Legal Education System in India

Legal education imparts knowledge of principles and provisions of law to the law students who are then granted their law degrees and then we have lawyers, advocates, judges, etc. Law is the combination of both liberal as well as professional education. Legal education produces law-abiding citizens, visionary judges, lawyers, brilliant academicians, and awe-inspiring jurists. Legal education helps in society’s growth with the help of such creation of knowledgeable persons who are conferred with their degree of law. 


A person having a degree of law and practical expertise in its working is a lawyer by profession. In India, legal education is managed by India’s Bar Council, state government, local government, universities, individual colleges, and grant commissions. India’s Bar Council has set up some rules to establish National University of Law (NLUs) for providing quality and formal legal education to the students. The Advocates Act, 1981 was established with a view to improve the quality of legal education in India. A critical advancement was witnessed in legal education after the enforcement of the Act.[1] It is well known that the member of the legal profession occupies a very high status or standard in the society as well the profession of law is a noble calling.[2]  Legal education is not only to make professional lawyers but to give a knowledgeable and an expert lawyer or a legal professional to the society. 

In Manubhai Vashi v. The State of Maharashtra, [3] the hon’ble Supreme Court held that legal education should meet the demands that are growing day by day in society and should be thoroughly equipped to cater to the complexities of different situations.


Ancient Egyptian law in 3000 BC contained the civil code law, which itself has overall twelve books for learning. The ancient Sumerian ruler ur-Nammu had created the first law code in the 22nd century BC, which consists of casuistic statements. Legal Latin maxims were only for guidance and a better understanding. The Greek philosophy positively influenced Roman law, but the development of detailed law was by professional jurists. After developing regulations in medieval period England, the royal court was created/developed for the proceedings, which later called or became the common law. In the past, the ancient Roman schools provided training to students or other people planning their careers as advocates, lawyers, legal professionals, judges, etc. but there was no proper or systematic or quality study.


Mr. Dean Wright of the University of Toronto has given three main reasons for the law schools, which includes:

  1. The quality of legal education is found in the legal practitioners,
  2. Legal education trains a man not only to solve the problems for someone but also beneficial and to solve the issues of the society,
  3. To act as a center of research and criticism and contribution to a better understanding of the laws by which societies are held together. 

Lord Denning, in his address to the society of Public Teachers of Law expressed, has given three aims of legal education, that are:

  1. To make the goal that should be the right option for the students’ future development and the development of society. 
  2. To learn or apply the principles existing in the legal rules,
  3. To be aware of the development of legal history and legal rules. 

Further, Dr. Mohammad Farogh, in his observations on legal education in a modern civilized society, includes the following aims and objectives[4]-

  1. To teach students with the operative legal rules, both substantive and procedural;
  2. To provide the students with adequate experience to apply these rules;
  3. To equip the students with sufficient knowledge of the historical and sociological background of the country’s legal system;
  4. To provide the students with some knowledge of the other legal system of the world so that the students do not find themselves at a complete loss when it comes to adopting a comparative approach;
  5. Very significantly, the students should be encouraged to participate in discussions, seminars and challenge the very premise of legal concepts and their applications.


Legal education should be skillful, furnished, competent, and equal education given to the students and legal professions. There are some objective for the developing country like India  that are as[5]-

  1. Research objective: to develop the research value in education and in society there should be educational facilities and good faculties; 
  2. Administrative objective: there must be managing, evaluating programs, sophisticated methods for budgeting, and planning for the governing and running the institutions;
  3. Socialization objective: there must be global and social development programs for the development of the country;
  4. To understand the problems of society and to know the reason and the solution to those problems; 
  5. Opportunity objectives: unlimited opportunities should be there for the growing and leading lawyers in society;
  6. Human resources objectives are: to generate the knowledge, skills programs, and training for social development.


At present, India’s Bar Council is the regulating body of legal education in India, which deals in rules, regulations, provisions, acts for the promotions of legal education in India. For every legal procession, law degrees must be taken from respected law colleges or any legally authorized law college conferred in terms of the Advocates Act, 1961. All the universities, colleges need to be affiliated with BCI ( Bar Council of India). According to the Bar Council of India Rules, Part IV, Section 4 of chapter III, there are two systems to study law in India that are operated simultaneously. The first one is the traditional legal education system, which is of three years of graduate degree after completing a bachelor’s degree introduced by India’s Bar Council in 1961. The second one is the integrated five-year law course introduced by the Bar Council of India in 1982, which is provided after 12th standard as an alternative to three years degree program so that law students can save their 1 or 2  years and directly can avail into B.A.LLB, B.COM.LLB, BBA.LLB, LLB, B.SC.LLB, etc. The bachelor’s degree is also given with a law degree to law students in this integrated course. Finally, both the degrees with all the subjects of both the courses are written with the grade and given to the law students after the completion of the five-year course and passed the ‘All India Bar Examination’ and approved by India’s bar council. [6]

When the students appear or enroll in the traditional education system, first, the student has to complete a bachelor’s degree. He can then apply for a law degree that is for three years. The students only deal with or learn about all the law subjects to enter into a legal field or become legal professionals, advocates, lawyers, judges, jurists, etc.


Legal education in India refers to lawyers, advocates, judges, etc. before entering into practice.[7]  Legal education provides knowledge related to law subjects to be a part of the legal field or to enter into the legal profession. Law is the combination of both liberal as well as professional education. Legal education produces law-abiding citizens, visionary judges, etc. Legal education helps in the growth of the society and in developing law and order. Legal education has changed from the past ten years drastically in India. However, there is still a need for reforms to make legal education effective, and quality study and justice-oriented. 


[1] Legal education system in India, available at  (last visit on October 1, 2020).

[2] Iyer, Krishna V.R.,”The Social Dimensions of Law and Justice in Contemporary India” – The Dynamics of a New Jurisprudence. Ph.D. Thesis, Gujarat National Law University, Gandhinagar – 2015, available at  (last visit on October 1, 2020). 

[3] AIR 1996 SC 1.

[4] Dr. Mohammad Farogh,”Legal Education: Contemporary Trends and Challenges”, available at  (last visit on October 1, 2020).

[5] Legal Education in a Changing World: Report of the committee on Legal Education in Developing countries, International Legal Centre New York, ISBN 91-7106-092-8, 1975.

[6]  Scenario of Legal Education in India, available at  (last visit on October 1, 2020).

[7]legal education system in India, available at  (last visit on October 1, 2020).


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