Law School Discussion

4.16 at a T25

KC#11

Re: 4.16 at a T25
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2008, 10:28:26 PM »
KC, last point you made is a little off.  A lot of 1Ls really increase their effort second semester or figure out what they did wrong.  My study group all did extremely well first semester, and with the same effort if not a little more, we all had our grades drop second semester.  Its going to take more then the same amount of effort to do the same second semester.  Not that I think you will have a problem doing well, but dont rest with the same amount of effort.

I am with you on every other point though.

Fair enough; all I meant by that (and I realize it's not entirely clear) is that if you're capable of beating the pack the first time around, you have an undeniable advantage the second time. Sure, they'll get better at law school but so will you. Everyone's in the same boat to begin with, and everyone gets better at it as we go along.

Honestly, I don't know how much "hard work" has to do with it as "gaming it" does. I ended up doing well this semester, and I didn't work extremely hard throughout the semester...in fact, I felt lost until the end (I guess this is normal, but still). In any event, I used my strategy at that point, and went into the exam set to go. It's not what you know or how hard you worked to know it; it's about beating the exam.

Re: 4.16 at a T25
« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2008, 10:40:31 PM »
true, true

Re: 4.16 at a T25
« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2008, 04:55:38 AM »
Hey guys, sorry didn't check the thread until this morning.

I wasn't trying to be arrogant in my statement, just answering a fellow poster's question as truthfully as I could. He was trying to ascertain how I was so successful, and the reason I answered the way I did is because I don't feel there is any one way to "beat the test." Every situation is different. Obviously preparation, "gaming it," and sheer dumb luck all play a role in the grading process during the 1L year. I disagree entirely, however, with your assertion that achieving high marks does not require either (1) intelligence, or (2) hard work. In my opinion, that statement is borderline ignorant and merely sounds like sour grapes from someone who didn't do that well. I would never suggest that people that did not perform highly lack either of those qualities, but they certainly come into play in everyone's performance. Sure, part of that intelligence is knowing how to "beat the exam"  given by each professor. Notice that was one of the main suggestions in my reply. The intelligence required to ace law school is, to be sure, distinct from that required to solve complex equations (as a random example), but it is a form of intelligence and from my own experience so far, some people have it, and many others do not. Hell it may not have anything to do with being a practicing attorney, but it is something.

Also, brightline - virtually everyone in my section used supplements. I'm not too sure how many briefed cases, but from my interactions and experiences with others I don't believe it was too many. Your mileage may vary. To be honest, while I'm sure some people will gun harder, I don't think my competition will be substantially different this semester. Obviously I won't risk it.

And thorc, thank you - I am proud of myself and I do have this in perspective. I fully realize that it is all for moot if I drop the ball this semester. Hopefully that won't happen! Appreciate the advice once again.

Re: 4.16 at a T25
« Reply #13 on: January 27, 2008, 12:17:24 PM »
Hey guys, sorry didn't check the thread until this morning.

I wasn't trying to be arrogant in my statement, just answering a fellow poster's question as truthfully as I could. He was trying to ascertain how I was so successful, and the reason I answered the way I did is because I don't feel there is any one way to "beat the test." Every situation is different. Obviously preparation, "gaming it," and sheer dumb luck all play a role in the grading process during the 1L year. I disagree entirely, however, with your assertion that achieving high marks does not require either (1) intelligence, or (2) hard work. In my opinion, that statement is borderline ignorant and merely sounds like sour grapes from someone who didn't do that well. I would never suggest that people that did not perform highly lack either of those qualities, but they certainly come into play in everyone's performance. Sure, part of that intelligence is knowing how to "beat the exam"  given by each professor. Notice that was one of the main suggestions in my reply. The intelligence required to ace law school is, to be sure, distinct from that required to solve complex equations (as a random example), but it is a form of intelligence and from my own experience so far, some people have it, and many others do not. Hell it may not have anything to do with being a practicing attorney, but it is something.


Both of your statements (bolded) are false. I have done well in law school (top 5%). Ability to game a system does not demonstrate intelligence. You suggest that there are "multiple intelligences," a theory that has been rejected by many scientists. You are right that it is an ability that some people have and others don't. But, that doesn't mean that it shows intelligence. Congrats on your grades, but don't let it go to your head...too late.

Re: 4.16 at a T25
« Reply #14 on: January 27, 2008, 02:33:20 PM »
A few random thoughts while I wait for the UVA game to tip off (not sure why I put myself through watching them anymore):

1) Pretty much everyone at a top law school is pretty intelligent, but I think there are degrees of separation.  One of my professors the other day was talking about sitting in class with Posner, and how pretty much everyone knew he was the smartest dude there, and would end up #1 in his class (he did).  It's never a level playing field.  The correlation between intelligence and grades, however, or even intelligence + hours worked and grades, is pretty mysterious.  Without getting into a philosophical debate over the meaning of intelligence (which I am ill-equipped to weigh in on), I think the ability to game the law school system, which involves isolating and applying the black letter law and occasionally some policy arguments, is one form of intelligence.

2) On a very different note, I would not transfer from a T25 to GULC, especially if your grades are anywhere near as good 2nd semester as first.  You'll be at least as well off at the top of your class on law review at a T25 as you would be as a transfer to a lower T14.  Transferring to a T6 may be a different scenario; a degree from Chicago might set you up better for an academic career, if that's what you're interested in.  And HYS would definitely be worth it in terms of opportunities.  Still, it's a very personal decision, and you likely wouldn't lose much from staying put if your grades hold up.   

Re: 4.16 at a T25
« Reply #15 on: January 27, 2008, 03:48:24 PM »


1) Your LSAT predicts your performance. Not for me.

It is just a statistical fact that there is a correlation between a LSAT and first year grades. The correlation is not 1 to 1 (or very meaningful over the 2 or 3 point range that most schools cluster in), however, so your experience is NOT a counterexample to that truth. It is perfectly consistent with (and, in fact, required of) the model that some people perform better than other people with higher LSATs.