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CONTRACT LAW (Mary Charman)

Preface to the fourth edition

The study of any area of law can appear somewhat daunting to a new student and presenting material in an accessible way, while retaining academic integrity, has become a significant feature of each edition of this book. This new edition is no exception and the book aims to be a complete text for students of Contract Law at A-level as well as those on other courses in further and higher education. The frequent revision programme means that the book is up to date with regard to examination specifications and this edition incorporates the new OCR four-module requirements, including both new source materials for the Special Study paper and examples of the new-style dilemma questions.

As before, the book includes opportunities to make connections between areas of law and to consider the moral, ethical and social issues found within the law. The reminders within the text prompt you to think about issues, to consider whether outcomes are fair to individuals and to consider the way in which justice is achieved within the broad context of the society in which we live. Many of these issues are raised in ‘boxed’ questions, indicating points at which you could stop and consider answers for yourself before moving on to the next section. At the end of each chapter is an updated set of questions, including some from recent A2 examination papers, for you to practise, with suggested outline answers at the end of the book. A whole section towards the end examines the general context of the law of contract, and the specific ways in which a synoptic overview is assessed by the major examination boards have been updated. The aim is twofold: to help you to achieve success in examinations and to present a context in which contract law may be set in order to acquire skills for life and to extend the value of study.

Many students have found the key skills section useful in assembling their portfolios, finding that generally those students who achieve a qualification at an advanced level do have such key skills in order to undertake their studies. At A-level there are specific requirements for this qualification, so to aid you in achieving this as smoothly as possible, a section is included to suggest some ways in which these skills can be demonstrated through your ‘normal’ study of contract law, and in fact to show how the assessments can complement and enhance each other. It is obviously important that a law textbook keeps up to date, since the law itself is a living and changing entity, reflecting the society in which we

live. This book is based on the state of the law at the time of publication, including recent cases and statutes. Try to read quality newspapers and legal journals, visit courts and legal practices, and make full use of the internet. The opinion of others is valued as a resource in both forming an individual view and in assessing the current state of the law. I have suggested further resources which you may like to investigate to help broaden your knowledge and to become aware of new law as it develops. I hope that this book helps you not only to acquire the knowledge that you need to pass examinations, but that it will encourage you to be enthusiastic in your study of Contract Law for its own sake, so that you really want to find out more because you are genuinely interested. Most of all, I wish you well in your studies and examinations, and hope that you are indeed successful.

I would again like to acknowledge gratitude to the A-level examination board OCR for allowing the reproduction of examination questions. I would also like to thank Brian Willan and the production team for their continuing expertise, support and extreme patience, and my family for again putting up with the domestic difficulties that writing seems to produce.

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