The advocacy courses conducted by the Advocacy Training Committee (“ATC”) aim to teach advocacy skills to lawyers at various stages of their practice, by conducting basic advocacy courses in civil and criminal matters, and advanced courses for the handling of expert witnesses and appellate advocacy.
These courses have the primary objective of improving the standards of advocacy and producing better advocates. The training method used is deployed in many common law jurisdictions. The method requires participants to perform as advocates in a simulated courtroom environment under the personal guidance of experienced and trained practitioners who observe their performance and teach them how to improve their skills.
Civil Advocacy Course
The Civil Advocacy Basic Course employs proven teaching method which is being used throughout the Commonwealth. The course is based on case studies that participants will have to prepare for and then perform in a real court setting. There will also be personalized video review sessions.
The course is taught by experienced practitioners and trainers. Participants are expected to gain confidence in examining witnesses-in-chief and during cross-examination, learn the art of presenting closing submissions persuasively after trial as well as to submit on interlocutory applications effectively. All conducted in an actual courtroom environment
Criminal Trial Advocacy Course
The Criminal Advocacy Basic Course employs proven teaching method which is being used throughout the Commonwealth. The course is based on case studies that participants will have to prepare for and then perform in a real court setting. There will also be personalized video review sessions.
The course is taught by experienced practitioners and trainers. Participants are expected to gain confidence in examining witnesses-in-chief and during cross-examination, learn the art of arguing your case at the prima facie stage and at the end of the trial as well as improving the ability to mitigate emphatically for your convicted clients. All conducted in an actual courtroom environment.
Appellate Advocacy Course
The Appellate Advocacy Course provides participants with practical insight and suggestions for improving their written/outline submissions on appeal, and making an effective oral argument before an appellate tribunal.
This course follows the same effective and successful training method deployed for the basic advocacy training course. The course is based on two case studies that participants will be expected to prepare for and then perform in real court settings. Participants will be expected to fully prepare for oral arguments and to file written/outline submissions in advance.
The trainers include Judges of the Court of Appeal and experienced Members of the Bar. This course is recommended for Members of the Bar with at least five years of experience in practice, who wish to refine their skills in relation to appellate work.
Handling Financial Experts in Court
The Handling Financial Experts Course provides participants with the following:
- The handling of expert evidence from the perspective of judges and senior practitioners;
- An introduction to financial statements, and the issues and terminology involved;
- The consideration and evaluation of two expert reports by financial experts;
- Practical and useful guidance on how to handle financial experts and expert reports in court;
- The handling of consultations with experts; and
- Reviews of the performance of participants in examination-in-chief and cross-examination of financial experts regarding their reports.
This course will feature senior and experienced trainers from Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Africa, and the United Kingdom; local judges and practitioners; and actual accountants as expert witnesses.
The course is recommended for Members of the Bar who wish to refine their knowledge and skills in handling expert evidence, particularly those with at least five years of experience. Prior completion of the basic advocacy training course conducted by the Advocacy Training Committee recommended, but not essential.