Essential Legal Skills: A Guide for First Year Law Students - Book + eBook

Essential Legal Skills: A Guide for First Year Law Students - Book + eBook

By Samantha Kontra


$107.00* RRP

Date: 06/12/2021

Code: 42923691

Lawbook Co., AUSTRALIA

Available Formats

Format Title Date Code Price
Book Essential Legal Skills: A Guide for First Year Law Students 07/12/2021 9780455244600 $83.00 Add to cart
eBook - ProView Essential Legal Skills: A Guide for First Year Law Students - eBook 24/11/2021 9780455244617 $83.00 Add to cart
Book+eBook Essential Legal Skills: A Guide for First Year Law Students - Book + eBook 06/12/2021 42923691 $107.00 Add to cart


Essential Legal Skills: A Guide for First Year Law Students is designed with first year law students in mind. It provides a preliminary introduction to many of the skills that first year law students need to master, structured through the lens of the commonly used IRAC problem-solving methodology (Issue-Rule-Application/Analysis-Conclusion). This book takes a practical approach to legal problem-solving, and guides students through each step of the problem-solving process. As such, each chapter is designed to explain foundational legal skills, and to help students to develop and master these skills at the beginning of their legal education.

While this book introduces students to academic skills that are specifically relevant to law, it also introduces two practical legal skills: client interview and negotiation. These skills are particularly beneficial for first year law students and provide an innovative way of analysing legal questions and material facts (client interviewing), while evaluating both perspectives of a legal dispute (negotiation). Early development of these skills will help law students to engage with legal materials and hone their legal analysis, which is deepened through the use of reflection as a tool to improve relevant skills.

Chapter 1 Introduces students to studying at university and studying law, with emphasis on academic integrity and legal ethics.

Chapter 2 Teaches students how to read and analyse secondary sources.

Chapter 3 Teaches students how to read and analyse primary sources.

Chapter 4 Explains the process of legal research and teaches students how to find relevant sources.

Chapter 5 Introduces the process of legal analysis, with emphasis on the most difficult components on this, and tips to improve analysis.

Chapter 6 Introduces students to client-centred skills including client interview and negotiation.

Chapter 7 Teaches students how to reflect on their skills and experiences, to improve their practice.

About the author

Samantha Kontra is an Associate Lecturer in Law at Flinders University. Her teaching areas focus on teaching legal and academic skills to first year law students, and she has a keen interest in orientation and transition. She has taught first year law since 2012. She also teaches tort law and is particularly interested in negligence cases related to psychological harm, which draws together her previous studies in both law and behavioural science (psychology). Samantha’s research interests focus on legal negotiation, with a particular emphasis on preparation for legal negotiation, which is explored in her PhD thesis.


To further enhance learning, Essential Legal Skills: A Guide for First Year Law Students is supported by videos created by the author Dr Samantha Kontra. These videos, ranging from five to eight minutes in length, provide a useful introduction to the following areas:

  • Introduction to Essential Legal Skills
  • Legal Research - explains what is and the importance of legal research and how to use primary and secondary sources.
  • Legal Analysis - explains what is legal analysis, preparation, explaining your line of reasoning and why analysis is so difficult
  • IRAC - explains IRAC and how students can use this legal method.
  • Client Interview - explains how to prepare for a client interview, asking questions and how these skills are useful outside of an interview.
  • Legal Negotiation - explains what is legal negotiation, how to prepare and some things to consider during a negotiation.

Please contact your Academic Account Executive for access.


eBooks and packages including an eBook may not be returned once the software key has been supplied. Your rights as a customer to access and use the ProView™ software and a ProView eBook are subject to acceptance of the ProView content licence agreement.


  • An email with a registration key and instructions for accessing your eBook will be sent after checkout. For existing ProView users the eBook will appear in your library after checkout.

  • Forthcoming/pre-order eBooks will be available after the publication date.

  • The ProView app is not currently available on Kindle. See the latest system requirements

Got a Promo Code?