Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

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LawsRUs
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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby LawsRUs » Thu Feb 19, 2015 3:42 am

why are you guys only on here?: you guys need to get together and publish a book about this or write it on your own.
seriously. pls dooo it. like this story needs to be circulated in publication. by publication, i don't mean an online forum, but a book. Brian Tamanaha did it in his book "Failing law Schools"--i really don't see a reason why you can't do the same. JCoug, didn't you go to WUSTL and have Tamanaha?
A cherry on top: you get to pay off your LS debt in book advance $.
PS: My font size is small because I'm a 0L and scared of posting in this thread, but I thought I shld interject something here

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rpupkin
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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby rpupkin » Thu Feb 19, 2015 3:43 am

LawsRUs wrote:why are you guys only on here?: you guys need to get together and publish a book about this or write it on your own.
seriously. pls dooo it. like this story needs to be circulated in publication. by publication, i don't mean an online forum, but a book. Brian Tamanaha did it in his book "Failing law Schools"--i really don't see a reason why you can't do the same. JCoug, didn't you go to WUSTL and have Tamanaha?
A cherry on top: you get to pay off your LS debt in book advance $.
PS: My font size is small because I'm a 0L and scared of posting in this thread, but I thought I shld interject something here

WTF is happening?

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LawsRUs
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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby LawsRUs » Thu Feb 19, 2015 3:46 am

^^ I just think more people shld be aware of this, and the people who need to know are the people who are not on TLS.
Someone has to reveal the BS that is LS, who else

lawsearcher
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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby lawsearcher » Thu Feb 19, 2015 6:30 am

romothesavior wrote:It's incredibly arrogant to say "I worked hard and got good grades, so almost everyone else can too."

It's incredibly arrogant to claim that the people who disagree and think law school grades involve far more than hard work and intellect are just jealous they didn't get good grades.

It's incredibly arrogant to say (and this is essentially a direct quote) that people who didn't get grades just didn't dedicate to hard work.

Basically, lawsearcher is an arrogant, self-righteous douche who keeps repeating the same tired mantra without substantively engaging the well thought out responses he's gotten, so I really can't blame people for getting testy and uncivil.


I'm sorry that you take disagreement for arrogance. I suppose you want me to type out an entire guide to how I did law school so you should compare. I provided a snippet of my prep and challenged others to say they did as much work prepping for class.

I don't know what I didn't answer for you? I don't have data tables of grades versus hard work to prove my point. What I am saying is that most people think they worked hard, but that varies. I am sure there are many psychological tests that prove this point (90% of drivers think they are above average). But there is a point where you can work so hard as to push past the variance in law school grading. I will give this one last shot to explain why you may have different results. I am going to do it in two steps.This applies GENERALLY, because I don't have all night to sit and type out a treatise.

Step 1: I might take 10 passes at a case or more before simply studying my outline. Each time someone takes a pass at a case, they refine or often outright change their view on the case. I broke down 4 of those passes earlier in my pre-class prep. I also will do a clean read again when I outline later in the year (5), plus I will write the outline (6), then I might ask the professor questions about it (7), confront the issues with my study group in a practice test (8), and then before finals I will read an E&E (9), plus some random read or whatever. I will tell you with certainty they way I view the case on pass 9 is different than I was at 6, than it was at 3 or 1 or whatever. Each time you get better, you add more nuance, and understand how the case fits into the over structure of the class. But the point is, I thought I understood the case at pass 3. As I mentioned earlier, I don't leave a case unless I think I get it in class prep. Inevitably, whatever your number of passes is, you believe you understand the case.

My contention generally is that most student might do let's say 5 passes (or at least some number lower than 10). They might incorporate some of these things or not (it's also possible they didn't really practice or think about test taking, but that's a separate issue).

Step 2: They take the exam. Except now we have two different knowledge bases:

Average student might fully understand 50% of the material, semi-understand 25%, and misunderstand 25% (Giving a rate of 50/25/25) based on their 5 passes.

