The article explores the origins, foundations, and present development of the case method in the Civil Law tradition. It supports the idea that, properly defined, this methodology is very suitable for law, and not only in Common Law jurisdictions, but also the Civil Law and is even more appropriate in Continental law schools. There are indeed some undisputable common roots between Common Law and Civil Law regarding this pedagogical tool.
The misunderstandings and skepticism about the usability of this method in Civil Law education are challenged and answered. The article proves that the case method is a serious and useful scholarly tool; it is not a new pedagogical technique, but is rooted and was nourished in ancient educational tradition, especially in humanities and law; it fits law as well as business, not only in the
Common Law but also in the Civil Law tradition; it is deeply related to the entire history and development of the Civil Law.
The author claims that it is not accurate to affirm that the case method is inherent and exclusively bound to a system using case law as a primary legal source, such as the Common Law tradition. He points out that it can be a fertile method in the Civil Law tradition.
The work encourages a rebirth of this methodology for the teaching and learning of the Civil legal system, demonstrating that the Civil Law was taught with this methodology in the past and that present experience in contemporary law schools proves that it is an outstanding teaching tool in Civil Law jurisdictions.
The case method is not an exotic flower having no place in the garden of Civil Law, but an important pedagogical element for the renovation of the Civil Law, the revival of which ought to be encouraged.
Fernando M. Toller,
Foundations for a Revival of the Case Method in Civil Law Education,
3 J. Civ. L. Stud.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.law.lsu.edu/jcls/vol3/iss1/5