In the Unites States, law students typically use HeinOnline. Google Scholar is an excellent free resource for books and case opinions. Also find search engines for related fields, such as history or political science.
Ask your librarian to recommend specialized search engines tailored to other disciplines that may have contributed to your topic. Gather sources and read them. Highlight or make note of important arguments, facts, and statistics. When you sit down to write your essay, you will want to be able to easily refer back to your sources so that you can quote and cite them accurately. Create an outline for each relevant source.
Write down the structure of the argument and any helpful quotes. This will help you condense the argument when you reference or summarize the source in your essay. Never cut and paste from the web into your notes or essay.
This often leads to inadvertent plagiarism because students forget what is a quotation and what is paraphrasing. When gathering sources, paraphrase or add quotation marks in your outline.
Plagiarism is a serious offense. If you ultimately hope to be a lawyer, an accusation of plagiarism could prevent you from passing the character and fitness review. Look for arguments on both sides of an issue. Law is a political subject, and any law adopted by a democracy is the product of debate.
Thus, you should be able to find rich counter-arguments on both sides of any legal issue. Write your thesis statement. Your thesis statement is the argument you are making. A thesis statements should be phrased as an argument, often using the word "because. An outline typically begins with the thesis statement, and then lists each argument and counter-argument that will be addressed in the essay.
Under each argument and counter-argument, include a bulleted list of facts from your research that support the argument. Note the source of each fact for use in your citations later. Begin your introduction broadly.
Briefly situate your topic within its greater historical context with a broad introduction. For example, if your topic is the exclusionary rule of evidence in the United States, open your essay with the importance and impact of the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution.
Finish your introduction with your thesis statement, which is the narrow question your essay will address. An effective introduction takes the reader out of his world and into the world of your essay.
After reading your introduction, your reader should know what you are going to discuss and in what order you will be discussing it. Be prepared to revise your introduction later. Summarizing your essay will be easier after you have written it, especially if you deviate from your outline. An essay is more than an outline with the bullet points removed. Explain each section of your outline in complete sentences, and remember to do the following: State each argument of your essay as a statement that, if true, would support your thesis statement.
Provide supporting information drawn from primary and secondary sources that support your argument. Remember to cite your sources. Provide your own original analysis, explaining to the reader that based on the primary and secondary sources you have presented, the reader should be persuaded by your argument.
A strong piece of writing always addresses opposing points of view. You should accurately paraphrase any counter-argument to an argument you put forth, and then use evidence and analysis to argue why your reader should be persuaded by your argument and not by the counter-argument. A conclusion briefly summarizes your argument without restating each individual point.
Conclude by strongly restating your thesis statement. Review your essay prompt. The prompt provided by your professor should include instructions for the formatting of your essay. Make sure that your work complies with these instructions to avoid having points deducted from your grade. When using LCMR, you need to clearly explain how they support your argument, as opposed to merely listing them unless they are being used to demonstrate a point of law as above.
It should take roughly the same form i. Introduction, Body and conclusion. The Board of Studies recommends that this section be approximately words 4 pages in length. The main point of difference between the options essays and the crime response is obviously the level of detail. Candidates who wrote long responses ran the risk of lacking focus and not presenting a sustained, logical and cohesive response as required by the rubric.
In order to do this, there are a variety of techniques which can be employed. Two techniques which can be used will be discussed further below. In my view, achieving a 24 or 25 in an essay is extremely difficult and requires a high level of proficiency in both the course content and essay writing.
As such, writing practice responses and having them marked is highly important in developing the level of proficiency needed to achieve these marks in an essay. Obviously, this is a highly simplified example and you would probably need a little bit more detail in an essay.
The use of this technique adds a great deal of sophistication to an essay and can make your essays stand out to the markers. This is because it demonstrates that you have highly developed analytical skills and a strong understanding of the course, as you are able to identify flaws in certain arguments and counter them. Thesis, anti-thesis, synthesis This refers to a technique where two contradictory views are examined in detail.
Following this, the writer will then suggest a new point which combines both these views. B demonstrates that the law is highly effective in relation to domestic violence due to enforceability. However, the article C shows that the law can be ineffective in this area due to a lack of accessibility.
Again, this is a highly simplified example and you would need a far greater deal of sophistication in a real essay. Similar to the use of counter-arguments, this technique can also make your essays stand out to a marker. This is because it demonstrates that you have a deep enough understanding of the course to be able to form your own view from two separate and distinct arguments.
Questions If anyone has any questions about this guide, legal essay writing or the subject in general, please feel free to send me a PM or make a post in this thread I'll try to check it regularly.
Also, if anyone thinks that I've missed anything or wants to add something, feel free to post your suggestions.
Last edited by enoilgam; 15 Dec at BLIT , msruru , spatula and 15 others like this. Legal Studies Essay Guide Thanks enoilgam. I have been looking for something like this. Share Share this post on Digg Del. Originally Posted by cf Any idea where I'd find sample answers or responses for the extended response questions from the HSC?
Legal Studies Essay Guide Wow! Thanks heaps for that enoilgam!! Can I ask what final mark you got for Legal Studies?? Originally Posted by legallaura. Legal Studies Essay Guide Like modern, are we still required to make our own educated conclusions, or are they just looking for factual argumentative flare? Legal Studies Essay Guide Like modem, are we meant to make our own educated conclusions on an issue, or is the essay purely for argumentative flare?
Legal Studies Essay Guide even if the question doesn't say analyse or evaluate effectiveness , is it still worth analysing the legal system? Legal Studies Essay Guide Thanks man, awesome share. Legal Studies Essay Guide Thanks a lot, its helping with my assignment. Hopefully, these changes make the guide much more helpful and useful. Legal Studies Essay Guide Bump. If you need reliable notes or simply want to check your notes are right, take a look at HSC-Notes. Diagrams, mind maps, tables, dot points, paragraphs, sources are included to aid your learning.
With these notes you can spend less time rewriting your textbook and worrying about whether your notes answer the syllabus dot points correctly and spend more time learning and practicing your skills knowing your notes are accurate and concise.
So below, I have bolded these. Which are the following points:. So given that we will be talking about those 5 syllabus points from above, which you should by now have a firm grasp of, you should be able to answer: How would you describe the way the law deals with young offenders?
The criminal justice system does provide some effective and relevant concessions for young offenders. However, due to its focus on incarceration and punishment rather than on preventative measures, the criminal justice system is only somewhat effective in dealing with young offenders. This means organising your ideas into themes. These are 4 major ways in which the criminal justice system deals with young offenders.
Each of these act as the theme of a paragraph or two! L do I have that support my argument? It is time to insert all the content and information you have been learning into your essay scaffold. This is when you should read through all the information you have on the syllabus points we identified previously, in order to back up your point of view.
You should briefly dot-point in the citations for that CML you have, and the quote or piece of information. This is a scaffold, so it does not need to be a full citation. These will serve as the basis for each paragraph, or idea that you write about.
Structure and Organisation How you structure and organise your essay is just as important as the research you have done. If your essay does not ‘flow’ or your material is presented in a haphazard fashion, not even exhaustive research will improve your grade.
Structure of Law Essays and Law Reports Law Essays. Unless you are told otherwise, the very minimum requirements of a law essay or problem question are an introduction, a body and a conclusion.
General Comments about Writing a Law Essay · The purpose of your article is to state and prove your thesis. You need to persuade your reader that your prescriptive proposal, i.e., the solution to the selected legal problem, is doctrinally sound. The legal profession in the United Kingdom has personalized the political system more than countless years to provide the society the.