Legal education

Legal education is the education of individuals in the principles, practices, and theory of law. It may be undertaken for several reasons, including to provide the knowledge and skills necessary for admission to legal practice in a particular jurisdiction, to provide a greater breadth of knowledge to those working in other professions such as politics or business, to provide current lawyers with advanced training or greater specialisation, or to update lawyers on recent developments in the law.

Painting depicting a lecture in a knight academy, painted by Pieter Isaacsz or Reinhold Timm for Rosenborg Castle as part of a series of seven paintings depicting the seven independent arts. This painting illustrates rhetorics.

Legal education can take the form of a variety of programs, including:

  • Primary degrees in law, which may be studied at either undergraduate or graduate level depending on the country.
  • Advanced academic degrees in law, such as masters and doctoral degrees.
  • Practice or training courses, which prospective lawyers are required to pass in some countries before they may enter practice.
  • Applied or specialised law accreditation, which are less formal than degree programs but which provide specialised certification in particular areas.
  • Continuing legal education, which do not lead to a qualification but provide practicing lawyers with updates on recent legal developments.