Director of Studies: Mr Tom Hawker-Dawson

Other Fellows in Law

Number of students admitted each year: 6 - 8

Introduction: Studying Law

Christ's College provides a first-rate opportunity to study law in a rigorous and collaborative setting. Its diverse student body is drawn from across the nation and around the world, and it boasts an extensive network of distinguished alumni. There are about 20-25 law students resident at any one time, forming an ideally-sized, friendly and diverse community. Upon graduating, Christ's lawyers have gone on into many walks of life - especially, but by no means only, the legal profession. The law degree is neither necessary nor sufficient for legal practice, and at Cambridge law is treated as an intellectual discipline rather than a vocational training course.

Law students at Christ's have access to exceptional resources, both academic and social. The College offers a well-stocked, separate law library, and a flourishing student-run law society.   We welcome you and invite you to explore Christ's through our website.
 

Law at Cambridge University

The Cambridge Law Faculty today is one of the largest and most prestigious in the country.  It is internationally renowned for its academics and their research.  The Faculty possesses an internationally important research library, the Squire Law Library, with its vast range of materials on open access for all students to use.  The Faculty and the Squire Library are about 15 minutes' walk from Christ's, with a further adjacent building for the Institute of Criminology.  All Law students take four compulsory subjects in their first year for Part IA; criminal law, constitutional law, law of tort and civil (Roman) law; and they also take a legal skills and methodology paper. In the second and third years students choose five subjects from a wide range - from family law to international law, details of which can be found on the Faculty webpages above.

The Faculty invites second year undergraduates to apply to take part in the study abroad Erasmus scheme, at partner universities in Poitiers (France), Utrecht (Netherlands), Regensburg (Germany), and the Universidad Autonoma de Madrid (Spain). Successful students spend a year studying abroad, before returning for their final year in Cambridge. No separate application is needed for these courses when applying for entry to read law at Cambridge, but appropriate language skills are strongly advised.
 

Law at Christ's College

Although lectures are an important part of learning, the supervision system is central to the Cambridge style of teaching. Supervisions are tutorial teaching sessions in small groups, and are one of the major advantages of a Cambridge education, providing individually tailored help and tuition. Every College has one or more Directors of Studies in Law, part of whose job is to advise students in their choice of subjects and to arrange supervisions for them. One of the strengths offered by Christ’s College, is that we can provide small group teaching in College for many of the qualifying compulsory papers.

Dr Shona Wilson Stark teaches Constitutional Law and Civil Law in the first year (Part IA). Her wider research interests include constitutional law and the “architecture” of law (who makes law and how, who uses law, and how we can evaluate the quality of law). As well as supervising two Part IA compulsory papers she also lectures on the Civil Liberties and Human Rights LLM course.

Dr Richard Williams teaches Contract Law in the second year (Part IB). His research is in the field of corporate and insolvency law. Topics discussed in his recent publications include the regulation of corporate political donations, directors’ disqualification and the simplification of private company law across the EU. He lectures on company and corporate insolvency law.

Dr Dominic de Cogan teaches the Equity paper for Part II (third year). His research interests centre on the interactions between taxation, public finance and public law, especially as they play out over extended periods of time.  In his recent work he has examined systematic inconsistencies in the application of taxing statutes, and has also tried to understand the relative absence of robust legal and historical analysis within tax reform processes. 

The College also provides a modern library including a specialist Law Library for the sole use of Law students.
 

Mooting at Christ's

All law students at Christ's have the opportunity to participate in mooting. A moot is a simulated court case, in which the participants are presented with a set of facts and then have to make submissions about how the law should apply to those facts like barristers in front of a "judge" (usually one of the Directors of Studies but sometimes a former Christ’s student who is now a real judge). Moots raise questions of law rather than questions of fact - cross-examination of witnesses as in a "mock trial" is not required!  The activity hones a number of important skills, such as public speaking, legal research and the ability to think on one's feet. In recent years, Christ's undergraduates have been very successful in mooting and all first years are required to participate in the college moot in Michaelmas Term.
 

Christ's College Law Society

The law students at Christ's have an active society run by officers annually elected from among the current undergraduates.  Among many others, annual events include: a party for the new undergraduates in October, a dinner at the end of Michaelmas Term, the formal Annual Dinner in January, an informal dinner at the end of Lent Term, and finally a garden party in June to celebrate the end of the academic year. The society regularly invites solicitors, barristers and others whose work interacts with law to give talks in college throughout the year.
 

Student Profiles

Emily, Emma and Page are all studying Law here at Christ's College, they have written about their experiences of studying Law in their student profiles:

If you would like to read more accounts from Christ's students, please see the student profiles page.
 

How to apply

We welcome applications from all kinds of academic background and school type. Details and a timeline for the application process can be found on the how to apply page, and we also have a dedicated section for international students.

Subject advice

Law students will generally have studied an essay-based subject as one of their post-16 subjects but there is no ‘ideal’ combination of subjects.  Successful applicants take all sorts of subjects from Mathematics and sciences, to arts and social sciences or various combinations. All of these teach skills that can be useful to the undergraduate lawyer. 

Interviews

For applicants selected for interview in Cambridge, these are held in early December. Applicants will have two interviews at Christ's. Directly before one interview, applicants are given a piece of legal text to read in preparation for discussion in the subsequent interview. However, no special preparation is needed for the interviews, and in particular, no special knowledge of law will be expected.  The process aims to identify aptitude and potential for legal reasoning and study at Cambridge, rather than existing knowledge. Further, more general information about interviews (including two useful films) is available in the Cambridge interviews section.

We also hold interviews in a number of locations overseas. If this may be relevant for you, please see the international students section

The Cambridge Law Test

All students selected for interview in Law are asked to sit the Cambridge Law Test on the same day as their interviews. We organise this for you - there is nothing that you need to do to register. The same test is used no matter which College you apply to. Further details about the Cambridge Law Test and specimen questions can be found in the Cambridge Law course information.  

Offers

Christ's College does not have fixed quotas of places for different subjects and the exact numbers admitted in any one year will depend upon the strengths of the fields of applicants in various subjects. However, our aim is to admit around 6 to 8 students each year in Law.

Conditional offers are likely to be minimum A*AA at A-level, 42 points overall in the IB with 7,7,6 in relevant Higher Level subjects, or equivalent in other qualifications, although the precise terms of each offer are assessed individually.  The international students section has further information about typical offers for other qualifications.

If you will have already finished school when you apply, please see the page for post-qualification applications

Resources

Think Cambridge Law (blog) A really helpful set of posts from the Faculty of Law at Cambridge
Websites for exploring your subject in Law (part I) Suggestions from the Law Faculty
Websites for exploring your subject in Law (part II) Suggestions from the Law Faculty
Information about Work Experience for Law Info and advice
Gresham College Law lectures Free online lectures
Cambridge Law Test Information and sample tests

 

Further Information

If you are able to come to a College Open Day, we will be glad to tell you more about Christ's and studying Law here in person. If you are not able to come, please feel free to email any queries you have to the Christ's admissions team: admissions@christs.cam.ac.uk.

Back to the subject list / How to apply / Why choose Christ's?