Concord University School of Law, Nation’s Only Online Law School, Grows From 33 Students in ’98 to 600 Today; School Reaches Major Milestones

February 8, 2001

Concord University School of Law, the nation’s only wholly online law school, and part of Kaplan, Inc., opened its virtual doors in the fall of 1998, and is now the nation’s second largest part-time law school.

Since that time Concord has reached a number of milestones, including:

A diverse, motivated, and talented student body of working professionals and others whose family and/or work obligations have made Concord Law School the right choice for them:

  • Approximately 600 students are enrolled in the Juris Doctor

    and Executive Juris Doctor programs.

  • Concord is the 2nd largest part time U.S. law program based

    upon size of the first-year entering class.

  • Students include alumni of such prestigious universities as

    Columbia, Harvard, Yale, MIT, the University of California

    Berkeley, Duke and the University of Chicago.

  • More than one-third of Concord’s students already hold

    advanced degrees.

  • Students hail from 48 US states and 9 other countries, and

    many live in suburban or rural communities, where there is

    little or no access to a law school education.

  • In an optional question on each Concord student’s application,

    approximately one-third of the 55% of the students responding

    to the question classified themselves as “non-white.”

  • Concord’s student body includes educators, small business

    owners, CEOs, physicians, bankers, pilots, police officers,

    retired and active military officers, city planners, nurses,

    compliance analysts, dentists, consultants, accountants, sales

    representatives, engineers, real estate developers,

    stay-at-home parents, and family caregivers.

A distance learning model that has captured the attention of academics and government officials as an example of sophisticated technology enabling access to a traditionally classroom-based education:

  • Focus of a William Mitchell Law Review Faculty Article by Robert E. Oliphant entitled “Will Internet Driven Concord University Law School Revolutionize Traditional Law School Teaching?” (Volume 27, Number 2, 2000), which stated: “A decade ago, an institution like Concord would have been considered as nothing more than science fiction. Few could have imagined assembling some of the nation’s leading scholars and through the use of technology and testing, deliver legal education courses over the Internet to the homes of students, who, for a variety of reasons, could not attend a traditional law school….One can hope that somewhere, in the not too distant future, Concord will be recognized as a major force that caused traditional law school teaching methods and offerings to be changed to reflect the digital age.”

  • Inclusion in the Web-based Education Commission’s report “The Power of the Internet for Learning: Moving from Promise to Practice”, issued on December 19, 2000, in a section entitled Learning at ‘Virtual U’. Concord Law School Provost Andrew Rosen had testified before the Web-based Education Commission about Concord, and specifically about access and equity issues as well

    as regulatory barriers.

  • Cover story in Training Magazine, December 2000 “A Model Class”, which stated: “Certainly, an online law school is bound to have its share of skeptics. But Concord’s high retention rate and its innovative learning tools are drawing increased attention and positioning the school as a model distance learning program. Developers and instructors of online training sessions would be

    wise to emulate this learner-focused approach.”

  • Cover story in Virtual University Business Digest, October 2000 “Concord Law — The Respectable Internet Alternative”

A Dean whose vision and passion for web-based learning has stirred the interest of lawyers and educators, and who has provoked discussion about online teaching and mentoring techniques, as well as the unusual use of assessments and feedback in the law school setting:

  • Recognized as a pioneer in distance learning, Concord Law School

    Dean Jack Goetz has been asked to showcase Concord’s learning platform at conferences including The Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI) Annual Conference for Law School Computing, and IQPC’s e-Learning Summit, and is featured as a speaker at upcoming events including the Law School Admissions Council’s Annual Meeting, and the American Association of Law Schools Conference on New Ideas for Experienced Teachers. ABA law schools have also requested Dean Goetz to present Concord’s

    platform to their faculties.

  • Dean Goetz was recently named to the Distance Education and

    Training Council’s Board Of Trustees, as well as the Online Standards Task Force and is a member of the Research and Educational Standards Committee.

Outstanding legal academics and practitioners who are pioneers in providing a legal education entirely online:

  • Concord has grown from 6 faculty members in September 1998, when

    the first class size was 33 students, to a total of 50 faculty members including Deans, Professors, Supplementary Lecturers and Instructors serving a population of 600 and growing. In addition to leading academics such as Harvard Law School Civil Procedure professor Arthur R. Miller, who serves as a Supplementary Lecturer, and renowned Criminal Law lecturer Rafael Guzman, Concord’s top-notch faculty includes law school deans and

    professors, judges, litigators, and academics.

  • Concord’s faculty members log in and teach from 20 states

    (Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina,

    Oklahoma, Virginia, and Washington, DC).

Licensed in the state of California, Concord has received accreditation under a pilot program from the Accrediting Commission of the Distance Education and Training Council. Completion of the JD program permits graduates to apply for admission to the California Bar, and upon passing the California Bar Examination, graduates are qualified to practice in California courts, and may also apply to practice in many of the Federal courts.

For more information, please visit Concord is part of The Kaplan Colleges group of institutions ( which includes Kaplan College and The College for Professional Studies. Each of the institutions within The Kaplan Colleges is separately accredited and authorized and offers a variety of career-oriented programs in both online and traditional classroom formats. Kaplan, Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Washington Post Company (NYSE: WPO).

Contact Information:

Kaplan, Inc., New York

Press:Liz Lindley, 212/492-5890