Law School Discussion

Law Students => Current Law Students => Topic started by: lalalander on January 20, 2008, 02:39:59 PM

Title: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on January 20, 2008, 02:39:59 PM
I just have no idea what happened, I seriously want to drop out. I've been getting grades over the past week and now have them all. Turns out that I'm below the median, close to bottom third. I have no idea what went wrong.

I started studying this past summer, just casual reading of E&Es for my upcoming courses. I read Getting to Maybe and worked on incorporating the advice from the book. I attended every class, every single one, and was always prepared. The studying over the summer and looking at some exams before school even started gave me a great layout of the courses. When we discussed things in class, I understood every bit of it and even knew the facts and holdings of many cases. Before school started I could name all the torts and their elements, go through contracts analysis, go through a lawsuit from start to finish, etc.

Upon starting school, I read for every class, pretty much every case. If I didn't read the case in it's entirety I got a Lexis summary of it and skimmed it. In addition to that, I read about the subject of each particular class in hornbooks and E&Es, that way I not only knew the cases we were discussing, but the policies and such behind the cases.

I took my first full length practice exam in Sept. and basically did one per week until December. I always compared my answers to the model answers. We took a practice exam in a class and I got an A on it. One of out profs handed out about 75 sample multiple choice questions that were similar to the MC section of the test. I did them all in about half the allotted time and only missed 2 out of those 75 with no help or anything. I thought I was in good shape.

On the exams themselves (practice and real), I clearly stated the rules of law, spent most of the time discussing how it would apply to the fact pattern, and came out with a conclusion in the end. I discussed the strongest arguments (and some weaker arguments) of every party involved, making sure not to make my analysis too one sides. I also added in policy concerns (ala Getting to Maybe) to everything that would apply. For instance, in torts I would discuss all the elements of the intentional tort, do a thorough analysis of both sides including defenses and counters to defenses, add in a conclusion that followed from the analysis, and throw in something like "Battery is meant to protect people from intentional harm to their person. A verdict in favor of the defendant would lead to many administrative concerns and have the effect of opening up the potential field of battery claims by ...etc.etc.etc."

Additionally, I organized with topics and headings. I started each question (or section of question) with xxx v. yyy, or State v. XXX (for crim). For instance, in my negligence analysis, I had the opening XXX v. YYY, a section for Duty, breach, factual cause, legal cause, damages, and defenses. I made it as easy to read as possible and when I was done with the question, I put together a short intro of what happened and a quick look at the analysis I was going to do.

I knew everything cold. Everything. I left every exam feeling like I completely nailed it. I had some fun during the school year, but mostly opted to do practice exams or learn concepts. I even threw in policy arguments that the prof made (when applicable) and some little quotes that the profs said a lot. All this and I got below median.

Can anyone offer tips/advice on what you think the problem may have been? I can even post one of my exam answers so you can see. I knew everything and fact checked it after the exam to verify that I used the right laws and such, and felt even better then! I'm not looking for posts telling me what my options may be, just help with whatever I did wrong. I assume its my writing ability or something. I pretty much always hit every issue on practice exams and such.

HELP PLEASE!!! Sorry for the long read. :(

Also, I'm at a top 20 school on a pretty nice scholarship, 170 lsat, pretty good ugrad gpa. The exams were pretty much issue spotters. All my advice on taking law exams comes from Getting to Maybe and reading countless posts on many different law boards on exam taking.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: Suzieq830 on January 20, 2008, 03:26:25 PM
did you make sure you answered all the questions??

at a t20 school you shouldnt be that worried about getting a job. also, you may have done great, but everyone else may have also done great.  therefore, you fell below the curve.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on January 20, 2008, 03:28:41 PM
I did answer every question and made sure to check them all off as I did. I also read every fact pattern several times and marked issues I saw and such. Plus, I doubt I would have missed questions on every exam.

