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THE FIRST BOOK YOU SHOULD READ AS AN UNDERGRADUATE LAW STUDENT
An appreciation by Elizabeth Taylor of Richmond Green Chambers and Phillip Taylor MBE of “The Barrister”
Law books have developed to a very high standard in the last 40 years as the newer technologies are used in a most positive way to aid learning. Routledge were amongst the first publishers to see the advantages of a companion website to assist a better understanding of the intricacies of how the English Legal System works developing their “Unlocking the Law” titles to a new generation of students. Students who probably do realise how lucky they are if they have ever seen some of the stuff we had to use in 1970!
So we welcome this fifth edition of “Unlocking the English Legal System” by Rebecca Huxley-Binns, Jacqueline Martin and Tom Frost for 2017 at a time of massive upheaval in the political and legal worlds. We described an earlier edition as “at the cutting edge of legal teaching” with the extension of digitisation to modernise legal teaching which “ease the burden on the teacher and the student”. And that is exactly what the fifth edition continues to fulfil for those new to the law.
Do read the “Guide to the Book” and its current Preface to begin with. It goes without saying that “English legal method and the English legal system are important as they underpin understanding of the development and practice of all substantive areas of law”. So this grounding is imperative to see how our system works today with so many changes in areas like legal aid and family matters.
There is a great deal to commend this book and its sister titles for modern teaching, both in the classroom and by distance learning. Readers will find the “self-testing” and the variety of activities included in the work highly beneficial for learning outcome goals. The layout is also most conducive to the learning environment where cases are separated out for easy access. We have sometimes had such a rudimentary system in the past by way of the citation of cases and statutes so we do appreciate the simple and expedient way in which the authorities are explained here.
Teaching law is about the selection of ‘bite size’ sections so we welcome the way in which the three authors have addressed their task. The result is a most readable and well structured account of our legal system making the subject more accessible by the focus placed on actual learning needs which the experienced writers have so well identified. This is a fine edition, and will also be of great help to unrepresented parties wishing to know more about how the law works in an era of developing public legal education.
The law is as stated at 1st October 2017 and it is available as a book, a paperback and as an ebook with an accompanying website.