Clinical Programs

Over 80% of our students participate in a clinical program, and the majority take more than one. All students are guaranteed a clinical experience during their time at Washington University School of Law. Graduates frequently identify the clinical programs as a capstone experience in their legal education, where they can connect their substantive legal knowledge with the needs of real clients. Students have the opportunity to work directly with practicing lawyers, judges, and legislators in clinical and externship programs across the country. With a range of opportunities to improve upon skills acquired in the classroom, students become confident practitioners of the law.

Washington University School of Law offers 19 clinical opportunities domestically and internationally. These are challenging, motivating experiences that enable students to apply their knowledge of the law to real situations.

Clinic students will learn advocacy, communication, and collaboration while gaining a thorough knowledge of the law that is vital to justice. The teacher-student ratio is often as low as 1:8, creating an atmosphere for optimum learning. Faculty members supervise and guide students through each stage of their development as they undertake a wide variety of legal work, from client interviewing and counseling to fact investigation, pre-trial practice, litigation, and brief writing.

Participants in the Civil Rights, Community Justice & Mediation Clinic are more likely to appear in court, but students in other clinics will have the opportunity as well. JD students are guaranteed at least one law clinic or externship during their second or third years of study, with topics ranging from criminal justice, children and family law, low income tax, patent law, congressional and administrative law, and supervised practicum clinics.

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