"The clinical program has been critical to my development as a public interest attorney. My clinical work, more so than any other experience I’ve had at HLS, has exposed me to the kinds of lawyers, law, and practice settings that have shaped the way I think about the provision of legal services."  - Former HLS student


Clinics at a Glance

The Harvard Law School Clinics provide students with hands-on legal experience under the supervision of attorneys who are not only great practitioners but also trained in individually educating and mentoring students. View an alphabetical directory of all clinics. Download the Clinics at a Glance for an overview of each clinic.

  • In-house clinics are student placements at HLS clinics, and the Clinical Professors and Instructors are part of HLS.
  • Externship clinics are located outside of HLS. Students are placed at organizations in the greater Boston area, as well as in other cities throughout the United States.
  • The Independent Clinical Program enables students who are interested in a specialized area of the law or field of practice to create their own educational experience. A number of students take the opportunity to work at organizations overseas during the Winter term. 
  • The Continuing Clinical Program allows students to continue their clinical work in subsequent semesters or  academic years at their clinical placement.

Students are welcome and encouraged to come in and meet with an OCP staff member to discuss which clinical program is right for them.

What is a clinic?

Harvard Law School Clinics:

  • Give students the opportunity to practice law under the supervision of attorneys who are experts in their field of practice; Students receive regular feedback on their work throughout their clinical placement;
  • Provide a range of hands-on experience, including interviewing, counseling, and advising clients; representing clients in court; conducting legal writing and research; investigating and analyzing facts; drafting policy; developing negotiation skills; and collaborating with other students and attorneys;
  • Have a class component – students are enrolled in a related course for academic credit and receive clinical credit for the practice component;
  • Fulfill the pro bono requirement (most clinics);
  • Include public and private sector placements; and
  • Are open to 2L, 3L, and LLM students (interested 1L students can get involved in Student Practice Organizations).

With clinical placements in more than 30 areas of the law and the opportunity for students to create their own independent projects, HLS has more clinical opportunities than any law school in the world. 

Student Guides to Clinics 

2014-15 Student Guide to In-House Clinics (PDF)
2014-15 Student Guide to Externship Clinics (PDF)

In order for students to practice law, they must be practicing under the auspices of an existing clinic or student practice organization. Learn more at the Dean of Student's page "Opportunities for Student Practice".

Last modified: March 24, 2015

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