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Author Topic: Am I crazy?  (Read 9677 times)

fatchance

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Am I crazy?
« on: October 14, 2007, 10:20:48 PM »
It may sound silly given some of the  horror stories I have read on this board, but I am really looking forward to learning by Socratic method.  I'm not by any means a gunner. As a matter of fact, I will be one of the ones blushing while being called on. I am just really excited at the concept of communal learning. All of my previous school experience was lecture based and we all know how boring that can be.

Do I sound too idealistic? I won't be starting school until next fall, so I only have my expections to go on. Are there any of you out there that actually enjoy this particular aspect of Law school? Am I way off base?

vaplaugh

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Re: Am I crazy?
« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2007, 10:39:17 PM »
Learning in LS is anything but communal.  You learn everything yourself by reading the case books; then you come to class and have, or listen to, a conversation about applying what you've learned.

Typically.

StevePirates

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Re: Am I crazy?
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2007, 01:20:20 PM »
You know, I actually enjoy the Socratic Method when it's me and the Prof talking, or the Prof and an articulate other student.  But, as mentioned above, a lot of the time the Socratic Method involves the Prof calling on underprepared people who mumble and fumble their way through cases. 

So, you're not crazy for thinking that the Socratic Method will be enjoyable to experience as it pertains to you.  But, the actual class experience usually isn't so fun.  And, as a really fun added kicker, if you volunteer enough to fill up the time and engage in the dialog, you'll get pegged as a gunner.

kasper11

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Re: Am I crazy?
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2007, 01:32:43 PM »
The worst is when the prof calls on someone who has no clue and the entire class is just stalled for 20 minutes while the prof tries to come up with a series of questions to get to the answer. The other problem is that listening to other students will confuse you as often as it helps you.
GPA: 2.15 (3.29 after 3 years off and transferring)
LSAT: 175

Dr. Balsenschaft

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Re: Am I crazy?
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2007, 03:41:19 PM »
The key is to pretend the professor is calling on you and figure out what you would have said. If whoever the professor is talking to is wrong (usually fairly easy to figure out when the student is wrong because students are usually wrong), try to figure out the answers to the seemingly obscure questions the professor is asking as follow-up questions. I've found if I can follow the professor's line of thinking, I will do better on that professor's exam. The answers really are unimportant, its how you get there - That's the point of the Socratic method. Plus, its fun to watch people being humiliated (the downside is that sometimes the person being humiliated is you).

JobInquiry

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Re: Am I crazy?
« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2007, 09:43:53 PM »
I don't know what these other people are talking about. Perhaps it's completely different at some other schools, but here:
- nobody is unprepared. So far (more than two months) people just keep up. Perhaps this will be different in the second and third years, but for now, people are prepared. It has happened once or twice that an assignment was unclear so that a student hadn't prepared the right thing; in those cases they just said so, and the professor went on to someone else in a non-embarrassing way.
- if the professor notices that the student has no idea what the answer is, he or she will ask someone else. 20 minutes of grilling someone who doesn't give coherent answers just doesn't happen.
- people who participate in class discussions aren't automatically labeled 'gunner'. Sure, there are some people who never say anything, but more than half of the class occasionally says something voluntarily.

StevePirates

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Re: Am I crazy?
« Reply #6 on: October 17, 2007, 02:54:51 AM »
JobInq... What marvelous school do you go to, and how may I go about transferring there?

I think your school is the exception rather than the rule.

JobInquiry

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Re: Am I crazy?
« Reply #7 on: October 17, 2007, 06:09:50 PM »
I would hope it's not the exception, because the horror stories about the Socratic method are not true here.

Here = Columbia.

At what school are you?

robsanpedro

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Re: Am I crazy?
« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2007, 11:48:26 PM »
Definitely gives you an incentive to read well!
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StevePirates

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Re: Am I crazy?
« Reply #9 on: October 23, 2007, 11:33:09 AM »
I would hope it's not the exception, because the horror stories about the Socratic method are not true here.

Here = Columbia.

At what school are you?

Oh, I go to Cal Western in San Diego.  I have a job lined up, so I took the full ride offer.  I really like my school actually.  Besides, I couldn't transfer out if I wanted to.  My entire life is in San Diego, including my fiance and job. I always wonder how things would be if I'd decided to go to the best school I could have gotten in to.  Grass is always greener I suppose.