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The New Lawyer

The New Lawyer

Nickolas James, Rachael Field

ISBN: 978-0-730-30154-7

Dec 2012

568 pages

Select type: Paperback

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The New Lawyer is written for first year law students and will introduce the next generation of lawyers to the environment of law and the professional attributes they should possess to be a successful lawyer. Academic reflection on the first year experience for law students and increased attention on developing career ready skills has significantly influenced the approach of this textbook. The text presents the knowledge a future lawyer is expected to know, the core skills a future lawyer is expected to have and behaviours a future lawyer should possess.

The text presents concepts in an engaging writing style. Students have the opportunity to apply their understanding of concepts and develop appropriate skills by completing activities in the chapters. The text is suitable for courses on legal skills and methods, legal foundations and frameworks, and introduction to the law and legal system.

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Preface xiv

Acknowledgements xx

About the authors xxii

Cases xxiii

Statutes xxiv


Chapter 1 – The life of a lawyer 3

Chapter 2 – The basic concepts 41

Chapter 3 – The history of law 83

Chapter 4 – The Australian legal system 113

Chapter 5 – The sources of law in Australia 145


Chapter 6 – Legal research skills 189

Chapter 7 – Interpretation skills 227

Chapter 8 – Thinking skills 265

Chapter 9 – Communication and collaboration skills 305

Chapter 10 – Self management skills 343


Chapter 11 – Being Realistic 375 

Chapter 12 – Being Committed to justice 405

Chapter 13 – Being Ethical 435

Chapter 14 – Being Globally minded 471

Glossary 507

Index 523

  • Content is influenced by and written around the Threshold Learning Outcomes (TLOs) for Law with integrated links to the TLOs of Knowledge, Ethics and Professional Responsibility, Collaboration and Communication, Thinking Skills , Research Skills and Self-Management Skills throughout the text
  • Legal Skill boxes in each chapter require students to ‘think’, ‘collaborate’, ‘rephrase’ or ‘research’ legal concepts
  • Chapter vignettes ‘Law in the media’ and ‘Perspectives on the law’ connect legal theory to legal precedence and actual legal events
  • Revision questions require students to synthesise and critically evaluate legal concepts
    Inclusion of law cases encourage deep learning and require to students apply legal reasoning
  • Chapter Checklist is a bullet list of key learning objectives
  • End of chapter exercises are ideal for tutorial discussion
  • The text is divided into 3 Parts: ‘Knowing’, ‘Doing’ and ‘Being’
    - ‘Knowing’ addresses the broad areas of knowledge that must be understood by every new law student
    - ‘Doing’ focuses on the fundamental legal skills required by every law student and lawyer
    - ‘Being’ is concerned with four personal traits essentials to success as a new lawyer