Bond University
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Abstract

This paper reports the experiences of a self-selected cohort of students enrolled in second year law programmes at three New Zealand universities. The cohort experienced a very similar teaching and learning experience as a result of the New Zealand legal education regulatory regime and the teaching and assessment programmes adopted by the participating law schools. What students say about the time that they devote to their studies is reported, as is what students say that they do during scheduled classes and periods of self-study. The type and frequency of the contact that students have with their teachers and peers is also included, as are other “non-law” school influences having an impact on students’ studies. Students’ perceptions of what they have learnt and their actual and likely academic success are also reported. Students’ reported experiences are considered in the light of factors identified by research on student engagement and law student wellbeing as supporting student success. Students’ responses revealed that their experiences and, ultimately, their engagement with their studies were largely driven by the course and assessment design and teaching practice at the participating law schools. Suggestions as to how law schools might act on the findings are also included.

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