Clinical Law Programs at the University of Iowa College of Law


The College of Law’s Clinical Law Programs reflect the richness and diversity of modern law practice and the College of Law’s commitment to clinical education. The clinic operates like a law firm within the walls of the Boyd Law Building, offering students the opportunity to put their legal skills to use in a variety of practice areas and venues. The programs include in-house, externship, and judicial externship components.

In-House Clinic

Student interns work on cases supervised by full-time faculty members, and have primary responsibility for the representation of their clients at all stages of the legal process, including interviewing and counseling, negotiation, fact investigation, depositions, drafting and briefing, and courtroom appearances. Most interns each semester have an opportunity to argue cases before various state and federal trial or appellate courts, or before administrative agencies. Students also provide basic estate planning, document-drafting, and other transactional services to clients. Some projects involve interns partnering with grassroots organizations, non-profits, businesses, and public officials to solve recurring and systemic problems that cannot be adequately addressed through litigation or traditional legal methods.

Practice areas include consumer rights, criminal defense, disability rights and policy, domestic violence, immigration, international human rights, juvenile court matters, and workers’ rights.


In addition to its diverse “in-house” clinic, Iowa offers an externship program that places students in a variety of legal settings. These externships are under the direct supervision of staff attorneys and also are supervised by College of Law faculty members.

Students have been placed with judges in the following courts:

  • US District Court
  • US Magistrate Court
  • US Bankruptcy Court
  • In addition, students have worked in the offices of the US Attorney for the Southern District of Iowa in Des Moines and the Quad Cities.

Other placements have included:

  • Iowa Attorney General
  • Youth Law Center in Des Moines
  • Student Legal Services in Iowa City
  • Iowa City City Attorney’s Office
  • Federal Public Defender in Cedar Rapids
  • Iowa Legal Aid in Cedar Rapids and Iowa City
  • HELP Legal Services in Davenport

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