Swinburne's inaugural moot court competition

Tuesday 13 October 2015

A group of Swinburne University of Technology’s brightest Bachelor of Laws students have participated in the inaugural Swinburne Law School Moot Court Competition.

The competition has been designed to help students develop their advocacy techniques. Deputy Chair of the Swinburne Law School, Dr Amanda Scardamaglia said it provides students with an opportunity to develop their ability to think on their feet.

“Students were required to present a legal argument in a clear, coherent and logical way but also had to respond to questions from those presiding over the case,” Dr Scardamaglia said. 

“While this was no doubt nerve-wracking for the students, they have definitely grown in confidence since their first attempt at mooting some six months ago.”

“In a practical sense, students got to learn about court procedure and appropriate court etiquette including how to address the bench and each other.”

Students competed in teams of two and were given 30 minutes to present submissions for their clients in relation to a contract law hypothetical problem. They were judged on their performance over two rounds.

Bachelor of Laws student, Jane Senserrick, said the moot competition was a confronting and challenging experience but was important for her to be part of.

“The moot is like nothing I have done before. The first round was definitely a little shaky, for me at least. All of us had done at least one or two moots before, but I think there was the added pressure of the competition and wanting to demonstrate what Swinburne Law students are capable of,” Ms Senserrick said.

“I was very nervous leading up to the second moot, but once I was speaking and being asked questions by the bench, I really got into a rhythm and actually started to enjoy it.

“The four of us are really keen to get others involved next year.”

Dr Scardamaglia said the idea of running the competition is to prepare students to be in a position to compete externally with other universities in the national and international university mooting competitions.

The winners of the competition will be announced at the end-of-year Law School function.