After dark and out in the cold: Part-time law students and the myth of 'equivalency'
Francis, Andrew; McDonald, Iain
Iain McDonald Iain.Mcdonald@uwe.ac.uk
This paper presents the findings of the first major research study of part-time law students. It argues that many face multiple disadvantages, largely unrecognized by universities, whose emphasis on the formal equivalency of part-time and full-time law degrees ignores the distinctive backgrounds and needs of part-time students. As a result, many are marginalized, impacting on their retention, overall performance, and work prospects. It is also argued that the context within which part-time law students experience legal education contributes to a collective habitus which may structure what is 'thinkable' for their futures. Such concerns are of particular importance given the strong vocational drive amongst part-time law students. An effective response requires action by both universities and the legal profession. Without this, part-time legal education will remain a fundamentally paradoxical experience, offering broader access to legal practice for non-traditional entrants, while continuing to inhibit their chances of success by entrenching their difference in the eyes of the profession. © 2009 Cardiff University Law School.
|Journal Article Type||Article|
|Publication Date||Jun 1, 2009|
|Journal||Journal of Law and Society|
|Peer Reviewed||Peer Reviewed|
|APA6 Citation||Francis, A., & McDonald, I. (2009). After dark and out in the cold: Part-time law students and the myth of 'equivalency'. Journal of Law and Society, 36(2), 220-247. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6478.2009.00464.x|
|Keywords||part-time law students, equivalency|
|Additional Information||Additional Information : Published by Cardiff University Law School and Blackwell Publishing. The definitive version is available at www.blackwell-synergy.com|
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