San Diego Law Review


Steven Hartwell

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Steven Hartwell explores the growth and value of teaching experientially in this article. Experiential teaching emerged when clinical legal education grew in response to student demands for a more relevant education. The educational advantages of the field clinic model are substantial: students are more motivated to lean, the learning is direct and based on real experience, it entails both cognitive and affective domains, and raises ethical issues by working with real clients. The author examines David Kolb's theory of experiential learning; the basic premise of that theory is that effective learning takes place experientially in a continuous, circular four-stage sequence. The four-stage sequence consists of experience, reflection, theory, and application. The author suggests that simulation, a hybrid form of clinical teaching that historically grew out of the field clinic model, provides a complete experiential sequence.

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