KU Law students preparing for careers as civil or criminal trial lawyers benefit from a range of hands-on courses and extracurricular options.


Experienced litigators and judges teach many of the courses in litigation and trial advocacy at KU Law.

Options include skills simulation workshops, clinics and field placements. In skills simulations, students learn to write and argue mock appellate briefs, take depositions and interview witnesses. Taught in the same way top firms train new associates, these courses offer hands-on experience in litigation skills. Through clinics and field placement programs, law students can work with clients and train in a real-world setting.

Students can also participate in numerous national and international moot court competitions, or train for national mock trial contests. KU Law’s moot court program regularly ranks among the top 30 for law schools nationwide.

The Shook, Hardy & Bacon Center for Excellence in Advocacy serves as an umbrella, organizing the many components of KU Law’s litigation program. The center adds interdisciplinary, outreach and professional networking opportunities.

Litigation Curriculum Guide

Required First-Year Courses:

  • Civil Procedure
  • Contracts
  • Criminal Law
  • Lawyering Skills I and II
  • Property
  • Torts

Recommended Upper-Level Courses:

  • Advanced Criminal Procedure
  • Advanced Litigation
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Antitrust Law
  • Business Organizations
  • Conflict of Laws
  • Criminal Practice in Kansas
  • Criminal Procedure
  • Deposition Skills Workshop
  • Employment Discrimination Law
  • Environmental Law
  • Evidence
  • Family Law
  • Federal Courts and the Federal System
  • Moot Court Competitions
  • Pretrial Advocacy
  • Product Liability
  • Professional Responsibility (required)
  • Trial Advocacy

Course descriptions

Students who want to hone their skills in trial settings can complete the Advocacy Skills Certificate. You’ll get a solid grounding in all aspects of litigation, while gaining hands-on experience through a related clinic or field placement.

KU Law teams regularly compete in regional and national moot court competitions, including the National Moot Court Competition, Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, National Environmental Law Moot Court Competition, and National Native American Law Students Association Moot Court Competition. 

Law students interested in advancing their advocacy skills in a courtroom setting can participate in KU Law’s Mock Trial Program.

In addition to full-time faculty, adjunct faculty with expertise in key areas serve as instructors for Antitrust Law, Appellate Advocacy and Trial Advocacy.

Full faculty list


Laura Hines
Director, Shook, Hardy & Bacon Center for Excellence in Advocacy
Centennial Teaching Professor