do firms care about what classes you take

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sk95
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do firms care about what classes you take

Postby sk95 » Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:50 pm

or are they just concerned with gpa? Better to take all fluff courses 2l and 3l to get top grades?

oscarthegrouch
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby oscarthegrouch » Sat Nov 20, 2010 10:19 am

I'd assume only GPA. However, it might be a good idea to, you know, actually learn something 2L and 3L year by taking real classes. (I'm taking 50-50 real and fluff classes.)

Jessep
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby Jessep » Sat Nov 20, 2010 11:12 am

I think many people find it helpful in bolstering their interests in practice areas (e.g. "I'm interested in corporate. I am taking securities regulation and really enjoy it"). It does provide insight into your interests though. If you are taking all public interest classes, firms might be wary of you.

SpiteFence
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby SpiteFence » Sat Nov 20, 2010 11:46 am

Yes x1000! I am confident that there were people at my T25 that struck out at OCI in part because they took stupid classes devoid of any practical skills! Save the fluff courses for 3L, or better yet, treat LS like the professional school its supposed to be and take classes that (at least theoretically) will make you a better lawyer. I was taking BA, Sec. Reg, and UCC2 and I know it helped me during recruitment.

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nealric
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby nealric » Sat Nov 20, 2010 11:50 am

Yes x1000! I am confident that there were people at my T25 that struck out at OCI in part because they took stupid classes devoid of any practical skills!


OCI at a lot of schools occurs before your schedule is even finalized. I don't think my class schedule ever came up at OCI or on callbacks.

SpiteFence
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby SpiteFence » Sat Nov 20, 2010 12:11 pm

nealric wrote:
Yes x1000! I am confident that there were people at my T25 that struck out at OCI in part because they took stupid classes devoid of any practical skills!


OCI at a lot of schools occurs before your schedule is even finalized. I don't think my class schedule ever came up at OCI or on callbacks.


Just to point out the other extreme, I probably had this asked or come up in at least half of my 25+ screening interviews and many of my callbacks as well. This might be because of my expressed preference towards transactional/corporate work.

Whatever your case is though, don't fluff your schedule first semester 2L year. Yes its a bitch to make up notes for hard classes when you're away on callbacks, but it will be wroth it.

SpiteFence
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby SpiteFence » Sat Nov 20, 2010 12:15 pm

G. T. L. Rev. wrote:
SpiteFence wrote:Yes x1000! I am confident that there were people at my T25 that struck out at OCI in part because they took stupid classes devoid of any practical skills! Save the fluff courses for 3L, or better yet, treat LS like the professional school its supposed to be and take classes that (at least theoretically) will make you a better lawyer. I was taking BA, Sec. Reg, and UCC2 and I know it helped me during recruitment.

No. This question has been asked and answered already countless times here on TLS.

First, GPA prevails over class selection 100% of the time for firm jobs. So as a 1L the rational thing to do is always take the class that gives you the highest chance of earning an A/H/HH/180. Second, I don't know of any firm that really analyzes which classes people took. Not one. Could be that some IP firms or other specialty shops do so, but I haven't heard of it. While it is true that taking a more practical course can give you something to talk about, there are lots of other ways to have things to talk about.


As a 1L yes, but most 1Ls don't have any choice of classes. Your 2L class choices can tell a lot about you, and you won't have any the grades for these classes yet either. I have overwhelming evidence from both my own experience and other's that at least some interviewers do care.

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vamedic03
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby vamedic03 » Sat Nov 20, 2010 12:17 pm

SpiteFence wrote:
nealric wrote:
Yes x1000! I am confident that there were people at my T25 that struck out at OCI in part because they took stupid classes devoid of any practical skills!


OCI at a lot of schools occurs before your schedule is even finalized. I don't think my class schedule ever came up at OCI or on callbacks.


Just to point out the other extreme, I probably had this asked or come up in at least half of my 25+ screening interviews and many of my callbacks as well. This might be because of my expressed preference towards transactional/corporate work.

Whatever your case is though, don't fluff your schedule first semester 2L year. Yes its a bitch to make up notes for hard classes when you're away on callbacks, but it will be wroth it.


Look, just because they ask you what classes you're taking doesn't mean that effected whether you got an offer. They're doing one of two things when they ask you that question: (1) trying to find something to talk to you about to find out more about you; and (2) see if you can articulate some reason for the classes you chose.

I think on every single one of my 25+ screening interviews they asked what classes I was taking and I'm pretty sure that 25+ of the screening interviews didn't turn on whether I was taking advanced basket weaving and the law versus some substantive class.

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doyleoil
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby doyleoil » Sat Nov 20, 2010 12:19 pm

SpiteFence wrote:I have overwhelming evidence


probably a good thing you're going with transactional and not litigation

SpiteFence
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby SpiteFence » Sat Nov 20, 2010 12:25 pm

Does the interview hinge on your class schedule? No. Is 1L GPA far more important? Obviously. All else equal between two students though, I'm giving the callback to the one that demonstrates that they actually understand that their preparing for a profession rather just doing undergrad plus. And if you're trying to sell yourself as a litigator/corporate person, class schedule may be one of the only things to show that your serious about it and not blowing smoke.

Will class schedule get you a job? No. Is it something you need to be prepared to explain in an interview? Yes. <-- This alone should be enough to make you take it seriously.

longhornnyc
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby longhornnyc » Sat Nov 20, 2010 1:14 pm

I think you can defend most course selection with the argument that you're selecting professors, not courses. I would always say something in interviews like, "I've talked to a lot of attorneys, in large firms and otherwise, and most recommended that I take the best professors, not the courses I thought would look best. I've heard everything you need to learn, you're going to learn on the job."