After all my passes I might be at 80/10/10

Now an exam only covers like half of the material in the course. So this is where the variance plays in. You might get some questions that play into your 50% understanding or not. But every person's knowledge base is different which is why the same studying results in vastly different scores. And yes, of course their are some subjective grading issues. But when I take the test I have must less variance. Yes, sometimes I get unlucky and am tested on stuff I am struggling with. But since I minimized that portion it doesn't hurt me as much.

But looking back at step 1, each person thinks they there at 100% knowledge (i.e. everyone thinks they are roughly 100/0/0). Based on their passes, they think they know the case well. Everyone always thinks they're right until they're wrong. And since most people don't see the professor after the exam or get challenged in the study group, etc., they don't realize they are missing points either by getting the law wrong or not fully extrapolating on an issue.

I am sure you will find many ways to disagree with this, but I don't know I could be much more thought out or clear without devoting serious time to this post.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby lawsearcher » Thu Feb 19, 2015 6:32 am

wolfie_m. wrote:
lawsearcher wrote:I read cases over three times before class, and I never left a case until I really felt I understood what it meant (although I was often wrong, but I learned from those mistakes). First, I gave a thorough read. Second, I went through and highlighted the case in full, picking up all of the major points and supporting information with a color highlighter that by following the highlights walks you through the case. Next, I did a third read through where I typed all of that highlighted info into a brief (that later turned into an outline). I did the same with notes cases.

It was a time consuming process, but I never missed a day. I also always did my assignment before class so it was still fresh. And when I got to class, which I never missed, I paid attention. I never got on Facebook or other internet sites. I spent the class taking notes on how my interpretation varied from the professor, challenged the concepts in my head and questioned things like why we had the rule or how we could change it for the better if possible (and other various thoughts). That just includes my class and pre-class prep. I am willing to bet I put more work into this than most of the people posting in this thread.


I'm surprised no one called lawsearcher out on these two paragraphs.

Lawsearcher, I don't know a single person who didn't attempt to do the exact. same. thing. you're talking about here and then some during 1L at my school.


I can tell you very few people at my school put this much work into every pre-class prep. I would be stunned if your school was so vastly different.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby Paul Campos » Thu Feb 19, 2015 7:21 am

In response to Romo's question, I think DF's and JCougar's summaries of the situation are accurate.

Lawsearcher believes that the key to doing well in law school is to treat appellate court opinions in the way the Cabalists are said to treat scripture, that is, by searching for the esoteric meanings hidden within these infinitely rich semantic repositories.

Homer: Well, there's not a bear in sight. The Bear Patrol is sure doing its job.
Lisa: That's specious reasoning, Dad.
Homer: Thank you, sweetie.
Lisa: Dad, what if I were to tell you that this rock keeps away tigers.
Homer: Uh-huh, and how does it work?
Lisa: It doesn't work. It's just a stupid rock.
Homer: I see.
Lisa: But you don't see any tigers around, do you?
Homer: Lisa, I'd like to buy your rock.

YibanRen
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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby YibanRen » Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:07 am

Paul Campos wrote:In response to Romo's question, I think DF's and JCougar's summaries of the situation are accurate.

Lawsearcher believes that the key to doing well in law school is to treat appellate court opinions in the way the Cabalists are said to treat scripture, that is, by searching for the esoteric meanings hidden within these infinitely rich semantic repositories.

Homer: Well, there's not a bear in sight. The Bear Patrol is sure doing its job.
Lisa: That's specious reasoning, Dad.
Homer: Thank you, sweetie.
Lisa: Dad, what if I were to tell you that this rock keeps away tigers.
Homer: Uh-huh, and how does it work?
Lisa: It doesn't work. It's just a stupid rock.
Homer: I see.
Lisa: But you don't see any tigers around, do you?
Homer: Lisa, I'd like to buy your rock.


Not that it really relates to the last comment, but I have some anecdotal information.

