What GCE A level subjects should I take?
The most important thing is to choose academic subjects that excite your interest and enthusiasm and extend you intellectually. There are no essential or desirable prerequisites for the study of law.
What grades do you ask for?
In Law the offer is typically conditional on achieving one A* and two A grades at GCE A level or equivalent. Please do not be put off by the offer conditions - if we make you an offer it means we want to take you and we are confident that you can meet its conditions. Further information (including details of typical offers for those not studying A levels) can be found here.
What can I expect at the admissions interview?
We interview almost all applicants who apply to read Law and the interviews are usually held in the first or second week of December. You will have two interviews, at least one of which will be with one or more Law Fellows of the College. In one interview we will ask applicants to read a passage immediately before the interview (such as a fictitious statute or part of a Law report) and then answer questions related to that passage in the interview.
In addition, you will be asked to sit the Cambridge Law Test. The majority of Cambridge Colleges use the Cambridge Law Test which is designed to complement the other elements of the admissions process. For information on the Cambridge Law Test, visit here. Specimen questions are available here.
Why do you set a written test?
Each student is different - some people excel at interview while others show their talent in a more reserved way. We find the combination of interview and test is a useful way of assessing a student’s capacity for problem-solving together with their ability simply to "get on with it". We are looking for both at Robinson.
Do I need work experience, and are there other ways I can develop my interest in Law?
You do not need work experience in order to study Law at Cambridge, and there are many other ways to develop your interest in the subject. Robinson’s Director of Studies Dr Brian Sloan has written this blog post on the topic.
Do you recommend a "year out" between school and university?
There is no bias either in favour or against taking a gap year between school and university.
What makes Robinson a good place to study law?
"I graduated from Robinson College in 1992 before practising at the bar and in leading solicitors' firms. I took silk in 2016 and became a Deputy High Court Judge in 2017. Reading law at Robinson College was stimulating and set me in good stead for my future legal career. I still remember my Roman law course taught by Dr Forsyth with great affection. In recent years I have found myself wishing I had taken my Roman Law studies further. The history is fascinating; you get the chance to study an entire legal system and the advanced legal thinking still resonates today...Over the years, I have often drawn upon my studies at Robinson College to guide me through novel and complex legal issues and cases in my practice."
- Justine Thornton QC, a leading environmental, planning and energy law barrister, Deputy High Court Judge and Visiting Professor of Law at University College London
"Academically, Robinson College is a fantastic place to go to study Law in Cambridge. Not only are [the supervisors] experts in their field, but they’re also genuinely nice people…Robinson College also has one of the best stocked Law libraries in…Cambridge…It’s a really nice, collegiate, supportive environment. Going to Robinson…has helped me a great deal to get me where I am today."
- Elliot Stevens, former Robinson Law student and scholar who went on to graduate study at Harvard and become a bankruptcy lawyer at a large firm in New York City.
One of the things that makes Robinson unique among Cambridge colleges is that we organize a Revision Week every Easter vacation for all Law students, which is funded by the College and by sponsorship from City Law firms. We stay in good accommodation and run intensive revision supervisions in most of the subjects studied by the students, so that they have some help and guidance in doing their own revision. Our students find that Revision Week helps their exam performance enormously and it is the envy of many Law students from other colleges. We also find time to enjoy ourselves so it is a great opportunity for Robinson lawyers to get to know each other better. One evening during Revision Week we invite representatives from our sponsor firms to come to visit us for dinner. This is a great opportunity for students to chat informally to people from various different firms, to find out what life is really like after University and to get some helpful advice on applying for jobs.
The student-run Law Society at Robinson also organizes an annual Law Information Event to help people in their career decisions. Although many of our undergraduates do go on to become solicitors or barristers, a Law degree provides an excellent foundation for many other careers too, such as the civil service, accountancy, banking, financial management, media and the Arts. If you enjoy debating or are thinking of a becoming a barrister, then you would particularly enjoy our first year mooting competition. Each first-year student takes part and the final is usually judged by a distinguished visitor, such as a High Court Judge. The winners then go on to moot against our sister College in Oxford, St Catherine’s. It’s not all hard work, though, as the Law Society also organises a number of social events throughout the year, including an end-of-year dinner to celebrate the end of examinations.
At Robinson there are approximately 20-25 law undergraduates at any one time and three members of the Law teaching staff. The Warden of the College is also involved in teaching undergraduates. One of the teaching Fellows will be your Director of Studies – the person to whom you can turn for any help you need in your academic work. You will also have a tutor who belongs to a completely different academic discipline and who can provide more general support on anything you need. Many of your small group sessions (supervisions) will be taken by the Robinson Law Fellows, but you will also be taught by Fellows of other colleges who specialise in particular subjects. There are a number of other lawyers amongst the College membership and Fellowship, including, the Hon. Sir Richard Plender, the Rt Hon.Lord Justice Kay and the Rt Hon. Lord Justice Laws.
Robinson has its own Law Library and separate study room, which also help lawyers here to build their own community. Thanks to the generous sponsorship of London law firm Herbert Smith, the Library has the most important textbooks, law reports and statutory materials, as well as the major journals. If the Law Library does not have what you are looking for, the Law Faculty (Squire) library is only a three minute walk from the College.
College prizes and scholarships are awarded based on examination performance.
Updated September 2017