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Preparing for Common Law Admission Test (CLAT)? You need to know this

Know more about Common Law Admission Test and career options in law

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Law Education. Wikimedia Commons

Know more about Common Law Admission Test and career options in law

Dr. Versha Vahin- a Legal career consultant and Faculty, NLSIU, Bangalore speaks to Vrushali Mahajan of Newsgram

Law has been one of the popular fields in education. Preparing for these exams is a tough job. If you plan to take law as a profession, you must keep these points in mind so that you know more about it from our exclusive interview with Dr. Versha Vahini.

Dr Versha Vahini, career consultant
Dr Versha Vahini, career consultant

Vrushali Mahajan (VM): The demand for the courses and profession of law has surged manifold of late? What do you think is the reason for that?

Dr. Versha Vahini (VV): It is one of highly paid professions in the US and  slowly catching up to its dignified place in India too. There was a time when people did not want to opt for law. It was taken up by those, who did not get admission in engineering or medicine. But today, the scenario is changed. Law courses are more in demand. This may be attributed to the newer avenues thrown opened by more commercialized and globalized world. Earlier the practice of law was confined to court rooms. But now it is spreading out of the court premises. Today everywhere law professionals are needed. Corporate too need lawyers to in their commercial and administrative activities. Organizations need lawyers to oversee their compliance with legal requirements. Even individuals need legal professional be it in family matters or taxation or property matters etc.

VM: Lawyers play an important role in the polity too? what is your opinion?

VV: Absolutely. If you look at the freedom struggle, lawyers not merely led mass freedom movements but also played constructive role in bringing about social and legal changes in the society. Be it Mahatama Gandhi, Dr. Ambedkar, Pt. Nehru or other important leaders, all were lawyers. They all have contributed significantly in the nation building.

Lady justice statue. Image source wikipedia
Lady justice statue. Image source Wikimedia

VM: What are the skills required to become a distinguished lawyer?

VV: To become a notable and distinguished legal professional, it is important to develop certain skills. These skills may not necessarily be innate or natural or god gifted. The skills required can be developed with education, training, practice, hard-work and perseverance.  One needs to develop critical and lateral thinking and eye for analysis. Most significantly, a lawyer must have is ethical quotient in order to earn esteem and reverence.

Visit the website at lawmentors.in

High court of Karnataka. Image source: Wikimedia commons
High court of Karnataka. Image source: Wikimedia commons

VM: What about the legal education and law courses?

VV: The basic qualification to become a lawyer is to obtain LLB degree. Currently there are more than 1500 law institutes (which includes private and government colleges, departments in Universities and specialized law universities) offering LLB courses. LLB courses, which a student opts for must be recognized by Bar Council of India.  There are 3 years and 5 years law courses offered by law institutes. Five years course is done after 10+12 and three years course after bachelors in any stream. Currently there are 18 specialized Law Universities, commonly known as National Law Universities, of which 17 conduct common admission test under the aegis of CLAT to give admission in their universities. NLU, Delhi conducts its own admission test (All India Law Entrance Test, AILET).

Image source Wikimedia
Image source:Wikimedia commons

VM: Are Law courses affordable to the general public?

VV: Higher education in general and Law courses in particular have become quite expensive and unaffordable for many.  Most of the National Law Universities are mandatorily residential. So, one has to spend more in these universities in comparison to other law colleges. One can find wide range of colleges offering LLB and LLM (Master of law) courses with their fees between 30K per annum to 150K excluding boarding and lodging. There is hardly any college which offers any grant or financial assistance for law courses. However some government colleges and universities have some financial aid schemes for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS). To the extent that education is mostly self-financed, one can say quality legal education is fast becoming non-affordable for the majority.

VM: What are the career options available after Law courses?

VV: There are quite a number of options available for law graduates. Apart from traditional solo court practice (litigation), one can opt to be an in-house counsel in companies and corporations (mostly non-litigating), join law firms (kind of organized form of law practice) in either litigation or consultancy or transaction based law practice. One can also opt for higher studies in order to go for teaching and research. There are in fact many legal education institutes where researchers, apart from teachers, are in demand.

-by Vrushali Mahajan. Vrushali is pursuing her graduation in Journalism and is an intern at NewsGram. Twitter @Vrushali Mahajan 

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  • Shivang Goel

    lawmentors.in looks promising,also adding to the above interview, one can opt for a 3 year course after the graduation from DU too,CLC ,New Delhi which has a good reputation and a delicate crowd and atmosphere to study in,
    Law profession in India has taken a turn to what it used to be and how people looked at it

  • Vrushali Mahajan

    Law has become the new favorite of students. They should know about these institutions which would help them better with their future

  • Thank you for the information. This is well written and gives a lot of value for people who are looking to learn.

