Students from the University of Graz and Petroc College

Austrian university and South West college students join to brush up on their mooting skills

Having debuted last year, the Law School’s ‘Introduction to Mooting’ event took place again this month to great success. This unique collaborative event hosted by the University of Exeter brought together students from the University of Graz in Austria and students from Petroc, a South West Further and Higher Education college. 

The event began with an introduction to mooting, followed by group work and preparation for the students’ own rounds of mooting, concluding with a mooting competition and evaluation. Four students, two from the university, and the others from the college were crowned the winners, judged by members of the University’s Bracton Law Society.

The University of Graz students collectively wrote a statement on their experience, stating that they particularly enjoyed the moots: ‘We were able to improve our Legal English language skills and develop our self-confidence therein, got to know the English mooting rules and the procedure of the Supreme Court. In conclusion, we are very grateful that we were given this opportunity by the University of Exeter to improve our English mooting skills and were allowed to join this competition’.

The University of Graz’s Dr Sascha Ferz is proud of his students’ achievements: ‘The students have achieved all main goals. Especially they had to structure legal arguments and prepare a precise speech. That is what excellent lawyers are capable to do … These experiences and the confidence in their negotiation respectively (litigation [and] competence they gained) will help them in any situation if they have to speak up for others or themselves. I really hope we can do this experiment next year again’.

Law lecturer at Petroc, Frances Green, describes the event as a ‘challenging, daunting, but rewarding experience’ for her students: ‘I was extremely proud of my students. They were all terrified about speaking in public and they have all had a great confidence boost. This confidence and skill will be useful to them whether they do law or another career. My students did find it all very challenging but the skills learned will help them as they prepare for their Law A-levels’.

She continues, ‘What I also found most rewarding is the interaction with our European counterparts. They were all very involved and settled my students’ nerves quickly. I have to say the talk on the train home was about how ‘cool’ they were!’.

Director of Mooting at the University of Exeter, Dr Matthew Cole says, ‘I think it is fantastic to be involved in a project that brings together students from different backgrounds and at different stages so that they can swap ideas and help each other. I think the students have really enjoyed getting the opportunity to try something new and at the same time sharpen their advocacy and public speaking skills, skills that will no doubt serve them well in their future careers. It was a joy to spend time with our Austrian visitors and I look forward to their return soon’.


Date: 22 March 2017

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