Learning through Practice
All students are required to take at least six credit hours of “Experiential Courses” before being eligible to receive their law degree. Clinics, Externships, and Skills Courses all qualify as “Experiential Courses” and provide students with the opportunity to earn credit while learning through real or simulated practice.
We invite you to explore these web pages to learn about all of the experiential opportunities available in your 2L and 3L years. ALL COURSES listed on these webpages qualify as “Experiential” and count toward the six credit hours of “Experiential Courses” required for graduation.
Our Law Clinics offer students the opportunity to practice law by representing indigent clients in the Baton Rouge community or act as mediators in the Baton Rouge City Court or the Family Court of East Baton Rouge Parish. The Law Clinic is analogous to a residency in medical school where, under close faculty supervision, students practice law by representing real clients with important legal issues or serve as mediators in real cases of controversy. Students practice in local courts, before administrative agencies and other venues. The Law Clinic is a self-contained legal services office located in the Law Center. Some Clinics are limited to 3Ls, while some enroll both 2L and 3L students. 3L students can be certified to practice law pursuant to Louisiana Supreme Court Rule XX. Clinic offerings include the Immigration Law Clinic (2L and 3L), the Juvenile Defense Clinic (2L and 3L), the Civil Mediation Clinic (2L and 3L), the Family Mediation Clinic (2L and 3L), the Parole and Reentry Clinic (2L and 3L), and the Prosecution Clinic (3L only). More clinical offerings are planned in the future.
Our Externship opportunities include the Judicial Externship, which places students as judicial “law clerks” in state and federal courts; the Governmental Externship, which places students with the Attorney General’s Office and other state and local agencies; and the Public Interest/Nonprofit Externship, which places students with local agencies serving marginalized populations and the legal interests of the poor. The Law Center’s location in the state capitol of Baton Rouge allows for the tremendous advantage of placing students with state and local governmental agencies and courts where students can experience the real practice of law through a structured academic setting. The Law Center also offers a Summer Externship that provides students the opportunity to participate in an externship during the summer session following their 1L or 2L years of law school. Summer Externship Students can participate in an online class and be placed in law offices or judges’ chambers anywhere in the world. Many choose an externship placement in their hometown or a location where they ultimately would like to establish their legal career.
Our Skills Courses teach students essential lawyering and professional skills through simulation and forensic exercises. Students can take skills courses in their 2L and 3L years. Students are encouraged to take Experiential Courses in all three categories of offerings because each offers students different opportunities to prepare for practice. Although students can learn fundamental lawyering skills through skills courses, Externship and Clinic opportunities take students into real practice outside of the Law Center.
The LSU Law Clinic is a recipient of a Models for Change Program Grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and a Prison Reentry Initiative Grant from the Huey and Angelina Wilson Foundation.