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Messages - SleepyGuyYawn

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Current Law Students / Re: Sick of manually typing your case briefs?
« on: January 06, 2006, 01:16:09 AM »
Wow -- West Rocks!  And a Boalt student to tell me about it and everything! 

Come on...

Current Law Students / Re: Sick of manually typing your case briefs?
« on: January 03, 2006, 11:27:40 PM »
Seems suspiciously like an advertisement...

Go West!

Current Law Students / Re: Quick Exams Question from a soon-to-be 1L
« on: January 03, 2006, 03:43:59 PM »
Yea, at my law school, 90% of students use laptops for exams.  And generally (I think) mult. choice questions rarely make up more than a third of any exam (that may be different for fourth tier schools, as they focus more on preparing students for the bar exam, which has a lot of mult choice).  And many exams (most exams at many schools) have no mult choice or short answer questions at all -- only issue spotters. 

Current Law Students / Re: books before starting law school
« on: January 03, 2006, 11:41:53 AM »
The recommendation of a summer course that costs $5000 to $9000 kind of irks me -- b/c I fear that some people who might not have the money to begin with might spend it b/c they feel it's necessary, or b/c they're scared about not succeeding in law school (especially first-generation college students).  Plus, of course, you must consider whatever earnings you lose in the summer while you're doing that course -- pushing the cost into the tens of thousands perhaps.

I know a couple people who participated in such summer courses and I am confident that they were no better prepared for exams than any other average student.  Maybe this doesn't apply for you, sjab, but then again you may have felt comfortable with law school even if you didn't take this -- there are some people who just naturally take to it better I think, and you might be one of those people, mistakenly believing it was the summer course. 

Or I could be wrong.  Perhaps the summer courses are helpful.  But I do know one thing: two of my friends who are 3L's are in the top 10% of their class, and neither did any preparation before law school at all (I know b/c I remember asking them about it before I started).

Current Law Students / Re: books before starting law school
« on: January 02, 2006, 10:37:59 PM »
I had a hard time believing this before I started law school, but there really doesn't seem to be any great way to prepare.  Yes, I remember thinking that sounded a bit silly, but it's true.

As I see it, there would be two ways to prepare, if you were to do so.  You could prepare substantively or procedurally. 

Substantive preparation would be trying to learn the law before you're a student.  I think this is highly unlikely to be successful.  I suspect that there's something about the process of law school -- learning to think like a lawyer (like a law student) that makes you able to gradually understand concepts in torts, contracts, property, civil procedure in the way that a law student should.  But if you read a hornbook before law school, I think it would be confusing and frustrating.  I think I would really wonder what to do with all of that information. And it's hard to realize the nature of the law before law school.  It's hard to grasp the ambiguity of the law -- and that the law as an entity that isn't concrete.  And without that understanding, the commercial supplements don't make much sense I think. Besides that, you really don't know what your professor is going to cover and how.  Some good advice for law school is that you should remember that you're not taking, for instance, just "torts" -- rather you're taking "torts with professor _____."   It makes a difference.

Procedural preparation is trying to figure out how to succeed on exams and succeed in your preparation for class.  But this is hard.  I think, for example, that most law school prep services are a total waste of money.  Because if your law school is anything like mine (and I think most schools), most people have to adapt their studying techniques greatly -- with time and to their own learning styles.  There is no "off the rack" law school advice that fits everybody (at least none that will be useful past the first two weeks) -- not even the "how to brief" advice that's typical of those law school prep programs (most students don't brief past the first month -- it takes far too much valuable time). 

Okay -- so I think that "preparing" for law school is pretty much a waste of time (contrary to what I thought last year).  But if you really pressed me, I would say there are a couple things you could read to help you understand a little bit of what you're going to be encountering your first semester -- in a way that you could comprehend before you actually start (that's not meant as an insult or anything -- it's only reflective of me really).  Yea -- so I would read "A Civil Action."  I would flip through a book called "Getting to Maybe" (this will end up being pretty helpful later in the semester I'm guessing).  And I would find a book called Heracles’ Bow by James Boyd White -- I think it's out of print.  But it was recommended to me by an old professor of mine, and I thought it gave me a real insight into what law is really about.

Good Luck!

Current Law Students / Re: WTF? Credit score of 550
« on: June 12, 2005, 01:32:49 AM »
Well, okay.  Get married and have three roommates.  How many people can sleep on a queen size bed?

Current Law Students / Re: WTF? Credit score of 550
« on: June 03, 2005, 09:07:31 AM »
I haven't read the whole thread so excuse me if I repeat something.

But I think you'd be really unwise to settle with the card companies. 

Live cheaply.  Get a roommate -- get three roommates.

You may want to get a book out of your library by Suze Orman that's geared towards the crowd in their twenties and early-thirties -- young, broke something it's called.  I can't stand Suze Orman when i see her on television (her personality is pretty annoying).  But she gives some pretty good advice on credit problems.

Current Law Students / Re: Have I wasted $85K?????????
« on: May 20, 2005, 12:13:14 PM »
I'm no expert, but I would think it'd depend on the reputation and location of the law school...

Current Law Students / Re: What do you use your laptop for?
« on: April 27, 2005, 11:30:14 AM »
I can really only speak for Dell and Panasonic b/c I've owned a Dell, and before that, a Panasonic Toughbook.

I was really impressed with my panasonic.  I felt like my Dell wasn't made particularly well, though.  It's an okay laptop to leave at home, but not durable enough for everyday travel. 

Current Law Students / Re: What do you use your laptop for?
« on: April 22, 2005, 03:10:37 PM »
A few things --

I'm going to wait until just before school (mid-August or so) to buy a laptop.  That way I'll get more technology for less money.  And even now technology is moving really really fast with laptops.

Pitt has discounts on laptops.  The law school has an IBM, a Sony, a Toshiba, and an HP/Compaq last year.  And you can get discounts through the University of Pittsburgh for Dells, Gateways, and Apples. 

I do believe you can now use pitt's exam software on apples, but you may want to check on it before you get a laptop.

Last, I wasn't quite sure about whether I'd use a laptop for notes.  Until I did a little experiment to see how my typing speed compared to my handwriting speed.  Quite nearly twice as fast.  I was surprised. 

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