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Mandating education

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The concept ‘mandatory professional education’ refer to the type of education exposed learners of those programmes deemed to be professions like Doctors and Lawyers for them to work effectively and efficiently when they go to the world of work.

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For instance, in the legal fraternity, lawyers are trained before they go into the field to improve the administration of justice which in turn benefits the public interest.Mandatory continuing professional education is a recommendation for all practicing lawyers in Zambia so that they remain active and up to date with information and current legal activities.This requirement is not only in Zambia but also in other countries as well like Britain, China, USA and Canada.Mandatory professional education in Zambia in the area of law is firstly portrayed at Zambian Institute of Advanced Legal Education (ZIALE) where all those who finished their law programmes are expected to go first before they can be admitted into the bar as practicing lawyers.Although it is part of their qualification, this education is also issued to those professionals already in the work fraternity but are expected to attend refresher courses in order to improve professionally in terms efficiency and effectiveness.The publication include the number of credits earned for completion of a particular program; (b) To establish procedures for the approval of Continuing Legal Education courses, whether those courses are offered within the Commonwealth or elsewhere.

These procedures should include the method by which CLE sponsors could make application to the Board for approval, and if necessary, make amendments to their application; (c) To authorize sponsors of Continuing Legal Education programs to advertise that participation in their program fulfills the CLE requirements of this Rule; (d) To formulate and distribute to all members of the Virginia State Bar appropriate information regarding the requirements of this Rule, including the distribution of a certification form to be filed annually by each active member.

Although mandatory professional education is said to have a lot of advantages as far preparation of professionals are concerned, there is a strong debate about it strength and weaknesses as discussed by Sandra Kerka (2008:2) who says that the following are the chief arguments of those opposed to MPE as quoted in (Brockett and Le Grand 1992; Morrison 1992; Nelson 1988; Queeney and English 1994): It violates adult learning principles, such as voluntary participation, the informal nature of adult education, and adult self-direction.

It promotes uniformity by disregarding individual learning needs and styles.

Each active member shall complete the required Continuing Legal Education courses each year during a specific period of time.

(2) In order to provide flexibility in fulfilling the annual requirement, a one year carryover of credit hours is permitted, so that accrued credit hours in excess of one year’s requirement may be carried forward from one year to meet the requirement for the next year.

Regular participation in Continuing Legal Education programs enhances the professional skills of practicing lawyers, afford them periodic opportunities for professional self-evaluation and improve the quality of legal services rendered to the public.