News and Events
"Community building is even more important now that we are all social distancing" - Reflections on a virtual reading group
The newly founded UCC School of Law PhD reading group has gone virtual.
In these testing times of social distancing as Ireland comes together (while staying apart!) to battle the COVID-19 virus, the School of Law, like the rest of UCC, has switched to remote working.
As the School of Law adjusts to working remotely, we will share some tips and reflections on what’s working well, lessons we are learning from online teaching, and creative ways we can enhance the learning experience for students in these unprecedented circumstances.
A virtual reading group
The School of Law PhD reading group has been meeting monthly since the start of this year and wanted to keep to the scheduled meeting despite the closure of UCC campus. The reading group was set up to provide a forum for the postgraduate community in the School of Law to meet monthly to discuss legal theory and landmark judgments. The reading group is also a forum where postgraduates in the School of Law can practice presentations before conferences or reviews.
"The value of the group as an online forum has become even more salient at this time of social distancing"
The most recent meeting was held on Google Meet and a lively discussion on Fuller’s 1969 article ‘Human Interaction and the Law’ ensued. The members of the reading group take turns proposing texts for the group to read in advance. This weeks selected reading was proposed by PhD candidate Amy O’Halloran who commented:
"At this difficult and challenging time it is great to be able to maintain a close connection with my fellow researchers at the School of Law. The reading group provides a wonderful opportunity for all researchers to share our research and ideas and the value of the group as an online forum has become even more salient at this time of social distancing."
The reading group members are researching in diverse areas of law including environmental law, the regulation of gambling, company law and administrative law ensuring a diverse range of views and perspectives. The reading group to discuss Fuller segued from legal theory to some practical topics in light of new working arrangements including accessing online materials now the library is closed and how the PhDs with teaching responsibilities are getting on using different methods of online teaching.
"The reading group provides an opportunity to connect with my fellow PhDs"
PhD candidate and organiser of the PhD reading group, Aisling Ryan, shares her reflections on the postgraduate reading group below:
“For me the reading group provides an opportunity to connect with my fellow PhDs to hear about how they are getting on with their research while we are all working remotely. I think that community building is even more important now that we are all social distancing.
The reading group also provides a forum whereby we can lift our heads out of the focus on our own PhD topics to listen to and engage with concepts our peers are currently working on.”
The PhD reading group will continue to meet virtually once a month and all postgraduate researchers in the School of Law are most welcome to join.
For further information on the UCC School of Law PhD programme, see: https://www.ucc.ie/en/law/courses/phd/