I'm not terribly worried about getting a job eventually, but I'm most concerned with bringing up my second semester.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: gershonw on January 20, 2008, 03:32:48 PM
one thing youve left out so far is that while youve seen your grades...you may not have actually seen your exam.

i thought i had written good exams becuase i studied on a similar regimen of beginning with E and E/PLS approach in the summer practice exams outlining etc and just felt good  coming out of the exams.....I had also been in the top 75% lsat for my class at a T1 etc...but when i got my poor grades i went back and looked at the exams that i had written themselves and was horrified by what i had written...just immediately saw i had left things out and made blatant errors...

not sure if it was the stress or staying up all night before each exam to study and tiring myself out...but it would seem the problem for me at least..wasn't knowing the material or knowing how to apply it..but actually getting it from my brain to the paper.

on the other hand..one of my profs tolf us not to follow IRAC...told us to forget about stating the rule and just apply it..then on the grading hseet had points for stating the rule itself (gerk)..so something like that may have happened also.  (the lesson there is always state the rule even if the professor says not to i guess).

go back and read your actual exam.

Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on January 20, 2008, 03:37:51 PM
Yeah, I'm going to do that Monday. Hopefully it shows me something. Do profs write something on the exams themselves to clue you in?
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: gershonw on January 20, 2008, 03:41:04 PM
none of my profs have so far. theres just too much to do.  but hey are all happy to sit down and explian if your curious.

make sure you tell him that you know you did ok and that you understood and are not lost-b ut rather are just trying to understand what made the difference between the top of the class and the bottom..he m ay not want to answer that but it would be good to focus his attention.

profs have been doing this for years..they probley have more advice for you than anyone on this board or in a law school prep book written by some guy whos was upset that he didnt get biglaw
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on January 20, 2008, 04:07:27 PM
Yeah, unfortunately all my profs are now either visiting other schools or on sabbatical or whatever. That makes it harder to get advice.

Would you offer up any other advice for a test taker beyond what I've already done? LEEWS? Anything like that?
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: gershonw on January 20, 2008, 04:12:01 PM
ive never done leews..but it certainly appears that thats what we/I need right?

don't be shy about emailing profs for advice....i just sent one to that prof who told us not to put down the rule then graded us on putting down the rule heh.

also if its exam taking technique thats our problem and not understanding or being able to apply a fact pattern...then we probably need more sleep and less stress going in..in exchange for 5 more hours studying...but i already said that didn't i?
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: KianaFran on January 21, 2008, 06:24:04 PM
When it comes to exams it's all about how you write it. A practice exam isn't curved, so a ton of people could have gotten A's on knowing the law. But how clear and concise you write your answer as well as whether you knew the law in comparison to everyone else determines your grade.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on January 21, 2008, 07:59:23 PM
Is it possible that I wrote too much? Example, Torts, one of the essay questions was a pretty straightforward negligence question, which was half of the exam. It had to do with a retailer stacking bottles negligently on a high shelf and one of them fell. Pretty straightforward.

I had a great intro, talked about all elements of negligence (of course), I threw in a few sentences on negligence per se (even though there was no indication of a statute on point), had a few sentences on vicarious liability (for the worker who stacked the retailer's bottles), discussed evidence such as direct evidence and RIL, hit on the history of proximate cause and how it evolved through the wagon mound cases, polemis, and the palsgraf andrews/cardozo opinions etc. and how each one would have resolved the proximate cause dispute, made sure to discuss factual cause/legal cause, all defenses applicable (comparative negligence, etc.) and joint tortfeasors, etc. I even threw in an alternate cause of action under strict liability for an abnormally dangerous activity and indicated it was weak. Talked about both sides and what they would argue on everything relevant, etc. and policies behind everything such as the hand formula, proximate cause, damages (and what types of damages can be awarded in neg. cases). I even littered the whole thing with case names when they applied.

I think that anything that we had talked about I threw in there if it was a possibility at all. Perhaps I talked too much, although it's not like I threw in professional malpractice or anything absurd that couldn't have been an issue. It's pretty clear from reading though, it definitely doesn't sound rambling.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: cesco on January 21, 2008, 08:25:23 PM
Is it possible that I wrote too much? Example, Torts, one of the essay questions was a pretty straightforward negligence question, which was half of the exam. It had to do with a retailer stacking bottles negligently on a high shelf and one of them fell. Pretty straightforward.

