October 27, 2009
Callister's Schemata for Thinking Like a Research Expert
According to Paul D. Callister, Director of the Leon E. Bloch Law Library at the Univ. of Missouri–Kansas City, "our profession lacks sufficient pedagogy [in legal research instruction], both theory and methodology based on such theory." I beg to differ though our professional literature may indeed be "meager" compared to the pedagogical literature in other fields as noted by Callister in Time to Blossom: An Inquiry into Bloom’s Taxonomy as a Means to Ordered Legal Research Skills[Bepress]. Callister has certainly made an interesting recent contribution to the literature with his Thinking Like a Research Expert: Schemata for Teaching Complex Problem-Solving Skills, 28 Legal Reference Services Quarterly 31 (2009) and in his Time to Blossom article he proposes an adapted version of Bloom’s Taxonomy for designing legal research courses. From the abstract:
Within law librarianship and legal education, there has been far too little scholarly engagement on the underlying pedagogy at the heart of legal research instruction. To correct this deficiency, law librarianship needs to open a dialogue and should consider adapting Bloom’s Taxonomy as a common schema for a collaborative effort.
Unfamiliar with Bloom's Taxonomy? See Bloom's Taxonomy of Learning Domains: The Three Types of Learning and Wikipedia's entry for background information.
Callister's Time to Blossom was initially presented at the "Conference on Legal Information: Scholarship and Teaching," held at the University of Colorado Law School on June 21-22, 2009, as part of its Boulder Summer Conference Series. Interesting but not nearly as stimulating as his Thinking Like a Research Expert article. The latter is highly recommended.
Hat tip to Robert Richard's Legal Infomatics Blog post. [JH]