The transferable skills of the law student
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The transferable skills of the law student

The study of law is, arguably, one of the most rounded academic disciplines that someone could undertake. The law student does not only achieve an understanding of the subject but also the historical, societal and political contexts within which the subjects sit. A law student will consider, debate and question historical facts and actions of the United Kingdom in a global setting and also current events as they unfold.
Studying law delivers the awareness that law is not a stationary thing, confined to books and legislation. A law student will quickly realise that law is an evolving and growing thing that must adapt and meet the needs of an evolving society both in terms of politics, economics, behaviour, tolerance and acceptance. Researching, writing and discussing issues such as the death penalty and the right to life will immerse the law student into levels of critical thinking that they never before thought they might have been capable of.
The skills developed by a law student are as varied as they are in number. A student of law will become a reflective learner. This means that they will take comment and criticism constructively from fellow students, tutors and even external sources. These comments will be examined and used to enhance and improve their performance in all tasks.
Becoming reflective also means becoming more self-aware and self-critical; honest about themselves, and open to criticism and feedback; objective in weighing up evidence; open to, and prepared to try, different approaches; curious to discover other approaches, motivated to improve, and more able to carry out independent learning.
The reflective law student will also participate in strategies which are designed as to improve and encourage reflection. These will include but will not be limited to:
  • Self-assessment where the student honestly rates their own performance in tasks.
  • Peer-assessment (fellow students) /feedback on assessments and progress.
  • Learner agreements with their tutors.
  • Personal development planners agreed and co-created with their tutors.
  • Reflective commentaries reviewing their progress and performance using feedback from team members, tutors and personal reflection.
  • Actioned research that is focused, deliberate and intended to produce results to meet an identified objective.
  • In conclusion, the law student identity actually goes beyond the listing of transferable skills and includes attributes such as confidence and self-esteem, flexibility and creativity. It also involves becoming aware of the discipline and culture of business and commerce, generally.
    The breadth of academic study, the rigour and discipline of the research, examination and presentation of the subjects being studied have all been cited by students as greatly helping them to develop their ability to engage with their studies, as well as increasing their employability. The reflective law student then becomes highly desirable to graduate recruiters generally.
    The study of law not only presents opportunities within the legal services sector but also promotes personal development, academic progress, lifelong learning and employability.