Applying to Law: Is it the right degree for you?
Naima Ali is a first year Politics, Philosophy and Law student at King's College London. In her post below provides a comprhensive account on how to decide whether Law is the right degree for you!
So, you’re thinking of applying to study Law but you’re not completely sure on whether it’s the right degree for you…
Here are a couple of questions to help you out:
· Are you interested in learning about the English Legal System?
· Do you like reading?
· Are you a problem solver?
· Do you enjoy writing and researching?
· Would your friends or family describe you as argumentative?
· Do you really like reading?
If you answered yes to these questions, then you’re on the right track!
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What career paths can I take with a Law degree?
My name is Naima and I’m currently a first-year Politics, Philosophy and Law student at King’s College London. I also studied A-level Law, so by the time UCAS applications were due, I had been interested in studying law at a degree-level for a couple of years. The most determining factor in this decision was my goal to qualify as a solicitor in the future. So, for any aspiring solicitors, barristers or other legal professions, a law degree is the most pivotal first step towards your career. For those of you who are not considering a legal career but are still interested in studying Law, you can gain many transferrable skills such as: critical analysis, legal reasoning, building logical arguments, problem solving and overall legal knowledge. Such skills can be used for jobs in industries including the business world, the public or political sector and even in banking, finance or accounting.
How can I know that I’ll enjoy studying Law?
I think the real test in seeing if Law is the right degree for you is seeing whether you enjoy the content. The best way that I can advise doing this is by picking up an A-level Law textbook (since degree-level textbooks are very dense) and see how you get along with the cases and law. It’s definitely not enough to watch a season of How to Get Away with Murder and decide Law school is right for you as not every module is as exciting as Criminal Law. You will come across some areas like Contract Law that discuss more tedious issues – such as whether a party only entered into a contract because they were induced by the other party based on a false promise (fraudulent misrepresentation) – but they still provide the same thrill of problem solving.
Is there really that much reading?
As you might have been able to tell from the introductory questions, reading is a big part of a Law degree, as well as career. You will need to read cases, textbooks, academics’ opinions and so on. It is important to stay on top of the reading as this will then be used to supplement your essays and help get that First. So, in short, yes, there really is that much reading, as well as that much writing to go with it!
What else can I do to prepare for a Law degree?
You probably won’t ever be completely prepared for a Law degree. But there are a few steps you can take – like the ones mentioned – to help. Here some books that one of which have at least been read by any Law student:
· Letters to a Law Student – Nicholas J McBride
· What About the Law? – Catherine Barnard, Janet O'Sullivan and Graham Virgo
· The Rule of Law – Tom Bingham
· Stories of the Law and How it's Broken – The Secret Barrister
· Is Eating People Wrong? Great Legal Cases and How They Shaped the World – Allan Hutchinson
Good luck in your application!