Clinics, Externships, and Experiential Learning

In 2020-21, New York Law School will offer a broad and varied array of experiential learning opportunities. These include simulation courses; externships and other field placement courses; clinics; upper-level writing electives; competition teams; and certificate programs.

At the heart of all of these programs is the opportunity to learn by doing.

In simulation courses, students work on simulated matters, taking on the role of the lawyer in role play exercises and written assignments. Students in externship and other field placement courses work in law offices or judges’ chambers, assisting lawyers or judges with their real cases. Clinics are courses in which students do the work of lawyers in real cases, with the close guidance and supervision of faculty members. The upper-level writing courses give students additional, and practice-minded, training in the fundamental skills of good writing: clarity, precision, and good organization.

Students may also join one of our competition teams, the moot court team (which focuses on appellate advocacy) or the trial team or dispute resolution team.

NYLS also offers two certificate programs, in which students may take a series of courses in a particular skills area, and ultimately achieve a certificate in that area, which is noted on their transcripts.

All of these courses help prepare students to practice law. For many students, these courses also provide training in the fields of practice of particular interest, and can help develop professional networks as well. Credits earned in most of these courses count towards the six-credit experiential learning requirement. (Please check the course catalog to confirm that the course is approved to satisfy the experiential learning requirement.)

A student’s work in some of these courses may help to satisfy the New York Court of Appeals’ requirement of 50 hours of pro bono legal work as a prerequisite for admission to the New York bar. Students should check with the professor teaching any course of interest, to learn more about whether work in that particular course is likely to help meet the pro bono requirement.