I had a great intro, talked about all elements of negligence (of course), I threw in a few sentences on negligence per se (even though there was no indication of a statute on point), had a few sentences on vicarious liability (for the worker who stacked the retailer's bottles), discussed evidence such as direct evidence and RIL, hit on the history of proximate cause and how it evolved through the wagon mound cases, polemis, and the palsgraf andrews/cardozo opinions etc. and how each one would have resolved the proximate cause dispute, made sure to discuss factual cause/legal cause, all defenses applicable (comparative negligence, etc.) and joint tortfeasors, etc. I even threw in an alternate cause of action under strict liability for an abnormally dangerous activity and indicated it was weak. Talked about both sides and what they would argue on everything relevant, etc. and policies behind everything such as the hand formula, proximate cause, damages (and what types of damages can be awarded in neg. cases). I even littered the whole thing with case names when they applied.

I think that anything that we had talked about I threw in there if it was a possibility at all. Perhaps I talked too much, although it's not like I threw in professional malpractice or anything absurd that couldn't have been an issue. It's pretty clear from reading though, it definitely doesn't sound rambling.

Sounds like you may have hit on your problem.  I believe the general consensus on how to answer an exam Q is to actually answer the question, not just spew out everything you know.  Your teacher likely had no interest in your version of the history of proximate cause; rather, he/she simply wanted to see how you could APPLY all of that knowledge to a specific hypo.

Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: resipsaloquitur on January 21, 2008, 08:36:40 PM
Is it possible that I wrote too much? Example, Torts, one of the essay questions was a pretty straightforward negligence question, which was half of the exam. It had to do with a retailer stacking bottles negligently on a high shelf and one of them fell. Pretty straightforward.

What was the question?  Are you sure you stuck to answering what was asked?

Sounds like you were throwing in several things that were not relevant.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: jacy85 on January 21, 2008, 08:38:32 PM
Is it possible that I wrote too much? Example, Torts, one of the essay questions was a pretty straightforward negligence question, which was half of the exam. It had to do with a retailer stacking bottles negligently on a high shelf and one of them fell. Pretty straightforward.

I had a great intro, talked about all elements of negligence (of course), I threw in a few sentences on negligence per se (even though there was no indication of a statute on point), had a few sentences on vicarious liability (for the worker who stacked the retailer's bottles), discussed evidence such as direct evidence and RIL, hit on the history of proximate cause and how it evolved through the wagon mound cases, polemis, and the palsgraf andrews/cardozo opinions etc. and how each one would have resolved the proximate cause dispute, made sure to discuss factual cause/legal cause, all defenses applicable (comparative negligence, etc.) and joint tortfeasors, etc. I even threw in an alternate cause of action under strict liability for an abnormally dangerous activity and indicated it was weak. Talked about both sides and what they would argue on everything relevant, etc. and policies behind everything such as the hand formula, proximate cause, damages (and what types of damages can be awarded in neg. cases). I even littered the whole thing with case names when they applied.

I think that anything that we had talked about I threw in there if it was a possibility at all. Perhaps I talked too much, although it's not like I threw in professional malpractice or anything absurd that couldn't have been an issue. It's pretty clear from reading though, it definitely doesn't sound rambling.

If you had "time" to write all of this crap, then you lost a TON of points by not talking about the issues that were actually relevant.  While you spent 1/3 of your time writing about negligence, and 2/3 of your time vomiting up your every rule or doctrine that is even tangentially related to negligence, the A-exam writers were spending 100% of their time on negligence. 