I went to law school at one of the top five schools. I generally never briefed any cases, or read anything to prepare besides online summaries of the cases while the professor was discussing them in class. I never prepared my own outlines for exams. I basically borrowed outlines from successful students from previous years and learned the nuts and bolts from those. I never studied for an exam for more than 20 hours, and only from second-hand outlines. I stopped buying books half-way into my 1L year. At the end of the day, I ended up in the top-third without really trying.

There were two exceptions--times where I really loved course material as a 2L and 3L and actually took notes, briefed, read before class, and even non-required outside readings on topics. These two exceptions were also my lowest grades in law school, both low passes.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby lawsearcher » Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:13 am

Paul Campos wrote:In response to Romo's question, I think DF's and JCougar's summaries of the situation are accurate.

Lawsearcher believes that the key to doing well in law school is to treat appellate court opinions in the way the Cabalists are said to treat scripture, that is, by searching for the esoteric meanings hidden within these infinitely rich semantic repositories.


You are ignoring the part where I mention paying meaningful attention in class, taking practice exams, going over material with a study group, reading the E&E, and meeting with professor for questions (not to mention things like LEEWS, GTM, etc.). The case stands for a set of rules, but it takes many passes to pull out the various ways you can use the rules.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby lawsearcher » Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:19 am

YibanRen wrote:Not that it really relates to the last comment, but I have some anecdotal information.

I went to law school at one of the top five schools. I generally never briefed any cases, or read anything to prepare besides online summaries of the cases while the professor was discussing them in class. I never prepared my own outlines for exams. I basically borrowed outlines from successful students from previous years and learned the nuts and bolts from those. I never studied for an exam for more than 20 hours, and only from second-hand outlines. I stopped buying books half-way into my 1L year. At the end of the day, I ended up in the top-third without really trying.

There were two exceptions--times where I really loved course material as a 2L and 3L and actually took notes, briefed, read before class, and even non-required outside readings on topics. These two exceptions were also my lowest grades in law school, both low passes.


Three issues with your anecdote:

I never said not working equals bad grade. I am saying you can work yourself into a good grade. And just because you worked harder in a particular class doesn't mean you worked enough to guarantee a good grade. You may have just worked an average amount compared to others.

I'm not talking about being top third, but rather top 10% (or some more meaningfully high percentage). I think there is more room for variance the lower you go.

I have repeatedly said for various reasons I do not think you can necessarily outwork the T14. I specifically said this only applies to T1 and below. At your T5, those reasons are going to be more pronounced.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby romothesavior » Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:49 am

lawsearcher wrote:I'm sorry that you take disagreement for arrogance.

I don't take your disagreement for arrogance. I take your self-righteous, "pat myself on the back for being such a good little law student" bullshit as arrogance. You're a smug asshole who thinks he knows it all and is looking for a worldview that enables you to look down on others.

A ton of people work their ass off and never make it to the top 10%. Do you deny these people exist, or do you think they just didn't work as hard as you and therefore are undeserving? If the former, then maybe you're not a smug asshole, just a naive one. If the latter, then jfc dude.

Try to respond with something less than a rambling wall of text.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby lawsearcher » Thu Feb 19, 2015 9:21 am

romothesavior wrote:
lawsearcher wrote:I'm sorry that you take disagreement for arrogance.

I don't take your disagreement for arrogance. I take your self-righteous, "pat myself on the back for being such a good little law student" bullshit as arrogance. You're a smug asshole who thinks he knows it all and is looking for a worldview that enables you to look down on others.

A ton of people work their ass off and never make it to the top 10%. Do you deny these people exist, or do you think they just didn't work as hard as you and therefore are undeserving? If the former, then maybe you're not a smug asshole, just a naive one. If the latter, then jfc dude.

Try to respond with something less than a rambling wall of text.


There clearly is no pleasing you. Two messages ago your complaint was I offered no explanation. I give yet another explanation and now you say I talk too much. Clearly you have no intention to seriously discuss the issue.

