Law School Discussion

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Messages - JG

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21
General Board / Re: Law Review Managing Board
« on: January 25, 2008, 11:01:40 AM »
It's extremely important for federal clerkships.  For a court of appeals clerkship, it's almost essential.  It's also a way to build relationships with people who may be able to help you down the road in your career.

Also, most people on the managing board of the law review at my school actually enjoyed it.  You work closely with people, become friends with people you might not otherwise, and become part of an often close-knit community within the law school.  And you might actually enjoy the work itself (it's not all bluebooking; some people don't bluebook at all). 

22
Studying and Exam Taking / Re: Are They For REAL?
« on: November 01, 2007, 09:22:23 AM »
Even if you don't do the study group thing, do you talk to people?  Do you overhear conversations?  Nearly everyone I knew outlined for almost every class (other than "practical skills"-type classes like pretrial or ADR), all three years. It is very surprising to me that someone could think of it as a 1L-only thing.

23
Studying and Exam Taking / Re: Those who aced their 1L Exams
« on: October 19, 2007, 06:32:17 PM »
The only person who can tell you whether you need to cite UCC sections or memorize language is your professor.  Ask!  Press him or her until you get a clear answer. 

24
Studying and Exam Taking / Re: Those who aced their 1L Exams
« on: October 18, 2007, 07:24:02 PM »
1.  I studied and used only what we studied in class--no supplements, etc.  I thought inside the box. I used IRAC.  I drew conclusions, but I didn't let my conclusions cut off lines of discussion.  After I said, "Therefore, the court will likely find X," I said, "On the other hand, if the court decides Y, another issue will arise:" and did another IRAC. I made liberal use of headings to make it easier for the professor to read.

2.  I occasionally used my outlines on exams. To make it feasible under time pressure, I made a table of contents or index and added tabs.

3.  I used study groups at the very end (a few days before the exam) and found them very helpful.  See my other posts for a detailed discussion of how I used them.

4.  If I had it to do over again, I wouldn't have wasted a bunch of money on study aids I never really used.

5.  My LSAT did correlate with my high exam performance (though I don't know how you're going to use that information to help you now!)




25
General Board / Re: Federal Clerk: how hard to land?
« on: October 12, 2007, 10:22:00 AM »
Blunderbuss, I think you have a decent shot, but no guarantee.  Lenny's networking advice is good.

My advice:
-If you're a 2L, get to know the 3Ls at you're school who've accepted clerkships.  When you apply next fall, they are going to be the people screening through hundreds of applications.  If they know you and like you, they might move your application to the top of the pile.

-Apply to out-of-the-way places.  The work is basically the same in Paducah, Kentucky as it is in New York City, and Paducah judges get far fewer applications.  Most people can live anywhere for a year.

-Apply to judges who have hired from your school before.

-Whenever you can do so without sounding phony, express enthusiasm about the geographic area where you're applying.  Judges (especially in out-of-the-way places) would rather interview people who actually want to come and work for them, not people who are going to turn them down if they get an offer in a "better" location.

26
General Board / Re: Federal Clerk: how hard to land?
« on: October 11, 2007, 06:43:52 PM »
I doubt it's anywhere near $70--my best guess would be it's around $56,000.  This year, federal circuit clerks fresh out of law school in localities without an upward cost-of-living adjustment make just under $53,000; I think district clerks make the same.  ED PA probably has a small locality increase.

27
Studying and Exam Taking / Re: Why You Shouldn't Join a Study Group
« on: October 02, 2007, 06:21:46 PM »
The original poster is simply wrong.   

My study group sessions were some of the most intensive and efficient studying experiences I had in three years of law school.  My study partners and I maintained the same group for the duration of law school--not because we liked gossiping and chatting (we weren't even particularly close friends), but because all of us considered the group extremely beneficial.  For what it's worth, we all ended up at or near the top of the class.  My other posts describe exactly what we did.

28
General Board / Re: class of gunners? or did i miss the boat?
« on: September 28, 2007, 09:52:14 AM »
Reading unedited cases (or cited cases) is just about the stupidest way to study I have ever heard of.

What you're going to be tested on is what professor talks about in class.  Half of what you're assigned to read won't even be tested, let along extra case reading.  What a stupid waste of time.

29
Studying and Exam Taking / Re: Study Group Strategies?
« on: September 21, 2007, 12:04:58 AM »
I used study groups all through law school, even as a 2L and 3L, and I found them valuable (though not essential).  Here's how we did it:

1.  We did NOTHING as a group until a couple of weeks before finals, but we all kept up with reading and classes.

2.  For each subject, we scheduled a marathon study session to occur 2-3 days before each exam.

3.  Before the scheduled meeting, each of us independently generated a complete outline of the subject (typically going in syllabus order, based on class notes--not commercial outlines--and focusing on the rule we could extract from each case or set of cases).

4.  On the scheduled day, we met in a study room or empty classroom at 8:00 a.m. and started going through our outlines, topic by topic, case by case.  We made sure everyone understood every rule and case; for difficult rules, we might throw around hypos and things to test our understanding.  Between the three of us, we filled in any holes in c coverage or understanding.  Just as important, we reinforced our existing knowledge by discussing it.  We ordered in lunch and dinner and went as late as it took.  Occasionally it took more than one day.

5.  We all aced the exam.  (Kidding, sort of. My whole study group did extremely well in law school, but I'm not sure one caused the other.)

Two things I found helpful about our process:

-having the scheduled meeting gave me a concrete deadline for having an outline done, with some accountability

-after studying silently, alone for weeks on end, the marathon session is almost like a break--it's social and interesting.  I actually came to look forward to the sessions.
 

30
Studying and Exam Taking / Re: Study group
« on: September 20, 2007, 11:49:32 PM »
I say don't worry about it.  I had a study group all through law school and liked it, but that was mostly because it motivated me to study the material on my own so I was prepared for the study group meeting.  Most of the actual learning occurred outside the group. 

I'd say that the vast majority of law students, including the successful ones, quit doing study groups after the first semester.  Most people find them to be a waste of time.

Also--the only thing our group did was meet for a marathon session (one to three LONG days) a couple of days before the exam, going though our outlines and making sure we understood every rules and case.  That's the kind of study group you can form closer to finals.  But again, I don't think it's necessary.

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