How To Compose A Brilliant Law School Essay Step By Step

Writing a paper for law school isn’t all that different than writing any other kind of academic paper—there are just a few small differences that you’ll get the hang of in no time. Follow this easy step by step guide to learn how to compose a brilliant law school essay:

  1. Choose a topic
  2. Depending on the paper assignment, you may or may not have been assigned a topic or a particular subject and side to argue on. If you haven’t, or if you’ve only been assigned a broad subject, you’ll need to narrow it down to a concise and specific topic that you can adequately address in the space you have for the paper.

  3. Set your thesis
  4. Once you have chosen a topic you’ll need to set your thesis, or the core of your argument. Sometimes a thesis statement can be a simple as ‘such and such is unconstitutional’ for a law school paper, while other times you’ll need to explain why or how about something.

  5. Outline your paper
  6. One area where law school essays can differ slightly from other kinds of papers is in how you lay out your argument, and in turn, outline your paper. Your courses should offer an explanation of exactly how your argument should be structured in a legally sound way. Be sure to follow this same argument structure in your paper structure. Aside from that, you’ll want to follow usual outlining strategies. And remember, the more detailed the outline you make, including notes, quotes, and citations, the less time it will take you to write your actual paper.

  7. Find relevant case law
  8. Another area where writing a law school paper can differ from other kinds of academic papers is the sources that you use for it. This will also differ a bit with the kind of law that the course is focusing on, and will also vary with the exact subject of the paper. One thing you will have to get used to, however, is finding relevant case law to support your argument. Spend some time getting familiar with the legal source databases you have access to!

  9. Use proper citations
  10. Depending on what kinds of sources you are citing in your paper, be sure to use the correct citation format. While you may be using APA or Chicago for academic sources, you’ll need to use the standard legal citation formatting for any cases.