The Job Readiness of Newly Admitted Lawyers

Project: Research

Project Details


The primary objective of this research project is to identify the reasons for and the impact of the discrepancy between employer expectations of the skills required for legal practice and the legal education system’s standards for the skills of law graduates and newly admitted lawyers. It is envisaged that the research will: Investigate and formally identify any discrepancies and disconnect between desired skills and actual skills; investigate and identify the causes of the disconnect; formulate an effective strategy to address the discrepancy, based on existing higher education and industry standards; consider and assess the viability and effectiveness of potential responses; improve the quality and effectiveness of legal education and training to increase and enhance graduate employability skills; and provide recommendations to safeguard the future generation of solicitors through effective legal education, training and practical experience.
The impetus for this project is the continued expression of concern by Queensland Law Society (QLS) members regarding the competence and job readiness of newly admitted solicitors. The volume of these criticisms has led QLS to believe that there may be a gap between employers’ expectations of law graduates and newly admitted solicitors’ skills and the skills and competencies resulting from the current legal education framework in Queensland.

Project Aims

Research questions:
1. What skills do legal employers expect law graduates to have on entry into the profession?
2. Are the skills that legal employers expect addressed in the current law curriculum and practical legal training (PLT) programs?
3. What reforms to the current law curricula are required to better align law graduate skill sets with the expectations of employers in the legal profession?
Effective start/end date1/07/2031/12/21


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