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Writing A Law School And LLM Personal Statement

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LLM Personal Statement

A great LLM (Master of Laws) personal statement should be persuasive, concise and easy to read:

Persuasive – you want the admissions board to choose you over the competition.

Concise – you need to compress information about your past, present and future into a limited word count.

Easy to read – you don’t want the admissions board to give up on it halfway through.

Why is your LLM personal statement so important?

Your LLM personal statement is a vital part of the process of applying to an LLM course, and together with your academic record and relevant work experience , it is a key element to the success of your LLM application.

It is crucial that you allow yourself enough time to craft the perfect LLM personal statement, one that showcases all your skills, qualifications, experience and personality.

1. An LLM personal statement explains gaps

If you've got a few spaces in your work history or a job that ended poorly, then the LLM personal statement is your chance to explain what happened and what you have learnt from the experience. An unhappy or bad experience can be a significant learning experience and might have provided you with additional skills or motivations that will make you able to contribute to the course in a unique or significant way. Many law schools encourage students to explain any career gaps.

2. Provides insight into motivation

It's important that your motivations for applying for and doing the LLM course match with the law school's ethics and ethos. Your LLM personal statement is your chance to show that you are a good match for the law school and the LLM course. Explain your reasons for wanting to do this course and why you are passionate about the law or the particular part of the law you are planning on studying. You can show what you will bring to the course and why you will be an asset to the law school.

3. Make yourself stand out

A popular LLM course at a prestigious global law school will receive many more applications than spaces on the course. Everyone applying to that course will have an excellent academic record and a wealth of relevant work experience. Your LLM personal statement might make the difference between being accepted onto the course and not. Make yourself stand out with the language you use, but don't overdo it. Explain the finer details of your experience and why you've chosen to attend this course at this particular law school.

4. Important part of the law school’s decision making

Almost 90% of universities use the LLM personal statement to make their decision about applicants. This means the time you spend on your personal statement is crucial. Try and get some other people to read through your statement and offer their advice/opinion, especially if you know someone who has completed the LLM course recently. Make sure that your personal statement is your own work and that any revisions you make on the recommendation of others don't change your personal statement beyond recognition and lose the essence of you.

5. Proves you can follow instructions

There will be guidelines and advice provided by the law school or university to help you write your LLM personal statement. Use these instructions to prove that you can follow directions. It's also an opportunity to show off your written English skills, this could be particularly relevant if English is not your first language, and your English test scores are not what you would like them to be.

6. The first chance for potential professors to ‘meet’ you

Your LLM personal statement is your introduction to your future law school professors and the people who you might connect and reconnect with throughout your legal career. View your personal statement as the first introduction to this new part of your future network.

What information should you include?

LLM Personal Statement

Key things to bear in mind to achieve success when crafting the perfect LLM personal statement are:

1. Conciseness:  whatever you do, you MUST remain within the institution’s word limit. Legal professionals are expected to be able to summarise masses of information without losing any essential facts, and your personal statement is an indicator of your ability to do this.

2. Language:  don’t use complicated words in an attempt to impress. As a legal professional, you will be working with clients who may not understand technical terms so your ability to communicate in a formal yet simple style will not go unnoticed.

3. Format:  keep your LLM personal statement uncluttered, with lots of spacing and white space, to make it easy to read. It's important for the document to look good as well as to read well.

4. Structure and flow:  your intro could summarise the reasons why granting you a place is the right decision for the admissions board to make. The main body should be broken up into your past (academic, professional and personal info; relevant experience, your interests and motivations and what led you to the point of applying), your present (all the details about the LLM; why you chose it at that particular institution, which modules you’re really keen on) and your future (what you plan to do after you complete the LLM). Your conclusion is a summary of your main points and should end on a memorable note. After you’ve written your first draft, print it out and review it to see if it makes sense, making notes in the margins along the way as if you were an editor editing another writer’s work.

LLM personal statement top tips

Here are some tips and strategies to creating the perfect LLM personal statement.

Academic history

Discuss what you studied as an undergrad and whether the LLM is a natural progression or would represent a change in career path. Do you have a first degree in law and are you working your way towards a PhD in Law and a future in legal academia? If your first degree was not in Law, how would the LLM complement it; do you have a first degree in Economics and want to do an LLM in International Business Law for example?

Make it personal

Mention what interests and motivates you, and what has happened in your life that put you on the path to applying for an LLM at that institution. If you’ve chosen a small college, explain why you prefer institutions with a small population. If you’ve opted for a large law school, let the admissions board know why you thrive in a busy environment. It’s important to explain your preferences so the admissions board gets a sense of who you are and why you fit in with their law school. Include relevant information – like volunteer experience or extra-curricular activities – that have inspired you with your choice. The admissions team want to understand the personal reasons why you want to study their LLM course.

Don’t make claims you can’t support

Since you are applying for a postgrad legal program you should be familiar with making persuasive arguments. As legal arguments are evidence-based, be prepared to apply the same approach in your statement by avoiding unsubstantiated claims. If you state that certain modules are ‘relevant to your career’, state specifically how. Don’t leave it to the admissions board to try to work it out for themselves. If you claim that you are a top student, highlight your grades even though you will submit transcripts as part of your application. Use clichés like ‘leadership skills’ only if you can give examples of instances when you demonstrated these traits. And don't forget that if you are subsequently called in for an LLM interview, this personal statement will probably be used as the basis for the interview, so always tell the truth!

Don’t just write it, craft it

When it comes to the actual writing of your LLM personal statement be prepared to write, edit and rewrite your personal statement several times. Remember all those essays you wrote in your undergrad days? Well, the same rules of presentation, structure and flow apply to your personal statement; the only difference being that this time, the essay is about you. And once you think you’ve written the perfect LLM personal statement get a trusted friend or colleague to read it through to offer you constructive criticism and to pick up any typos or grammatical errors.

Relevant referees

Pick a referee who can provide you with a good academic reference, so choose a tutor and lecturer who will remember you from your undergraduate studies. Including your employer as a referee is a good idea if your current job is relevant to the course, or include someone you did relevant work experience for. You will need to ask potential referees before you submit your application.

10 things to avoid in your LLM personal statement

Here are the top 10 things that you should avoid doing when writing your LLM personal statement.

