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The role of emotion in undergraduate legal education in England and Wales

Jones, Emma Jane


Emma Jane Jones


This thesis will explore the current and potential role of emotion in undergraduate legal education in England Wales.
It will discuss the lack of acknowledgment of emotion within both the doctrinal and liberal traditions of legal education and the limited recognition that has been accorded to emotion more recently as a result of the development of socio-legal and other approaches to the law degree. Parallels will be drawn with changing philosophical and scientific conceptualisations of emotion, which have shifted from viewing emotion as irrational and potentially dangerous, to viewing it as intertwined with, or even part of, cognition and intelligence. The different ways in which emotion can, and arguably should, be incorporated within legal education will then be evaluated. The influence of neo-liberalism on both higher education generally, and legal education specifically, has led to a focus on skills which could incorporate the use of emotion, in particular emotional intelligence, into legal education as a form of soft
skill or competency. However, the final three chapters of this thesis seek to demonstrate that relying on this conceptualisation alone is too narrow (as well as being ideologically driven). A detailed discussion of the role of emotion within learning and its impact on the wellbeing of both law students and the legal academy shows that emotion is more than a fotm of soft skill and should become an integral part of undergraduate legal education in England and Wales to improve both the academic attainment and the psychological health of those involved.


Jones, E. J. (2016). The role of emotion in undergraduate legal education in England and Wales

Additional Information Indefinite embargo on electronic copy access - Non-compulsory. Enrolled pre Sept 2011 regulatory change and choosing not to permit electronic access. For access to the hard copy thesis, check the University Library catalogue.

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