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This article joins a growing body of scholarship on the pedagogy of transactional law and skills. This article challenges the traditional pedagogy of teaching law students to think like a lawyer and argues that law schools should shift the analytical framework of a litigation-dominated model, which is typically taught in the first year, to a model that incorporates transactional skills teaching into the first year law school curriculum. This approach will (1) create a greater balance of skills taught in the first year and (2) address the mandate to train more practice-ready lawyers. This article argues that the best place to begin incorporating transactional skills training is within the first year skills curriculum. Part II of this article defines transactional skills. Part III makes the argument that transactional skills generally should be incorporated throughout the law school curricula, including, in the first year. Part IV explains why transactional law should be taught in the first year of law school. Next, Part V explains how transactional skills teaching can be integrated into the traditional framework of first year skills by adding transactional components to the existing framework. Finally, Part VI addresses several challenges that may arise in connection with such integration.


Education Law | Law | Legal Education


This article was originally published in the Ohio Northern University Law Review.