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Author Topic: OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?  (Read 1897 times)

jd2b06

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OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?
« on: January 11, 2006, 12:05:59 PM »
Yes outlining is supposed to cement the concepts learned in class, the book, and casebriefs but for me I find myself staring at one source and typing it directly into what I think an outline should look like while learning nothing.  If you're like me give me some tips on what you do. 

I think outlining for me and the way that I learn is a big waste of time.  Everyone learns differently so I don't want to hear people bash this.  I'm just interested in the what individuals like me for whom outlining doesn't help... do with their studying... more specifically how they study because they don't outline. 


S|

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Re: OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2006, 12:28:09 PM »
A good outline should serve to compartmentalize your knowledge for easier recall.  Regardless of whether it "looks like an outline," if it serves that purpose the outline should be useful.

Jumboshrimps

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Re: OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?
« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2006, 05:42:31 PM »
The problem with an "outline" is that it is linear, while the law and concepts in general are certainly not. Try drawing the concepts out in a non-linear fashion, starting with a circle in the center entitled, for example, "Intentional Torts." Then draw an arrow outside the circle to battery, etc. Then draw arrows from each intentional tort to its elements. Then draw arrows to exceptions, defenses, etc.

But don't abandon the idea of outlining all together. Without a way of organizing all this stuff into a recognizable skeleton, I don't see how one could keep the law straight.

racheles05

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Re: OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?
« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2006, 06:33:46 PM »
Flash cards and E&E hypos work way better for me than outlining. However, it's an indespensible tool on open-book exams.

S|

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Re: OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?
« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2006, 07:00:29 PM »
The problem with an "outline" is that it is linear, while the law and concepts in general are certainly not. Try drawing the concepts out in a non-linear fashion, starting with a circle in the center entitled, for example, "Intentional Torts." Then draw an arrow outside the circle to battery, etc. Then draw arrows from each intentional tort to its elements. Then draw arrows to exceptions, defenses, etc.

But don't abandon the idea of outlining all together. Without a way of organizing all this stuff into a recognizable skeleton, I don't see how one could keep the law straight.

What's wrong with:
Intentional Torts
Battery- an 1) intentional act that causes 2) harmful or offensive 3)contact.
1) an intentional act is to act with the purpose or desire, or substantial certainty of causing contact.
2) harmful contact is any physical impairment of the defendant's person; offensive contact is contact that is offensive to the reasonable person under like circumstances
3) contact is any violation of a person's physical autonomy
Assault..etc, etc.

Affirmative Defenses
Consent... etc, etc.

Why do you need circles? I guess different people learn differently.  The key, I suppose, is finding what works best for you.

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Re: OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2006, 07:09:46 PM »
too many get caught up in the word..."OUTLINING"

Organize the material in the way that is best suited to your learning style...don't worry if know one but you understands it.  Making it, whatever it is just another way to reinforce the material

Jumboshrimps

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Re: OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2006, 09:15:30 PM »
The problem with an "outline" is that it is linear, while the law and concepts in general are certainly not. Try drawing the concepts out in a non-linear fashion, starting with a circle in the center entitled, for example, "Intentional Torts." Then draw an arrow outside the circle to battery, etc. Then draw arrows from each intentional tort to its elements. Then draw arrows to exceptions, defenses, etc.

But don't abandon the idea of outlining all together. Without a way of organizing all this stuff into a recognizable skeleton, I don't see how one could keep the law straight.

What's wrong with:
Intentional Torts
Battery- an 1) intentional act that causes 2) harmful or offensive 3)contact.
1) an intentional act is to act with the purpose or desire, or substantial certainty of causing contact.
2) harmful contact is any physical impairment of the defendant's person; offensive contact is contact that is offensive to the reasonable person under like circumstances
3) contact is any violation of a person's physical autonomy
Assault..etc, etc.

Affirmative Defenses
Consent... etc, etc.

