Research Essays
About Research Essays
Style and Purpose
Readership and Tone
Good Research Essays
Common Mistakes
Topics and Tasks
Set Questions
Understanding Your Task
Your Own Essay Topic
Exposition and Analysis
Critical Analysis
A Central Thesis
Stating Your Argument
Sample Essays
2,000 Words
5,000 Words
5,000 Words
Native title - from original proposal to final essay
You may be required, or choose, to undertake a major research essay of 5-10,000 words in Law School. This form of legal academic writing gives students the opportunity to develop a sustained examination and analysis of a topic, which may be of particular interest.

An extended research essay of 5,000-10,000 words shares many of the features and requirements of a shorter research essay. These include: clear and effective communication, logical structure and organisation, critical analysis and argument. However, an extended legal research essay differs in terms of: the scope of the work, the range of the topics considered, and the depth of analysis.

Taking time to plan a longer essay is most important. The example we provide here illustrates the various stages of the planning and writing process for a 5,000 research essay:

Original proposal
Revised proposal
Brainstorming outline
First draft
Final essay
As you will see, good writing rarely springs fully formed onto the page. Rather, it involves a series of supporting stages that build into the essay as the 'finished product'.

We would emphasize that there are many different styles of good legal writing and this example represents just one possible approach. However, the final essay does exhibit the characteristics of effective legal writing. The outlines and drafts demonstrate the extent of the work and planning involved in a longer research task. Research Essays
About Research Essays
Style and Purpose
Readership and Tone
Good Research Essays

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