SHARE
  • Shivang Goel

    lawmentors.in looks promising,also adding to the above interview, one can opt for a 3 year course after the graduation from DU too,CLC ,New Delhi which has a good reputation and a delicate crowd and atmosphere to study in,
    Law profession in India has taken a turn to what it used to be and how people looked at it

  • Vrushali Mahajan

    Law has become the new favorite of students. They should know about these institutions which would help them better with their future

  • Thank you for the information. This is well written and gives a lot of value for people who are looking to learn.

Next Story

Tips for Holding a Telephone Interview that Requires Translation

That’s not a problem—the cost is nearly zero, thanks to online messaging apps

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Given how fast globalization is moving today, it’s already common for phone interviews to happen between people from different countries. Pixabay

Face-to-face interviews are what we’re traditionally used to, but sometimes they’re not doable because of distance. In this case, phone interviews are another option. 

Given how fast globalization is moving today, it’s already common for phone interviews to happen between people from different countries. That’s not a problem—the cost is nearly zero, thanks to online messaging apps. However, what if you have to interview someone who speaks a different language? 

It’s not an impossible feat—the solution is to get help from an interpreter. 

Phone Interviews with an Interpreter

Telephone, Interview, Translation
Face-to-face interviews are what we’re traditionally used to, but sometimes they’re not doable because of distance. Pixabay

In meetings and conferences, you typically see simultaneous interpreting. The interpreter talks at around the same time as the speaker, and the audience hears through headphones whichever of the two is using their native language. This prevents confusion and saves time. 

With phone interviews or remote setups in general, it’s far less doable. Consecutive interpreting is used instead, where the speaker and interpreter take turns. Depending on their personal style, the interpreter may either wait for the speaker to finish or interject on their own. 

By default, the interviewer and interviewee won’t be in the same location for the phone interview. If you’re using a telephone translation service, the interpreter is also remotely located, and all participants should have a telephone or computer with VoIP. 

Otherwise, the interpreter and interviewer can simply sit near each other. The most convenient setup here is to use a dual handset phone, which has two receivers that they can use all at once. Alternatively, they can put the phone on speaker mode, but the interview might be overheard and background noise might be distracting.

Also Read- The Best Countries to Sell Handmade Items

Pros and Cons

 Even if you’ve had experience with interpretation for meetings before, phone interviews are a different situation altogether since these involve carefully evaluating the interviewee. Normally, the interviewer is responsible for asking thoughtful questions and analyzing the interviewee’s responses, but in a phone interview that requires interpretation, the interviewer must work in tandem with the interpreter. For the interview to be successful, the interpreter must convey the interviewee’s responses accurately. 

Another major factor is the lack of face-to-face contact. Body language is very expressive, and without being able to see it, the interpreter must rely on the words of the interviewee alone. At least twice as much time must also be allotted for the interview because the interpreter will essentially be repeating everything that both the interviewer and interviewee say. 

Tips

Telephone, Interview, Translation
In this case, phone interviews are another option. Pixabay

Setting Up

If you’re not placing a call directly, avoid using a cellphone as much as possible—opt for landline or a phone with dual handset instead. For calls placed through online apps, make sure that the internet connection is stable. Reserve a quiet space for the call, and do a trial run before to check the sound quality. 

Before the Interview

Because there’s a charge per minute for both offline calls and interpreting services, prepare your questions and discussion points to maximize time. 

Also Read- Samsung Set to Unveil Galaxy Note 10 Devices in India

Regardless of how experienced an interpreter may be, consult with them at least a few days before and brief them about the interview. You can explain its purpose, give basic information about the interviewee, and share your list of questions. This way, the interpreter will have the mental space to prepare and review any niche-specific jargon that may come up. It’s also a good idea to ask the interpreter what their usual process is like. Do they interpret after every few sentences, or only when the speaker is done? What equipment have they tried before?

Likewise, the interviewee should also be aware before about the presence of an interpreter. Let them know about the interview setup and clarify that the interpreter will only be there to translate, not serve as another interviewer. 

During the Interview

Introduce everyone at the start. To keep the flow natural, be mindful of the interpreter and pause after long statements to give the interpreter a chance to speak up. There might be delays occasionally on the side of the interpreter because they’re grappling real-time with words that have no direct translation. 

Throughout the interview, maintain transparency by having the interviewee aware at all times of what you’re saying. Don’t have private conversations with the interpreter—everything that you say as the interviewee must be addressed to the interviewer, unless you’re asking the interpreter for clarification.  

After the Interview

Once the call ends, check in with the interpreter and ask if they want to expand on what they said, in case they weren’t able to formulate a full translation at any point in the interview because of time pressure. They can also bring up any cultural nuances that’ll shed more light on what the interviewee said. 

A phone interview with an interpreter on board is still ultimately an interview, so the same rules apply. Prepare well, give your full attention to the interviewee on hand, and by the end of it, you’ll still get the information you need. Language doesn’t have to be a barrier anymore, and teaming up with an interpreter will help you conduct bilingual phone interviews successfully.