Why do you need circles? I guess different people learn differently.  The key, I suppose, is finding what works best for you.

Nothing's wrong with it, except that Western people read from top to bottom and left to right. Battery, however, does not come before assault. Point is, concepts don't lend themselves well to traditional "writing," which can be misleading and carry baggage.

LostMyMonkeys

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Re: OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?
« Reply #7 on: January 11, 2006, 09:39:07 PM »
too many get caught up in the word..."OUTLINING"

Organize the material in the way that is best suited to your learning style...don't worry if know one but you understands it.  Making it, whatever it is just another way to reinforce the material

I agree. Its the consolidation of the material into easy to understand snipits. Not rewriting the case briefs verbatim. Synthesize the material into your own way, writing, etc. so that it is simple to look at and you say 'hey, assault!' or whatever.
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tacojohn

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Re: OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?
« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2006, 06:40:21 PM »
My torts outline, because of the unique nature of the class, looked nothing like an outline.  Actually, it looked a lot like an outline because it is helpful for me to use I,A,1,a,etc.  But the information in it was not a typical outline.  It had each of the elements of negligence, then information on them.  Tools for the defendant, tools for the plaintiff, policy arguments, things the judge can do, etc.  I had some case information, but not a lot.  Essentially, it was a checklist, a set of tools to use on the exam, not a consolidation of information necessarily in a casebrief (as my prof said "That's not outlining, that's shortening).  The test was closed book too. 

That was a special case though, as he really did focus his exam on the sort of policy and theory that he taught in class.  However I think the lesson everyone can take away from a situation like that is that what an outline needs to be cannot be defined across the board.  The outline should change based on personal learning type and the way the class is structured.  My property exam in May will be a massive closed book multiple choice test.  You can bet I'll have a lot of definitions, facts, case names, professor quotes, maybe dates, judge names, etc.  Just a lot of random information which I hopefully can organize into something helpful, then study from.  Much different than my torts outline.

If outlineing doesn't agree with you, don't do it.  I think many students are outlining to lessen their anxiety.  The outline is a physical product of all your hard work.  Seeing your 50-100 page outline (or however long it is) on the table reminds you of how much you studied, and is your security blanket.  "If I forget X concept, I can look it up in my outline."  I know someone at my school who had them bound, specifically because he said it made him feel more comfortable for exams, since his outlines now looked like commercial outlines, and thus more throughly showed the massive amount of work he put into them.  Before you abandon the idea of synthesizing the information into a large document (which is what outlining really is), see if you can find a new method or a new type of outline to try, since I would say it's still very valuable for most law students.

jen2262

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Re: OUTLINING DOESNT AGREE WITH ME ANYONE ELSE FEEL THE SAME?
« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2006, 08:03:08 PM »
Hi Jd2b,

You been victim of another way that law school hides the ball. They tell you to "study" alot, but what exactly does that mean? How does one "study"? This may seem easy, but studying in undergrad for me meant learning the material thirty minutes or up to a day before the test and the result straight A's. However law school is a different ball game. There are two parts to "studying." 1. Outlining 2. Reviewing (memorizing and practice tests) Outlining is very beneficial, but you must finish your outline a few days earlier so you give your self time to review it over and over until you cement the black letter law in your head. This is what professors never tell you. In fact, give yourself a lot of time at least 2 days to memorize the law. You can't learn the BLL without in some way organizing it so that you can spit it back out. Then make a check sheet or a mini-mini version of the outline so that you can bring it to the exam or if your exam is closed book you can jot it down and use it as a check list.  Outlining is a good way to do this, but it is only half of the battle. Once you have the BLL down. Attack the practice test, and make sure you know exactly how to apply the law. This is the learning part, because you will get many of the practice answers wrong and will learn the correct way to apply the law.  Do this with flash cards, CALI execises, hypotheticals or whatever works. Make sure you know exactly how to apply the law and once you do this for your course you should be good to go. This is "studying" that works well for me.