Experiential legal education: stepping back to see the future

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3 Citations (Scopus)


An experience gap has opened up in the development of legal professionals. The workplace-based experiences (traineeships and articles of clerkship) that were once pivotal to the progress of law graduates from student to practitioner are either no longer available or are much diminished in scope and scale. Graduates are expected to have accessed such experiences through other avenues. This is a particular challenge for those law graduates who lack the family and social connections to help them start their engagement with the profession. In response to these changing circumstances Monash University has instituted a Clinical Guarantee assuring every law student a place in its Clinical Legal Education (CLE) programme if they so choose. In this chapter, we describe the Clinical Guarantee initiative, our progress to date, the way in which we have used technology to support provision and the challenges we have faced during implementation. We conclude by emphasising the value of CLE as preparation for modern legal practice, and outlining our intention to measure that value through future evaluation work. This chapter tells an Australian story, but one which resonates with experiences in other jurisdictions.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationModernising Legal Education
EditorsCatrina Denvir
Place of PublicationCambridge UK
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9781108663311
ISBN (Print)9781108475754
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Clerkship
  • Clinical guarantee
  • Clinical legal education
  • Educational technology
  • Experience gap
  • Experiential education
  • Law graduates
  • Legal education
  • Legal practice
  • Traineeships

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