Criminal law problem questions - getting a firstWatch
Does anyone have any tips on how to get a first in criminal PQs? I seem to constantly hover around the 65 mark!
- Structure: Your essay should be clear and easy to follow, with the examiner knowing what you will address and advise from the outset. For each point, it is helpful to follow structures like IRAC (Issue, Rule, Apply, Conclude).
- Style: A technique that will get you far, your writing must be concise and easy to follow.
- Content: A first class essay will be able to identify red-herrings and little quirks that would a weaker one would not. This can only be achieved by having an excellent grasp of the case law, knowing areas of contention (for example, where cases were only decided by a narrow majority or interesting points were raised in obiter). Something we see a lot of, especially on TSR, is students inclination to go into excessive detail on points that really don't contribute much to the overall argument.
- Discussion: Following on from knowledge of the case law, it can also be handy to know contemporary issues, so that where relevant you can say 'the law is this, but reform is imminent/this position is unsatisfactory'. Here it is handy to read the purposes behind the rules being made, how they came about, and if they are thought to be going in the wrong direction.