CNB and e-learning
Pursuant to Law No. 71-1130 of 31 December 1971, the regional professional training centres for lawyers (CRFPA, or law schools) are responsible, in accordance with the missions and prerogatives of the National Council of Bars and Law Societies (CNB), for providing initial and continuing professional training for lawyers. The CNB’s mission is to “define the principles for the organization of training and to harmonize its programmes. It coordinates and controls the training activities of the CRFPAs”.
In application of these texts, for a number of years now, the CNB has been harmonizing the training programmes of the CRFPAs and coordinating them by designing and implementing e-learning training courses. This tool has proved to be an excellent driving force in this respect.
In 2018, CNB has accelerated this process by forging a partnership with the European Expertise & Expert Institute (EEEI).
The CNB has indeed identified that many lawyers are poorly or inadequately equipped in their practice in certain technical subjects that are not covered during their initial training. In order to respond to this problem, the NBC decided to create targeted distance training modules. As these subjects are related to judicial expertise, the CNB relied on the EEEI, which has both the competence to steer training projects and the ability to mobilize recognized technical experts in the relevant disciplines and to coordinate their work with other players in the judicial world, such as magistrates or academics.
This partnership has led to the creation of a first series of online training courses:
- In 2019: an e-learning path aimed at helping lawyers to support SMEs and VSEs in the implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which since 28 May 2018 has strengthened the security of personal data and introduced a general obligation to secure information systems;
- In 2020: two e-learning courses aimed at enabling as many lawyers as possible to have the necessary reflexes to advise their clients properly on cybersecurity and cybercrime;
- By 2021, three e-learning courses are planned to enable as many lawyers as possible to be prepared for the reality of forensic assessments.
Once designed and implemented, these training courses are deposited on the 360LEARNING platform used by each CRFPA. They can then register the lawyers in their jurisdiction, under the coordination of the CNB.
To date, more than 2,000 lawyers have already been registered by CRFPAs for the courses relating to GDPR and cybersecurity. Moreover, as of spring 2020 and the closure of the law schools due to the national confinement, these courses have also contributed to a form of pedagogical continuity for the benefit of some 3,700 student lawyers. Interactivity with the designers of the training is ensured in order to answer the questions of the learners, with the platform functioning as a social network.
It should be noted that these training courses are accessible on computers as well as on tablet or smartphone, from the 360LEARNING application. They thus meet the mobility needs of both lawyers and trainee lawyers.
Naturally, these distance training courses cannot, however, overlook the need for face-to-face training workshops that meet the need for practical role-playing in small groups. That said, e-learning makes it possible to ensure a good level of training that is standardized at national level, it being specified that certain technical subjects do not attract sufficient enrolments at each regional level. E-learning thus remains a flagship tool for the National Council of Bars and Law Societies in its mission to harmonize curricula and coordinate law schools. And there is every reason to believe that this training tool will be put to good use by a growing number of professionals.
Former President of Bar – Former Chairman of CNB’s Education Commission (2018-2020)