Virtual Clinic to Develop Professional Responsibility

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Long title: 
Using Virtual Clinics to Develop and Experience Professional Responsibility and Clinical Legal Skills
Thanaraj, Ann
Author(s)' contact information: 
University of Cumbria, Carlisle, UK
Conference title: 
International Legal Ethics Conference VI
Conference location: 
City University London

Globalisation in the legal profession has increased demands for cross-border legal services involving several national and international legal systems. This demand places intercultural communication as a vital skill for lawyers, especially to recognize and appreciate culture in a way that minimizes conflict, promote understanding and to establish a relationship of trust and confidence. The need for competency in intercultural communication sets out a challenge for academics. We need to consider opportunities that will provide students with appropriate tools to resolve intercultural communication barriers by identifying cultural assumptions and understanding their effects on communication and, consequently, finding new practical approaches to overcome such assumptions. Using the Cumbria Lawyer Skills simulation, we investigated whether virtual simulations are effective in developing intercultural communication competencies. Having synthesised the literature and the findings of this study, a set of guidelines has been drafted for students to reflect upon prior to commencing future intercultural negotiations.

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