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Author Topic: Anyone else going to GULC?  (Read 3618 times)

TrojanChispas

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Re: Anyone else going to GULC?
« Reply #40 on: May 06, 2005, 03:21:24 PM »
3Peat,

From the Curriculum B description on GULC's admitted student's website:

...Exposure to the important common-law principles comes in a context that emphasizes the connection between different areas of law and other disciplines. More emphasis is placed on the emergence of the regulatory state and on the impact government regulation has on legal theory and practice. Most significantly, the faculty make a concerted effort to integrate their various offerings and to teach students the ways in which seemingly unconnected legal problems pose common, recurring issues. In short, the curriculum focuses on the "big picture" -- not just the "what" of law, but also on the "why."

that sounds right up my alley.  why woudnt everyone want to focus onthe big picture?
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Nizzy

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Re: Anyone else going to GULC?
« Reply #41 on: May 06, 2005, 05:16:53 PM »
3Peat,

From the Curriculum B description on GULC's admitted student's website:

...Exposure to the important common-law principles comes in a context that emphasizes the connection between different areas of law and other disciplines. More emphasis is placed on the emergence of the regulatory state and on the impact government regulation has on legal theory and practice. Most significantly, the faculty make a concerted effort to integrate their various offerings and to teach students the ways in which seemingly unconnected legal problems pose common, recurring issues. In short, the curriculum focuses on the "big picture" -- not just the "what" of law, but also on the "why."

that sounds right up my alley.  why woudnt everyone want to focus onthe big picture?

Thats pretty funny, man.  And how come so many people don't like discussing philosophy with me?  A majority of people consider the 'why' rather irrelevant and want to focus more on practicality.  I can't tell them they are wrong to feel that way, but I just feel differently.  Join the club. (I imagine you literally will)

RobinHood

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Re: Anyone else going to GULC?
« Reply #42 on: May 07, 2005, 07:32:49 AM »
Wow, that's a really interesting and possibly troubling something...Thanks so much for posting it! I was an English major in college, and while I did take some philosophy and political philosophy classes, my grasp of legal history and such is about as firm as warm water, and I haven't taken any Econ. Those of you who've signed up for B, I'd be interested in the depth (or lack thereof?) of your background for B...I mean competing against guys who've been reading The Economist cover to cover and philosophical treatises in the meantime....The worry of starting from behind and trying to claw my way to mediocrity is, well, filling me with trepidation--nevertheless it still sounds powerfully alluring...


Thanks y'all. I appreciate those very thoughtful comments.
What I find interesting is, as the thread I've quoted from demonstrates, Curriculum B sounds like a no-brainer--in theory at least. I mean, isn't this why any intellectually curious (and not simply greed-mongering Hun) individual goes to law school? I guess I've just been raised (and here, perhaps my conservatism, albeit moderate conservatism emerges) to expect catches. In other words, there must be drawbacks, right? I guess I'm just on the qui vive for those drawbacks...A little more reading isn't discouragement enough, but, as Penn Warren writes, although I may butcher it, man is conceived in sin and born in corruption, from the stench of the diddie to the stink of the shroud, there is always something....Now, what is that something?


Taken from a review of GULC on epinions.com:

"I was given the choice of taking the standard curriculum or an alternative curriculum, what they call Section 3. Basically you learn black letter law but also the history, political science, sociology, and other liberal arts type background to that law. I chose the curriculum because I thought it would be a great learning experience--and it was. The thing that I wasn't prepared for was that most of the students taking the curriculum already had so much knowledge and background in those subjects, and I felt myself at a disadvantage. Students would spend whole class periods philosophizing and debating back and forth between legal realism and the value of a hypothetical life and so on. I was more than a little intimidated and also frustrated because my brain does not function on that level. I learned that I wasn't really a good fit for the curriculum. This was a hard lesson to learn since first year grades basically determine whether you get a journal spot and interviews with top firms and judges. This is not just sour grapes talking, my first year grade average was horrible, but 2nd and 3rd year (when I took mostly straight black letter law classes) I made Dean's List. So if you are considering the alternative curriculum, make sure you know what kind of person you are and whether you enjoy philosophical debates on theory that has no place in real law. I learned a lot and I'm glad I learned it, but I wish someone would have warned me sufficiently before I made the choice."

