, Mary Ann Robinson
, and Jean Sbarge
were presenters at the Teaching Methods session at the AALS 2012 Annual Meeting held in
Washington D.C., in January. Their topic was Teaching Professional Values Across the Curriculum: Engaging Student Learners in the Process of Becoming Lawyers. The purpose of this panel was to describe, demonstrate, and engage participants in a variety of techniques for teaching professional values across the curriculum.
Alison and Mary Ann showed one of the filmed vignettes they created addressing some core professionalism concepts, including the importance of timeliness, the need to work independently, and the duty of candor. They demonstrated how to use the vignettes to discuss professionalism issues in the classroom or at other forums. These video vignettes are available on Widener’s website
Jean discussed and demonstrated teaching techniques pertaining to: 1) classroom dynamics and management; 2) assignments; and 3) forums outside the classroom. Her presentation highlighted one particular technique – “Professional at Work” cards. These cards feature real-life professionalism dilemmas and offer students an opportunity to be active learners by stepping into the shoes of someone facing the real-life professionalism problem. One set of cards includes the professionalism dilemma, and the corresponding set includes the real-life professionalism lapse or professional response.