How to win moots and influence people

3 Nov 2016

Two UQ TC Beirne School of Law academics have published a comprehensive guide to mooting that will inform and influence the School’s academic and mooting programs. 

The Thomson Reuters’ Guide to Mooting was written by Professor Anthony Cassimatis and Associate Professor Peter Billings, with contributions from Dean of Law Professor Sarah Derrington, Emeritus Professor Gabriël Moens, and current student Mr Samuel Walpole. The guide contains a foreword by The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG.

Professor Billings said the guide – which took two years to research and write – was based on the authors’ collective experiences of mooting competitions in Australia and internationally, going as far back as 20 years.

“We identified a gap in the market,” he said.

“By drawing on our experiences we thought we could make a real contribution to students’ learning and development, and enhance effective participation in these competitions.”

According to the authors, mooting is an effective way to prepare students for the rigours of life in legal practice.

 “A moot is one of the most authentic learning experiences that a law student can have at university; it’s an academic exercise but it also has a clear vocational dimension,” Professor Billings said.

“Our guide will help them devise strategies to meet any challenges they face. They’ll learn how to work effectively with others, manage their research, write and speak persuasively, and think on their feet.”

Some of the material from the guide was road tested on students preparing for AAT mooting competitions. It also shaped the professors’ teaching materials, particularly in their joint Advocacy course.

Professor Cassimatis said the guide will continue to inform the School’s academic program.

“The book will assist students enrolled in courses that use moots as a form of assessment, and also in the elective courses built around student participation in national and international mooting competitions,” he said.

The guide has earned praise from academics in Australia, Europe and North America and is expected to benefit law students and teachers all over the world.

The TC Beirne School of Law has educated generations of students in the art of mooting. In 2016 alone, the School has supported students’ participation in 17 local and international moots.

Professor Billings was the School’s Director of Mooting from 2011 to 2015, while Professor Cassimatis is heavily involved with the prestigious Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition – coaching teams that have won the Australian regional rounds and the world championship.

The Thomson Reuters’ Guide to Mooting is available for purchase online and in stores now.