Including a mini dissertation – you are meant to explain your interest in the area that you wish to specialise in, which doesn’t mean writing an essay on your proposed dissertation topic! That can wait till you start your LLM program and are asked to submit a thesis proposal.

Underselling yourself – rather than blaming yourself later on for missing out on listing achievements from your work experience or undergraduate study, make it a point to highlight all the relevant information; ranging from past work experience on specific projects, skills acquired and applied, publications, moot courts, etc.

Being ambiguous – all your efforts will be futile if you didn’t make your personal statement read clearly with details relevant to the LLM course that you are applying for and clearly stating your interest for that course.

Writing too much or too little – usually universities provide the word count/A4 page limit for the LLM personal statement. Some students will have a tendency to write less hoping that the CV will cover all their academic and career highlights, whilst others may be tempted to write too much describing everything they have done in all possible detail. The sensible approach would be to mention enough to match the word count/page limit and to highlight only what is important to put your case forward.

Obsessing with templates – it might be a common trend to scour the internet for templates on personal statements but be warned that some may have been copied off the others and may all end up looking very similar. Your LLM personal statement should be unique and well drafted to make logical sense to the reader.

Making stupid mistakes – sometimes we tend to overlook minor mistakes that can have significant bearing on the outcome of our application. Things such as addressing the statement to the wrong university (or with a wrong date/address) can give a very bad first (and almost certainly final) impression!

Doing it last minute – our general advice when it comes to university applications is to never leave anything to the last minute. Some students tend to work hard on their personal statement redrafting it a 100+ times, while others only pick up this part of the application on the last day of its submission. Time must be given to this vital part of your application so that any mistakes including ones listed here can be corrected in good time.

Repeating information – although you may feel that you are trying to make a point by explaining a situation in different ways, university admissions staff may see this as a repetition of information that they don’t need to know. Once you make a point about a particular skill/achievement, move on to the next piece of information to show varied experience, knowledge and interest.

Name dropping – in professional services we tend to mention names of high-profile clients or popular legal representatives to get ahead of competition through our application. This may work in a casual networking setting, however when it comes to application processes for admissions, the focus is usually around your contribution to legal matters, your ambition to progress your career further through further studies, rather than just throwing some names in!

Making grammatical errors – although legal eagles tend to be careful on this one, it is best to proofread your LLM personal statement several times before handing it in. Ideally, you should share it with friends or colleagues to spot any noticeable errors.

Writing a personal statement – real-life examples

With all this key information on writing the perfect LLM personal statement – explore our law expert’s analysis of real applications to help you craft the ideal introduction and give yourself the best chance of getting onto your dream LLM program.

Introduction to our law admissions expert

LLM Personal Statement Robynn Aliveri

To help you achieve the success you deserve with your LLM applications we have taken four genuine (and successful) LLM personal statements from four genuine LLM students and asked LLM admissions expert Robynn Allveri to fine-tune them to make them as good as they possibly can be. To put it simply, our admissions expert cast her (very) critical eye over all four law school personal statements – that had already proved successful – and offers advice on how they can be improved. She highlights where the LLM personal statements let the candidates down, and of course also shows where and why they enable the candidate’s qualities to really shine through.

Our genuine LLM personal statements have been written by both international students and home students, applying to law schools in the UK, the USA and Canada. This unique selection of real law school personal statements will give you real insight into how to make you own law school personal statement a success. Armed with our knowledge of the dos and don’ts of LLM personal statement writing and unique admissions tips , you should be just a hop, skip and a jump away from LLM admissions success!

So here is our real-life guide on how to write a law school personal statement to guarantee success with your LLM application .

personal statement sample for llm

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Law School Personal Statement

Your personal statement is an opportunity to present yourself as more than an LSAT score and GPA. The personal statement sets you apart from other candidates. It is also a sample of your ability to express thoughts clearly and cogently.

The Process

  • Brainstorm any topics or themes you might want to consider for your statement
  • Select 1-2 topics/themes you believe will be the strongest
  • Write a rough draft. Don’t worry about length, style, or grammar
  • Put it away for a while. Time adds an interesting perspective on your writing.
  • Redraft and edit as needed
  • Have several people read it including NCA’S prelaw advisor, a professor or the Writing Place
  • Consider the feedback you have been given and craft your final draft
  • Proofread, proofread, and proofread

Possible topics

If the school does not specify a topic (and many don’t, but always check) here are a few ideas to help you brainstorm:

  • Hobbies/work/other experiences that have shaped you
  • How you became interested in the law
  • Life events that have changed or motivated you
  • Challenges & hurdles you have overcome
  • An issue or subject that you feel strongly about and why (just make sure not to “preach”)
  • The growth you’ve experienced in college
  • A unique experience that you have had inside or outside the classroom
  • Your goals and the events that have shaped those goals

Things to Watch for when Writing and Editing

  • Ensure that you answered the essay questions they provided
  • Remember to put the “personal” in the personal statement – use a personal stories/anecdotes
  • DO NOT approach this as a “Statement of Purpose” ( which would be an essay about why you want to pursue a law degree) unless the law school essay prompt indicates to do so
  • Try to “Show” the reader/Do not “Tell” in your writing
  • Avoid just restating your resume or transcript: law schools are looking to get to know who you are outside of your achievements
  • Most schools do not place restrictions on the personal statement but a general guideline is 2-3 pages double spaced (although check with each school for specific guidelines)

Formatting your Personal Statement

  • Make it distinctive by telling a story
  • State your topic

Detailed Body Paragraphs

  • Focused, each with its own topic sentence

Relevant, each contributing/supporting to your main idea Conclusion

  • Summarization of your points
  • Brings essay full circle to the beginning

Top Mistakes Made in Personal Statements

  • Spelling and grammatical errors
  • Staying too detached in your writing style and not letting your personality come through in your “personal” statement
  • Using too many big words, “legalese,” or research jargon
  • Spending just a few hours on your personal statement and submitting your first draft
  • Not following directions: exceeding the specified page limitations, not answering the questions
  • Using gimmicks such as writing in crayon, modeling your personal statement as a legal brief, or writing it as a poem
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Ll.m. admissions: how to write a personal statement.

