Swinburne and Leo Cussen to accelerate graduates into legal practice

Friday 5 May 2017

Four students from the law school stand with law lecturer Roger Hawthorn

In summary

  • Swinburne Law School partners with Leo Cussen Centre for Law
  • Accreditation approved for first dual award LLB/GDLP in Victoria
  • Students will graduate with two qualifications

Students interested in law can accelerate their way into the legal profession with a new dual award offered by the Swinburne Law School and the Leo Cussen Centre for Law.

The arrangement with Leo Cussen, an independent not-for-profit centre of excellence for practical legal training, will qualify Bachelor of Laws (LLB) students for admission to legal practice on the day they graduate.

The dual award has been accredited by the Victorian Legal Admissions Board and will be offered from 2018. This is the first time in Victoria that the Graduate Diploma of Legal Practice has opened admission to current undergraduate students. The new arrangement will be open to any Swinburne LLB student, including single degree, double degree and graduate entry.

“Offering the Swinburne LLB with the Leo Cussen course will make a huge difference to our law students,” says Dean of Swinburne Law School, Professor Dan Hunter.

Students who aim to be admitted to practise law are typically required to complete an additional four- to six-month course of practical legal training after they complete their LLB.

The arrangement will provide students a direct and integrated pathway from the Swinburne LLB into the Leo Cussen Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice during the final year of their Swinburne degree.

This will allow students to cut months off the time it takes to become a lawyer and graduate with both qualifications at the same time.

“Swinburne is the only Victorian law school to offer this option, making our students career-ready the day they graduate,” Professor Hunter says.

The Swinburne Law School was rated the top law school in Victoria for overall quality of education experience and teaching quality  and skills development by the Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching (QILT) website, sourced from the 2015 and 2016 Student Experience Surveys.

“Leo Cussen is excited to be part of this new model for delivering practical legal training’” says Elizabeth Loftus, Executive Director of Leo Cussen Centre for Law. “The students will be the beneficiaries.”

This dual award program is not available to international students on a student visa.