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Teaching ‘AI and the law’ in law school
By Eran Kahana  |  Feb 05, 2024
Teaching ‘AI and the law’ in law school
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AI has come a long way in a short time and is no longer the exclusive domain of computer scientists and techies. Even aspiring lawyers are now learning about how its many applications will shape the future of the law, explains attorney, professor, and AI expert Eran Kahana.

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA - The age of artificial intelligence (AI) is an exciting time. When one thinks about it, even people who do not particularly care about AI cannot ignore it, because the tech is virtually everywhere and is highly accessible. One does not need a computer science degree, software coding skills, any specific level of computer proficiency, or even a special computer to experience AI. All one needs is an internet connection along with either a smartphone, tablet, basic laptop, or desktop.

This was not the case 15 years ago, which is about when I became interested in the relationship between AI and law. Back then, AI was a nebulous concept most had only ever seen or heard about in science fiction movies like The Terminator, Alien, and 2001: A Space Odyssey. While AI was also a fascinating topic at the time, it was shrouded in mystery, prone to hype, and most of its applications were neither user friendly nor easily accessible. Given this environment, it is unsurprising that individuals passionate about AI were few and far between.

Looking back, I must say the AI course I now teach at the University of Minnesota Law School evolved at precisely the right time. Even just one or two years ago, it was unlikely that a course as expansive as my ‘AI and the Law’ would have been offered at law school.

‘AI and the Law’ is a class designed for law students in their final year of study. The course takes traditional legal topics such as intellectual proper

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