95% of the time, the interviewer totally agrees, and talks about how law school doesn't prepare you at all, and how you should just take courses that interest you/have good professors.

My 1L elective was one of those Bullshit & the Law courses, and it didn't stop me from landing multiple V50's with 1/3 grades at Texas.

EDIT: Also, regarding 2L, I took the same approach.

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vanwinkle
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby vanwinkle » Sat Nov 20, 2010 1:53 pm

I don't think they really care during OCI, especially since most schools don't even offer 1L electives. You haven't had a chance to take anything different than anyone else yet.

It can matter, though, during the summer job. If you get a job at a firm and start there without having taken Corporations, you could end up really behind and confused all summer compared to your peers. At least, this is what I've heard from 3Ls and from posters here.

ITE, with the potential for no-offers still looming, that's not a gamble I'd take.

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tome
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby tome » Sat Nov 20, 2010 2:12 pm

Class selection seemed to have no bearing on OCI success here. Taking hard courses seemed to be a real detriment. I took less demanding courses and it didn't seem to hurt me.

irishman86
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby irishman86 » Sat Nov 20, 2010 3:18 pm

Re: All the responses above -- I'm pretty sure OP meant if firms cared when making a permanent offer (not SA offer). I don't think firms see your fall schedule at OCI. However, I know that some firms (e.g. Magic Circle firms) look at your 2L GPA to see whether or not to give you a permanent offer.

hithere
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby hithere » Sat Nov 20, 2010 11:02 pm

firms don't give a shit about what classes you take-just get As

Anonymous User
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Nov 20, 2010 11:24 pm

if you are struck out of OCI, is it smart to take all those soft seminar classes to bolster your GPA? At my lower T14, it is almost guaranteed that you could get at least A- if you take soft seminar classes. I know someone at my school who was struck out OCI with a 3.3 GPA after 1L, took all soft seminar classes and got almost a 4.0 GPA for 2L, and still could not find a big law job at 3L OCI. I do not know what does this mean, but does this say that firms might still care about the classes you took?

ToTransferOrNot
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Sat Nov 20, 2010 11:30 pm

Anonymous User wrote:firms don't give a shit about what classes you take-just get As


If you go to a firm, say "I want to do tax law," and you didn't take any tax classes in your 2L year, yes, that is going to matter. Similarly, "I want to do Bankruptcy law" without having taken secured transactions or bankruptcy.

It doesn't matter much, but it matters some, particularly if you claim to have an interest in a particular area.

Edit: I was also able to point out an error in a senior associate's brief that was pretty significant, based on the fact that I had taken what amounted to a "recent developments" seminar. He missed a change in the law. This was a biglaw SA gig. Things happen. I was petrified to point it out, but it paid dividends when I convinced myself to point it out.

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ResolutePear
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby ResolutePear » Sat Nov 20, 2010 11:39 pm

ToTransferOrNot wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:firms don't give a shit about what classes you take-just get As


If you go to a firm, say "I want to do tax law," and you didn't take any tax classes in your 2L year, yes, that is going to matter. Similarly, "I want to do Bankruptcy law" without having taken secured transactions or bankruptcy.

It doesn't matter much, but it matters some, particularly if you claim to have an interest in a particular area.

Edit: I was also able to point out an error in a senior associate's brief that was pretty significant, based on the fact that I had taken what amounted to a "recent developments" seminar. He missed a change in the law. This was a biglaw SA gig. Things happen. I was petrified to point it out, but it paid dividends when I convinced myself to point it out.


I don't know about you - but I wouldn't want to be anywhere that would smite me for pointing something out, even if it's totally right. If there is a reasonable explanation - at least it shows you have interest and critical thinking skills.

Nothing is more unattractive of a co-worker/employee than a 'yes (wo)man'.

mollie
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby mollie » Sat Nov 20, 2010 11:59 pm

assuming firms did care about what classes you take, which ones should you take? is remedies a good class?

taxguy
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby taxguy » Sun Nov 21, 2010 1:17 am

I will give you the same suggestion that I gave my son. You can take it as you will:

There are basically two types of courses that you can take in law school The first are subject matter courses such as military law, contracts, administrative law, etc. These teach the law as it applies to a specific area. The second type are the skills oriented courses that include legal drafting, advanced research skills, civil and criminal litigation skills, dispute resolution etc.

Generally almost all subject skills can be learned. ALI-ABA publishes treatises in about any area of law that you can think of. However, it is VERY hard to learn skills. Thus, I strongly recommend that you take every skill course that you can,which includes externships and clinics. You can then fill in with subject related courses that boost your knowledge of areas of interest.

Some people argue that you should take subject courses that are found in bar exams. Although I see the logic to this, I don't agree. Almost everyone that I have known has passed the bar based on bar review courses,which do a great job in preparing folks for the bar. However, there are many who disagree with me on this. Thus, each student must make this type of judgement call.

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vanwinkle
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Re: do firms care about what classes you take

Postby vanwinkle » Sun Nov 21, 2010 2:33 am

sk95 wrote:or are they just concerned with gpa? Better to take all fluff courses 2l and 3l to get top grades?

hithere wrote:firms don't give a shit about what classes you take-just get As

mollie wrote:assuming firms did care about what classes you take, which ones should you take? is remedies a good class?

These three posts were all unauthorized use of the anonymous feature. They were also all made by the same person. Unauthorized alting is prohibited, and will lead to this:

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