Is this anecdote a reflection of the current situation?  Is this a reflection of a larger opinion?  I don't know.  But there it is.  One person's opinion on the "something."
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ethelmag

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Re: Anyone else going to GULC?
« Reply #43 on: May 07, 2005, 08:24:55 AM »
Wow, that's a really interesting and possibly troubling something...Thanks so much for posting it! I was an English major in college, and while I did take some philosophy and political philosophy classes, my grasp of legal history and such is about as firm as warm water, and I haven't taken any Econ. Those of you who've signed up for B, I'd be interested in the depth (or lack thereof?) of your background for B...I mean competing against guys who've been reading The Economist cover to cover and philosophical treatises in the meantime....The worry of starting from behind and trying to claw my way to mediocrity is, well, filling me with trepidation--nevertheless it still sounds powerfully alluring...

I can't imagine you'd have to be a philosophy major to do well in curriculum B. The epinions reviewer didn't talk about the extent of his/her lack of aptitude for that kind of thing - maybe he/she had never taken a philosophy class at all.

I sat in on a B class when I visited GULC. It seemed a lot like an undergraduate political theory class. It was the Government Processes class. The professor put up a PowerPoint slide of the law that created the rulemaking and public comment procedure for some government agency or other, which was about one page long. She then described how the process works in real life. All this was probably in the reading for that day, too. Then the class discussed the ways in which the real-life process differs from what Congress probably had in mind when they wrote the law. They discussed possible alternative procedures, both procedures that could have developed differently from the same law, and procedures that could be developed if the statute were amended. There was some discussion of the rights of companies directly affected by the procedure, and the rights of companies/communities/individuals that are indirectly affected by the outcome of the rulemaking process.

It was really interesting, and I don't imagine you'd need a degree in philosophy or political theory to follow or participate in the discussion. (My view may be slightly distorted, since I do have an undergraduate degree in philosophy and political theory, but the discussion didn't seem to be engaging any of my particularized knowledge in the field.) If you've never taken any classes in that area and thus have no idea whether you are good at thinking in that way, you might be a little wary about signing up for a whole year of it. But I think even just a little bit of experience is enough.

Has anyone else sat in on a B class? What were your impressions?

RobinHood

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Re: Anyone else going to GULC?
« Reply #44 on: May 07, 2005, 09:16:29 AM »
Ethelmag, that was a really helpful post--I'm not a total novice where philosophy's concerned, just not at all an expert (alas, if Chaucer and a background in postmodernism were all we needed, I'd be set) and, I, too, would be really interested to hear more first-hand accounts...I mean, this is an awfully big decision for all of us, and the way I see it, the better informed/prepared we are, the better....
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ethelmag

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Re: Anyone else going to GULC?
« Reply #45 on: May 07, 2005, 09:41:11 AM »
Ethelmag, that was a really helpful post--I'm not a total novice where philosophy's concerned, just not at all an expert (alas, if Chaucer and a background in postmodernism were all we needed, I'd be set) and, I, too, would be really interested to hear more first-hand accounts...I mean, this is an awfully big decision for all of us, and the way I see it, the better informed/prepared we are, the better....

You should talk to my husband - he's a Chaucer fanatic and wants to set up a Middle English reading club.

squirrel

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Re: Anyone else going to GULC?
« Reply #46 on: May 08, 2005, 06:24:51 PM »
robinhood, another factor you may look into before making your final decision is the professors who teach curriculum B. i assume that that due to the unique nature of this curriculum, the same group of professors teach it every year. you could find out who taught what last year on the gulc web, then you could look up each professor's bio/background/research interest in the big faculty facebook gulc mailed you.

also, remember that even though curriculum A focuses on teaching black letter laws, it'd give you some exposure to legal history/theory. unlike some of the lower-tier schools which basically offer a 3-year bar review course, most top-tier schools seem to use a holistic approach in teaching, so i'm sure that curriculum A would teach you more than "what are the laws."

the epinion excerpt was interesting (thanks for posting it) and sort of echoed my earlier fear that i don't have what it takes to do well in B albeit that i may thoroughly enjoy it. as a science/engineering major, i only had to take a few liberal arts courses, and i got out from most of them using AP credits and by taking placement exams of my native language.:D i'm sure i'll pay dearly for that in law school.
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