The Professional Course Offered By the School of Law
Aim of the Course
The one year Law School programme is designed to prepare candidates for the Final Examination which all intending legal practitioners must pass before being admitted to practice law in Sierra Leone. Since the profession is a fused one in Sierra Leone, it means on admission into the profession the practitioner becomes entitled to act both as a solicitor and a barrister. The training is therefore geared towards teaching those practical skill which are necessary for the work of a solicitor or barrister such as the following:-
Legal drafting including of documents for use both in and out of court;
Writing of legal opinion;
Professional practice Ethics and Advocacy
Though the subjects taught at the Law School do include the core subjects of Criminal Law, Law of Contract, Law of Tort, Equity and Trust, Constitutional Law, and Land Law which would already have been studied as part of the various degree course the objective of including them in the Law School programme is to afford students the opportunity of revising the key legal principles involved in these core subjects before embarking on the actual professional training by learning how to apply those principles to particular fact situations.
The Structure of the Academic Year
The Academic Year starts in October each year and ends in June of the following year. The year is divided into three term, Michaelmas, Epiphany and Trinity of at least ten (10) weeks duration each. The formal part of the course consists of lectures attendance at which is compulsory. There is also in place a system of continuous assessment that requires students to be examined in each subject during each of the terms either by way of tests or assignment. Continuous assessment accounts for thirty (30) per cent of the students overall marks with a maximum of ten (10) per cent to be gained in each term. Marks for the Michaelmas term should be submitted to the Registrar not later than fifteen (15) days after the commencement of the Epiphany term; those for the Epiphany term not later than fifteen (15) days after the commencement of the Trinity term and those for the Trinity term not later than the last days of the sessional examinations in June. It is incumbent on students to ensure that all their continuous assessment marks are submitted to the Registrar on the due date. The Final Sessional Examination are held at the end of June. Another sessional examination may be held in September for resits and for references.
Apart from the formal aspects of the course students are expected to take part in tutorials organized by the tutor of each subject, practical exercises, moots and attachments organized by the School.
The School organizes a formal dinner at the end of every term. Attendance at dinners is compulsory.