Clinical Legal Education at Monash Law

What is Clinical Legal Education?

Our Clinical Legal Education Program is designed for undergraduate and postgraduate law students seeking real-world experience as lawyers. This means you work with real clients, on real cases, all while gaining course credit towards your degree.

Depending on your placement opportunity, you can work directly with clients, solicitors and other professional staff, gaining 'real life’ experience and skills that cannot be taught in the classroom.

Apply for a Clinical Placement

Applications the next Clinical Placement intake are now open. Applications close on Sunday 14 August 2022.

Learn more and apply for the following opportunities below.

"Doing the clinic was a turning point for my career because it made me realise I wanted to be a lawyer.”

- Gellie, LLB (Hons)

What will I learn?

You will gain practical skills in mediation, negotiation, collaboration and arbitration - all essential skills for your future.

You will gain communication skills and emotional intelligence - essential for effectively attracting, representing and maintaining relationships with clients.

Ultimately, you will develop a profound understanding of your legal coursework material, the social dynamics of a legal workplace, the challenges faced within the legal sector and how the law serves the broader community.

"My experience at the clinics has always been a talking point in graduate interviews as well as networking events.”

- Chyntia, JD

Where can I work?

Different categories of placement opportunities include (please note: available placements may differ each intake):

  • Law Firms: Work with or within a boutique or well - established law firm, providing legal advice and assistance for their different legal practices  (e.g. criminal law / human rights law / corporate governance law).
  • In - House Legal: Work with or within an in - house legal team for one of Australia's leading retail property groups, a budding start - up company or an iconic Australian brand like Carlton & United Breweries (CUB).
  • International / Human Rights: Provide legal advocacy for issues relating to human rights, modern slavery and the death penalty.
  • Courts: Work with judges and other judicial staff members in the Supreme Court of Victoria or County Court of Victoria on legal research, preparing case summaries and drafting speeches.
  • Community Legal Centres: Provide legal advice (under the supervision of a qualified lawyer) to vulnerable members of the community who are without access to legal aid.
  • Government / Governance: Work with key government organisations such as the Australian Law Reform Commission, Victorian Ombudsman and Public Transport Ombudsman.
  • Other: You also have the opportunity to work with the Innovations / Start Up Clinic, Climate Justice Clinic or a self - sourced placement.

Why is it important?

Clinical Legal Education is instrumental in developing a law student's confidence and skills. The benefits this type of education provides to students is threefold:

  1. Firstly, this hands-on experience within the legal system helps you to better understand concepts discussed in the classroom as you are able to apply theoretical knowledge under the guidance of a qualified lawyer (your supervisor).
  2. Secondly, exposure to a variety of legal environments will help you decide what field of law you're most interested in, and will give you the professional networks and support to pursue this chosen field of law.
  3. At the heart of this program is the people you will meet; the relationships you will develop with your fellow students, supervisors and clients. Your contributions may have lasting effects on the area of law in which you're involved in, the lives of individual clients and the wider community.

What do our students say?

Hear from Monash Law students who have participated in the Family Law Clinic.

Our Clinical Guarantee

We guarantee our students a place in the clinical legal education program to build their knowledge, experience, and confidence.

Monash Law offers a guaranteed clinical education experience for all students who wish to incorporate a practical component credited towards their Monash Law degree.

We are the first law school in Australia to offer a guarantee like this for our students. This reflects our belief in the transformative effect of experiential education.

Outcomes for Studentsmore for your degree & improved employability

  • Improved graduate employability driven by the skills and knowledge gained through participation
  • Providing all students, regardless of social or economic background, with pathways into the legal profession.
  • Increase connection points and enhanced opportunities
  • Build professional networks.
  • A deeper understanding and appreciation of the law and its application in the community, government and commercial world
  • Potential to be involved in meaningful and high-profile law reforms.

For over 40 years we have been trailblazers in this space. We’re committed not only to continuing this important service into the future - we’re expanding it.

Clinical Legal Education Units

The following units in the Clinical Legal Education Program are offered to students.

Popular FAQ's

''[Monash University’s clinical legal education] … has been a highlight of my studies at Monash Law School. The practical skills I have obtained are invaluable. I have gained experience in a wide variety of areas, from conducting client interviews to running my own files and even appearing in Court on behalf of clients. This type of experience cannot be taught in the classroom!'' - Michele Mihailovic (Monash Law Alumna)