I am saying that up to a certain point, if you work hard, you're leaving yourself vulnerable to the inherent randomness of a law school exam. Most people do not push past that point. But at a certain level of effort you begin to truly maximize your knowledge and therefore minimize your downside risk at any exam.

I didn't say absolutely everyone could do it, but yes, at a T1 most of the students are intellectually capable of achieving this point.

I don't care to pat myself of the back. I would have posted on this issue a long time ago if that was the case. I am merely calling attention to the fact the wrong message is being sent. I don't believe 0Ls should enter law school with the idea they should do roughly the same work as everyone else and let the chips fall. They have the power to raise their grade considerably through effort and discipline. And there are plenty of positive guides on TLS that can help you achieve that point.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby Pragmatic Gun » Thu Feb 19, 2015 9:30 am

One could really obtain high marks by just reviewing old outlines?

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Feb 19, 2015 9:47 am

Lawsearcher, what happens when everyone reads your advice, decides they will go to law school because they can outwork everyone else at their school, and then everyone puts in the work you describe? You're going to say that they don't, but if your advice is "you can control your grades by hard work" and so only people who are willing to do that work go, and they're all in law school together, all doing that kind of work. What then?

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby lawsearcher » Thu Feb 19, 2015 9:55 am

A. Nony Mouse wrote:Lawsearcher, what happens when everyone reads your advice, decides they will go to law school because they can outwork everyone else at their school, and then everyone puts in the work you describe? You're going to say that they don't, but if your advice is "you can control your grades by hard work" and so only people who are willing to do that work go, and they're all in law school together, all doing that kind of work. What then?


I agree this would no longer work. But we are very far from that point. And I just don't think at any point you could get a set of people ready to fully commit to law school in that way. Although at some point you might reach a level where top 10% is not necessarily attainable.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby lawsearcher » Thu Feb 19, 2015 10:03 am

As a final explanation, I add this. Occasionally a professor will reveal how their tests are scored. They say, for example, last year the top grade in my class got 86% of the available points and the median score was 68%. We can argue about the numbers, but generally this is a possible result. And of course it can change year to year, but this is what students roughly achieve.

All I am saying is almost anyone can work hard and get to that 86%. It's not like curve is 98% top, 92% median. Nor does the curve work like jeopardy, where someone else's answer deprives you of the opportunity to earn points. It's all individual.You just have to learn and practice enough to score 86%. Following the steps laid out in the many guides on TLS can help you get significantly closer to 86%. And if you fall a little short, you're still doing well.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby bjsesq » Thu Feb 19, 2015 10:26 am

Hey lawsearcher, seriously, shut the fuck up.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby ymmv » Thu Feb 19, 2015 10:27 am

Boo how's your head feel.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby bjsesq » Thu Feb 19, 2015 10:31 am

This bootstrap your way through law school argument is tired as fuck and stupid. Of course there are a few people who do jackshit in law school, but they are not the majority, or even close to it. Further, this fucking asshole seems to want to separate hard work from the right kind of hard work, as if there is some sort of objective truth as to what works for everyone. No, you fucking narcissistic dullard, it doesn't work that way. The thing that really pisses me off is that some impressionable kid may come on here and see that retarded shit and think he can simply muscle his way to stellar grades, and that's fucking stupid.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby notgreat » Thu Feb 19, 2015 10:41 am

law searcher you seem genuinely dumb and should probably thank your lucky stars you did as well as you did your first year.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby JCougar » Thu Feb 19, 2015 12:48 pm

lawsearcher wrote:As a final explanation, I add this. Occasionally a professor will reveal how their tests are scored. They say, for example, last year the top grade in my class got 86% of the available points and the median score was 68%. We can argue about the numbers, but generally this is a possible result. And of course it can change year to year, but this is what students roughly achieve.

