Using virtual learning environments to add community to content

Mohsen al Attar*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To what extent can law students act communally during the pursuit of their degree? In the following article, I discuss the use of a virtual learning environment strategy devised to promote communal self-perception among law students. In the opening section, I detail the inspiration behind the project including the challenges of legal education to law student well-being. Next, I argue that social learning and self-determination theories provide sound support for a calculated approach towards the management of a virtual learning environment. In line with these theories, pedagogical innovation should be directed towards enhancing feelings of community among students to deepen learning and improve performance. Following this, I explicate the development and implementation of a virtual learning environment strategy informed by both theories. To evaluate the strengths and shortcomings of the strategy, we turn to reflections from students who participated in a series of focus groups. Overall, the strategic use of a virtual learning environment helped improve the intellectual and emotional satisfaction of students, nurturing greater enthusiasm for learning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)346-358
Number of pages13
JournalLaw Teacher
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2 Sept 2014
Externally publishedYes


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