LL.M. Admissions: How to Write a Personal Statement

Many law schools require a personal statement from applicants. What are they looking for exactly?

Update, July 2017: Read LLM GUIDE's new article: LL.M. Applications: The Personal Statement for more up-to-date information on LL.M. personal statements.

Many law schools require a brief “personal statement" or “statement of purpose” from applicants to LL.M. programs. But for some applicants, there can be confusion about exactly how to approach this statement.

This might be because not all schools give precise guidance about how to write them. While some schools give applicants specific questions to answer, many simply ask for a description of the applicant's professional background, areas of interest, and reasons for pursuing an LL.M.

If you are an LL.M. applicant, consider this your opportunity to describe yourself and your aspirations. Since an interview is typically not part of the LL.M. admissions process, this might be your only real chance to add some personal context to your academic transcripts and resume.

Hilary Lappin has read hundreds of LL.M. applications. As assistant director of admissions at American University's Washington College of Law, Lappin sees many applicants use the statement to simply summarize their past academic and professional accomplishments - almost like a job cover letter.

While a few law schools ask specifically for this “personal history,” Lappin argues that using the statement only to focus on the past doesn't add much value to an application.

"We see their transcripts and their resume. We know what they've done," says Lappin. "What we don't know is their motivation for coming."

In other words – don't just summarize your CV in sentences and paragraphs. Lappin says that students should share their short- and long-term career goals, and they should discuss why an LL.M. from the law school they are applying to will help them get there.

"We've been trying to get them to focus on their future in their personal statement," says Lappin.

Paul Burns, academic administrator for Oxford's Bachelor of Civil Law and Magister Juris programs, agrees with this approach.

“I don't think [a statement] needs to go into any great detail about academic accomplishments as these should be evident from the other application materials,” says Burns.

“Information about future goals may be useful, but we'd prefer applicants to be honest, and said they weren't quite sure rather than trying to anticipate the sort of answer they think we'll want to hear.”

Gail Hupper, the director of the LL.M. program at Boston College School of Law, says that effective statements sometimes bridge past accomplishments with future ambitions.

“It's much more interesting if they can talk about a unifying theme related to their activities,” says Hupper, “because that unifying theme will then provide a springboard for what they want to do next.”

The statement of purpose is also an opportunity to convince the school that you are a good fit. So, why not tell them about what - specifically - attracts you to the school?

This doesn't mean you have to pander to the admissions team, or shower the law school in praise. Don't do that. But if you have the space, it's probably a good idea to tell them what aspects of the school or program - a certain module, internship opportunity, or research focus, for example - you think would help further your career.

According to Lawrence McNamara of Reading Law School in the United Kingdom, this "indicates that this is a person who has actually looked at all of the information about the school, and somebody who really wants to come here."

When it comes to tone and language, there's no need to showoff your flowery English skills or wax poetic. Keep it formal, and when a specific question has been asked, be sure to answer it.

“You would be amazed by the number of statements we get that don't answer the question,” says Gail Hupper of Boston College.

“I realize that people are applying to more than one school, and that they want to save themselves some work by doing the same statement for every school, but you can't not answer the question, and expect the schools to take your application as seriously as they otherwise might,” adds Hupper.

LL.M. personal statement quick tips

Here are a few more key do's and don'ts to keep in mind when writing an application personal statement:

  • Use spell-check: It might seem obvious, but spelling mistakes are so easy to avoid these days that when they're there, it's like a big, red, waving flag with the word "lazy" written on it.
  • Follow directions: Beyond answering the question posed, if there is a page or word limit, respect it.
  • Don't mix up university names: If you're applying to more than one school, and plan to reuse the same personal statement (or parts of it) for different applications, be sure to check, double-check, and triple-check that you're always using the right name of the university. In other words, don't write about you dream of pursuing an LL.M. at Cornell in your Yale statement of purpose. It's a common mistake in today's copy-and-paste world, but such an oversight can reflect a carelessness unbecoming of an ambitious lawyer.
  • Don't use standard templates or have someone else write the statement for you. Remember that the faculty and admissions staff who will read your statement have usually read hundreds of them. They can easily spot fake and generic statements.
  • Image: istockphoto

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How to Write a Great LLM Personal Statement

Close up of hands typing on a laptop

It is a big decision to pursue an LLM or Master of Laws after completion of your LLB. However, the decision to apply is not the final hurdle you have to face. Part of applying is writing the perfect LLM personal statement to persuade admissions tutors at your chosen institution that you are a suitable candidate to undertake the programme. So, to help get started, the following tips will provide you with a helpful checklist to set up the foundation of your statement.

Be Specific

One of the purposes of taking a very specific masters programme such as one in finance law or criminal justice is to allow you to take your knowledge and understanding of the sector to a deeper level. Therefore, in your personal statement you have to be really clear and specific about why you want to spend a year, or two, delving so deeply into one particular area of the law. Fortunately, if you have chosen a very niche masters you probably already have a decent list of reasons for your interest. On the other hand, if you have chosen to apply to a more general LLM programme, you still need to demonstrate to tutors why you want to take your academic study of the law in general beyond your LLB and how the particular LLM programme you have applied to can help you do that.

Provide Evidence

This tip is inextricably linked to the first. You can argue that your passion for X area of the law is why you are the perfect LLM candidate all day long but it is unlikely to mean anything if you cannot provide evidence that this is true. It is vital to point to experiences in your undergraduate degree, in your wider life, relevant work experience or extracurriculars which have contributed to why you want to pursue this LLM. It is also crucial when providing evidence that you are honest about your reasons. This will be much more persuasive than vague or made up reasoning.

Look to the Future

It is really important to include why exactly, in your envisioned career path, an LLM is the vital next step for you. An LLM is not a required qualification for many legal careers, therefore admissions tutors will be interested to know why pursuing their LLM programme is right for you at this stage in your career over and above another route. Also, highlighting your key interests and how they link in with your future goals is really helpful to portray how an LLM can help you achieve them.

Check, Check and Check Again

Like your undergraduate personal statement and any assignment, work experience or job application you have ever written in the past, you need to make sure you go through your LLM personal statement with a fine-toothed comb before submission. You need to go through a checklist of important factors to make sure the content of your statement is not let down by minor errors.

