How to utilise this lockdown? Here’s what a law student can do.

By | April 2, 2020
Lockdown

Last Updated :

This lockdown that not only our country but the entire world is facing has put a halt to our plans. As the semester comes to an end, many law students prepare for their semester break by planning internship and many other activities to enhance their careers. Although, these plans have been disrupted, do not dishearten yourself.

Here is a list of things law students can do to make the best of their time in this lockdown –

I. Certificate Courses Online

Many colleges have closed down, that doesn’t mean learning should close down. Online courses are a great source to learn any topic or subject you want. Students can also add the certificates to their CVs. Many platforms offer certificate courses, here is a list of a few of them (national and international) –

  1. Coursera – An online learning platform provides courses on a wide variety of subjects and topics. The courses offered are by universities all over the world, some courses are also offered by firms and organizations. Students can learn from the best universities in the world like Harvard, Stanford, Oxford etc.
  2. EdX – An educational platform that offers students the opportunity to learn from all over the world. The courses are provided by universities all over the world and on completion of the course, on payment of a fee you receive a certificate from the university which conducted the course.
  3. Udemy – An online platform that has unique ways of learning. This platform has creatively animated videos and catchy exercises that help in conceptual clarity. The courses on this site are highly affordable. A majority of courses have more than 80% on different occasions.
  4. Indian Academy of Law and Management – Provides students with career opportunities, skills development and knowledge that supplements their current academic studies. They aim to teach students to run and manage the modern-day Corporations, Government and Administration of Justice.
  5. Law Skills – This platform is dedicated to catering only to law students. They are offering courses for free till 7th April. They have courses in six languages. They cover Indian law and cater to the needs of an Indian Law Student.

II. Research papers

Find a topic worth exploring? Go ahead and write a research paper on the topic. 

Research papers are one of the most productive as well as time-consuming tasks. They involve laborious hours of endless research. We know that law is a vast subject, through research papers as a law student you can go in pick one subject or topic from this ocean and explore it in depth. Writing a research paper not only guarantees your knowledge of the subject but teaches you how to form structured arguments. You learn the art of writing.

This is just one facet, the other facet of writing a research paper is announcing to the world that you are a knowledgeable person. Research papers are a great way to communicate your ideas to the academic world. Research papers can be turned into a fun activity by conducting surveys and collaborating with a friend.

There are a plethora of online legal journals that are devoted to publishing the work of law students

III. Writing competitions

Essay writing has been inculcated in our curriculum from the time we were in school. Essay writing is an apt way to express our thoughts. These like research papers strengthen our argumentative skill and law students can learn how to structure their arguments.

More importantly, these are competitions through which law students gauge their level. These competitions are also a great source of getting hands on some extra cash. Prizes of most of these competitions vary from Rs. 500 – Rs. 10,000. 

The word limit is comparatively lesser which reduces the research. Essays are short and crisp.

Online National Legislative Drafting and Review Competition 2020

IV. Online Internships  

Since the scope for an offline internship that many law students rely upon as their semester break activity is cancelled, students can take up online internships. Many law journals/blog/websites provide law students with the unique opportunity to intern and learn with them.

Law students should utilise their time this lockdown does some online internships where they can understand how the sites they visit multiple times for help in subjects/moots/research paper/competitions functions.

  • This is a chance to get insight into many things.

  • This is a great way to sit at home to increase your competitive edge.

V. Books to read

Law is a subject that demands lengthy readings. Students are required to read a lot of material to keep up to date. This lockdown inspires yourself by reading some books. Here is a list of a few books that you might find interesting, all of these are available on kindle as buying a hardcopy is difficult right now.

  1. Before Memory Fades: An Autobiography – First-hand account of the life of eminent jurist and Supreme Court advocate Fali S Nariman. He has been awarded the Padma Bhushan, Padma Vibhushan and Gruber Prize for Justice and was also remained a nominated member of the Rajya Sabha. He is an inspiration to many law students. In this book, he recounts his early encounters as a budding advocate.
  2. The Wit & Wisdom of Nani A. Palkhivala – The biography of the legendary Indian lawyer who many say saved our democracy by Jignesh R Shah. He played many roles. His talent was multifaceted. Law students need to look no further for inspiration and idols. Nani Palkhivala is the embodiment of the goal that many young law students aspire to be. This book is surely going to light a spark.
  3. Legal Eagles: Stories of the Top Seven Indian Lawyers – The story of the life Harish Salve, Mukul Rohatgi, Rohinton Nariman, Abhishek Singhvi, Prashant Bhushan, Arvind Datar and C.A Sundaram their unexpected career in law and many failures has been captured by Indu Bhan.
  4. Tomorrow’s Lawyers: An Introduction to Your Future – This book is a commentary by British author and speaker Richard Susskind he is accredited for writing in the field of law and technology. Through this book, he argues that technology is having a profound effect on the world around us. Lawyers who fail to acknowledge this fact and adapt accordingly will undoubtedly pay the price.
  5. 10 Judgements That Changed India – This book by Zia Mody presents a compilation of 10 essays on some of the most influential judgments’ that were passed by the Supreme Court of India and proved to be life-altering for the common man and the democracy of the nation. This is a must-read for all law students.

