and Career Center) has some projects for grappling with up-to date matters. Every year, we hold symposiums and guidance on forehead issues of lawsuits or disputes. These projects can help students to decide on their own direction as a legal expert.
The new bar exam for law school graduate students has been planned to be less competitive than the long-established exam. It is assumed nevertheless to be highly competitive. Succeeding in the new bar exam is, of course, our primary goal. However, OULS aims to provide students with sufficient legal knowledge and skills whatever legal profession they might choose. Therefore, the students’ successful future is the School’s final goal.
Osaka University Law School
1-6 Machikaneyama-cho, Toyonaka, Osaka 563-0043 Japan