If you're even more discerning, you read a fact pattern and know that it's not only a negligence issue, but primarily a duty problem.  So you spend 2/3 of your time discussing duty, and the other 1/3 covering the other negligence elements.  Writing a good exam isn't about vomiting up everything you know.  It's being able to spot the issues, and then being able to hone in on the exact elements that the issue will turn upon, and THEN being able to articulate the arguments available to each party (both legal and then factual interpretations), making a conclusion based on your analysis, and finally followed up by acknowledging what the outcome would be if the court or jury decided differently than your conclusion.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: jimmyjohn on January 21, 2008, 08:41:16 PM
Your first problem is that you think your answer was great.  Obviously you did not answer the question the way the prof wanted or you would not have received poor grades.  You need to get over thinking that you did a good job but simply did not get rewarded with a good grade.  If you keep this mindset, nothing will improve.  You should probably scrap your strategy and start over with a new focus on how to write an exam answer.

LEEWS might help, talking to your profs might help, but ultimately you need to figure out what you did wrong.  Sitting around and talking about how you had it figured out before you got to law school and that you knew everything throughout the semester and on the exam isn't going to get you anywhere because all that matters is the grade that you get on the exam. 
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on January 21, 2008, 08:51:19 PM
Good points all around, thanks.

I'm pretty certain that I applied everything in an orderly fashion, but perhaps I didn't spend enough space applying the stuff.

Thanks a lot for the advice.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: jacy85 on January 21, 2008, 09:03:29 PM
Good points all around, thanks.

I'm pretty certain that I applied everything in an orderly fashion, but perhaps I didn't spend enough space applying the stuff.

Thanks a lot for the advice.

It doesn't matter how "orderly" it was.  If you threw in a bunch of irrelevant issues, then you got absolutely zero points for the time you spent writing about them.  If there was NO negligence per se issue in the problem, the professor has zero points to allocate for anything you wrote about it!  Time = points, and wasted time for no points means a lower exam grade.

I suggest you go see your professor, and then do LEEWS.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: gershonw on January 21, 2008, 09:21:44 PM
i definitely agree with a lot of the points being made here..particularly orderliness doesn't matter...

when i looked at model A answers the profs gave afterward (basically actual answers students gave with the typos corrected) they were terribly disorganized..but it didn't matter as long as they had the right info in there..

i would also agree not to spend any time on elements that obviously arn't there..points definitely do equal time on lots of tests.

my problem was i thought i could take a four hour exam on no sleep..you cant really do that and do well..i thought i had said things that when i looked later were just not on the page...half finished paragraphs really..such as...X case was different because of Y...without contrasting that to the fact pattern..thought i had done so...but it gets really muddled on no sleep and you loose track of whats in your head and whats on paper.

Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: resipsaloquitur on January 21, 2008, 09:32:19 PM
Good points all around, thanks.

I'm pretty certain that I applied everything in an orderly fashion, but perhaps I didn't spend enough space applying the stuff.

Thanks a lot for the advice.

It doesn't matter how orderly or coherent you are if you don't answer the question.  Don't throw things in for the sake of throwing them in.  You're not going to get points for inventing issues where they don't exist (e.g. negligence per se when a statute isn't hinted it, RIL when it cannot factor in).  I am not sure how you fit the history of proximate cause in there. What did the evolution of proximate cause have to do with the exam question? 

You really should see your professor about this.  That is your best resource for understanding where you went wrong.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: McLovin on January 21, 2008, 09:42:45 PM
www.leews.com

I'm not sure why more people don't take advantage of this.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on January 21, 2008, 09:54:28 PM
Good points all around, thanks.

I'm pretty certain that I applied everything in an orderly fashion, but perhaps I didn't spend enough space applying the stuff.

Thanks a lot for the advice.

It doesn't matter how orderly or coherent you are if you don't answer the question.  Don't throw things in for the sake of throwing them in.  You're not going to get points for inventing issues where they don't exist (e.g. negligence per se when a statute isn't hinted it, RIL when it cannot factor in).  I am not sure how you fit the history of proximate cause in there. What did the evolution of proximate cause have to do with the exam question? 

You really should see your professor about this.  That is your best resource for understanding where you went wrong.

Yeah, I emailed my prof, unfortunately he hasn't responded and is on sabbatical.

