Teaching Individual Representation Alongside Institutional Advocacy: Pedagogical Implications of a Combined Advocacy Clinic
August 18, 2010
Bibliography: Jayashri Srikantiah and Jennifer Lee Koh, Teaching Individual Representation Alongside Institutional Advocacy: Pedagogical Implications of a Combined Advocacy Clinic, 16 Clinical Law Review 451 (Spring 2010).
A growing number of clinics have adopted a combined advocacy model, in which students both represent individual clients and participate in broader-scale projects to achieve social change. Combined advocacy clinics permit students to learn about working for social justice in a variety of capacities, from small-case lawyering to larger advocacy work on behalf of institutional clients. Students simultaneously acquire a range of skills: the traditional lawyering skills associated with small case work—including interviewing, counseling, fact development, and negotiation—as well as the ability to conduct advocacy, including legislative work, impact litigation, local advocacy, and public education. This Article examines the pedagogical implications of the combined advocacy model. In particular, how should clinical teachers adjust their supervision methods when working with a student on both an individual case and a larger advocacy project? While the traditional student-ownership model of supervision generally facilitates student learning in the individual small-case context, that model is a poor fit for student work on larger advocacy projects. The Article proposes a supervisory model based on collaboration between students and clinical instructors as to the advocacy component of student clinical work.