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Essay Writing in Undergraduate Law

Assessment by coursework is one attribute of some modules in law school. In these modules, students write practise essays, semester essays and course work in law.

In undergraduate syllabus in law, there are three types of essay:

Practise Essays

The purpose of practise essays is formative, specifically to enable you to practise writing. Usually, they are not included in computing the final grade in the module but they are recorded and given the equivalent of an attendance in a tutorial.

Semester Essays

A semester essay is required at the end of the semester in courses which do not have any coursework component and consist of two modules running back to back across the two semesters. Even though the semester essay does not count towards the final grade in the two modules, visiting students in the course involved may be formally assessed through them.

Coursework

A coursework is the written work undertaken outside the examination room. It contributes towards the final grade in the module or accounts its entirety.

Basic Aspects

The important aspects of law essay writing you need to develop are:

1. structuring your arguments
2. properly referencing your material
3. presenting your material in an attractive manner

Advanced Writing

In addition to the mentioned important aspects, advanced essay writing in law involves two components you can further develop:

1. good writing style
2. critical engagement with the focus of the title

You can develop this more complex skill by doing some more reading, writing, work at your writing, listening, reflecting upon the feedback you get on your writing.

Guidance

When you write an essay, you should first consult the relevant regulations, any code of practise applicable to your programme, your undergraduate handbook, and any specific guidance provided in relation to the module in which you are writing the essay. When a specific provision in the mentioned authoritative guidelines is contradicted or conflicted with a tip you learned outside of them, you should give preference to the former.

Studying Law is Writing

Take the opportunity to develop your law essay writing skills by performing well in practise essays. Also, if a time will come when you need to write a semester essay, the skill will come in handy. These, not to mention that you need to write coursework as part of or as the whole of your final grade.