Law School Discussion

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Messages - m1ss_uNdeRst00d

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81
General Board / Re: Note Taking
« on: April 15, 2009, 04:58:09 PM »
I don't want to get so caught up in the format that I'm losing out on the content, but I want to think about a method that will work for me before I get there.

You are right to be concerned about getting caught up in form over substance - I saw many law school brethren spend way too much time making perfect outlines rather than memorizing and appyling the law.

I took notes in Word my first year. I did well. But I took notes by hand for my other two years, and knocked it out of the ballpark. I wish I had taken notes by hand for all three years. The biggest problem with notetaking on the computer is the fact that it is so easy to get distracted either 1) by the internet, or 2) by being a slave to form. I got distracted by both, which is why I switched to handwritten notes.

Thanks for your reply. I'm guessing that the other two posters are saying the same thing about getting caught up in form, or they're just jerks. I type way faster than I write - did you ever feel like you couldn't keep up?

82
General Board / Note Taking
« on: April 15, 2009, 04:39:53 PM »
What is/was your method for law school? In undergrad, I never took notes on my laptop. But I'm thinking about using it for law, but I don't know. I've heard of people using 3 different notebooks for each class, different color pens, etc. I don't want to get so caught up in the format that I'm losing out on the content, but I want to think about a method that will work for me before I get there.

83
General Board / Re: Summer before first year
« on: April 15, 2009, 04:30:59 PM »
I completely agree that you need to CHILL and enjoy your summer.  I will go a step further and suggest that you should not bother with legal reading because you may do more damage than good.  First, as was stated before, every professor will teach different things, will put his/her own spin on how the law developed, and put emphasis on different areas of the law - if you fill your head with stuff you read in some book on that subject, you will spend part of your semester "unlearning" that information when you really should be concentrating on what YOUR professor will test you on.

Second, YOU'RE GOING TO BURN OUT before you even get to law school - you will find out just how dry some of this stuff is, and your excitement will wear off (and you desperately need that to push through the frustration of your first semester!) You have to trust that you will learn everything you need to know in your courses and course reading.

NOW, I do have three books that I suggest you read, none of which are substantive law. First, read Law School Confidential - it is a handbook that will prepare you for what to expect during all three years of law school and what you can do to get an edge both scholastically and in the competitive job market. Second, read The Federalist Papers - get a sense of the history behind our Constitution and government and the ideological struggle our young country went through in negotiating our government.  Third, read Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville - he was a French man who travelled extensively throughout America in the early 1800s, and this book was a product of his observations and thoughts on how democracy works (remember, at that time America was an experiment that world was watching closely!)

That should be plenty of reading for you to tackle for the summer. And I wouldn't do any more than that unless it is brainless fun reading (which you won't be able to do until you graduate!)


Well, I guess I've finally heard it enough times that I need to enjoy this summer ;) That's what I'll try to do. Thanks for the book suggestions. I'll be reading them!

84
General Board / Re: Summer before first year
« on: April 15, 2009, 06:58:08 AM »
I've heard that a lot, just to relax and enjoy the summer. But I know me and I know I'll be looking for things to do to prep and just thought I'd get some suggestions ;)

The first week is an intensive intro to law and legal institutions, I'll take a year long research and writing course, and contracts, torts, property, criminal law, constitutional law and civil procedure. I'll get my schedule in late May or early June.

My undergrad is in social work and I didn't even consider law school until my senior year (just a few months ago). I know it's what I want to do, but I have no background whatsoever and am terrified of showing up with no knowledge about it at all - although I know that's what they expect and most students feel the same way. I'm just finally off cloud 9 after getting my acceptance letter and am stressing wondering what I go myself into...

85
General Board / Summer before first year
« on: April 14, 2009, 11:21:26 PM »
I was recently accepted to a JD/MSW program. I have this summer totally free. No school, no work, nothing. I want to "prepare" as much as one can for law school. So I'm looking for suggestions... TIA

Ok, maybe I'll add to this a bit... My school has posted a summer reading list, but they did so grudgingly just because so many accepted students asked for one. So it lists obvious books like One L and The Sweet Hereafter. But beyond reading the basics, is there anything you did to really prepare yourself?

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