Have other people check it for you. This is vital to prevent repetition, ensure clarity and to stamp out any glaringly obvious spelling, punctuation and grammar errors. Not only this but if, after reading, a layperson is convinced and could explain why you are a perfect candidate for this LLM, then you are well on your way to convincing an admissions tutor of the same fact.

As above – spelling, punctuation and grammar are really important. So triple check you have not missed any errors. This means more than using the spellcheck function on Word. Grammarly is a great tool for this.

Stick to the Word Count

Make sure you do not exceed the word limit. If you have, your statement will not flow as well and it is unlikely that the admissions tutor will read the additional words, that’s if the application portal even lets you submit if you are over. It is always better to remain simple and concise than to overdo it with unnecessary explanations or flowery language.

Words: Alicia Gibson

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What Do the Best Law Personal Statements Have in Common?

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Law personal statement

An LLM can make you stand out from the competition thanks to your enhanced subject knowledge and industry contacts. Find out what to include in an LLM personal statement

When writing a personal statement for an LLM you'll need to:

  • state why you wish to study this particular LLM subject. Its undertaking will require considerable time and expense so be clear in your motivation.
  • outline how your experience to date, both academic and non-academic has prepared you for the LLM and how this indicates that you will be successful on the course.
  • link your study of the subject to your future career goals and state how completion of the course will support your achievement of this.

This example should be used for guidance only. Copying any of this text could significantly harm your chances of securing a place on a course.

LLM personal statement

My primary motivation for applying for the LLM in Criminal Litigation is to enhance my existing subject knowledge and to gain a solid foundation from which to build a career as a criminal defence solicitor. I have not yet applied for a training contract, as I have a love of both academic study and the subject and wish to pursue this further, as well as enhancing my career prospects. Throughout the study of my undergraduate LLB I strove to maintain consistently high grades in each module and I believe my achievement of a first is testament to my commitment, which I intend to take forward when studying the LLM.

My interest in law is longstanding and was first piqued through a work experience placement with a local solicitor while still at school, where I had the opportunity to witness a criminal case first hand. Through attending court with an outdoor clerk I gained an insight into the workings of the court and into how cases were managed and argued. I was drawn towards this type of work due to its human aspect - the importance of trust between lawyer and client and the life implications for the client depending on the outcome of the case. I built on this experience by attending the public gallery of the Crown Court in my own time and developing a greater understanding of how the criminal justice system functions through observing proceedings and speaking to solicitors and barristers whenever possible. It was this experience that prompted me to study an LLB.

While my experience of the criminal sector provided my initial motivation, on the LLB I also felt it was important to take modules that would allow me to develop skills and experience across a range of legal sectors, to test the area I was most suited to in terms of interest and aptitude. I undertook Business Law and International Commercial Law, as well as modules in Employment Law, Family Law and Criminal Litigation and Evidence. I enjoyed the technical challenge of the commercial work and successfully applied to complete a work experience placement with a commercial law firm. There, I sharpened my legal skills by engaging in tasks such as researching relevant law, drafting a memo to a trainee solicitor and drafting a letter of advice to a mock client. I also gained an appreciation of the daily duties of a solicitor through shadowing them at meetings and reviewing contracts. I gained an insight into how corporate lawyers' relationships with professional clients have a far greater commercial focus than those of lawyers working with the individual.

I sought to build on these combined experiences by gaining as much practical experience as I could to gain real-world insight and skills with clients in my own right. I volunteered as a Gateway Assessor with Citizens Advice, which gave me excellent experience in how to manage an interview with a client using an appropriate professional manner and identify the pertinent legal issues and draft advice. It also gave me practical experience of building relationships with often vulnerable people, from all walks of life and the ability to speak to them in a way that they understood. 

Further to this, I have undertaken several pro-bono opportunities. These include working on projects such as Street Law, teaching young people about legal issues like online privacy and rights regarding stop and search, through practical and interactive methods. I have also taken part in the Schools Consent Project, leading workshops around the legal definitions of consent and assault in secondary schools and youth groups. Through these roles I further developed my ability to effectively communicate with audiences from a range of backgrounds and to adapt my approach according to their needs. I believe this ability, together with my deep interest in the subject, will stand me in good stead when working with clients involved in the criminal justice system.

In addition to academic work, I have a number of achievements in the field of music. I have obtained Grade 8 standard in both cello and violin and as part of my university's Symphony Orchestra I have played to audiences in Germany and the Czech Republic, as well as around the UK. I have achieved this while maintaining excellent grades in my undergraduate studies.

My goal is to work as a criminal defence solicitor in the future. I have chosen the route of solicitor, as opposed to barrister, as I place great value on the strong relationship built with a client and have the intention, once qualified, to undertake Higher Rights of Audience qualifications to allow me to advocate in court and see a case through to its conclusion. I see the achievement of the LLM in Criminal Litigation as a crucial step in gaining the enhanced knowledge to really excel in this role. My career aims beyond the course would be to secure a training contract with a Tier 1 ranked firm for crime, ideally in London or the South East, where I have strong personal roots.

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Inside the Black Box

Real Talk: The Personal Statement

For our first entry in the Re al Talk series, Associate Director Nefyn Meissner shares his advice on approaching the personal statement. 

Some applicants feel the need to start their personal statements with a bang by throwing in a colorful personal story or dramatic hook to grab the Admissions Committee’s attention right from the start. I, for instance, could spend the next page regaling you with a pithy vignette from my prior work in elementary education, opening with a vivid description of the time a lively Pre-K student chased me across the classroom with a pair of safety scissors after I tried to correct his attempt at identifying the letter Q. (He was adamant that it was the letter O…just fancier). Instead, I will start this post by reassuring you that our best applicants most often open their essays by making a clear statement in their opening paragraphs. Such essays start strong, dig deep, and end when they should end. These essays do so with a dash of authenticity and brevity. It is my hope that this short essay does just that.

Putting aside debates over whether or not the letter Q is indeed just a more dressed-up version of the letter O, the former elementary educator in me would be remiss if I did not remind you that the two most important things to do when writing an essay are to follow instructions and check your work. This is doubly true for those of y’all applying to law school. A jumbled memo, a rambling oral argument, or a misplaced comma in a contract can all have major implications in the real world. Law school will equip you with the skills and knowledge you need to write incisive memos, craft compelling arguments, and draft ironclad contracts. Show us that you are ready for the challenge by formatting your essays appropriately, following word and page limits, and avoiding simple mistakes.

