Summary of the Programme

The programme addresses the increased needs and demand for foreign language skills in the filed of law in several ways:

1) In order to solve the problem of the insufficient number of foreign language lecturers specializing in law, language teachers will be given the opportunity to spend re-training periods at related EU-institutions. Moreover, teacher-training courses in languages for special purposes (LSP) (law) will be organized at Croatian law faculties.

2) In order to meet the need for adequate language training of law students, foreign language curricula will be updated and developed at BA and MA levels at Croatian law faculties in keeping with the Bologna requirements.

3) Since Croatian legal practitioners who had completed their university studies before the present higher education reform, and who are now expected to take an active part in harmonizing Croatian legislation with the EU law, often lack both adequate language and information technology skills, intensive training courses will be organized for this important target group, focusing on foreign languages and also offering practical training in legal database research. Lectures/courses (in English, French and German) on relevant legal topics (primarily EU law) will also be given.

In order to address the above issues, an interdisciplinary Foreign Language Center for Law will be established. at the Faculty of Law, University of Zagreb, which will be in charge of development strategies in foreign language education for law in Croatia.

Within this framework, Croatian and EU lecturers will be invited to give lectures on various topics of interest, such as legal terminology, forensic linguistics, EU law and institutions, international law, human rights, European language policies and planning, intercultural communication, etc.

New courses will be developed, such as Language and law,  Intercultural communication in the field of law, Legal terminology, Legal translation etc. Topics related to the EU law will be integrated into foreign language teaching at all levels (BA, MA, training courses).

The existing language courses will be updated by introducing new, student-centered teaching methods enhancing the students' oral and writing skills.

Since most students take English courses only, efforts will be made to encourage students to take at least one additional language (German or French).

Due to increased mobility and professional contacts, experience and expertise of the EU consortium members will be transferred to the partner country members.

The results will be implemented at all the existing Croatian law faculties (Zagreb, Rijeka, Split, Osijek), and the project will provide a platform for useful exchange of experience. The existing foreign language curricula for law students on the BA and MA levels will be updated and developed throughout the duration of the project. The curricula for the new training courses for lawyers will be jointly developed by consortium members in the first project year. In the second project year, the language training courses for lawyers will be implemented at the coordinating institution (the Law Faculty, Zagreb), while in the third project year they will be implemented at the other partner country law faculties based on the gained experience and good practice.

New teaching materials will be developed. The program will incorporate quality control mechanisms and disseminate good practice and results.

The efficiency of teaching will be increased by obtaining adequate equipment, software, books and periodicals.

A three-day conference on Language and Law will be organized in Croatia as a platform for an exchange of views and experience, focusing on foreign language curricula development in the field of law, teaching methods, legal terminology, intercultural communication and forensic linguistics. Results of the conference will be incorporated into the foreign language curricula development for law on all levels.The target group includes both law students and legal professionals of different profiles who are involved in Croatian integration in the EU. Direct beneficiaries are members of the legal profession, whose work has crucial importance for Croatian integration into the EU, while indirect beneficiaries belong to all segments of Croatian society.

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