Teaching Lawyering With Heart in the George Washington University Law School Domestic Violence Project
Violence Against Women 2016, Vol. 22(12) 1484-1495
13 Pages Posted: 6 Nov 2015 Last revised: 23 Sep 2016
Date Written: 2016
The Domestic Violence Project (DVP) began as an experiment and has become my favorite model for teaching law students about domestic violence work. The heart of the course is its emphasis on developing awareness of and compassion for the personally and emotionally challenging dimensions of this work. I achieve this (i) through a dialogue between students’ journals and my written responses, (ii) by inviting students to produce a creative project, and (iii) by teaching reflexively about vicarious trauma. Many students experience this course as an oasis of holistic professional and personal growth within the often dispiriting experience of law school.
Keywords: Domestic violence, trauma, clinical teaching, holistic teaching, hybrid clinic
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