Content is just as important. Your personal statement should tell us something about who you are, where you’ve been, and where you want to go. Should you add a famous quote at the top for inspiration? No, please don’t. Should you mention you want to come to HLS? We already assume that if you’re applying. Should you talk about your grandmother? Only if doing so helps make the case for us to admit you. Otherwise, we might end up wanting to admit your grandmother. Whatever you write about, keep it relevant and real.

In closing, I’ll share the real secret behind a good essay. That secret? There is none. It’s fine if you can’t write about surviving a classroom showdown over the true identity of certain letters of the alphabet. Just start strong, dig deep, end when you should end, and remember to check your work.

Filed in: Inside the Black Box

Contact the J.D. Admissions Office

Website: hls.harvard.edu/jdadmissions

Email: [email protected]

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Cambridge Law School Personal Statement Examples

Cambridge Law School Personal Statement Examples

Your Cambridge law personal statement is a short essay which highlights why you are interested in studying law and how equipped you are for the task. Cambridge uses the UCAS system for all applicants wanting to study law at the undergraduate level, so there are no unique requirements for your law school personal statement here. In this blog, we’ll cover what Cambridge expects from your law school personal statement, important requirements you need to know, and some law personal statement examples .

>> Want us to help you get accepted? Schedule a free strategy call here . <<

Article Contents 6 min read

How to write a law school personal statement for cambridge law.

Cambridge law doesn’t have any specific law school admissions essays topics . The purpose of your Cambridge law personal statement is simply to share with the admissions committee why you want to study law at Cambridge and how you have prepared yourself to do so.

Your law personal statement will often be the basis of discussion during your interview, so it’s a good idea to include your most significant accomplishments or experiences in your personal statement, as well as your future career goals and interest in a specific area of the law.

Since there are no specific prompts and the personal statement can be quite open-ended, start with brainstorming. Identify 2-4 experiences or important ideas you want to convey in your personal statement. Focus on how you can demonstrate your passion and enthusiasm for legal study, and how you have prepared yourself for a career in law. While you can include early life experiences, try to focus on important experiences in the last few years at most.

Here’s some questions you can ask yourself and answer in your Cambridge law personal statement:

  • What first drew you to the law?
  • How did you develop your enthusiasm for the law?
  • What legal questions interest you most?
  • What particular areas of legal study fascinate you?
  • What personal or professional experience do you have with legal matters?
  • How have you prepared yourself for the rigors or law school or the practice of law?
  • What are your intellectual or academic interests? How do they relate to your interest in law?
  • Which aptitudes do you possess that are suited to the study of law?
  • Why have you chosen Cambridge law?

Once you’ve identified a few notable experiences or accomplishments, organize them into an outline and write a draft without concerning yourself with word count. Give yourself plenty of time to rework your essay and revise it. Remember to double check for spelling and grammatical errors, and to remain under the word limit.

If you want expert help crafting or reviewing your law school personal statement, a law school admissions consulting service or law essay writing service can help you get organized and polish your drafts.

The Cambridge undergraduate law program uses the UCAS application system, so the format and length requirements for your Cambridge law personal statement will follow the UCAS requirements. UCAS allows you up to 4,000 characters, or 500 words, to complete your personal statement, or 47 lines—whichever comes first. The minimum character count for your personal statement is 1,000 characters, or around 250 words.

Cambridge law uses your UCAS personal statement as the basis for your interview, and to evaluate your academic interests and commitment to the study of law. In short, while Cambridge does not provide law school essay prompts , they are essentially asking: why do you want to study law ? Your personal statement for Cambridge should:

  • Explain your reasons for wanting to study law at university
  • Demonstrate enthusiasm for and commitment to the study of law
  • Express any particular interests within the field of law
  • Outline how you’ve pursued your subject interest in your own time

For a better idea of the format and structure of UCAS personal statement, read examples of Cambridge personal statements or Oxford personal statements as a guide. ","label":"TIP","title":"TIP"}]" code="tab1" template="BlogArticle">

Cambridge Law Personal Statement Example #1

My passion for the law was first sparked by an interest in people and their behaviours. As a child, I had a peculiar hobby, introduced to me by my father. I loved observing poker. My father taught me how to play, the two of us, and whenever he would host a friendly game with his friends, I watched and learned. I studied their behaviour, learning their tells and reading their body language. It appealed to me to puzzle out their intentions and their attempts at bluffing. Soon enough, I had a very good knack for reading other people.

As I grew older, I enjoyed watching true crime documentaries and found any crime fiction novels I could get my hands on. Each one was a puzzle that I could take apart, dissect and put back together to find the truth, the reveal. Whenever there was a real criminal court case covered on the local news, I watched with rapt attention. I pursue intellectual interests in sociology, criminology and psychology, through both fiction and scientific articles. I wanted to understand better how people thought, why they behaved the way they did.

I also pursued a side interest in theatre as a teen, as it allowed me to become more comfortable performing in front of others, and allowed me to gain self-confidence. By now, I was curious about a legal career, as it would allow me to marry my love of figuring people out with my interests in true crime and criminal law. I knew to be an effective solicitor I would need a greater presence and confidence in myself. Theatre proved to be a very effective way for me to rehearse and develop myself for the courtroom.

I was able to put my performance skills as well as my knowledge to the test when I participated in the Bar Mock Trial. I was able to banish any nerves when it came to performing in front of an audience, and theatre helped me immerse myself in the mock scenario and truly take on the role of a lawyer. Thanks to my experience with the mock trial, I began sitting in on cases in a public courtroom, once again to observe how the game was played. And just like poker, it was fascinating to me to see how real lawyers analyzed the individuals around them. This was a far more hands-on and realistic examination of people than I could find in all my books and articles. This was no longer theory but a live study of individuals in a court of criminal law. I was fascinated by the entire process.

The law is a complex and intriguing puzzle, and criminal law especially is an area that demands keen observation, sharp analysis and the ability to see beyond the surface. I look forward to the prospect of applying the knowledge I have gained so far, developing new skills and deepening my understanding of a captivating subject.

