Law School Discussion

Law Students => Current Law Students => Topic started by: Trancer on January 06, 2006, 06:56:43 AM

Title: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: Trancer on January 06, 2006, 06:56:43 AM
Thought this would be beneficial for us 1.5L's and anyone else who is about to start law school...

1. Do not put off outlining until November, keep up with your outlining every week.

2. Legal Research and Writing assignement will be a monkey wrench in your routine.  Plan accordingly, do not put off LRW for the weekends otherwise youll be in a race to finish them and thats not the best position to be in.

3. Flash Cards work wonders for memorizing Element and Factor based rules, but they dont supplement for actually studying the material.

4. Study, dont just read.  Ask questions while you browse through materials, find out whether the rule is a minority or majority rule.

5. Try to get your practice tests in 2 weeks before finals, messing up a previous test 3 days before a final can be a serious destriment to your self-confidence (even if it borders on hubris, its better to feel over confident than scared shitless)
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: DutchessA on January 06, 2006, 08:08:02 AM
1.  It takes approximately three months to see the true character of the people you choose to study with, select study mates carefully.

2.  Outlines should be updated every weekend.

3.  Practice tests are incredibly important, make time for at least issue spotting tests once a week.

4.  Studying isn't about quantity, its about quality.  Two hours spent in a quiet (or loud) room where you are dead-set focused is worth four hours where you are in and out of consciousness on the subject.

5.  No matter how hard you are working there is someone who is working even harder!!! And if there isn't, you are doing something right.



Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: Senior Belding on January 06, 2006, 08:40:48 AM
These are tips for any school, not just law school.
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: racheles05 on January 06, 2006, 08:51:53 AM
1. Get your resume and cover letters ready for job hunting in September.
2. Get to know all of your professors. The better you know them, the more you'll know what's on the exam.
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: S| on January 06, 2006, 10:13:01 AM
Since you are reflecting on your first semester, I have a question.  Do you feel that it is absolutely necessary to write a perfect exam to get an A? I did multiple practice exams and left the exam feeling as if I had done everything possible within the time allotted, but after extensive reflection on the exam I know there were things I could have done differently. Is it reasonable to expect that 5-10 students wrote a perfect exam?

Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: DutchessA on January 06, 2006, 10:54:57 AM
It doesn't have to be perfect, just the best out of the bunch...  That is where quirks of the prof. come in and it pays off to know their personality and how they like things phrased.

I need to work on that with my torts prof.  He says I'm not nearly crazy enough with my ideas, I CAN BE CRAZY!!!
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: Trancer on January 06, 2006, 12:23:39 PM
When running from a bear in the forest, you dont need to run faster than the bear, just your friend.  That same mentality applied to law school.  As a side note, as far as cutthroat behavior goes ive seen very few overt acts by some individuals, but not as much as the hype.  Im a firm believer in synergy... i dont care if all 4 of my study mates do better than me, so long as we place 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th in the class.  ;D
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: chrisfield on January 06, 2006, 01:22:55 PM
This is good stuff.  Please keep posting for all of us 0L's.
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: DutchessA on January 06, 2006, 01:37:38 PM
I've experienced some fairly aggressive behavior from fellow students...most of it done to get a rise out of other students.  The best idea--trust your own gut instinct and what you know, if you have a question ask the Prof. if available. 

Same with me in terms of study mates, I hope that she did really well...which I'm sure she did.
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: jacy85 on January 06, 2006, 02:11:08 PM
When running from a bear in the forest, you dont need to run faster than the bear, just your friend.

 :D
Excellent way of phrasing that.
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: Trancer on January 06, 2006, 02:51:20 PM
One situation stood out in my head, i asked an older member of our section to clarify something.  His explanation was so blantantly wrong that it couldnt be anything but a clear example of cutthroat gunner behavior.  Aside from that most students either will tell you they dont know (even if they do) or help you out.  Personally, whenever i explain a subject to someone i find it solidifies it in my own mind.  But more tips...

1. Briefing is almost completely useless (except for torts, where each case introduces a new rule of law).  Class does not prepare you for the test, but paying attention to what the prof. concentrates on goes a long way in determining what they are looking for on the test.
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: plumbert on January 07, 2006, 12:54:58 AM
I think keeping up with the outlines each week and taking lots of practice tests are the most important changes I'll be making this coming semester.
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: stunner on January 08, 2006, 01:40:29 PM
1. Calm the @#!* down and don't worry about it. This is (very seriously) by far the most important thing.
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: J D on January 08, 2006, 03:00:09 PM
1. Calm the @#!* down and don't worry about it. This is (very seriously) by far the most important thing.

Co-sign.
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: txaggie99 on January 08, 2006, 05:15:16 PM
This is more a response to the things going on in my head after my first semester:

1)  ***deleted this one in the interest of not starting the adminstration on any crazy witch hunt. maybe they will realize that they messed up, not the students.***

2) I spent A TON of time in my LRAW class. I had an A- average going into the final paper and got so stressed over doing well on it that I got a B-. While I know there are many 1Ls that would love to get a B- in LRAW, it kills me to know that my time was not well spent and with 75% of the grade based on the final memo, Ill be lucky to get a B in the class.

3) I always knew that there would be people that could party all semester and still do well in school. It is amazing to me that they still exist in Law School. One classmate appeared to be stoned every day in class, when he was awake, and he has all As at this point. Im not even upset about itjust shocked. Congratulations to him. Hopefully the rest of his life is as painless as it appears to be.

4) Im glad I made time for the people in my life that cared about me before I started school. They were there to help me forget the pain over the break and helped me smile after the 1L grade shock hit me.

5) At some point, I hope that I can stop thinking about everyone else, and focus on me. Why should I care how everyone else does?


Anyway, it's over. Now for round two....

Good luck to all you other 1Ls going back to hell. Only 115 days until finals.
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: CoxlessPair on January 08, 2006, 06:18:22 PM
Txaggie, I'd swear we are at the same law school
Title: Re: What I learned from my first semester of law school...
Post by: dbgirl on January 10, 2006, 09:27:55 AM
Well, it's hard to say what I did right/wrong because I haven't gotten all my grades yet, but from what I know so far ...

This semester I will

*Outline early (did this last semester but need to do it even earlier this semester)
*Buy commercial outlines during the first week of school.
*Continue taking practice exams -- I think these were really helpful.

And, as I did last semester ... when I don't get something, concentrate until I know it backwards and forwards. Whatever I'm uncertain about will definitely be on the exam.