English Language Development Resources
Language and communication is fundamental to the discipline and practice of law. If you are studying law and English is not your first language consider building a ‘language development strategy’ into your study routine. This means thinking about how you are going to improve your general and academic vocabulary, strengthen your grammar for writing, and even developing listening and speaking proficiency. Some great English language resources are listed below:
English Language Resources
Michael Swan, Practical English Usage (2005): UniM ERC – 428.24 SWAN
Fredrik Liljeblad, Berlitz English Grammar Handbook (2004): UniM ERC TB – 428.2 LILJ
- A very accessible grammar and language development book
Purdue University’s Online Writing Lab: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/
- Recommended Academic writing and language skills site
HyperGrammar – University of Ottawa: http://www.arts.uottawa.ca/writcent/hypergrammar/
- This site is very useful. It’s really well organised, and has a functional focus – usingverbs, building clauses, sentences, paragraphs etc.
Monash University Language and Learning online – Grammar: http://www.monash.edu.au/lls/llonline/grammar/index.xml
The Guide to Grammar and Writing, sponsored by the Capital Community College Foundation: http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/
- English Page: http://www.englishpage.com/index.html
Common Errors in English: http://vlc.polyu.edu.hk/common/
Daily Grammar: http://www.dailygrammar.com/archive.shtml
ESL Gold – general English language resources: http://www.eslgold.com/index.html
ESL Resource Centre: http://eslus.com/eslcenter.htm
Speaking and Listening Skills
Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab: http://www.esl-lab.com/index.htm
‘Sounds of English’: http://www.soundsofenglish.org/index.html
Merriam-Webster Online: http://www.m-w.com/
- Word pronunciation, American accent
Understanding the Australian Legal System
Your studies will be easier and more interesting if you have a basic understanding of Australia’s legal system. Some awareness of current legal issues as reported in news services will also be useful.
Introductory information about Australia: http://www.australia.gov.au/about-australia
- Includes information on Australia’s States and territories, government structures and population statistics, which will be useful for international students.
The history of Australia’s legal system and governments: http://www.foundingdocs.gov.au
- The National Archives of Australia website, Documenting a Democracy, includes images and discussion of 110 key documents that have provided the foundation for Australia’s governments. It also includes a timeline of major political events in Australia’s colonial and national history.
The Parliament of Australia: http://www.aph.gov.au/Help/A_-_Z_Index
- The website contains information about the composition of the Houses of Parliament, info sheets on various aspects of government and the Constitution, and links to key Law internet sites.
The High Court of Australia: http://www.hcourt.gov.au/about/role
- Find out who sits on the Bench and take a virtual tour through the Court.
The Parliament of Victoria: http://parliament.vic.gov.au/
- Who’s your local MLA? Find out what an MLA is in the parliamentary glossary.
The Australian Newspaper: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/
- An Australian national daily newspaper.
The Age Newspaper: http://www.theage.com.au/
- A Melbourne daily newspaper.
Heilbronn, Latimer, Nielson & Pagone, Introducing the Law (6th ed, 2006): UniM Law – KL 26 INTR
Catriona Cook et al, Laying Down the Law (8th ed, 2011): UniM Law High Use – KL 155 K1 LAYI
James Miller, Getting into Law (2002): UniM Law High Use – KL 26 MILL
The Law Report: http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/lawreport/
- A weekly program on ABC Radio National that considers current legal issues. Listening to this and other Australian radio programs (see: http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/) can also help international students become familiar with the Australian accent.