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Title: What links an eight-year old’s ‘journey to the moon’ and a law student going to court for their client? : orchestrating experiences conducive to student learning in a law clinic
Authors: Hall, Jonathan Richard
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: Clinical Legal Education (CLE) is a form of legal education in which students provide legal services to people under legal supervision. Little is understood about how students learn in law clinics. There has been particularly little empirical research into the nature of the law clinic learning environment, how students learn in that environment and what supports them in their learning, particularly concerning the role of the supervising teacher. This research, conducted in a pragmatic paradigm, reports a naturalistic inquiry into the experiences of eight law students under my supervision in the law clinic. A qualitative methodology is adopted utilising a variety of data sources: discourse in meetings with students, students’ assessed reflective work and their reflective diaries. It utilises both thematic analysis and sociocultural discourse analysis to answer the research questions. The research contributes further understanding of how inquiries in indeterminate situations lead to particular learning experiences. It also highlights important supports for student learning and particularly the teacher’s (the term supervisor interchangeably used) role in orchestration at all levels from long term planning of tasks to further understanding improvisation by the supervisor and students in the moment. Kaendler et al’s (2015) framework for teacher competencies for implementing collaborative learning and Hämäläinen and Vähäsantanen’s (2011) categorisation of tasks, interactions and resources are adapted to provide teachers from any discipline with further insights into their role in these forms of learning. It is concluded that additional research into collaborative student learning when not under supervision is necessary to further understand how and what students learn in these environments and how they can be further supported.
Description: PhD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences

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