Kutafin Law Review

Advanced search

Online Simulations for Teaching Professional Legal Skills

Full Text:


Experiential learning approach in legal education is a global influential trend. Legal clinics is one of the most obvious examples of including experiential learning approach into the educational curriculum for law students. The main educational value of legal clinics is a providing training opportunity for students to apply their legal knowledge and skills in professional simulations like role plays of interviewing, counselling, negotiations, mock trials (first instance hearing) and moot courts (appeal hearing). These type of training programs allow law students to test their ability to client-oriented and problem-solving. The Russian legal clinics community has been actively developing since the mid of 1990s for more than 30 years. More than 100 Law Schools over Russia have own legal clinics. Clinicians overview their experience and share this experience between clinicians community. At the same time only relevantly small part of law students have access to effective training of legal skills because of various reasons, but mostly because of relevantly small number of legal educators who use the experiential-learning approach. Transition of experiential-learning best practices into online format is a good tool of scaling the number of students who could be trained in legal skills significantly. The paper describes the collection of unsupervised online learning modules devoted to legal skills, including case strategy, interviewing, counselling, legal writing and trial skills. These unsupervised online learning modules are developed based on modern instructional approaches to developing of online educational courses. The piloting of the unsupervised online learning modules demonstrates that these modules might be used as a supplementary educational tool and as a part of main educational curriculum for law students.

About the Author

M. R. Voskobitova
American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative; Free University of Berlin

Maria R. Voskobitova, Cand. Sci. (Law), Professor

16-18 Kaiserswerther Str., Berlin 14195


1. Abrosimova, E.A., et al. (2015). Legal Clinic — Education Based on Practical Experience: Teaching Aid. Part I. Moscow: Legal Clinics Development Center (In Russ.).

2. Anderson, T. and Elloumi, F., (2004). Theory and Practice of Online Learning. Alberta: Athabasca University.

3. Bulakova, E.Yu., Voskobitova, L.A., Voskobitova, M.R., Lukyanova, I.N., et al. (2006). An Advocate: Professional Skills. Moscow: Wolters Kluwer (In Russ.).

4. Grow, G.O., (1991). Teaching Learners to be Self-Directed. Adult Education Quarterly, 41(3), pp. 125–149. Available at: [Accessed 15.11.2021].

5. Gutnikov, A.B., (2008). Clinical Legal Education in Modern Contexts. In: Proceedings of International Scientific and Practical Conference “The Main Trends of Development of Legal Education in the East Siberian Region: Problems, Trends, Prospects” [23–25 Jenuary, 2008]. Irkutsk. Available at: [Accessed 11.10.2021] (In Russ.).

6. Hase, S. and Kenyon, Ch., (2001). From Andragogy to Heutagogy. Southern Cross University. Available at: [Accessed 15.11.2021].

7. Ignatovich, E.V., (2013). Heutogogy as a Foreign Concept of Self-Studying. Continuing Education: 21st century. Issue 3 (In Russ).

8. Moiseeva, E.N., (2017). Reforming the Legal Services Market in Russia: a Sociological Analysis. Zakon, 11, pp. 68–81 (In Russ.).

9. Moiseeva, E.N., (2018). Legal Education in Russia: Analysis of Quantitative Data and Changes since 2012. In: Analytical reviews on law enforcement issues. St. Petersburg: IPP EU SPb (In Russ.).

10. Sarker, Sh.P., (2014). Legal Education in Asia. Editing by Shuvro Prosun Sarker. The Hague: Eleven International Publishing.

11. Sullivan, W.M., (2007). Educating Lawyers. Preparation for the Profession of Law. The Carnegie Foundation of the Advancement of Teaching. Available at: [Accessed 15.11.2021].

12. Voskobitova, L.A., Voskobitova, M.R., and Rubinshtein, R.E., (2009). Methodological Materials for Trainers in the System of Professional Development of Lawyers. A Study Guide. Moscow: American Bar Association (In Russ.).

13. Yasvin, V.A., (2020). Instrumental Expertise in the Process of Pedagogical Design of the School Environment. Author’s Abstract of Doctoral Dissertation. Moscow: Moscow City Pedagogical University (In Russ.).


For citation:

Voskobitova M.R. Online Simulations for Teaching Professional Legal Skills. Kutafin Law Review. 2021;8(4):519-545.

Views: 31

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

ISSN 2713-0525 (Print)
ISSN 2713-0533 (Online)