Teaching methods

photo showing students in a lecture theatre

Teaching methodology is varied. It is based on an intensive daily schedule quite different in structure from other postgraduate courses. Detailed instruction in basic skills, procedures and techniques of practice is provided in two ways: by lectures reinforced by written notes, precedents and examples, and by practical exercises conducted by tutors (highly experienced solicitors or barristers who are experts in their field) working with groups of trainees. The exercises simulate the real experience of practice, particularly during the early years of professional life.

A programme of mock trials in which trainees can be asked to perform any role from prosecuting counsel to witness, is conducted by members of the judiciary or senior counsel, staff or tutors. These mock trials may be held in the Royal Courts of Justice or at the Laganside Court Complex.

In many skills-acquiring classes, e.g. advocacy, mock trials, etc, trainee performances are videotaped, played back and critiqued. Trainees also have the opportunity to participate in a judge-shadowing programme, court induction programmes and a number of international competitions.