All I am saying is almost anyone can work hard and get to that 86%. It's not like curve is 98% top, 92% median. Nor does the curve work like jeopardy, where someone else's answer deprives you of the opportunity to earn points. It's all individual.You just have to learn and practice enough to score 86%. Following the steps laid out in the many guides on TLS can help you get significantly closer to 86%. And if you fall a little short, you're still doing well.


But the thing is, those "points" are somewhat arbitrarily awarded, no one knows what they are before the exam. A lot of them end up being stuff that people already know, but wouldn't know to say because they didn't know you would get points for saying that thing in particular.

In essence, not getting the points isn't a function of not knowing the material--it's a function of not knowing what you get points for saying.

There's kind of a ceiling effect. Once you know the law backwards and forwards, up and down, that's the extent of the work you can do. But doing this is really only enough to keep your grades out of the basement. Once you get to this point, studying the law more is just going to make you crazy and not help you on the exams. Like, it's stupid to keep studying your own name once you already know how to spell it. Studying it for an extra 3 hours isn't going to help you spell it better.

Lawsearcher, have you ever seen the movie Pi, by Darren Aronofsky? It's a film about a smart man that drives himself insane looking for patterns in the number Pi--a random stream of numbers. At some point, studying and re-studying stuff you already know is going to drive you bonkers. There's a line at which more studying doesn't benefit you, and most people at top-ish schools are able to make it to this line before exams. So it's not necessarily a matter of more effort once you put in an adequate amount.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby Desert Fox » Thu Feb 19, 2015 1:03 pm

For example, professors will sometimes give points in a Torts exam for discussing battery in a hypo about someone not shoveling their drive way and a third person slipping on it. Obviously it isn't battery, but sometimes a prof will give you those points.

But other times profs won't give you points for that.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby JCougar » Thu Feb 19, 2015 1:55 pm

I still remember someone I know who did particularly well telling me he got points on a contracts exam by questioning whether the pen used to sign the contract might have run out of ink and thus there was no signature--even though there was nothing in the fact pattern about signatures.

I still can't tell whether he was bullshitting or not, but it wouldn't exactly be shocking to find out that he wasn't. Obviously, that's something that would not occur to me to say in order to incur law exam points. Which obviously means I didn't brief my cases enough!

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby Tiago Splitter » Thu Feb 19, 2015 2:06 pm

The flame that everyone knows the law backwards and forwards is really pretty tired but yeah obviously brute forcing your way to top 10% at any non-T14 Tier 1 is stupid.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby lawsearcher » Thu Feb 19, 2015 2:37 pm

bjsesq wrote:This bootstrap your way through law school argument is tired as fuck and stupid. Of course there are a few people who do jackshit in law school, but they are not the majority, or even close to it. Further, this fucking asshole seems to want to separate hard work from the right kind of hard work, as if there is some sort of objective truth as to what works for everyone. No, you fucking narcissistic dullard, it doesn't work that way. The thing that really pisses me off is that some impressionable kid may come on here and see that retarded shit and think he can simply muscle his way to stellar grades, and that's fucking stupid.


As opposed to your plan which is apparently to not bother? Or plan to be median? I feel bad for the people who fall for your line of thinking.

The only real lesson to be taught is speaking against certain TLS groupthink is not tolerated. Berate them rather than discuss. I am not writing for people like you. I want people to realize greater things are possible. Apply yourself, look for ways to edge out the competition, read the TLS guides. There is room for success. Results are not pre-destined.

If you think that's so bad, then I guess you don't believe trying harder will result in better grades. But apparently that's fallible logic here.

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Re: Vale of Tears is the Most Horrifying Thread on TLS

Postby lawsearcher » Thu Feb 19, 2015 2:38 pm

notgreat wrote:law searcher you seem genuinely dumb and should probably thank your lucky stars you did as well as you did your first year.


It wasn't just my first year. I'm a 3L. And my grades have been consistent throughout. Never left the top 5 in my class. Perhaps I'm successful because my reaction isn't to insult people during a discussion and actually deal with the issue.




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