Brook K. Baker

Document Type



In Section II, I first explore supervisory sources of learning in traditional clinical terms, describing a full range of teaching/learning interdependencies with clinical supervisors including role-modeling, top-down collaboration, mentoring, case supervision, feedback, and mandatory reflection. However, it is not clear that ecological learners benefit from workplace experiences solely because they receive "instruction" from idealized supervisors nor that the quality of their learning experience is dependent on the availability of high quality, didactic supervision. Accordingly, we might ask ourselves a series of questions about additional sources of learning: do students learn from participation itself and if so how? What internal and external factors increase or decrease the quality of students' participation and how might educators positively affect those factors? Assuming students learn laterally from their peers, how do they do so and how might educators intensify that learning? Assuming theory is not th eend all of learning in the workplace, what role does theory and theory talk play in the replication of expertise? Assuming feedback and reflection are not the only appropriate forms of supervision, what kinds of lawyering and performances, assigned tasks, collegial communications, and exposures really do facilitate learning with senior colleagues? How directive or non-directive should senior colleagues be, how intensively must they supervise, and what is the best timing and location of their guidance?

To begin answering these questions, in Section III, I describe participatory and lateral sources of learning that challenge and supplement the clinical model. In Section IV, I turn to the more traditional concern of clinicians and focus on expert/novice interactions and explore how students acquire competence through interaction with their more senior colleagues. After briefly summarizing evidence concerning the nature of expertise and the differences between expert and novice performance, I identify multiple circumstances that might facilitate is replication. Ultimately, I propose a model of guided participation in apprectice-like opportunities as the best means to assist the socialization of a novice and to ensure the rapid replication of expertise.

Date of Authorship for this Version



law clinics, legal education

Original Citation

Originally published in Clinical Law Review, Vol. 6, No. pp. 1-84, 1999.