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We look forward very much to welcoming Part IB and Part II students, including new and returning Senior Status and Changeover students, in October 2020. The following information is intended to provide guidance as to the intended shape of the academic year for Part IB and Part II Law students given the changes that have had to be made in the light of the Covid-19 pandemic. We will continue to monitor and respond to the changing public health situation, and will be adding to or, if necessary, amending the information on this page as the summer progresses.

Teaching

Lectures in all full papers will be recorded. These recordings will be made available online in blocks ahead of the relevant supervisions so that students will be able to view the lectures before undertaking the work for the supervision concerned. Opportunities will be made available, whether through online discussion fora or otherwise, for students to ask questions of lecturers, just as, in normal circumstances, students are able to ask questions of lecturers at the end of each lecture.

The Faculty is still in the process of finalising arrangements for lectures in Part II half-papers and for the delivery of Part II seminar papers. However, it is likely that at least most lectures in half-papers will be recorded and made available online. Suitable arrangements are being put in place to enable half-paper students to ask questions of, and engage in regular discussion with, their half-paper lecturers: we recognise that such opportunities are particularly important given that half-papers are not supervised.. Seminar papers will be delivered in a manner that reflects their inherently interactive nature. This means that most aspects of the delivery of these papers — seminar discussion, student presentations and one-to-one meetings with dissertation supervisors — will take place either in-person or online in real time.

Colleges will share information about the arrangements for supervisions in 2020–21 in due course. However, supervisions will continue for the most part as normal: it is expected that the same number of supervisions as usual will be given over the course of the academic year, and that supervisions will continue to afford opportunities for highly interactive teaching with typically two to four students per supervision group. Supervisions will be delivered in-person where this is safe and feasible (with all public health advice adhered to) and will otherwise be delivered via an online video conferencing platform.

Library and resources

The Squire Law Library’s team is working to ensure that all the elements of library provision will be in place and ready for the new academic year. The Library responded to the challenges of the recent Covid-19 lockdown by placing a stronger emphasis on electronic services to allow students to access resources remotely and at their convenience. Our aim will be to continue with that approach by strengthening and re-balancing our resources as much as possible to take advantage of the many online options whilst retaining physical publications in the Squire – books, journals, law reports, etc – for those who prefer to use and work with the print copies. The Library and the Faculty are working closely together to ensure a safe re-opening of the physical library within the David Williams Building observing the social distancing rules and creating a safe and healthy environment for students who wish to visit and use the study areas and facilities across the three floors of the library.

Assessment

Provided that University approval has by then been obtained, the Faculty expects to be able to announce its assessment plans for 2020–21 by the beginning of Michaelmas Term. The Faculty has reviewed feedback from students and examiners on the 2019–20 online examinations and is now in the process of considering the most appropriate way of delivering assessment in 2020–21 with a view to adopting a fair and academically robust assessment model that will be resilient in the face of potentially rapidly changing public health circumstances during the course of the academic year.

Questions and concerns

If you have concerns about travel arrangements, or about increased susceptibility to infectious diseases, or disabilities impacted by COVID-19, please refer to the University’s advice on exceptional circumstances and its Covid-19-related information concerning disability and increased susceptibility to infectious diseases. If you have any questions about the Law Tripos in 2020–21, please direct these to your Director of Studies in the first instance who will, if necessary, be able to seek advice from or pass queries to the Faculty.