Apr 2014

Plagiarism. The wrongful appropriation of another author’s words, thoughts, ideas or expressions and the representation of them as your own original work. The term comes from the Latin word for kidnapper, and ‘kidnapping’ the work of another person is a serious offence in academia that could mean the end of not only your university studies but also your legal career.

Mar 2014

Challenging assignments are the norm in law school, and we can’t afford to be losing marks over something as simple as referencing. Every comma out of place could be costing you precious marks, so here are a few referencing tips to help you ensure that your footnotes are as flawless as your arguments…

Feb 2014

We all start the new academic year with ambitious goals. We tell ourselves that we will do all of the weekly readings, prepare for seminars and complete our notes well before exams, but before you know it, the term is half over and you’ve barely completed the work for week one. If this sounds all too familiar, here are some tips for how to stay motivated this year…

Nov 2013

As a law student (and future legal professional), try as you might, you won’t be able to avoid all that reading. As such, many people will tell you that if you don’t like reading, you’re not going to enjoy being a lawyer. Although I see what might be meant by this comment, I have to disagree. I love to read but I don’t always (if ever) love reading cases, legislation and other legal materials. What I have realised, perhaps far too late in my journey through law school, is that reading for law is a different story to reading for pleasure.

If you’re anything like me, you enjoy being captivated and drawn into the world of a good book and although some cases can be just as captivating (my inner law nerd showing himself) reading cases like novels is not an efficient way to study or work. So to help you out, I’ve put together a list of questions and helpful tips to assist you to read more efficiently and effectively.

Oct 2013

With so many assignments to do each semester, it’s easy for all those resources to get into a funky mess if you don't keep them in check. Academic misconduct is the last thing you want to have marked against your name at the end of your degree, so how do you avoid accidental plagiarism and manage your resource efficiently?

One of the worst things about doing an assignment is getting to the end rushing to footnote, only to realise that you’ve now forgotten where many of the quotes and ideas came from. When you start an assignment, work out how you will keep your resources and references organised. I'm a big fan of EndNote or any referencing software. Reference software seems like a hassle when you first start to use it, but in the long run it saves you time and reduces your errors.

Regardless of whether you use software or have another method, here are three steps that can help you to keep track of all those resources…

Oct 2013

We all know how it goes. You sit down at your desk, open your subject guide and tell yourself, “I am going to do all my readings, write that assignment, and update my notes today. I am going to be so productive!” Then you turn to your laptop and see that Facebook is open, and somehow the next 50 minutes disappear.

In the absence of strange smelling herbal teas and fish oil tablets, what are some things you can do to help improve your concentration?


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