Schools Requiring Experiential Courses

Schools Requiring Experiential Courses

Please note, the contents of this page is not an endorsement of the schools listed, but rather a compilation of United States Law Schools which require either pro bono service, or participation in an experiential course before graduation. 

Albany Law School

Albany Law School requires every student to enroll in at least one clinical course (Inhouse clinic, Hybrid, or Field Placement).

University of California - Irvine

  • Minimum of 4 credits from clinical course or externship

City University of New York Law School (CUNY)

  • Requires a fourth semester Lawyering Seminar in a subject of the student's choice, which builds skills in simulations, mock trials, mediation, arbitration and live client representation.
  • In the third year, students are required to complete one or two semester clinic or concentration (12-16 credits) with highly supervised live client representation.

University of Colorado Law School

  • "Practice requirement" for graduation, satisfied by taking one of several courses: any clinic, any trial advocacy course, any course in which actual or simulated practice experience is a substantial part of the course work. Externships do not satisfy the practice requirement

Columbia Law School

  • Students are required to participate as counsel in one moot court argument during second semester of the first year.
  • Each student must complete 40 hours of uncompensated public interest service between the end of the first year and the last day of classes of the third year

University of Dayton School of Law

  • Requires a 4-credit hour externship in one of last two academic semesters

District of Columbia Law School

  • The University of the District of Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law combines theory with practice and pro bono service throughout the J.D. program. All first year and transfer students are required to take a 1 credit Law and Justice course, then perform 40 hours of pro bono legal service. First year also includes a 2 semester Lawyering Process class ( 3 credits first semester, 2 credits second semester) followed by Moot Court ( 2 credits) in the second year.
  • Over the course of second and third year students are required to participate in two 7 credit (350 hour) legal clinics, (a total of 700 hours) which is more than any other law mandates. Students may also earn up to 2 additional credits (100 hours) in one or both clinics with special approval from their clinic supervisor and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.
  • After three semesters, students may enroll in our Internship Program; qualifying sites are limited to public interest organizations, government agencies and the judiciary and must be in the metro DC area. In the spring, students may enroll for 4 credits, which include at least 180 hours of work at the placement (approximately 14 hours a week). They also participate in a weekly tutorial. In the summer, students may take the class for four or eight credits. To earn 8 credits, students must work for at least 270 hours at the placement (approximately 30 hours a week), participate in the weekly tutorial, and also enroll in the 2 credit class, "Civil Rights in the 21st Century." As a practical matter, because of clinical requirements, the internship program is limited to third-year students, either taking the class in the summer after their second year or in the spring of their third year

Dedman School of Law at Southern Methodist University

  • 40 hour pro bono requirement

Univ. of Denver

  • To satisfy the public service requirement, students must perform at least 50 hours of supervised, uncompensated, law-related public service work

University of Detroit Mercy

  • Participation in one clinic or externship

Drexel University Earle Mack School of Law

  • Beginning in 2010-11, students will have an experiential learning requirement that requires either a co-op (one-semester externship 25 -40 hours per week depending on placement) or a clinic (full-year experience for roughly 20 hours per week), or possibly an extensive trial advocacy sequence
  • 50 hour (minimum) pro bono requirement for all of our students

Golden Gate University School of Law

  • GGU's Honors Lawyering Program (HLP). HLP is a selective program, involving about 20% of our students. HLP students attend a regular first-year curriculum and then participate in an intensive skills-focused summer session that integrates classroom learning, simulated exercises and real-client work for each student. The clients come from local non-profits and all have a landlord-tenant issue. Aside from opportunity to implement practical skills, students shape their own professional identity while representing low-income clients.

Gonzaga University School of Law

  • 3 credits of clinic or externship in the 3 rd year
  • 30 hours of public service, which may include pro bono work

Harvard Law School

  • Students must contribute at least 40 hours of law related pro bono work

University of Hawaii, Williams S. Richardson School of Law  

  • 2 credit clinical experience
  • 60 hours of pro bono work

University of Idaho College of Law

  • 40 hours of pro bono work

Inter American University of Puerto Rico School of Law

  • Students are required to work with clients with two semesters (6 credits) of a clinical course with the Legal Assistance Clinic.

Loyola, Los Angeles

  • Students must perform 40 hours of uncompensated, legally related public service

Loyola, New Orleans

  • Eight skills credits
  • Law and poverty requirement can be satisfied by taking the course, seminar, Street Law, or by representing low income people in the Clinical Seminar or performing 50 hours of volunteer pro bono legal services to the poor in one academic year

Univ. of Maryland

  • Full time day students must complete one course with the Clinical Law Program

Univ. of Montana

  • Third year students are required to practice public interest law in an in-house clinic or under the supervision of an attorney in the community

Univ. of New Mexico

  • Students must participate in at least six hours of clinical law school credit


  • 40 hours of pro bono work and four three month externships

Univ. of Puerto Rico

  • Students are required to participate in the Legal Aid Clinic in their last year (3 credits per semester)

Roger Williams University School of Law

  • 50-hour pro bono requirement

St. Thomas University School of Law (FL)

  • 40 hour pro bono work requirement

University of St. Thomas School of Law (MN)

  • 50 hours of uncompensated, "public service" required for graduation, can be satisfied by the provision of legal services to "those who are repressed by poverty."


  • Students are asked to pledge 50 hours of pro bono work over the course of three years

Thomas Cooley

  • 63 hours of substantive and skills-based courses
  • At least 3 credits from an in-house clinical program

Touro Law School

  • Students must complete one clinical course, externship, or rotation; or one of the Public Interest Requirement courses and 20 hours of pro bono legal work; or 40 hours of pro bono legal work

Univ. of Washington

  • Students must complete 60 hours of public service legal work with the Law School clinic, a public service externship, or completing the requirements of the Street Law course (teaching basic law to high school students)

Washington & Lee

  • Clinic required; 60 hours of legal service connected to professionalism course in 3 rd year

William Mitchell College of Law

  • 11 credits of experiential/skills courses. (6 credits provided by first year writing, research and representation skills course)
  • 50+ % of students voluntarily perform 50 or more hours of pro bono work through the Minnesota Justice Foundation.