One size fits all? Multiple intelligences and legal education

Jones, Emma (2017). One size fits all? Multiple intelligences and legal education. Law Teacher, 51(1) pp. 56–68.



This article argues that teaching and learning methodologies used in undergraduate law degrees are gradually shifting. The traditional model relied on a largely standardised, “one size fits all” approach which assumed that developing legal reasoning through attendance at lectures and participation in tutorials and seminars would produce a successful lawyer. However, today’s law schools are adapting to a large and diverse body of law students, many of whom will move on to careers outside the legal profession. This is being recognised by an increasing plurality of approach within undergraduate legal education, aided in no small measure by an increasing focus on skills. This article will discuss the theory of multiple intelligences, which rejects the idea of a single measure of intelligence and instead identifies a number of different intelligences with both biological and cultural underpinnings. It is argued that acknowledging these multiple intelligences and using them as an organizing concept to vary and diversify teaching and learning methodologies could help to further avoid the “one size fits all” approach and enhance the student experience.

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