Law schools have offered student externships for several decades. The number of participating students has fluctuated over time. At first, more law students participated in externships than in in-house clinics, but that changed in the 1980s and remained consistent for many years. Starting in the early- to mid-1990s, externship enrollment surpassed in-house-clinic participation again and has continued to increase in the past decade, each year widening the gap between these two primary forms of practice-based experiential learning. Today, externships have never been more important as a means of providing practical legal education to the current generation of law students.


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