As for the history thing, it was something that the prof spent A LOT of time on. He discussed negligence and proximate cause and the differences between the wagon mound approach, and the contrasting palsgraf approaches. Because he had focused and spent so much time on this issue, I was pretty sure that he wanted to hear how the issue may be resolved depending on whether it was looked at through, say, Cardozo's view/ Andrews's view/Wagon Mound approaches. I simply put those discussions in chronological order.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on January 21, 2008, 09:55:49 PM
www.leews.com

I'm not sure why more people don't take advantage of this.

Because the majority of what people read say that it is a waste of time. That's pretty much all I can find on it. I'm going to try it anyways, but if you just search for leews on google, you'll find that the majority of law discussion posts talk about how it's all useless common sense.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: McLovin on January 21, 2008, 10:10:34 PM
www.leews.com

I'm not sure why more people don't take advantage of this.

Because the majority of what people read say that it is a waste of time. That's pretty much all I can find on it. I'm going to try it anyways, but if you just search for leews on google, you'll find that the majority of law discussion posts talk about how it's all useless common sense.

I'm pretty sure the majority of people don't say it's a waste of time.  At least you won't find many people on here who say it.  I already took it and it's certainly not a waste of time; after taking it I did extremely well and am in the top of my class.  You're the one who needs help, so shutup, stop whining, and take it.  Ok?
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on January 21, 2008, 10:18:08 PM
www.leews.com

I'm not sure why more people don't take advantage of this.

Because the majority of what people read say that it is a waste of time. That's pretty much all I can find on it. I'm going to try it anyways, but if you just search for leews on google, you'll find that the majority of law discussion posts talk about how it's all useless common sense.

I'm pretty sure the majority of people don't say it's a waste of time.  At least you won't find many people on here who say it.  I already took it and it's certainly not a waste of time; after taking it I did extremely well and am in the top of my class.  You're the one who needs help, so shutup, stop whining, and take it.  Ok?



Because the majority of what people read say that it is a waste of time. That's pretty much all I can find on it. I'm going to try it anyways, but if you just search for leews on google, you'll find that the majority of law discussion posts talk about how it's all useless common sense.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: resipsaloquitur on January 21, 2008, 10:19:52 PM
As for the history thing, it was something that the prof spent A LOT of time on. He discussed negligence and proximate cause and the differences between the wagon mound approach, and the contrasting palsgraf approaches. Because he had focused and spent so much time on this issue, I was pretty sure that he wanted to hear how the issue may be resolved depending on whether it was looked at through, say, Cardozo's view/ Andrews's view/Wagon Mound approaches. I simply put those discussions in chronological order.

Can you get an outline from a 2L or 3L who took this course?  That might help you distill all the history into the relevant rules.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: McLovin on January 21, 2008, 10:25:55 PM
I know you're trying it.  I just told you to shutup and stop whining.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: jacy85 on January 22, 2008, 05:11:11 AM

Yeah, I emailed my prof, unfortunately he hasn't responded and is on sabbatical.

As for the history thing, it was something that the prof spent A LOT of time on. He discussed negligence and proximate cause and the differences between the wagon mound approach, and the contrasting palsgraf approaches. Because he had focused and spent so much time on this issue, I was pretty sure that he wanted to hear how the issue may be resolved depending on whether it was looked at through, say, Cardozo's view/ Andrews's view/Wagon Mound approaches. I simply put those discussions in chronological order.

See, the problem with history is that it's not the law.  It has shaped the law, no doubt, and can be absolutely relevant.  But the key is knowing WHEN it's relevant.

I'd hazard a guess that MOST torts professors go through Wagon Mound, Andrew and Cardozo.  I'd also hazard a guess that most professor don't test for it in an ISSUE spotting question.  When you take an exam, and have a proximate cause issue, you APPLY the TESTS, you don't run your mouth off on the history of the test.

If, however, your professor puts a policy question on the exam dealing with proximate cause, then that's a very different story.  But since that wasn't what your professor wanted, that's yet another example of you vomiting on the page and wasting time.

