Our student Law Society organises many competitions in legal skills which are relevant to working in law and to most other careers. In any given year about 200 of our students are taking part in one or more of these competitions. There are parallel competitions for novices and for those with previous experience. Teams which are doing well get the opportunity to participate in national competitions against other universities.
Mooting takes the form of mock submissions to the court. Each team of two students represents one party to dispute and present the arguments as barristers would do in court. Workshops and internal mooting competitions are held each year for first and second year students. The competitions are judged by academics, local practitioners and judges. Students are also encouraged to take part in external moots where they compete against students from other universities.
Negotiation is a key skill in nearly every walk of life. Not only do we teach and practice this skill in the Law in Practice module but there are beginners and advanced competitions run by the student Law Society. Students compete in teams of two. The winners of each competition are awarded a week’s work experience with the regional office of an international law firm.
Client Interviewing - this is another very popular competition which enables our students to enhance their skills and get a feel for what it is like to be legal adviser. For those students who intend to volunteer for the Law Clinic activities this is also a great way of obtaining some practice. Volunteer actors, sometimes from the Drama School, play the parts of clients and teams of two more students interview them about their legal issues and provide advice. The winning teams are awarded a visit, and lunch, at the London office of another international law firm.
Mediation is a particular type of negotiation, where the parties are assisted in reaching agreement by a skilled ‘mediator’. In this competition volunteer actors play the parts of the warring parties and the competitors other mediators and are judged on their skills in trying to help the parties to reach agreement to resolve their dispute.