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Author Topic: battered 1L would like advice.  (Read 2868 times)

980eQ

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battered 1L would like advice.
« on: September 27, 2005, 01:52:30 PM »
Hello all:

I am in the begining of my 2nd month of my 1L 1st semester. I feel lost, frightened, and rather confused at all times. I study at the library about 7 hours a night on avg, (2pm - 9 or 10) and on the weekends spend my days there. I feel as if I am not catching the socratic method and feel almost bogged down with the material as the teacher doesnt necc. say much towards it but allows people to kind of compass their way to a possible answer. I dont sleep much, my smoking habit that was all but gone has flared to a pack a day, and I barely eat. I find it difficult to concentrate and have a sinking feeling and extreme fear of failure. Being completely honest here. I read all of my stuff, stay slightly ahead, and when I study in my study group and were orally going over the material, Im quite quick and it s hows that the material is sinking in, but in class, I feel lost, and far too tempted by the internet. I tend to turn of my WLAN so that I dont have the option to surf. I have study guides and notecards that really help me understand, but once again, teh class methods just throw me off. My favorite classes are civ pro and writing, I dislike torts and contracts mostly because my teachers seem more disinterested in the subject matter than the stoner in the back row... Id greatly appreciate any advice you guys can give to help me out in getting over these rather unpleasant and foreboding feelings. I dont like it and would really like to succeed in this endeavor. Please Advise.


tacojohn

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Re: battered 1L would like advice.
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2005, 02:15:16 PM »
Try going to talk to the professors.  If there's a conflict between what you think you know (what's in the outlines and guides) and what you should know (what the prof says), ask the professor to find out if there really is a conflict.  Perhaps you need to back off of the commercial outlines.  Perhaps you need to stop listening in class.  Who knows?  But talking to the professors is bound to help.  At the very worst, you'll get to know a professor.

jacy85

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Re: battered 1L would like advice.
« Reply #2 on: September 27, 2005, 04:39:30 PM »
I agree, go talk to the professors.

Over all though, don't worry about the socratic exchanges you listen to in class.  They're usually worthless.  Listen to it, but don't waste time taking notes or getting upset or whatever.  What your classmates say usually doesn't mean crap.  I find that what the professor says is the most important thing.  If a student says something, and the professor makes a *statement* about that part of the exchange, then he probably said something relatively important that might be worth writing down.  These nuggets of info are what the professor wants you to know.  If the prof fires back with another question, then don't worry about it.

I actually find playing a simple game of solitare isn't too bad during these types of exchanges, especially one card draw.  It keeps me awake when teh question get to be inane (we spent almost 3 days on the hand formula...I wanted to kill myself), but it's not as engrossing as playing on the internet or whatever, so I can pay attention well enough to hear the important stuff.  Granted, I really only do this in torts.  The questions and hypos some people come up with are just ridiculous.

jimmyjohn

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Re: battered 1L would like advice.
« Reply #3 on: September 27, 2005, 07:29:26 PM »
Class doesn't really mean much.  I feel the same way you do sometimes.  I read the material and then get to class and either become disinterested or lost.  Class is tough.  I actually enjoy studying the cases and the other stuff that goes along with it.  I just think that sometimes class turns into a platform for the prof. to give us his/her view of the legal universe or otherwise go off on an unrelated 20 minute speech.  What I would worry about most, especially now that we're a month in the semester is trying to work a practice exam problem or two.  This is especially helpful if there's a model answer.  Compare it with yours and if you're on the right track, even remotely, you must be doing something right.

lipper

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Re: battered 1L would like advice.
« Reply #4 on: September 27, 2005, 09:20:53 PM »
as a 2L, i can tell you that classes do NOT MEAN SH!T! if you feel u know ur stuff in ur study group, u r fine. you gotta relax also. 2-10 in the library everyday, plus both days on the weekend is gonna burn you out. i would suggest to tone it down a little bit, take a day off. i take sundays off and watch football all day. Just be aware that when Nov. hits, it all hits the fan, and the craziness begins. Outlining, memos, all of that on top of classes - its not a happy time.
check the footnotes ya'll

T. Durden

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Re: battered 1L would like advice.
« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2005, 01:32:10 AM »
hey sort of off-topic but i'm beginning my outlines now and i don't really have the slighest clue as to what i'm doing.

basically i'm going on a case by case basis comparing what i have briefed with the notes that i've taken in class and outlining a very brief description of the facts (usually four or five words to remind me what the case was about, ex: boat damages pier, private necessity)followed by a brief description of the legal principle

is this the general idea?

i've seeen elsewhere on this site discussion of "outlines" that take up over 100 pages - this seems semi-ridiculous to me as the totality of my case briefings per class probably will amount to 100 pages or so .... i'm looking to keep my outlines in the 15 page region - but then again, i really have no clue about what i'm doing

any suggestions as an experienced and weathered 2L about putting together outlines?


crazymofo

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Re: battered 1L would like advice.
« Reply #6 on: September 28, 2005, 04:56:10 AM »
Just be aware that when Nov. hits, it all hits the fan, and the craziness begins.

