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Clinical Programme

Amsterdam Law Clinics

What does it mean to work in the public interest? How do you best interact with your clients? What is needed for strategic litigation? How do you draft a legal document that is not purely academic, but can be used in e.g. advocacy or litigation? To what extent do you have to remain confidential about your work in the clinics? And, how do you ensure your teamwork leads to the best outcome of the case? These are among the questions that will be answered in our clinics.

To enhance your learning experience with respect to both the law and legal skills, the Amsterdam Law Clinics provide a unique clinic programme. As part of this 6-credit clinic programme, students work on a case (the clinical work) and participate in an interactive seminar devoted to legal skills, public interest lawyering and professional ethics (the seminar component).

Clinical Work 

Students work in small groups on an assigned case for a single semester, and in few exceptions during an 8-month period (Amsterdam International Law Clinic). Students may be asked to write legal memos, pleadings or research reports per the needs of the case. Students will be closely supervised by academics from the relevant departments. As part of the clinical work, students will have regular meetings with their team-members, supervisors and intermittently with the client(s) as well. 

Seminar

The seminar component consists of eight lectures and interactive workshops which address public interest lawyering, strategic litigation, legal ethics and professional responsibility in the legal profession, critical legal thinking and legal skills. Furthermore, specific lectures might be provided depending on the cases students are working on in the clinics. At the end of the semester students will draft a brief essay in which they reflect on the clinical work and on the legal, practical and ethical obstacles or dilemmas they may have encountered.

Through participation in our clinics, students will develop a set of skills that will prove highly useful in their career as legal professionals, including:

  • Investigating and analyzing facts
  • Approaching legal questions in an open-minded manner
  • Legal research and drafting legal (procedural) documents
  • Presenting complex cases in a clear in concise manner
  • Professional skills, particularly in relation to team work and in interacting with clients and partners.

Please look at our Course Catalogue for more details on the course and its requirements.

Eligibility criteria

How to apply

  • Submit your application

    Please submit your application, in English, by sending an email to amsterdamlawclinics@uva.nl addressed to Ms. Linde Bryk, LL.M, indicating in the subject-line ‘Application Amsterdam Law Clinics - [your name]’. Your application must include:

    • Your CV or resume (max. 2 pages);
    • An overview of relevant courses and grades from courses you have taken at the University of Amsterdam or other universities;
    • A sample of 1 - 5 pages (maximum 10) of your own writing in Dutch or English related to your studies;
    • An analysis responding to the questions below, in a Word document that has your signature and indicating place and date:
      • Why are you interested in taking part in the AmsterdamLaw Clinics, and more specifically in the clinics you have listed as your preferences? (max 400 words)
      • In your opinion, what is one of the most impressive public interest law case you have come across that has been dealt with in the courts and why is this case of such importance? What would you have done differently? (max. 400 words)
    • Indication of preferences. The Amsterdam Law Clinics strive to ensure that as many studenst as possible are given the opportunity to participate in a clinic during their Master. We cannot ensure admission to a particular clinic and the application and selection process for the clinics is competitive. We recommend students to list in the e-mail that accompanies their application at least 3 clinics ranked in order of interest.

    If selected for the clinic of first choice, selection is binding.

    If you apply for the Amsterdam International Law Clinic , your application must include:

    • Your CV or resume (max. 2 pages);
    • An overview of relevant courses and grades from courses you have taken at the University of Amsterdam or other universities;
    • A short personal statement that clearly expresses your motivation to participate in the Amsterdam International Law Clinic and why you are ideally suited to make a contribution (max. 400 words);
    • A sample of at least 5 pages of your own writing in English, preferable a paper dealing with international or European law;
    • Indication of preferences.  The Amsterdam Law Clinics strive to ensure that as many studenst as possible are given the opportunity to participate in a clinic during their Master. We cannot ensure admission to a particular clinic and the application and selection process for the clinics is competitive. We recommend students to list in the e-mail that accompanies their application at least 3 clinics ranked in order of interest.

    The applications are processed by the Amsterdam Law Clinics (not through SIS).

    The deadline for applications is:

    • First semester: 19 June 2020
    • Second semester: 16 November 2020

    Note that for the Amsterdam International Law Clinic the clinic work will start in the first week of November 2020 (duration case-work: eight months) and there is no option to start in February.

Portrait of Master's student Lucas Brand

For me, one of the most valuable lessons was, that there is a difference between law from a university perspective and law in practice.

– Lucas Brand (ALCs Spring 2019), Master Private Law