3-Know all black letter law before class so I can focus on nuances instead of rules.
Quote from: NonTradInSATX on January 28, 2011, 05:03:04 PM3-Know all black letter law before class so I can focus on nuances instead of rules.Mistake. Focus on the larger picture, as this is not an efficient way to use your time. You will forget the black letter law before exam time. Prepping for class is only important if the professor gives (or takes away) points for attendance, or grading is not anonymous.
John, I'm in no position to argue, but all of my strongest resources and 'how to succeed' type books have repeatedly said that exams are on black letter law only. I take your comment to mean that by understanding the big picture the black letter law is clear naturally. If so, then we really dont have a disagreement as its just understanding black letter law to the point that you see the forest and know the trees because you know the forest.My big point was that I dont want to fall in the trap of just case briefing and trying to glean law from the case, but rather read the E&E and hornbooks ahead of time (before the semester) so that I'm just refining knowledge throughout the class.
It is true that you have to know black letter law for the exams. However, knowing the black letter law will only get you half way there (about 1/2 of your classmates will have memorized the black letter law by exam time as well). You still have to know when the law applies to the facts and how to apply it. You learn how to spot issues and apply the law to the facts by reading cases. Get a good outline (preferably from someone on law review), read some cases, but don't overprepare for class.