Skip to content

Role of Advisor

What is the Role of the On-Site Supervisor for Externships?

Approved field placement supervisors must:

  1. Normally be actively licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction in which their supervision will take place and must have actively practiced law for three years before beginning their supervision.
  2. Initial and sign the Tri-Part Externship Agreement at the beginning of the semester, and furnish a mid-semester evaluation and a final advisory report assessing the student's overall performance.
  3. Provide regular and specific feedback to the student with respect to particular assignments, and have at least two formal scheduled review sessions with the student to review progress--one at mid-semester and the other at the conclusion of the externship.
  4. Ideally, have contact by phone or in-person with the Faculty Supervisor or Director of Externships at least once during the semester and, if for any reason it is felt necessary, more frequently.

What is the Role of the Faculty Supervisor?

Faculty members assigned to the externship programs are expected to take an active role in the education of the student for a variety of purposes, including finding out what and how the student is doing, providing an academic frame of reference to the student, and facilitating the student's reflection and externship learning experience. It may be helpful for the faculty member to contact the field supervisor either in person or by telephone sometime around mid-semester in order to check progress and problems.

The method of faculty sponsorship and evaluation is within the faculty member's discretion and should be fully explained to students before commencing the externship. At a bare minimum (except for semesters away) there must be periodic face-to-face meetings with the externing student. In addition, Faculty Supervisors are encouraged to:

  • Review and provide feedback on students' written reflections
  • Review and provide feedback on copies of written work completed at students' externship placements
  • Communicate with field supervisors via telephone or in person
  • Contribute to externship seminar sessions (for first-time externs participating in the Externship Seminar)

A final summary and evaluation from the student and field placement supervisor(s) will be solicited by the Externship Office at the end of the semester. On the basis of this data, the faculty member will formally evaluate the student on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis only. If, in the informed judgment of the faculty member, after consultation with the student's externship supervisor(s), the Externship Office, and the Dean's Office, the student has performed less than satisfactory work, the faculty member may either award credit proportional to the amount of satisfactory work completed, or, if necessary, award the student an unsatisfactory grade.