Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from CALI)
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI)
CALI LogoWithTagline green.jpg
Founded June 22, 1982; 35 years ago (1982-06-22)
Founder Harvard Law School and University of Minnesota Law School
Type Education
Focus Legal Education, Technology, Access to Justice
Area served
United States, Some International
Product CALI Lessons, A2J author, eLangdell Press, Classcaster, CALI Excellence for the Future Awards
Method Computer-Aided Learning and Teaching
200+ US Law Schools
30+ Undergraduate Programs
Various Other Organizations and Schools
Key people
Executive Director, John P. Mayer
Director of Internet Development, Elmer Masters
Director of Curriculum Development, Deb Quentel
Software Services Manager, Sam Goshorn
Systems Administrator, Dan Nagy
Marketing Coordinator, Scott Lee
Content Coordinator, Jessica Frank
Membership Coordinator, Ronella Norris

The Center for Computer-Assisted Legal Instruction, also known as CALI, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit consortium of mostly US law schools that conducts applied research and development in the area of computer-mediated legal education.[1] The organization is best known in law schools for CALI Lessons, online interactive tutorials in legal subjects,[2][3] and CALI Excellence for the Future Awards (CALI Awards), given to the highest scorer in a law-school course at many CALI member law schools.[4] Nearly every US law school is a member of CALI.[5]

CALI was incorporated in 1982 in the state of Minnesota by the University of Minnesota Law School and Harvard Law School.[6] The cost of membership to CALI is US$7,500 per year for US law schools; free for legal-aid organizations, library schools, state and county law librarians; and US$250 per year for law firms, paralegal programs, undergraduate departments, government agencies, individuals, and other organizations.[7]

CALI Lessons[edit]

In the early 1980s, CALI set the precedent for creation and use of computer-assisted legal instruction exercises.[8] CALI pioneered pre-packaged, interactive, computer-based legal education materials in text form with its CALI Lessons.[9] CALI Lessons are web-based tutorials on a variety of legal subjects known as CALI Lessons.[10] Currently there are over 1,000 lessons in over 40 law school subjects in CALI's library of lessons.[10] The lessons are free to all CALI member schools' students.[11]

Tutorials are authored by law faculty using CALI's lesson authoring software called CALI Author.[12][13] CALI Author is available to download for free by member school faculty.[14]

Conference for Law School Computing[edit]

CALI sponsors an annual conference with computer-related programming for law school professionals.[15] The annual CALI conferences "have been a focal point for the interchange of ideas and innovation in legal education."[16]

CALI first hosted The Conference for Law School Computing in 1991 (then known as the Conference for Law School Computing Professionals) at Chicago-Kent.[17] From 1991 to 1994 the conference was hosted at Chicago-Kent, and since 1995 the conference has been hosted on-site by various CALI member law schools.[18]

CALI Excellence for the Future Awards[edit]

CALI member law schools can opt to give CALI Excellence for the Future Awards ("CALI Awards") to the students who have the highest scores in individual law school courses.[4] CALI Award winners are chosen by the professor of the class.[19]


