Graduates of the LLB (Practice) Program are eligible to be admitted to practice law without having to undertake any additional study or practical legal training or workplace experience. Practice program graduates are able to commence working as a lawyer around six months earlier than graduates from most other Australian universities.
285 hours of legal professional workplace experience is a key component of the Program. A minimum of 105 hours of placement is undertaken at the University of Newcastle Legal Centre (UNLC). Students have the opportunity to work on major public interest cases through the UNLC including cases where there has been a miscarriage of justice and human rights cases including assisting persons seeking asylum. As part of the placement program at the UNLC, students intensively participate in legal advice clinics and prepare and deliver seminars and workshops to community groups including newly arrived international students in its 'Street Law' project. Students participate in externships and external placement at law firms in Newcastle, Hunter region, Central Coast and Sydney as well as interstate and overseas. Placements are also arranged for students in government departments and agencies, barristers, Aboriginal Legal Service, Legal Aid and the Hunter Community Legal Centre.
Real client experience is central to the Newcastle model of clinical legal education. A passion for social justice, respect for the rule of law and a dedication to the interests of clients is fostered. Students are challenged to critically analyse the connections between law in theory and law in practice and reflect upon and critique the practice of lawyering.