Clinic is the Basis for a Complete Legal Education: Quality Assurance, Learning Outcomes and the Clinical Method


  • Neil Gold University of Windsor, Canada



Clinic is the basis for a complete legal education. The time has come to stop treating clinic as a marginal, alternative approach to learning some but not all things requisite for a sound legal education aimed at producing capable practitioners.  It is a powerfully effective, experiential and varied, comprehensive approach to the structure and contents of a legal education. I will argue that given a full interpretation of the term “Clinical Legal Education” (CLE), CLE in its many forms can serve as the model for a legal education. Also, in this paper I will examine the relationship between the learning outcomes we have for a legal education and the learning methods characteristic of a variety of forms of clinical legal education. At another time it will be useful to show how assessment of learning through clinic suits the full range of outcomes as well. There is a discussion of the meaning of the term Clinical Legal Education, as I use it, in Section 6. Some readers may wish to come back to the beginning after reading the section entitled “What is clinical legal education?”.

Author Biography

Neil Gold, University of Windsor, Canada

Professor Emeritus in the Faculty of Law at the University of Windsor, Canada