CALI's old logo
Old logo 1980s-2009
  • 1971 - Harvard Law School and The University of Minnesota Law School begin collaborating on the development of computer-based exercises for use in law school curriculum and in the development of a computer network for sharing these exercises.
  • 1982 - CALI is incorporated as a Minnesota non-profit by the University of Minnesota Law School and Harvard Law School.
  • 1991 - First Conference for Law School Computing Professionals (aka CALIcon) is held at Chicago-Kent College of Law. Eventually "Professionals" will be dropped from the conference name. CALIcon is hosted at Chicago-Kent annually until 1995 when CALIcon begins visiting a newly built law school every year.
  • 1993 - CALI joins the World Wide Web. Lessons will still be only available via CD-Roms or dedicated terminals at law schools until 1999.
  • 1996 - CALI passes the 100 CALI Lesson mark in 23 legal subjects.
  • 1996 - CALI declares 1996 to be the Year of the Electronic Author and encourages law professors to create electronic books for law students.
  • 1997 - The CALI Excellence for the Future Awards are created. These awards are given to the highest scoring individual in each law school course at over 100 participating law schools. The program is free for CALI members to join and to date, CALI has distributed over 200,000 awards.
  • 1999 - CALI Author™ debuts! This is the software tool that powers CALI Lessons. It also allows for CALI Lessons to be run from the web. CALI Author™ was and remains free for any member affiliated employee to use for educational or non-profit uses.
  • 2000 - The first CALI Lessons produced by our authoring fellowship program are published. CALI Lesson fellowships allow a group of 4-6 faculty members to work closely together to produce CALI lessons covering a large segment of a topic.
  • 2004 - CALI releases white paper for CODEC, the Consortium for Distance Education from CALI.
  • 2004 - Faculty enhancements for CALI Lessons are released: LessonLink, a tool that allows for faculty members to view the performance of students on CALI Lessons on a question by question basis; AutoPublish, which allows faculty to edit or create a CALI lesson and publish it on the CALI website; and LessonText, which puts the entirety of a CALI Lesson on a single webpage for easier review.
  • 2004 - CALI has over 400 lessons in 30 legal subjects.
  • 2005 - Classcaster®, CALI's podcasting and blogging platform is released. Within a year, there will be over 1000 legal education podcasts.
  • 2007 - InstaPoll, CALI's free classroom polling tool that requires no special software is unveiled.
  • 2007 - CALIspaces, a social network for law students is created.
  • 2007 - A2J Author®, created in collaboration with Chicago-Kent's Center for Access to Justice & Technology, is released. This tool creates guided interviews that assist Self-Represented Litigants in navigating the court system.
  • 2007 - For the first time, over 1,000,000 CALI Lesson runs are completed within a calendar year.
  • 2009 - The Legal Education Commons is created. An early open educational repository, this is meant to be a place for legal educators to share syllabi and course tools. It was closed in 2014 with the website re-design. Stay may be back!
  • 2011 - CALI5 Viewer, the overlay that allows students to take CALI Lessons is upgraded to no longer require flash. This means that CALI lesson can be taken on mobile devices and Apple computers.
  • 2012 - The A2J Clinic program is created. This partners law school clinics with legal aid organizations.
  • 2012 - CALI begins publishing free and open casebooks and supplements under the eLangdell® Press imprint.
  • 2013 - Time Trial®, a card and online game designed to test a student's knowledge of important legal dates is created.
  • 2013 - CALI passes the 900 CALI Lesson mark.
  • 2013 - CALI sends out its 200,000 CALI Excellence for the Future Award®.
  • 2014 - The current version of the CALI website is unveiled. It operates on Drupal 7.0 and is mobile responsive.
  • 2014 - A2J Author® 5.0 is released. This transforms A2J into an entirely web-based authoring tool.
  • 2015 - A2J Author® hits 3,000,000 usages.
  • 2016 - CALI passes the 1,000 CALI Lesson mark.


  1. ^ Tonsing, Dennis (2003). One thousand days to the bar, but the practice of law begins now. Wm. S. Hein Publishing. p. 96. ISBN 0-8377-3726-5. 
  2. ^ Info: CALI Lessons (Seattle University Law Library), 2009-09-10, retrieved 2010-03-04 
  3. ^ Kraynak, Joe (2004). Que's Official Internet Yellow Pages. Que Publishing. p. 282. ISBN 0-7897-3252-1. 
  4. ^ a b Wise, Carolyn (2007). The Law School Buzz Book, Book 2007. Vault Inc. pp. 218, 497. ISBN 1-58131-424-8. 
  5. ^ Wang, William K.S. (June 30, 2000). "Restructuring of Legal Education Along Functional Lines" (PDF). Journal of Contemporary Legal Issues (17): 331. Retrieved 2010-06-16. [permanent dead link]
  6. ^ Drake, Miriam A. (2003). Encyclopedia of library and information science, Volume 1. Dekker Encyclopedias Series. 1. CRC Press. p. 654. ISBN 0-8247-2077-6. 
  7. ^ Who Can Join CALI?
  8. ^ Gramling, Jennifer; Thomas Galligan; Jean Derco (June 30, 2000). "New Approaches to Law Education: Making the Case for Web-based Learning". The Journal of Information, Law and Technology (JILT) (2). Retrieved 2010-06-16. 
  9. ^ Martin, Peter (1999). "Imminent Challenges to Professional Identities and Institutional Competence (Commentary)". CiteSeerX accessible. 
  10. ^ a b CALI Lesson Listings
  11. ^ Spizman, Justin (2007). Insider's Guide to Your First Year of Law School: A Student-to-Student Handbook from a Law School Survivor. Adams Media. pp. 223–224. ISBN 1-59869-084-1. 
  12. ^ Teachers Wallet ( Online Tutoring Step-By-Step. Online Tutoring. p. 104. 
  13. ^ Fodden, Simon (2007-04-05). "Slaw: CALI Author". Retrieved 2010-03-04. 
  14. ^ CALI Author
  15. ^ Edwards, John Duncan (2001). Emerging solutions in reference services: implications for libraries in the new millennium. Routledge. p. 14. ISBN 0-7890-1360-6. 
  16. ^ Oliphant, Robert E. (2001–2001). "Will Internet Driven Concord University Law School Revolutionize Traditional Law School Teaching" (PDF). William Mitchell Law Review. 29 (841): 844. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-19. Retrieved 2010-06-16.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  17. ^ Conference for Law School Computing. Chicago, IL. June 7–8, 1991. Retrieved 2010-03-04. 
  18. ^ Conference for Law School Computing Archives
  19. ^ John Marshall Law School Press Release on CALI Awards

External links[edit]