What are ‘Super curriculars’?
Super curricular activities are essentially extracurricular learning activities that are specifically related to your chosen course of study at university. They can include many different things, including experiences and academic research. Incorporating these in your personal statement, and using these experiences in your interviews, can really help improve your chances of being accepted onto your chosen law course.
Why are super curricular activities important for Law?
As with all subjects, super curriculars can set you apart from other candidates within your personal statement. Including a wide range of super curricular activities and experience can help you to demonstrate that you have a breadth of interest and skills. Law schools are looking for you to demonstrate:
- Motivation and enthusiasm for the subject
- Leadership and responsibility within a working environment
- Interpersonal skills
- Time management
- Problem-Solving skills
- Good argumentation
- A strong essay writing ability
- Legal knowledge
How do I include super curricular activities in my Law personal statement?
Remember that the personal statement is your opportunity to show each university why you are suitable for the study of their law course. Make sure you don’t just describe your experience but analyse how these experiences have developed your interests.
The content of your personal statement should be at least a 75/25 academic to non-academic ratio. As such, the best way to include your super curriculars is to discuss how they have influenced your academic research law. However, it is also important to discuss the non-academic aspects of your super curriculars, and how they demonstrate your development of the core skills listed above.
For more detail on how to include super curricular activities in your personal statement, read our Personal Statement blog.
What super curricular activities are good for law?
Any experience that can help you to develop skills that are transferable to the study of law are useful. Examples of specialised law-related experience have been listed below:
- Work experience – This can entail shadowing solicitors and barristers in their roles. Research law firms and/or chambers near you and contact them to see if you could shadow them for a week or two in your school holidays.
- Volunteering with legal charities/law-related organisations – There are a variety of different pro bono charities and organisations that provide free legal aid to those in need. Volunteering here can give you some excellent practical legal experience.
- Visiting Court Rooms – Some court rooms will have public galleries that will allow you to sit in and observe a case in action. This is a great way to see the legal system in action and familiarise yourself with courtroom procedure.
- Summer Schools and Online Courses – There are a range of different courses and summer schools available that can offer you an insight into a higher level of legal study and give you a taste for what studying law at university is like.
- Debating Societies – Getting involved with debating with your school is an excellent way to develop your argumentation skills within a structured environment.
- Essay Competitions – This is a great way to practice your essay writing skills and research a legal topic in greater detail. You can refer to your research in your personal statement!
For more information on legal work experience opportunities and useful links, take a look at this in-depth guide.
Independent Law Super curricular Development:
Beyond the activities listed above, it is important to enhance your understanding of the core subjects that you would be studying within your university law course. For a qualifying law degree, you will need to complete modules in the following topics:
Criminal Law - The theories and institutions of criminal law and their place in modern society. It provides an understanding of the vital principles which shape criminal law legislation. Areas include:
- Sexual Offences
- Law of Theft or Fraud
Law of Torts - A civil law which refers to an individual’s rights to compensation for damages caused in the event of a breach in safety, emotional distress, invasion of privacy and other instances. Areas include:
- Workplace Safety
- Environmental Damage
- Road Safety
- Psychiatric injury
The Law of Contract - The elements of a legally binding contract. Areas include:
- Contract Formation
- Breach of Contract
- Regulation of unfair terms
- Invalidation of contracts
Land Law (Property Law) - the law on property in economic, social and other contexts. Areas may include:
- Land Registration
- Settlements of land
- Trusts of land
- Nature of land
- The distinction between registered and unregistered land
Equity and Trusts - Specific ways of managing and protecting assets which can include money, property and investments guided by the Equitable Maxims, a set of principles which control how equity functions. Areas may include:
- Remuneration of trustees
- Variation of trusts
- Trusts of land
- Duty of care of trustees
- Constitutional and Administrative Law - Explores the nature, structure, and operation of the British constitution. Areas may include:
- Parliamentary sovereignty
- The rule of law
- Personal liberty and human rights
- Judicial Review
- The role of tribunals
EU Law - The constitutional and administrative justice systems in place the European Union. This is still required even after Brexit, although the emphasis may vary depending on your university course. Areas may include:
- Free movement of goods
- EU citizenship
- EU human rights
- Economic governance of the EU
To help guide your research, here are a list of some useful sources. Alongside those listed below, you should also try to keep up to date with the news and any topical legal issues.
Recommended books on Law
Law: A Very Short Introduction — Raymond Wacks
What About Law?— Catherine Barnard, Janet O’Sullivan & Graham Virgo
Letters to a Law Student— Nick McBride
Law and Modern Society— P.S. Atiyah
Recommneded Podcasts on Law
Law in Action (BBC 4)
Serial Season 3 examines the US Justice system in the Cleveland, Ohio courts (This American Life/The New York Times)
The Hearing (Thompson Reuters)
Rightsup (University of Oxford)
Recommended videos on Law
Law in Focus,video series from the Faculty of Law
The Supreme Court - You can watch live court sittings, recorded current cases, and decided cases, as well as reading about court procedures.
Recommended Online Courses on Law
A Law Student’s Toolkit (Yale University)
Introduction to English Common Law (University of London)
Introduction to American Law (University of Pennsylvania)
Law for Non-Lawyers (Monash University)
How to Become a Lawyer (University of Law)
The Modern Judiciary (King’s College London)
LNAT and Law University Entrance Tuition
Please do get in touch with Keystone Tutors if you are looking for an LNAT or Law Entrance tutor to further support your university preparation. Our tutors have extensive experience with the LNAT, both through having successfully sat the test and then gone on to tutor it.