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My research focuses on Australian PLT practitioners’ engagement with scholarship of teaching and learning (“SoTL”) in institutional practical legal training (“PLT”). I adopt “practice research” to critically study individual and extra-individual accounts of SoTL in PLT. Individual accounts were drawn from semi-structured interviews with thirty-six PLT practitioners. Extra-individual accounts were drawn from statutory instruments, policy documents, speeches, legal education histories, official legal education reports, and peer-reviewed literature. I used qualitative methods to analyse these accounts, informed by sociological and cultural theories.
Based on my research, I argue that SoTL is “underdone” in PLT practice, some reasons for this, and why it matters. I propose that we enrich PLT and improve its status, by conceptualising PLT practitioners’ work as “practice” within a context-sensitive community of practice, informed by scholarship of teaching and learning, and using practical strategies.