November is my birthday month. Happy f-ing birthday to me.

But seriously, I've gone in to this first month on the hunch that I just need to soak everything in, lay low, and conserve energy for the last month of unnecessary indoctrination. I feel better about this tactical decision every day that goes by. My mantra? The oft-used "It's a marathon, not a sprint" phrase. So far, I think that's a solid gamble.

Loosely translated: I'm still football savvy and well-relaxed on the weekends. I still love me some beer. However, I continue to maintain robust study habits when certain classes and assigned workload dictate, but I don't dive off the high-board to ultimately impress no one when I don't have to. I see most of my fellow students doing just that. Wasted effort is their curse. Work smarter, not harder (any more Tony Robbins-izms?).Most of the time, we don't even get to the friggin case that I comprehensively and utterly nailed anyway.

But I'm cocky anyway in a subdued, humble way. I could still totally bomb exams. If my foot is wounded, I refuse to be the tortfeasor.

(For me) One and 1/2 months in, this law school thing is cuttable, and my mental knife is 'sufficiently' sharp. (Under a reasonable person standard, of course). I think if people are freaking out at this point, they are their own worst enemies and overthinking/overexerting themselves.

lipper

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Re: battered 1L would like advice.
« Reply #7 on: September 28, 2005, 08:31:39 AM »
hey sort of off-topic but i'm beginning my outlines now and i don't really have the slighest clue as to what i'm doing.

basically i'm going on a case by case basis comparing what i have briefed with the notes that i've taken in class and outlining a very brief description of the facts (usually four or five words to remind me what the case was about, ex: boat damages pier, private necessity)followed by a brief description of the legal principle

is this the general idea?

i've seeen elsewhere on this site discussion of "outlines" that take up over 100 pages - this seems semi-ridiculous to me as the totality of my case briefings per class probably will amount to 100 pages or so .... i'm looking to keep my outlines in the 15 page region - but then again, i really have no clue about what i'm doing

any suggestions as an experienced and weathered 2L about putting together outlines?



typical outline is about 50 pages or so.
check the footnotes ya'll

zaphod

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Re: battered 1L would like advice.
« Reply #8 on: September 28, 2005, 10:23:28 AM »

typical outline is about 50 pages or so.

If your outline is 50 pages the day before the exam, you're screwed.  I for one (and I think I am the exception, at least to the majority) had ONE outline, at it's longest, at over 50 pages.  The best method, in my opinion, is to have your outline done sufficiently early and prior to the exam go through and cut the crap out.  You simply can't be going through a 50 page outline and succeed. 
Don't Panic

sarbinson1

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Re: battered 1L would like advice.
« Reply #9 on: September 28, 2005, 12:15:44 PM »
If you're studying 56 hours a week on top of 16 in class, man is that a ton.  My approach has been to spend around 40 total in class and prepping- now I may get crappy grades but I'm just not willing to spend that amount of time right now. 

I agree with the people who say not to let the socratic method worry you.  I tune out IMMEDIATELY when they call on someone for at least ten minutes until it comes around to the issue.  If you're the one teaching other people in your study group, you're probably in great shape.


Hello all:

I am in the begining of my 2nd month of my 1L 1st semester. I feel lost, frightened, and rather confused at all times. I study at the library about 7 hours a night on avg, (2pm - 9 or 10) and on the weekends spend my days there. I feel as if I am not catching the socratic method and feel almost bogged down with the material as the teacher doesnt necc. say much towards it but allows people to kind of compass their way to a possible answer. I dont sleep much, my smoking habit that was all but gone has flared to a pack a day, and I barely eat. I find it difficult to concentrate and have a sinking feeling and extreme fear of failure. Being completely honest here. I read all of my stuff, stay slightly ahead, and when I study in my study group and were orally going over the material, Im quite quick and it s hows that the material is sinking in, but in class, I feel lost, and far too tempted by the internet. I tend to turn of my WLAN so that I dont have the option to surf. I have study guides and notecards that really help me understand, but once again, teh class methods just throw me off. My favorite classes are civ pro and writing, I dislike torts and contracts mostly because my teachers seem more disinterested in the subject matter than the stoner in the back row... Id greatly appreciate any advice you guys can give to help me out in getting over these rather unpleasant and foreboding feelings. I dont like it and would really like to succeed in this endeavor. Please Advise.