Lessons learned here:

1.  History of a law is not relevant and should not be put on an exam unless I am asked about it.
2.  Just because my professor spends a lot of time on something doesn't necessarily mean it will be on the exam in my issue-spotting question.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: smujd2007 on January 22, 2008, 07:31:30 AM
I agree with the other posters, for the most part.  The best way to bring your grades up is to go see ALL of your profs and talk to them individually about your grades.  That way, you can see what mistakes you made all across the board, and then, see what mistakes you made by professor.  Some things are general, such as doing a lot of applying the law to the facts, and others, such as stating the rule, might be different (depending on the teacher, whether or not the test is open book, etc.) 

If you are at a top 20 school, it is also possible that everyone did well on the exams.  That is one of the drawbacks of going to a top law school--it becomes even harder to distinguish yourself from the rest of the pack.  Law school grades are tricky.  They mean everything right now, but in 5 years, no one will care what grades you made, except in 5-10% of jobs. Put the problem in perspective, but still attack it head on. 

Good luck!
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: babychicken on February 09, 2008, 07:40:25 PM
From my experience when the professors write up the exams, they usually have a checklist answer sheet that they go through that and compare the answers we write to that. So essentially if you write something extra or fancy shmanzy that is irrelevant but sounds good, that won't be on the answer sheet checklist and no matter how good you think it was, you won't get points for it.

I didn't do so well myself and when I spoke with my professors all of them said, write concisely and clearly. And when I read over my exams I realized that I had written down everything but it was all in a big knot. I mean everything was there but I guess I could only understand it since it was not written in a structural manner.

I am desperately trying to pull up my grades this semester as well and so far I have gotten zipo OCI interviews and I applied to quite a few places on my own but have not gotten any job offers. I have a great resume but my grades suck. I am in the bottom 30% of my class. It's so sad, its making me depressed as the rejections keep coming in. sigh!
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on February 23, 2008, 06:44:13 PM
Epilogue:

Well, I talked with all profs about the exams. One prof said I missed one minor issue (apparently THE issue that separated B grades from A grades, according to prof) and should have discussed another issue a little deeper to go from my B+ to an A. Oh well.

Talked with my torts prof. Evidentially I hit ALL possible issues (and the extra credit issues), but my format screwed me. Basically, it dealt with a negligence action by two people against the owner of a premises. Because the duty owed by the premises was the same analysis for both parties, I combined it (to save space/time) and said "This is why the duty is owed to all parties." Evidentially, I should have had two separate discussions saying the same thing. Showed the prof that I actually did discuss everything. He conceded and met me halfway increasing my B to an A-, wouldn't give me the A though.

Got another grade bumped from a B+ to an A-.

My B- screwed me though. The prof said that my discussions were flawless and got all points for about half of the exam. On the other half, I misread a word/sentence or two and did a great analysis on point, but the analysis was on the WRONG THING. I shouldn't have gone so fast on the exam. He kept my grade at a B-. Nuts.

So, basically, I moved from the bottom third of the class to the top third (almost). Still want to quit law school, but at least it's not as bad.

I started LEEWS a couple weeks ago and am hoping that their guarantee holds true that grades increase by a point or so. Combined with reading better/slower (I was WAYY too cocky on that exam), I'm hoping to have As and A-s next semester. I guess that's possible considering that I ended up with an A-, A-, B+, B-. I could even live with an A, A, A-, B I suppose.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: aman49 on February 23, 2008, 07:46:19 PM
Epilogue:

Well, I talked with all profs about the exams. One prof said I missed one minor issue (apparently THE issue that separated B grades from A grades, according to prof) and should have discussed another issue a little deeper to go from my B+ to an A. Oh well.

