The Cambridge Law Test (CLT) is an essay-based exam where students are given a list of Cambridge Law essay questions to choose from.
The CLT is designed to examine your ability to cope with the intellectual and academic rigour of the Cambridge Law course. A student studying Law at Cambridge would be expected to exhibit a number of qualities; including, analytical skills, an ability to construct a logical argument and strong reasoning skills. These are the sorts of qualities examiners will be wanting to see from applicants.
The Law Faculty provides some examples of the types of questions you’ll need to tackle. This is useful preparation for the exam, and it is recommended that you complete timed practice of essay questions in order to be fully prepared for the exam.
Let’s go through the types of questions that may come up.
What will the Cambridge Law test essay questions be?
Here are three examples of CLT essay questions:
Would it be a failure of UK democracy if a majority of UK adults supported restoration of the death penalty, but the UK Parliament consistently voted to maintain its abolition? Discuss.
Is there ever justification for holding a person liable for damage that he or she does not cause? If so, in what circumstances?
If you come up with an idea for a new product and tell a friend about it, should you be able to sue your friend for a share of profits if your friend (without your knowledge or consent) takes your idea, develops the product and makes a lot of money from selling it? Discuss.
There is a pre-prescribed format to this exam, which means you can have some confidence in what to expect when you sit down. The essay questions you’ll be given will be provided in a selection of three types. You will be tasked with answering one of these questions in one hour. These are the three types of questions that colleges tend to use:
The first type is essay questions. If you choose one of these questions, you will be expected to discuss a statement provided. You will be expected to give reasons for the arguments for or against the opinion. Here, reasoning and argument are the core skills to be demonstrated. Your answer should be structured clearly with an introduction, argument, and conclusion. Within this, you should set out what you want to discuss, your points of argument and reasoning and link your arguments back to the statement provided. This is not fundamentally about in-depth legal knowledge. Rather, focus on argument and crafting a strong and logical essay.
The second type is problem questions. For these, you will be given a statement of law and a scenario. In this type of answer, tutors are expecting candidates to identify issues that are presented within the scenario and how this is applied to the relevant law. You must explain how the point of law you are arguing is applied to the scenario in a persuasive way. It is also important to consider the structure of your argument again in this piece. As above, thinking logically and reasoning your argument are important skills to demonstrate.
Finally, the third question type is comprehension questions. For these, you are given a passage or a section from a judgment. You then have to process the information given and be prepared to summarise your understanding of the text and answer a number of questions on it.
It is advised that, in preparation to answer one of these Cambridge Law Test essay questions, you should select the type of question you’ll feel more comfortable with answering. You should then prepare this in-depth.
What should I do next?
As mentioned above, the next best thing to do is prepare for the test. You should start your preparations well in advance of the test itself and test yourself in a similar environment as you would expect to be in on the actual test day. Practice answering these essay-based questions from mock papers and familiarise yourself with some law terminologies to get ahead of the game.
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