Since the 1970s, the Penn Mock Trial team has traveled around the country to compete in some of the most prestigious tournaments - providing outlets for future lawyers, actors, debaters, and public speakers to refine their craft.


Mock trial is a competition structured around the imitation of a real life court trial. As a competitor, you will be evaluated by legal professionals who serve as tournament judges on your performance and preparedness. Students compete as attorneys and/or witnesses. Witnesses provide testimony about the facts of the case; attorneys help elicit this testimony and protect it from objections. 

Mock trial is a mix of public speaking, acting, and debate. The ability to think on your feet and adapt to unanticipated circumstances are two of the most valued qualities in a mock trial competitor. 

Mock trial is also the opportunity to be a part of one of the most tight-knit, diverse, and supportive communities at Penn. It’s traveling around the country with some of your closest friends, competing at schools like Yale, UVA, Cornell, NYU and UC Irvine (that’s right, we might fly you out to California). It’s being part of a team and fighting together for victory.

Mock trial is fast-paced, intense, highly competitive and most of all, extremely rewarding.

Are you up for the challenge? 

For more information on Mock Trial, visit the website of the American Mock Trial Association, the governing organization of collegiate Mock Trial in the United States. 

Through engaging in trial simulations in competition with teams from other institutions, students develop critical thinking and public speaking skills, as well as a knowledge of legal practices and procedures.
— American Mock Trial Association (