VI. Documentaries

Documentaries are an interesting way to receive new information, as they started two of our five senses, they are an easy way to store information. There are many documentaries for law enthusiasts. A few which are available on Netflix are as follows –

  1. OJ Simpson – Popularly known as the trial of the century, is one of the most riveting courtroom trials. Legendary NFL player OJ Simpson known by his fans as ‘Juice’ is accused of murdering his ex-wife and his ex-wife’s boyfriend. This trial reveals that the craft of structuring arguments is essential in convincing people.
  2. RBG – Nicknamed the notorious RBG, Ruth Bader Ginsburg is the oldest serving Justice in the Supreme Court of USA. She was appointed by President Clinton and took the oath of office on August 10, 1993. She is the second female justice of four to be confirmed to the court. She is considered a feminist icon.
  3. The trials of Gabriel Fernandez – This shocking case is of the murder of an eight-year-old boy by his mother and her boyfriend. This is a heart-wrenching case, of a boy crying for help and a system failing him. The Department of Child and Family Services and law enforcement were called multiple times before Gabriel’s death yet nothing was. This is the story of a system that enabled abusers.
  4. Dirty money – This is a documentary series which deals with white-collar crimes committed by major conglomerates like Volkswagen, HSBC and Wells Fargo. The greedy side of human is brought out. In many of these cases, the conglomerates come out unharmed or with little harm. Although, they break think they break the law can it be said that they are too big to be taken down?
  5. The laundromat– This informative documentary is made in the form of a confusing comedy. This documentary explores the Panama papers scandal that shocked the world. This documentary uncovers way the law has been evaded and manipulated to make money.

VII. Movies

They are a great source of entertainment. Movies can also be considered as a great source of knowledge. Here are a few movies that a law student can watch –

  1. Erin Brockovich – This biographical movie encompasses the life of a single mother Erin who becomes a legal assistant to support her family faces immense judgement from her co-workers due to her social background and comes across a case against Pacific Gas and Electric. When she discovers that the company is poisoning a city’s water supply, she seeks justice.
  2. Spot Light – This investigative story dives into the widespread child abuse by Catholic clergy. This is a story of cover-ups and blatant violation of law by those who hold influence. The priests the were accused of misconduct were being systematically removed and allowed to work in other parishes.
  3. Philadelphia – This is the story of a young Philadelphia lawyer who keeps his sexuality hidden as he is a homosexual does not want to face the stigma at work. When he is infected with AIDS his secret starts to unveil. He is suddenly dismissed; he hires a homophobic lawyer for a wrongful dismissal suit. With the odds stacked against him, will he regain his respect and dignity?
  4. Shahid – This is a story of a man who goes from being involved in terrorist activities to becoming a criminal lawyer defending terrorists, in the end, his life reaches a tragic death. This movie explores the difficult life of a lawyer who is on the opposite side of law and chooses to defend criminals condemned by the public. This movie is a good watch for anyone interested in pursuing litigation as a criminal lawyer.
  5. No one killed Jessica – This movie is based on the Jessica Lal murder case. She was a Delhi model who was working as a celebrity barmaid at a crowded socialite party when she was shot dead. There were multiple witnesses to the murder who all pointed to the same person. The accused was the son of a wealthy a powerful MLA, was acquitted by the trial court.

Dealing with Law School Problems(Opens in a new browser tab)

Author: Kanishta Naithani

Kanishta is a student at Symbiosis Law School, Pune. She has published research papers, participated and placed National Essay Writing competition(s) and also presented a paper in a national seminar. She enjoys writing and researching, she aims to be a professional writer.

  • Nidhi Patil says:

    Reading Legal Eagles, it is indeed an amazing book recommendation!