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Chapter

Cover Legal Skills

13. Referencing and avoiding plagiarism  

This chapter focuses on referencing and avoiding plagiarism. These skills are of critical importance to law students since their academic work will inevitably require them to read, critically consider, and evaluate the work of others. However, they must ensure that they carefully and meticulously distinguish their own work, ideas, and arguments from those of the authors or judges encountered during their research. This is done by providing thorough references to the sources used in their work; failure to do so may lead to accusations of plagiarism. The chapter first explains the meaning of plagiarism in more detail and then discusses OSCOLA, the most frequently encountered referencing system in academic law.

Chapter

Cover Legal Skills

13. Referencing and avoiding plagiarism  

This chapter focuses on referencing and avoiding plagiarism. These skills are of critical importance to law students since their academic work will inevitably require them to read, critically consider, and evaluate the work of others. However, they must ensure that they carefully and meticulously distinguish their own work, ideas, and arguments from those of the authors or judges encountered during their research. This is done by providing thorough references to the sources used in their work; failure to do so may lead to accusations of plagiarism. The chapter first explains the meaning of plagiarism in more detail and then discusses OSCOLA, the most frequently encountered referencing system in academic law.

Chapter

Cover Learning Legal Rules

4. From Reading to Writing  

This chapter discusses the techniques involved in basic academic legal writing—an important aspect of one of the key skills required by employers, namely written communication. It covers writing legal essays—conveying information, constructing an argument, and applying the information and arguments to the essay title; answering legal problems and considering questions of legal liability; how to present your answers by use of the IRAC system; planning your answers and checking your work; the significance of referencing and the various methods used to reference work; and marking standards used by various quality assurance bodies and how law essays are marked.

Chapter

Cover Legal Systems & Skills

14. Writing and drafting  

Scott Slorach, Judith Embley, Peter Goodchild, and Catherine Shephard

This chapter focuses on the development and improvement of writing skills by law students. It then goes on to explore why these skills are needed in practice, and how to continue to improve them at that stage. It also explains what are professional drafting skills and provides guidance for good drafting. The section about academia includes comprehensive writing guidance for law students. This includes spelling, grammar, punctuation, structure, layout, language and proofreading. The section then moves on to explaining plagiarism, honesty and academic conduct. Guidance is provided about how to OSCOLA reference, and how this differs from other styles such as Harvard. Supportive technology is discussed, including Endnote and Grammarly. The section then moves on to how to write good essays, with guidance about planning and structuring essays. Reference is made to assessment criteria, and how to meet the criteria at the highest level in an essay. The professional writing and drafting section explores how to further develop the good writing practice mastered at university. It also explores drafting and dictation skills, and how to use a precedent. Writing and drafting templates are provided, including for an email.