Want more tips for writing a law school personal statement? Watch this video!

Cambridge Law Personal Statement Example #2

Education, and ensuring everyone has the right to education, has been my crusade for many years. For me, the law has become a vehicle that will help me effect real change in education around the world.

I was fortunate to attend a private school in my formative years, and so I saw firsthand how exclusionary it can be to some students. There is a distinct lack of equal access to quality education for all students, and typically money and privilege are the biggest obstacles. However, around the world I know there are far larger barriers for some young students who crave access to education, and are denied it. In my private school, the few students who could attend on merit scholarships were considered lucky, but they should be able to access quality education without winning some type of lottery.

In my passion for the right to education, my initial plan was to become a teacher and bring education directly to students. But I also realized as a teacher I would not have the level of influence needed to effect real and lasting change. I decided to switch my focus, and I started volunteering with Oxfam. I took my summer off, and volunteered my time as a girls’ teacher in remote villages in Malawi. Oxfam has long been dedicated to providing access to education, and it was fulfilling to be able to help provide educational resources to students even more underprivileged than the peers I’d met in private school. To be able to witness the difference I was making every day as a teacher to young girls. Still, I had lofty goals, and I wanted to continue my humanitarian aid and continue to work towards the right to education for all students.

I delved into researching the global issues and obstacles surrounding education. It soon became clear to me that it was not always a lack of access blocking students from going to school, but a lack of educational rights. I knew I would need to pursue a career in international law, if I wanted to see through my goal of breaking down barriers to education on a global level.

For me, the law is a tool, a resource I can use to help effect change in the lives of young students eager to learn and grow. So I know I must be eager to learn and to develop my legal knowledge as well. I am committed to the studying of the law, so it might serve as my foundation in bringing education to students around the world.

Your personal statement for Cambridge law will be submitted through UCAS, so it should follow UCAS personal statement guidelines. Your personal statement for Cambridge college of law will highlight why you want to study law and what you have done to prepare yourself to become a lawyer.

Your Cambridge law personal statement should cover your motivations for studying law, your specific interests within the field, how you are suited to the study of law and independent learning you’ve done to further your passion for the law.

To write a strong personal statement, ensure it is error-free, flows naturally and is well structured. It should also demonstrate a strong enthusiasm for the study of law, an intellectual aptitude for the field and some experience with law.

Your UCAS personal statement should be no longer than 4,000 characters or around 500 words or less. At minimum, your personal statement should be 1,000 characters or 250 words.

Your law school personal statement should share why you want to study the law, what first sparked your interest in the law or a particular field of law, and what actions or pursuits you’ve taken to deepen your understanding of the law.

A law school personal statement uses a short essay format.

Yes. Your Cambridge law personal statement will be the basis of discussion at your interview, so it is important to present a well-written personal statement. While Cambridge focuses heavily on academic qualifications in applicants, your personal statement provides context and further information about you as a candidate.

Avoid using irrelevant anecdotes or personal stories, unless they provide important context to your motivation to study law. Also avoid using any cliches or often repeated phrases, informal language and merely providing a list of your accomplishments. Remember to use your word count wisely and get straight to the point!

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personal statement sample for llm

Student Good Guide

The best UK online resource for students

Law Personal Statement Example

I hope this personal statement example for the LLB Law course and LLM will help as a motivation and inspiration to work on your university application. You can use this example as a guide to writing a personal statement for any university in the UK – Oxford , Cambridge , UCL, LSE, KCL etc.

As a child, I was fascinated by the stories my grandfather would tell me about his work as a lawyer. I was captivated by the idea of using logic and reasoning to solve complex problems and help people in need. As I grew older, my interest in the law continued to develop, and I began to explore the different areas of law and the ways in which they intersect with society.

During my high school years, I took advantage of every opportunity to learn more about law, including participating in mock trials, attending workshops and seminars, and conducting independent research. I also volunteered with a local legal aid clinic, where I gained practical experience and saw the law’s impact on people’s lives.

In college, I decided to major in political science and legal studies. I have been able to build on my earlier experiences and deepen my knowledge and understanding of the law. I have also been able to gain practical experience through internships and research opportunities, and I have developed strong critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

I am excited to take the next step in my journey and apply to a law program. I believe that a law degree will provide me with the knowledge and skills I need to pursue a successful career in law. I am eager to learn from experienced practitioners and engage in meaningful work that makes a difference in people’s lives. I am confident that I have the passion, dedication, and abilities to excel in a law program and make a valuable contribution to the field.

Learn more:

Applying for a Master of Laws (LLM) Degree The Best Master of Laws Universities In The UK

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Master the LLM Application | eBook Download

Master All Aspects of an LLM Application

Do you know how to complete the more difficult parts of an LL.M. application form ? Are you wondering how to go about drafting a persuasive C.V. or resume? What about the LL.M. personal statement and letters of reference ? Do you know what LSAC is and how it is used in the application process for U.S. Master of Laws programs?

Master LLM Application with Sample Documents

With real life examples of how to answers substantive questions in LL.M. application forms and helpful sample documents , this handy eBook will be your guide to successfully completing your application and accompanying documents.

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How to Master the LL.M. Application – A Concise Guide with Samples  is the  only eBook on the market  that includes:

  • Helpful hints on each major aspect of a typical LL.M. application
  • Sample answers for various questions found in the leading schools’ application forms
  • Full-length sample LL.M. personal statement (not found in our other eBook )
  • Sample academic reference letter
  • Sample work/professional reference letter
  • Sample resume/C.V.
  • 30 pages  of highly relevant, exclusive content
  • Unlike other commentary and samples you might find online, we offer  reliable ,  high-quality material  by our  team of experts

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LLM Commercial and Corporate Law - Sample Personal Statement

  • Sample personal statement

personal statement sample for llm

19 April, 2018

Llm commercial and corporate law - sample personal statement share.

