Law & Tech: Embracing the New Paradigm

Published on Sep 01, 2017

Australian law schools face an imperative to engage with technologies: both in teaching and in understanding the law itself. Yet how many law academics are equipped to embrace what is surely a new paradigm? This presentation adopts Douglas Belshaw's framework of digital literacies, as a means of articulating the likely skill set necessary for teaching and researching in law. It concludes with some low-tech strategies for improving digital literacies.

This presentation was delivered at the National Association of Law School Administrators conference, Bond University, 7 September 2017.


Law & Tech

Embracing the paradigm shift
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Legal practice is changing (becoming 'disrupted')

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Education is changing

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Legal education must change too

Are legal academics ready?

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Keeping pace

  • New laws
  • New technologies
  • New ways of teaching
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Digital literacies: 8 essential elements

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Ingredients (Belshaw)

  • cultural
  • cognitive
  • constructive
  • communicative
  • confident
  • creative
  • critical
  • civic
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Barriers to entry more about cultural and social factors - habits of mind... (Belshaw)

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Digital literacies is about expanding the mind...having more tools to enjoy more of the digital world (Belshaw)

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Literacy in a digital world involves using digital tools to enable constructive social action (Martin)

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Communicating effectively using tech means knowing, understanding, applying norms (Belshaw)

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Confidence involves solving problems, managing one's learning in digital environments (Belshaw)

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Creativity: Do new things in new ways that somehow add value (Belshaw)

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Being critical = 'crap detection'

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Literacy practices should support development of civil society (Belshaw)

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Lo-tech strategies for digital literacies

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Push your boundaries, dispell the myth:
'I'm no good at tech'

Think about security

Press buttons! (It won't break)

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Look it up!

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Develop a community of (tech) practice

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Network (digitally)

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