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What About Law?

Studying Law at University

By: Catherine Barnard, Janet O'Sullivan, G J Virgo
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Published: 10-03-2011
Format: Paperback
Edition: 2nd
Extent: 256
ISBN: 9781849460859
Imprint: Hart Publishing
Dimensions: 198 x 129 mm
RRP: £16.99
Online price : £15.29
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Loren Epson

About What About Law?

Most young people considering studying law, or pursuing a legal career, have very little idea of what learning law involves and how universities teach law to their students. The new edition of this book, which proved very popular when first published in 2007, provides a 'taster' for the study of law; a short, accessible presentation of law as an academic subject, designed to help 17- and 18-year old students and others decide whether law is the right choice for them as a university subject, or, if they have already made the choice, what to expect when they start their law degree. It helps answer the question 'what should I study at university?' and counters the perception that law is a dry, dull subject.
What About Law? shows how the study of law can be fun, intellectually stimulating, challenging and of direct relevance to students. Using a case study approach, the book introduces prospective law students to the legal system, as well as to legal reasoning, critical thinking and argument.
This is a book that should be in the library of every school with a sixth form, every college and every university, and it is one that any student about to embark on the study of law should read before they commence their legal studies.
All of the authors have long experience in teaching law at Cambridge and elsewhere and all have also been involved, at various times, in advising prospective law students at open days and admissions conferences.

Listed as one of the 'Six of the best law books' that a future law student should read by the Guardian Law Online, 8th August 2012.

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Table Of Contents

1 Introduction to Law
Catherine Barnard, Graham Virgo and Janet O'Sullivan
2 Criminal Law
Graham Virgo
3 Law of Contract
Janet O'Sullivan
4 Tort
Tony Weir
5 Land Law 1
Kevin Gray
6 Equity
Graham Virgo
7 Constitutional Law
Mark Elliott
8 European Union Law
Catherine Barnard
9 Conclusions: Drawing Some Threads Together
Janet O'Sullivan, Catherine Barnard and Graham Virgo


“The enthusiasm of the authors for the academic study of their subject is infectious, and this energetic little book should give those musing about a law degree a better insight into whether to study law at university than any amount of work experience in a lawyer's office, which after all, is not the inevitable outcome of a law degree, any more than it necessitates one.” –  Cherry James, Web Journal of Current Legal Issues.

“'What About Law?' succeeds where so many legal guidebooks fail. The authors give a measured, succinct tour around key legal issues that is both illuminating for the non-lawyer and refreshingly thought-provoking for those whose undergraduate days are long behind them…By anchoring the book in contemporary cases replete with human interest and a tangible effect on our lives, 'What About Law?' skilfully demystifies the law and ably proves its argument. The law is, indeed, all around us - and this book will whet your appetite to find out how and why.” –  Alex Wade, The Times

“As a 17 year old student who wishes to study Law at University, I have found it particularly difficult to get a clear idea as to what studying Law entails having never studied it previously. However, your recently published book 'What about Law?' stands out as a superb read for any prospective Law student. The writing style is very accessible and areas of which I previously had little or no knowledge such as EU Law, have been brought to life through the excellent writing technique...After reading 'What about Law?', I feel far more aware of what the Law is and what a university Law course is likely to consist of...I am sure that anyone who has the good fortune to pick up and read this book will answer the title question with a resounding 'Yes!'” –  Matthew Cowen, Student at Haberdashers' Aske's Boys' School, Elstree,

“..very well conceived and superbly executed.” –  Charles Rickett, University of Queensland,

“It is a concise and accessible introduction to law written by experts in each field. In addition to introducing the reader to fundamental legal concepts, each chapter offers an insight into the fascinating peculiarities of the law which will hopefully capture the imagination of potential law students.” –  Dr Lisa Whitehouse (Schools & Colleges Liaison Officer, University of Hull),

“The authors of this volume expertly identify and communicate the essence of the subject: its broad scope, covering a wide range of social, political and moral problems; its intellectually satisfying methods of analysis, based on logic, precedent and judgment; and, above all, its entertainment value…I very much hope and expect that the information, and enthusiasm, contained in these pages will encourage potential law students.” –  Foreword by David Pannick QC, Blackstone Chambers