What is it about at sixth-form level?
What would it be like to live free of laws in a state of nature? A state of bliss in which we are free to do as we choose? According to the philosopher Hobbes, in this state life would be “nasty, brutish and short.” It is through a system of law that we ensure order and obtain rights enable to live safely and productively. As a student of law, you will look at where our rights come from and the institutions that supervise and maintain them. You will look at some of your rights and whether or not they are well-motivated. For example, we may consider police powers and whether police on behalf of the state should have the authority to stop and search you and how that might be balanced against your rights as an individual. You will study criminal law in detail and look at actual cases. You will be required to advise on fictional scenarios. You will visit the courts to see the criminal law at work and we will invite legal professionals to visit the college give you an insight into their professional world.
An A level in Law will give you a profound understanding of the complex mechanisms that maintain this pillar of democracy and an insight into the complexities of legal argumentation. It is a challenging but well-respected and very rewarding subject.
Why study it and what skills does it develop?
It is not necessary to study A Level Law in order to study law at university or to qualify as a lawyer. It does however provide a very useful grounding. You will have a clear idea as to what is involved in the study of law; and you will have covered a lot of the subject material that you would expect to encounter on the first year of a law degree course. The A level will develop the skills of rational analysis and evaluation and the ability to put together and present a well-structured argument. There is a focus on written work, so your ability to communicate clearly and with the proper use of technical language will significantly improve. The subject works well with History, Politics and Psychology or any other subject that demands logical thinking and analysis.
What prior knowledge and skills are required?
You will need at least a grade 4 in GCSE English as there will be a lot of writing.
How is the course assessed?
The A level is assessed by three examinations. Paper 1 deals with the English Legal System and criminal law. Paper 2 covers law-making and the law of tort. Paper 3 examines the nature of law and either the law of contract or human rights law, depending on what you option you have chosen. Each paper contains a number of essay questions of varying lengths. Each paper lasts 2 hours and is worth 33% of the A level.
To be confirmed at the start of the course
OCR AS/A level Book One
By J. Martin and N. Price
Published by Hodder Education, ISBN 978-1510401761
OCR A level Law Book 2
By J. Martin, N. Price amd R/Wortley
Published by Hodder Education, ISBN 978-1510401778
Exam Board and Specification Codes
A level: OCR H415
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"As a dyslexic student who initially got CCEE for my AS, I was convinced that I could not achieve any higher. My time at MPW proved me wrong. Initially I was reluctant to move from my local school in York to a college so far away from home, my parents, and friends. At the end of my first year I was overjoyed to find that many hours of hard work and renewed revision techniques had resulted in me achieving three A's in my subjects. I wanted to continue at A2 as I knew it would greatly improve my university prospects and encourage me to work even harder. After two fantastic years at MPW I can emphatically say that going to MPW was the best decision I ever made."
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"Honestly, I could not imagine when I joined MPW that, due to language and adaptation barriers, I would achieve top grades in my first A-level exam sittings. This view changed completely after only a few weeks in the college’s supportive and motivational environment; with teachers who aimed at finding a personal touch with each student and with my Personal Tutor who made my adjustment to the UK education system not only an easy step in my life but, more importantly, an enjoyable one."
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