Dear Prospective Law School Students,
This is a note from us, the School of Law at BRAC University, containing some guidelines to help you decide whether studying Law is the right choice/option for you. You need to know that your legal education will teach you to "think like a lawyer" and the skills of analysis and problem solving, required of all lawyers are qualities that will be nurtured and developed here.
However, in order to tackle the curriculum and learning methods required for the study of Law, it would be highly beneficial to you to enter Law School with a reasonably well developed set of analytic and problem solving abilities. These abilities include:
Critical Reading Abilities
A substantial experience at close reading and critical analysis of complex textual material is necessary. Much of what you will do as a law student and lawyer involves careful reading and comprehension of laws, judicial decisions, documents, and other written materials. As a Law student, you will be rigorously engaged in carefully reading and understanding, and critically analyzing, complex written material of substantial length. Even before you decide on studying Law, you must be the kind of person who enjoys reading lengthy books – even novels - and articles and have the capability of summarising their context.
Oral Communication and Listening Abilities
The ability to speak clearly and persuasively is another skill that is essential to your success in law school and the practice of law. Excellent listening skills go hand in hand with communication skills. Law is complex and you need to be able to follow the lectures – and know where you need clarifications and explanations. In later life, you will need to pay attention to your clients, to the judges and others with whom you will interact. Prospective students, who have participated in debate, making formal presentations in class, or speaking before groups in school or the community, already have some substantial oral and listening skills.
Language is the most important tool for a lawyer. In preparation for a legal education, you should develop a high degree of skill at written communication. You must be able to express yourselves clearly and concisely. Thus, you must come to Law School armed with fundamental writing skills. Basically, you must be a person who enjoys writing descriptive, explanatory essays and papers.
General Research Skills
It would be to your advantage to come to law school having had the experience of undertaking research projects or papers that require significant library research and analysis of information. The ability to use a personal computer is also necessary for law students, both for word processing and for computerized legal research. Again, if you were a debater or have participated in Model United Nations events and similar programmes, you have the basics of such skills.
Task Organization and Management Skills
You are going to need to be able to prepare and assimilate large amounts of information in an effective and efficient manner. To study and practice law, you need to be able to organise large amounts of information, identify objectives, and create a structure for applying that information in an efficient way in order to achieve desired results. If you have undertaken school projects that require substantial research and writing you may already have some basic experience of such skills.
Knowledge of Current Events
Here at the School of Law, we primarily focus on the laws of Bangladesh. However, as per our teaching practice we like to compare laws to laws and practices in other countries. Courses such as International Law, Human Rights, Legal Systems and Institutions, Environmental Law, Cyber Law contain a lot of information on current global events. Law students need to be aware of events unfolding around the world such as global politics, warfare, major events and trials, etc. As a result, prospective students must already be in the habit of reading newspapers and watching not only the new in Bangladesh but also news channels such a Al Jazeera, BBC, CNN and other international media.
We sincerely hope that this guideline will help you assess whether the School of Law is the place for you to be. We wish you all the best in your academic journey!
The School of Law