Talked with my torts prof. Evidentially I hit ALL possible issues (and the extra credit issues), but my format screwed me. Basically, it dealt with a negligence action by two people against the owner of a premises. Because the duty owed by the premises was the same analysis for both parties, I combined it (to save space/time) and said "This is why the duty is owed to all parties." Evidentially, I should have had two separate discussions saying the same thing. Showed the prof that I actually did discuss everything. He conceded and met me halfway increasing my B to an A-, wouldn't give me the A though.

Got another grade bumped from a B+ to an A-.

My B- screwed me though. The prof said that my discussions were flawless and got all points for about half of the exam. On the other half, I misread a word/sentence or two and did a great analysis on point, but the analysis was on the WRONG THING. I shouldn't have gone so fast on the exam. He kept my grade at a B-. Nuts.

So, basically, I moved from the bottom third of the class to the top third (almost). Still want to quit law school, but at least it's not as bad.

I started LEEWS a couple weeks ago and am hoping that their guarantee holds true that grades increase by a point or so. Combined with reading better/slower (I was WAYY too cocky on that exam), I'm hoping to have As and A-s next semester. I guess that's possible considering that I ended up with an A-, A-, B+, B-. I could even live with an A, A, A-, B I suppose.

whoa, the professor changed your grades after the fact? I thought that never happened in law school. has anybody else heard of this happening?
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: SJ228 on February 23, 2008, 07:50:15 PM
I think my school actually has a policy against that unless there is a numerical error.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: plex on February 24, 2008, 02:06:23 AM
I think my school actually has a policy against that unless there is a numerical error.

Same, most schools don't want hundreds of students going in and arguing their grades. For one thing, the students will, taking up lots of administrative time, and then also, any student that then doesn't argue their grade, is screwed.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: lalalander on February 24, 2008, 09:37:12 AM
So do the schools that you guys go to have policies against correcting grading mistakes on exams? If so, that sucks.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: intel on February 25, 2008, 09:07:05 PM
you got a B bumped to an A-? that in itself is HUGE. and then a B+ bumped to A-?! I've never heard of such lunacy.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: LVP on February 25, 2008, 09:14:49 PM
The word you're looking for is "evidently."

Congrats on your grades.  Squeaky wheel gets the greasing.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: thorc954 on February 25, 2008, 09:17:46 PM
So do the schools that you guys go to have policies against correcting grading mistakes on exams? If so, that sucks.

grading is so arbitrary, so what grade comes up on my transcript is the grade i earned in the course.  there are no wrong grades when it is subjective or graded by scantron. 
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: KianaFran on March 02, 2008, 09:25:03 PM
Good points all around, thanks.

I'm pretty certain that I applied everything in an orderly fashion, but perhaps I didn't spend enough space applying the stuff.

Thanks a lot for the advice.

It doesn't matter how orderly or coherent you are if you don't answer the question.  Don't throw things in for the sake of throwing them in.  You're not going to get points for inventing issues where they don't exist (e.g. negligence per se when a statute isn't hinted it, RIL when it cannot factor in).  I am not sure how you fit the history of proximate cause in there. What did the evolution of proximate cause have to do with the exam question? 

You really should see your professor about this.  That is your best resource for understanding where you went wrong.

Yeah, I emailed my prof, unfortunately he hasn't responded and is on sabbatical.

As for the history thing, it was something that the prof spent A LOT of time on. He discussed negligence and proximate cause and the differences between the wagon mound approach, and the contrasting palsgraf approaches. Because he had focused and spent so much time on this issue, I was pretty sure that he wanted to hear how the issue may be resolved depending on whether it was looked at through, say, Cardozo's view/ Andrews's view/Wagon Mound approaches. I simply put those discussions in chronological order.


Just because your professor spent a lot of time discussing the history, theory or philosophy behind a rule of law doesn't mean that he wants it discussed on the exam. My contracts professor taught theory behind contract law but didn't expect it on the exam. Most professors discuss it just to help you understand the topic being discussed.
Title: Re: Can someone please help me figure out what I did wrong?
Post by: Peaches on March 02, 2008, 09:27:59 PM
theory or philosophy is more likely to be relevant, because you can APPLY it to the case at hand.

history is usually just for your own knowledge.