by Katie Bacon
I couldn’t believe it when I found out that I’d been invited to interview, there was a thrill of excitement soon followed by fear of the unknown. I had absolutely no idea what to expect so hopefully this post will help make the prospect of a Law interview seem slightly less scary or at least less confusing!
Before interviews started all the Law students attended an information session run by the tutors. It’s definitely a good idea to google the interviewers beforehand so you know at least what they look like and won’t be surprised! The key message of the talk was that we had done really well to reach the interview stage. It’s worth keeping this in mind throughout the process, remind yourself how hard you’ve worked and that you deserve to be there - they invited you for a reason!
Each interview had an hour of pre-reading to go through a case that would be the basis of the interview. One case was from the Supreme Court (SC) about a very complicated contract and chain of purchase involving a car dealership, a fraudster and an innocent party. The other was from the Court of Appeal about a hostage situation in which the hostage was accidentally shot by the police. The cases were taken straight from the courts so it might be helpful to practise reading and understanding cases, you can download some directly from the SC website. I would recommend keeping a watch on the table in front of you during the pre-reading as the time goes much quicker than you think! Both cases included latin translations so don’t worry about knowing any technical terms. The front page of the SC case outlined some of the questions that would be asked - what happened in the case? what was the view of the majority? what was the view of the minority? what was the outcome? What I found most helpful, for both interviews, was to write my key ideas on the back page so that when I went in I wouldn't have to flick through to find the relevant annotation I’d made, everything of importance was in one place.
The interviewers had very different styles, one was very enthusiastic the other completely dead pan, try not to let either put you off! I wasn’t asked much about my personal statement but the things that were picked up were from minor statements I’d made, so make sure you know your statement inside out and how every single thing relates to law! You never know what they’ll pick up on! Each interview was about 20-30 mins long. They were difficult but fun, try to let go of nerves and enjoy the experience.
Definitely don’t worry about doing anything embarrassing, in my second interview I got really disorientated by the layout of the room and started to sit on a sofa (as I had done in my first interview) only to be told I was actually sitting on a chair, I had to get up awkwardly from my half squat and move to the chair! Also try not to be phased if something unexpected happens, in the pre-reading for my second interview the fire alarm went off and we all had to leave the building. I took my pre-reading with me as I needed to maximise that hour and good thing too as I wasn’t given any extra time!! The situation was explained to the interviewers and everything was fine - fire drills are never scheduled for interviews so this shouldn’t happen to you but don’t panic if it does!
I was absolutely shattered after each interview and basically just sat in the same chair chatting to people for the rest of the day. Don’t worry about doing anything productive in dead time, do what you have to do to keep yourself in the right headspace. Congratulations for being invited to interview and really good luck! Feel free to message me if you have any questions!