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Author Topic: Highlighters and LSAT  (Read 1466 times)

FagelIsMyHero

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Highlighters and LSAT
« on: March 16, 2013, 01:22:42 AM »

So the question is, will LSAC permit you to bring only a highlighter or can you bring more than one and use more than one at a time? For example, pink is main main conclusion, organge is evidence, green is opinion.

Jeffort

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Re: Highlighters and LSAT
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2013, 08:44:15 PM »

So the question is, will LSAC permit you to bring only a highlighter or can you bring more than one and use more than one at a time? For example, pink is main main conclusion, organge is evidence, green is opinion.

The LSAC description of items allowed in the test room says "a highlighter" in singular rather than plural "highlighters" form whereas it says "pencils" rather than "a pencil", so it follows that the rules limit you to one highlighter.  There are multicolor all in one highlighters available at office supply stores so you can have one that you just twist or whatever to select a color.  I think using multiple colors to highlight is a bad idea because it will slow you down and over complicate things on test day.  The time pressure is rigorous, making it difficult for many people to finish the sections within the allotted time.  Spending mental power and analysis time deciding which color to highlight things will detract from the amount of time you have available for quality analysis to accurately solve as many questions as possible in the allotted time. Just use either one color or come up with a simple set of notations you can make in pencil to differentiate important portions of the test questions.

 

 

Thane Messinger

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Re: Highlighters and LSAT
« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2013, 07:07:17 PM »

So the question is, will LSAC permit you to bring only a highlighter or can you bring more than one and use more than one at a time? For example, pink is main main conclusion, organge is evidence, green is opinion.

I will go further than Jeffort (and against the grain of nearly the entire educational establishment) to say that if you've fallen into the habit of highlighting, you are wasting your time and talent. 

If one could look at a law classroom from above, one will see a rainbow of highlighted passages . . . and nearly none of the highlight-happy souls will have a clue as to the deeper meaning of what it is they've so earnestly highlighted.

The LSAC testers are interested in logical ability, not in some mechanical aptitude.  Put away the highlighters.  Put away even a single highlighter.  Take several dozen exams, under real-world conditions, and then take a few dozen more.  And a few dozen after that.

Sorry to seem even a bit rude, but that's the take from at least one corner.  Highlighting (and, in the classroom, note-taking) are not just silly, they are a distraction from what you really do need to be doing.

Thane.

Jeffort

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Re: Highlighters and LSAT
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2013, 09:59:05 PM »

So the question is, will LSAC permit you to bring only a highlighter or can you bring more than one and use more than one at a time? For example, pink is main main conclusion, organge is evidence, green is opinion.

I will go further than Jeffort (and against the grain of nearly the entire educational establishment) to say that if you've fallen into the habit of highlighting, you are wasting your time and talent. 

If one could look at a law classroom from above, one will see a rainbow of highlighted passages . . . and nearly none of the highlight-happy souls will have a clue as to the deeper meaning of what it is they've so earnestly highlighted.

The LSAC testers are interested in logical ability, not in some mechanical aptitude.  Put away the highlighters.  Put away even a single highlighter.  Take several dozen exams, under real-world conditions, and then take a few dozen more.  And a few dozen after that.

Sorry to seem even a bit rude, but that's the take from at least one corner.  Highlighting (and, in the classroom, note-taking) are not just silly, they are a distraction from what you really do need to be doing.

Thane.

I 100% agree.  Going nutzo with highlighters is not helpful. 

When I started LS I got a good laugh at some classmates during first semester.  There were people in the class that went overboard with multiple highlighter colors.  They made every page of the casebooks look like rainbow bright was the student taking notes.  It was amusing looking at their books since they would end up having almost everything on each page highlighted with various colors all over the page.  It made no sense to help focus on particular pieces as being more important than others since eventually everything would be highlighted.  I asked one classmate if the highlighting was helping and she said no because it was confusing, but that it made her feel good while doing it because the page would be colorful and look friendly rather than intimidating.

So, don't highlight, do think and analyze carefully, and get a coloring book for fun when not studying to put the highlighters to good use.

 


Thane Messinger

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Re: Highlighters and LSAT
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2013, 04:29:26 PM »

So, don't highlight, do think and analyze carefully, and get a coloring book for fun when not studying to put the highlighters to good use.

 


Once upon a time I wrote that in law school all electronic devices . . . all of them . . . should be disabled.  A colleague wrote that "Heads would explode." 

Here's to exploding heads . . . or at least expanded ones.  = :   )

For all, if you want to get a sense of what law school and the LSAT are all about, read a few oral arguments.  For example, Paul Clement (who argued the PPACA, or "Obamacare") is widely considered one of the best advocates before the Supremes.*  Does he highlight?  Doubtful.  Does he take notes?  Well, yes, but they're either two lines with regard to a case, or an entire memo to evaluate every aspect of the jurisprudential impact of a line of cases.  The challenge is to *understand* the arguments.  Devices, gimmicks, bad habits . . . all are not just pointless, they're a distraction.  Use your *mind,* not gimmicks.

You want to be a biglaw hotshot?  Get (nearly) as good as Clement *before* the LSAT (much less before law school).  Really.

Thane.

*  The fact that Clement lost, in large measure, on the merits is irrelevant to the legal argumentation, and even the justices who ruled against the challenge were at pains to recognize (albeit minimize) Clement's force of argument.