Design in Legal Education

A visually rich, experience-led collection
exploring what design can do for legal education.

A visually rich, experience-led collection exploring what design can do for legal education.

In recent decades design has increasingly come to be understood as a resource to improve other fields of public, private and civil society practice. Today legal design – that is, the application of design-based methods to legal practice – is increasingly embedded in lawyering across the world.

This new publication brings together experts from multiple disciplines, professions and jurisdictions to reflect upon how designerly mindsets, processes and strategies can enhance teaching and learning across higher education, public legal information and legal practice. It will be of interest and use to those teaching and learning in any and all of those fields.

A conversation between the editors

Emily Allbon

Emily Allbon

Associate Professor of Law
City Law School
Amanda Perry-Kessaris

Amanda Perry-Kessaris

Professor of Law
Kent Law School

Explore the chapters

Using personas, vignettes, and diagrams in legal education

by Clare Williams

Personas, vignettes, and visual technologies of narrative can help educators tell memorable and engaging stories about the law that both illustrate and interrogate theory and methods. In illustrating core concepts, these approaches can simplify complexity, reduce text fatigue, and create spaces for knowledge co-production. In interrogating legal theory, they can offer quick-access routes to sites where meaning is created and shared whilst simultaneously sidestepping some of the limitations of linguistic framing.

This chapter shows how personas, vignettes, and visual approaches might be used in legal education. It introduces the persona of “Academic Ann” and explores how she introduces her students to an area of methodological and theoretical complexity. The personas and vignettes explored in this chapter are waiting to meet you at Clare’s research blog.

Dr Clare Williams is an ESRC-SeNSS Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at Kent Law School, exploring visual and interactive ways of communicating socio-legal methods, frameworks and lenses in accessible and engaging ways, which she blogs about on her website.

Her work looks at how we do, talk, and think about legal and economic phenomena. She uses insights from an economic sociology of law and its core concept, embeddedness, to argue that if we want to “build back better”, and respond innovatively to the crashes, crises, and catastrophes facing society, we need alternative vocabularies, grammars, and mental models.

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