Let's talk about Lex: Narrative analysis as both research method and teaching tecnique in law
Date of this Version
Law is saturated with stories. People tell their stories to lawyers; lawyers re-tell their clients' stories to courts; legislators develop regulation to respond to their constituents' stories of injustice or inequality. This article describes an approach to first-year legal education that respects this narrative tradition. In particular, it outlines the curriculum design and assessment scheme that deploys narrative methodology as the central teaching and learning device. This narrative approach to legal education is a fresh twist on the teaching research nexus. The link between teaching and research has occupied growing interest in the scholarship of higher education. Initially cast as a clash of civilizations, more recently, teaching and research are seen as inter-related and complementary: research outputs can inform curriculum content, research skills can be incorporated in the course design, research on teaching effectiveness can guide course instruction, and research specific values of critical inquiry and evidence-based reasoning can steer the learning approach. However, this article argues that a narrative approach to legal education goes further than this. It does more than simply incorporate research into teaching; it transforms a recognised qualitative research method — narrative analysis — into a teaching technique.
This document has been peer reviewed.