Legal Education Research Network LERN


Upcoming Events

LERN events poster May 2017

  • 10th May 2017 - Demystifying the Review Process The review process, typically for journals but also for books, is at the heart of quality mechanisms in publishing and higher education. However, this review process can seem to be shrouded in mystery. Who are the reviewers? How do they achieve that role and, critically, how do they do their work? What are they looking for in a 'publishable' article? How formal and structured are the processes and do they vary from journal to journal? Are the processes effective?

    LERN, in conjunction with The Law Teacher and the Journal of Law and Society is organising a Workshop to consider these issues. It will be led by Professor Phil Thomas, long serving editor of the Journal of Law and Society, and Chris Ashford, current editor of The Law Teacher. They will be joined by others with reviewing and editorial experience. This will be an invaluable workshop for those seeking publication, those wishing to be involved in the review process and those interested in the topic more broadly. Book one of the available seats here.

  • 16th-17th June 2017 Centre for Legal Education Conference An upcoming event hosted by Nottingham Law School on Legal education, Legal Practice and Technology. Call for papers and Submission Form.

  • 26th September 2017 The Futures of Legal Education is a joint, one day conference, held in partnership with the Open University. Participants have the chance to explore the current and potential opportunities and challenges facing legal education.  The day will include keynote speakers, including Professor Fiona Cownie, a plenary panel and a number of papers on a wide range of issues including the impact of the TEF, the innovative use of learning theories, the incorporation of technology and the importance of the affective domain. Call for papers here. Tickets available here.

  • 30 September 2017LERN Research Grants deadline. Find more about the grants and how to apply here.

  • 5th December 2017Annual Showcasing of the Work of the LERN Research Grantees and Reception. The LERN Showcase give our LERN Grantees the opportunity to present their research projects funded through the LERN grants.


Recent Events

  • On Monday 10th April 2017 LERN held a special session at the Association of Law Teachers (ALT) Annual Conference at Portsmouth University on Stories of research projects in legal education - bringing together researchers from the LERN funded projects to explore many of the practical issues surrounding the undertaking of a project.
  • On Wednesday 8th March 2017  Dr Debra Malpass (Head of Research and Analysis) and Mijanur Rashid (Statistical Modelling Analyst) at the SRA held a Workshop devoted to designing robust surveys and de-mystifying statistical data.
  • On Wednesday 8th February 2017 Dr Chalen Westaby led a Workshop on ‘Researching emotional labour’ Ths was a very stimulating yet highly practical session.

  • On Wednesday 7th December 2016 we held our Annual Showcasing event.   This is an increasingly popular event and one that makes a huge contribution to our overall understanding of developments in legal education. It was followed by our usual reception and opportunities to catch up with colleagues and generally network.
  • On 3rd November 2016 LERN and the Law Teacher hosted an event at City University on the review process in academic journals and books. The Workshop entitled ”Reviewing for Academic Journals and Book Publishers” considered all elements of review.

  • On the 20th October 2016 we were back at IALS for another event by popular request. This time it was preparing for a project or research work and the Workshop is entitled ;The Importance of Literature Searches and research preparation’. Although we have explored in Workshops topics like using social media, changes in publishing, open access we have not provided a Workshop dedicated to the literature search itself. This was a ‘hands on’ event, led by Professor Fiona Cownie and Tony Bradley and a ‘must’ for new or newish researchers and for established researchers but who want to know about developments on source materials and the like.

  • A joint event with Portsmouth Law School on Academic Writing and Writing for Research at the University of Portsmouth on 12th October 2016.

  • LERN hosted a joint event with Sheffield University Law School on16th September 2016. The title of this event was ‘How do we research and teach equality and diversity in legal education?’  The event brought together the opportunity to reflect on the state of our knowledge on equality and diversity issues affecting, in particular, legal education, along with exploring the implications for research, including for source materials and research methods.

  • A popular and important LERN Workshop entitled Effective Dissemination of Research Findings was held at the IALS on 16th June 2016. For a full report on outcomes from this workshop and results of a short questionnaire please see LERN Report 16 June 2016.

  • LERN contributed to the ALT's Annual Conference, March 20-22nd 2016 at Northumbria Law School in Newcastle. An interactive Workshop on March 20 was facilitated by Professor Lisa Webley, our TEAM LERN Co-ordinator, on ‘Building Relationships for Effective Research Mentoring’. We brought together experienced researchers willing to support new/emerging/less experienced researchers into legal education with those who would likely value mentoring. This is a unique opportunity to explore how best to work together and get productive outcomes from the relationship. Further information about  the event and TEAM LERN generally will shortly be on the LERN website.  If you have any queries about this, please contact the LERN Administrators (

  • On 3rd February 2016 Professor Lisa Webley from the University of Westminster led a LERN workshop on Demystifying Quantitative Data in Legal Education Research. This hands-on workshop used real raw data to enable analysis and understanding. It will focused on four main areas: Types of quantitative data; Reading quantitative data; Analysing your own quantitative survey data; and Using and analysing other people's quantitative data.

  • On Wednesday 9th December 2015 LERN held its Annual Showcasing of the Work of the LERN Research Grantees and Reception. The LERN Showcase event gave our LERN Grantees the opportunity to present their research projects funded through the LERN grants. The symposium materials and presentations can be found in the LERN Online Repository.
  • The LERN Symposium 2015 took place at IALS on 23 September 2015, reuniting 40 research experts in education, legal education and the legal profession. A few photos with the speakers and participants can be found in our online album. The symposium materials and presentations can be found in the LERN online repository. More details about the event can be found in the News section.
  • A highly interactive session on using and designing questionnaires took place at IALS on 10th June 2015. The session looked at questions such as: Online or not? How do I construct a sample; how do I know if it’s adequate? How can you ensure a good response? What are the typical problems that can arise and how might you be able to resolve them? How do I ask questions that are clear and unambiguous?
  • Professor Jane Ching's report from the Nottingham Law School Centre for Legal Education international conference on legal education and access to justice, June 2015

LERN Workshops

We have  run Workshops on a wide variety of topics over the years; they have tended to take one of two forms. The first is exploration and debate over the broad context of legal education and research agendas-what and how should we be researching, how should we respond to key research reports and the like? The second type of Workshop focusses on developing practical research skills, such as designing questionnaires, undertaking interviews, managing research etc.

Examples of typical and recent Workshops are:

‘Exploring new themes for legal education research’ (2011)
'Qualitative research: A Practical Workshop' (2011)
‘Managing a research project in legal education’ (2012)
‘After the LETR, what should we be researching and how? (2013)
'A Symposium on Perspectives on Legal education Research' (2015)
'Using Social Media in Legal Education Research' (2015) 

Materials are available from some of the Workshops. For example, you can download Notes from the Workshop on managing research projects here and information from the Workshop on the Legal Education and Training Review (LETR)

Each year we hold a Showcasing Event, to learn more about the finding and to celebrate the research undertaken by our LERN Research Grant-holders. This is usually held in late Autumn.

Workshops are usually held at the IALS on Wednesdays from 12 noon to 4.30pm. The cost is moderate and designed simply to cover expenses.

In 2016 we will be holding Workshops outside London. If you have an idea and would like to collaborate with LERN, please get in touch.

Future events will be announced on this website and the LERN mailing list. LERN organises a number of events with the IALS each year. Details are posted on the IALS events calendar.

Page last updated: 25th April 2017