Mooting at Dundee Law School

At the University of Dundee, we place great importance on Mooting as a way of developing our students' academic and professional legal skills.

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What is a Moot?

At the University of Dundee, we place great importance on Mooting as a way of developing our students' academic and professional legal skills.

A moot is a legal argument where students take on the role of court lawyers to present their case before a judge, in the same way as would happen in an appeal hearing. It is not dealing with witnesses, it is not dealing with evidence, it is creating a legal argument in an area of law where the answer is unclear or where the answer is disputed. Students must research the areas of law the moot problem raises, construct persuasive legal arguments to support their case and then deliver them clearly, confidently and concisely. Students also have to develop expertise in responding to questions from the moot judge.

Mooting at Dundee Law School

For our first-year students Mooting is a compulsory element of their studies, and every student will present a case before two academic members of staff acting as the Judges.

Students are also encouraged to join the student led Mooting Society (UDMS) which provides additional training (including masterclasses by judges and practitioners), selects Dundee teams for national and international competitions, and organizes the Dundee Law School internal competition. In 2022 the internal final was held at the United Kingdom Supreme Court and judged by Lord Hodge, the Deputy President of the Court. UDMS also hosts the Lord Jones Mooting Competition which brings together teams from universities across Scotland.

University of Dundee Mooting Society

Recent Mooting success

We have seen some great performances from our students over the years in domestic and international competitions; here are a few recent highlights:

  • 2022 Lord Jones Mooting Competition: Alex Anderson and Saul McGivney finalists
  • 2021 Lord Jones Mooting Competition: Robyn Mearns and Kelsey Laird finalists
  • 2020 Lord Jones Mooting Competition: Cameron Irons and James Beattie winners

Telders is the largest Mooting Competition in Europe and the finals, which bring over 40 teams together, is held at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague. The competition concerns a fictional dispute between two States before the ICJ. Dundee has represented Scotland for the last six years.

Dundee students also compete in other competitions such as the Oxford University Press mooting competition, the English Speaking Union-Essex Court Chambers National Mooting Competition and in previous years the Alexander Stone Scottish Intervarsity Moot Court Competition hosted by Glasgow University.

Mooting in Africa

Since 2019 Dundee Law School has been training high school pupils from across Africa in the art of Mooting. Face to face competitions have been held in Kenya, Ghana and Nigeria. In 2021 the competition went online and was contested by 13 schools from five countries, with the team from Brookhouse School, Nairobi, Kenya emerging victorious.

“The standard this year was the highest we have encountered. The senior high school pupils got to grips with complex legal concepts and produced compelling submissions. I have no doubt that many will go on to be legal stars of the future.”

Professor Peter McEleavy (Barrister & Academic Lead for Africa)

In 2022, 23 schools participated in the African Mooting Competition. Each school has received a Mooting pack with gowns and books to support the creation of a Mooting Society within the school and encourage the students to develop an interest and passion for this key legal skill. With four Dundee Law School students leading on lectures and workshops, the high school students have enjoyed a comprehensive series of training events with internal mooting competitions being held for practice.

“The moot competition has been an eye opener for my students considering that they all look forward to pursuing law at university. The guidance by the University of Dundee team has been superb and I believe that this is the best way to nurture young people.”

Mr Vincent Manyura, College Counsellor, Aga Khan Academy Nairobi, Kenya