  • 12 May, 2013

My name is T Ahmed. My nationality is Bangladeshi and I am 25 years old. I am intending to pursue the LLM Comparative Commercial Law at BPP University to to achieve a deeper understanding of the field of Comparative Commercial Law. I look forward to having the opportunity to study it to a higher level. Following my SSC & HSC, I have completed my Bachelor of Laws (Honours) from ASA University of Bangladesh in 2019. Then I admitted myself at Jagannath University for my Master of Laws (Professional) and right now I am expecting for my result. I am a hard-working individual and tend to work patiently until I reach my goal. I love to watch documentaries during my leisure time. My command of the English Language has been developed through my bachelor's course, as the medium of instruction for this course have been in English. However, I believe that this course will enable me to show the best of my intellectual capacity and prosper in a competitive work environment.

I choose the UK as my study destination because British universities are renowned for their well-balanced academic programmes which offer opportunities for professional development through teamwork and participation in research projects. Moreover, Bangladesh government and private organizational structures and governance are UK system oriented. So I think to learn from the UK because the degrees meet the job requirements more than in other countries. Well, I looked at many Universities but choose BPP University becauseit is one of the UK’s leading Law Schools, with over 25 years’ experience delivering professional legal qualifications. Also The University is trusted by many of the most influential law firms and 60 leading firms educate their trainees exclusively with them. Tutors are expert and every single student is given personal attention and individual care with maximum contact hours with academics. The University has been exclusively education 4 out of the 5 magic circle law firms. This put BPP’s position at top in teaching law and demands of BPP graduates after they complete they qualify. Students have the chances to gain practical legal work experience by working with real clients through our award-winning Pro Bono Centre. Studying here would give me the chance to differentiate myself with distinct accomplishments and success. I have keep an eye on the course specification of my chosen programme and found that some of its modules are align with my study, research focus which will play a vital role on my future progression. The modules includes Comparative Commercial Law, Law Relating to Fraud and Financial Crime, Transnational Criminal Justice, Commercial Law and the Law of Investigations and Practice, Dissertation. All the practice ready modules of the course are highly demanding and suitable according to today's legal sector and these modules are designed to introduce students to the nature of commercial and financial activity from a comparative perspective. The assessment methods in my chosen programme which will also contribute to my development. Furthermore, I will be be able to gain deep understanding of law practice in a real world context. Basically I work hardly on my daily routine to improve my skills and ability and I am confident that my personal attributes and academic achievements make me a suitable candidate for the course.

Upon on completion of my course, I will be able to grow my career in different legal sectors of my home country. My goal is to be a Senior Commercial Lawyer in a well reputed firms of my home country. I am ready to increase my knowledge in this sector by studying my chosen course so that I can able to face the intellectual challenge this will bring. In this fast rising world, legal problems are becoming universal. So, I want to study the LLM Comparative Commercial Law at BPP to earn a professional level platform in my future career path. I believe that further study in the UK is the best decision to step on the path to my career goals as the UK is the ideal setting for refining my expertise in law while also acquiring a broader, international viewpoint. In my country, education system is theory based and learning materials are not adjusted with latest developments. Degrees in my country do not maintain international standards. Due to this, degrees are not recognized and valued. Tuition fees are commercialized heavily day by day. Degrees do not develop transferable skills like the UK. I am determined to study this course in the UK as the study environment in my country is quite different and we get to study with only the national students. Furthermore, the UK has a great multicultural and diversified student community which is an opportunity for me to learn with lot of students from different nationalities. UK education brand is highly respected by employers in our country as UK degree prepares graduates with academic competencies, developed personal and professional skills that are imperative for organizational success. The transferrable skills graduates carry forward from UK are pivotal for transforming organizational growth and gain competitive advantages. In a recent Survey of International Graduate Outcomes 2019 by Universities UK International produced by iGraduate shows that 82% international graduates say that their UK degree are worth the financial investment and same percentage say they are satisfied or very satisfied with their careers. Nearly 83% feel that UK degree has helped them to get jobs. These aspects have driven my ambition to gain the degree from a UK institution. These reasons have letting me to decide to pursue this course in the UK.

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AI Assistant Insights: Writing C++ Code With the Power of AI in CLion!

Anastasia Kazakova

CLion can help complete your C++ code in a variety of ways:

  • Basic code completion offers completion options for names, types, and keywords within the visibility scope as soon as you start typing them.
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We call it inline code completion , and it inserts whole code snippets after the cursor. Doesn’t it look handy? You can evaluate it in CLion v2023.3.3 or later versions by getting an AI Assistant license or using a free trial.


Since the context is known to AI Assistant, it can successfully guess exactly what you’re trying to do. For example, it can help you launch Qt-based apps:

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You can disable automatic suggestions in Settings/Preferences | Tools | AI Assistant . The suggested completion will still be available via the completion menu, a dedicated action, or a shortcut:

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AI-based completion in CLion is a powerful tool that can save you time and effort. However, it currently uses OpenAI’s GPT-4 and GPT-3.5 models, as well as models trained by JetBrains. The latest cutoff point for these models is 2021, so some constructs specific to C++20 and C++23 are not known to the service. AI Assistant can also lack some knowledge of C++17’s contexpr .

Give AI-powered code completion a try in CLion! If you want to provide any feedback about it, please do so in the comments or via the issue tracker .

While we’re still on the topic of completion, there’s also a Full Line Code Completion plugin. It utilizes a deep learning model and runs on your local device without sending anything over the internet, which means it is available even when you’re offline. This is provided directly by the plugin , but it currently only supports Python, Kotlin, JavaScript/TypeScript and their associated frameworks, CSS, Java, PHP, and Ruby. We hope to get C and C++ added to this list sometime soon!

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  1. LL.M. Applications: The Personal Statement

    LL.M. Applications: The Personal Statement By B. Xu on Jul 31, 2017 The personal statement can be a daunting part of the LL.M. application process—what to write, and how to write it? Here are some tips from admissions officials to help guide you through the process.

  2. Writing A Law School And LLM Personal Statement

    1. An LLM personal statement explains gaps If you've got a few spaces in your work history or a job that ended poorly, then the LLM personal statement is your chance to explain what happened and what you have learnt from the experience.

  3. [2024] 4 Law School Personal Statement Examples from Top Programs

    1) Research the Law School 2) Outline Your Law School Personal Statement 3) Write a Compelling Introduction 4) Showcase Your Achievements and Interests in Law 5) Articulate Your Motivations for Pursuing Law 6) Highlight Unique Qualities for the Legal Field 7) Addressing Potential Weaknesses or Gaps 8) Craft a Persuasive Conclusion

  4. 18 Law School Personal Statement Examples That Got Accepted!

