Such an approach may well appeal to the ‘traditional’ law student although it does inevitably mean that that moral and political discussions will always be marginal to the dissertation, appearing perhaps only in the conclusion.
If you are pushed for time or have limited financial resources this may be the methodology for you in that the majority of your research can be undertaken either on-line using a reputable legal database or from a good quality law library.
This process requires the student to interpret each case on the basis that it forms a system of inter-related rules rather than a stand alone decision.
Once a rule has been identified, it needs to be further generalised as binding, taking its place in a coherent way.
One immediate problem of this approach is in providing a single and conclusive definition of the nature and scope of the study, a problem which arises out of the sheer volume of studies that have been undertaken within this tradition.
Students opting for this approach need to be alive to the possibility of ethical issues arising such as informed consent and confidentiality.This method of dissertation research aims to reduce the study of law to an essentially descriptive analysis of a large number of technical and co-ordinated legal rules to be found in primary sources.The primary aim of this method of research is to collate, organise and describe legal rules and to offer commentary on the emergence and significance of the authoritative legal sources in which such rules are considered, in particular, case law, with the aim of identifying an underlying system.Students who have experience of the operation of law in other jurisdictions may find the comparative analysis approach of interest, particularly if this allows them to make use of their pre-existing knowledge. The increasing availability of cases, statutes and articles on other legal systems on line has resulted in an increase in popularity with this particular methodology. The research method or methodology you adopt will depend partly on the topic you have selected and partly based on your own interests and/or preferences.Factors such as the amount of time and resources that you can commit to your research is also likely to factor.It can be used is areas for potential reform as diverse as the impact of technology on conveyancing or the introduction of no-fault compensation schemes. A comparative historical approach could be utilised within the human rights field, considering for example changing attitudes to slavery in social and economic history. Advanced research must be more than a purely descriptive account of the law on a given topic.For example, if you propose a thesis on the topic “The Rights of National Minorities”, this is likely to be too broad.