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School of Law Secondary School Essay Competition


The School of Law at the University of Limerick invites all post-junior certificate students to submit an essay of approximately 1,000 words on one of the following topics:Law School Essay Poster

  1. In Ireland the rich get richer and the poor get prison?
  2. Children should be seen and not heard - especially in the courts?
  3. What happens on the pitch should stay on the pitch?
  4. Animal Welfare and Health Act 2013: A step in the right direction?
  5. The voting age should be reduced to 16
  6. Should retrials be permitted if the defendant has been acquitted?

The aim of the essay competition is to introduce secondary school students to the study of law and to challenge their preconceptions of law. There are a number of preconceptions that surround the law and indeed those that practice law. We often think of law in terms of crime and policing. Television shows depicting crime scenes, the collection of evidence, the subsequent trial with the District Attorney prosecuting those responsible, have all helped shape our view of the law and the legal system. While these images are fictional, they nevertheless contain a modicum of truth in that law serves as a guide or a standard in relation to human behaviour. Law is not just concerned with criminal matters but comes into operation in the most mundane of circumstances. For example, the Law of Contract can be involved in the building of a multi-million Euro shopping centre or a person simply purchasing an item from a local shop. In recent years we have seen an increased involvement of the law in sport. Professional footballers sign contracts with their clubs; injuries sustained on the field of play may be subject to criminal or civil proceedings depending on the circumstances; and athletes being required to attend a drug test may give rise to challenges on the basis of fundamental rights, including the right to privacy and the right to fair procedures.

The best essay in each topic will receive a prize of €100.

  • Essays must be typed, double spacing and must be accompanied by an application form which is available on our website:
  • Essays may be submitted via email to or by post to: School of Law Essay Competition, FG013, University of Limerick, Limerick.
  • Essays must be received by Friday the 6th of February 2015; submissions after this date will not be accepted.
  • A prize giving ceremony will be held in UL in March 2015, date to be confirmed.

Click here for a larger image of the poster.

Please click here for an application form.

The School of Law would like to thank Sean Duggan, 4th Year Law Plus, who designed the poster.