    Law School Personal Statement Example #1 When I was a child, my neighbors, who had arrived in America from Nepal, often seemed stressed. They argued a lot, struggled for money, and seemed to work all hours of the day. One day, I woke early in the morning to a commotion outside my apartment.

  5. Law School Personal Statement

    Law School Application Documents Law School Personal Statement Law School Personal Statement Your personal statement is an opportunity to present yourself as more than an LSAT score and GPA. The personal statement sets you apart from other candidates. It is also a sample of your ability to express thoughts clearly and cogently. The Process

  6. How to Write the Perfect LL.M. Statement

    By Seb Murray on Apr 12, 2023 ChatGPT has ignited concerns over cheating, but, for now, law schools say the personal statement remans a key piece of the LL.M. application If you're applying to an LL.M. program, writing a personal statement to your graduate law school is likely to be one of the first steps on the road to being admitted.

  7. 7 Tips for Writing Your LLM Personal Statement

    1. Be (and show) yourself Remember that an LL.M. personal statement should be a condensed reflection of your own persona. Highlight your strengths and achievements, but do not attempt to be someone you are not.

  8. LL.M. Admissions: How to Write a Personal Statement

    Many law schools require a brief personal statement" or statement of purpose from applicants to LL.M. programs. But for some applicants, there can be confusion about exactly how to approach this statement. This might be because not all schools give precise guidance about how to write them.

  9. How to Write a Great LLM Personal Statement

    How to Write a Great LLM Personal Statement Published on July 30, 2020 by lauraduckett It is a big decision to pursue an LLM or Master of Laws after completion of your LLB. However, the decision to apply is not the final hurdle you have to face.

  10. The Personal Statement

    Here are some tips to help you write a strong personal statement: Explain your motivation: Your personal statement should begin by explaining why you want to pursue an LLM and how it fits into your overall career goals. Provide specific examples and explain how the program will help you achieve your goals. Highlight your qualifications: Use ...

  11. Law personal statement

    July, 2023 An LLM can make you stand out from the competition thanks to your enhanced subject knowledge and industry contacts. Find out what to include in an LLM personal statement When writing a personal statement for an LLM you'll need to: state why you wish to study this particular LLM subject.

  12. 4 Outstanding Real-World Law School Personal Statement Examples

    4 Outstanding Real-World Law School Personal Statement Examples What does a successful law school application essay look like? Look no further. Below you'll find five real-world examples from some of the students admitted to New England Law | Boston's fall 2019 entering class.

  13. Real Talk: The Personal Statement

    For our first entry in the Re al Talk series, Associate Director Nefyn Meissner shares his advice on approaching the personal statement.. Some applicants feel the need to start their personal statements with a bang by throwing in a colorful personal story or dramatic hook to grab the Admissions Committee's attention right from the start.

  14. Harvard Law School Personal Statement Samples

    Updated: Jan 01, 2024 Reading Harvard Law School personal statement samples is a great way to learn how to write your own for your application to law school. As arguably the best law school in the world, Harvard has extremely competitive law school acceptance rates.

  15. Top LLM Personal Statement Samples

    Top Personal Statements for LL.M. Programs contains 10 LL.M. personal statement samples that are based on actual personal statements by successful applicants .Variations of these LL.M. personal statements have helped applicants gain admission to some of the most pre-eminent law schools in the U.S. and the U.K.

  16. Stanford Law Personal Statement Examples

    Example No.3. I was getting snowed under between work, school, and family life. My father had recently had an invasive operation performed, and while he was recovering nicely, he was frequently on my mind during my studies. It made any additional responsibilities unfeasible for me that year.

  17. The Harvard LLM Personal Statement

    Law school personal statements typically revolve around leadership potential, integrity and accountability, intellectual curiosity, determination in the face of adversity, problem-solving skills, dedication, compassion, creativity, and personal skills.

  18. PDF Examples of Personal Statements

    Personal Statement Example #1 After I graduated high school, I had no idea what careers appealed to me. For my first two years of university, I searched for a calling, a class that would change my life and direct my studies. I enrolled in a wide variety of courses in a wide variety of departments.

  19. Personal Statement

    Please check HERE for detailed guidelines on how to write a personal statement (statement of purpose). I am keen to pursue LLM International Law and Social Justice at University of Brighton. This LL.M in international law and Social Justice will complement and enhance my Bachelor degree. The application is supported by my CV and evidence of my ...

  20. Cambridge Law School Personal Statement Examples

    Cambridge Law Personal Statement Examples Cambridge Law Personal Statement Example #1. My passion for the law was first sparked by an interest in people and their behaviours. As a child, I had a peculiar hobby, introduced to me by my father. I loved observing poker. My father taught me how to play, the two of us, and whenever he would host a ...

  21. Law Personal Statement Example For LLB And LLM

    Law Personal Statement Example. 6 Dec,2022 Alan Withworth. I hope this personal statement example for the LLB Law course and LLM will help as a motivation and inspiration to work on your university application. You can use this example as a guide to writing a personal statement for any university in the UK - Oxford, Cambridge, UCL, LSE, KCL etc.

  22. The LLM Application: Sample Reference Letters, CV, Personal Statement

    Full-length sample LL.M. personal statement (not found in our other eBook) Sample academic reference letter; Sample work/professional reference letter; Sample resume/C.V. 30 pages of highly relevant, exclusive content; Unlike other commentary and samples you might find online, we offer reliable, high-quality material by our team of experts

  23. Sample personal statement for LLM Comparative Commercial Law

    Resources Sample personal statement TSC 19 April, 2018 Resource LLM Commercial and Corporate Law - Sample Personal Statement Note: the example personal statement (statement of purpose) below is for guidelines only and to help you understand how to write one - do not copy any part of it.

  24. AI Assistant Insights: Writing C++ Code With the Power of AI in CLion!

    CLion can help complete your C++ code in a variety of ways:. Basic code completion offers completion options for names, types, and keywords within the visibility scope as soon as you start typing them.; In Smart type-matching code completion shows only the types applicable to the current context.; Statement completion helps you create syntactically correct code constructs by generating and ...