1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

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DURS
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby DURS » Mon Dec 28, 2009 5:28 pm

I'm going to finish outlining earlier so that I have more time for practice exams. I'm also going to go to office hours more often. I started in mid-November and found speaking 1 on 1 with the professor very useful in determining what they were looking for on an exam or in the memo.

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joobacca
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby joobacca » Mon Dec 28, 2009 5:35 pm

DURS wrote:I'm going to finish outlining earlier so that I have more time for practice exams. I'm also going to go to office hours more often. I started in mid-November and found speaking 1 on 1 with the professor very useful in determining what they were looking for on an exam or in the memo.

hope this doesn't sound too stupid, but how to do go about prying such information?
do you come in with general questions and just look for shit when the professor talks?

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Learning Hand
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby Learning Hand » Mon Dec 28, 2009 5:48 pm

Read the corresponding chapter of the E&Es before I read the cases. Using cases as illustrations of a particular application of a general principle I've learned beforehand will be more conducive to my learning--I think. I'm also going to refer to outlines throughout the year and supplement that for my final outline.

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superserial
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby superserial » Mon Dec 28, 2009 5:53 pm

Mroberts3 wrote:This thread is very useful, keep it up guys.

I'm just a 0L but my apps are in and I find myself reading more and more threads about how to actually do well once in law school. I was wondering, did you guys come into law school with a set plan that you are now changing in ways described above, or is it studying in law school more of trial and error throughout the whole semester?


for me it was lots of trial and error throughout the semester.

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Learning Hand
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby Learning Hand » Mon Dec 28, 2009 6:04 pm

superserial wrote:
Mroberts3 wrote:This thread is very useful, keep it up guys.

I'm just a 0L but my apps are in and I find myself reading more and more threads about how to actually do well once in law school. I was wondering, did you guys come into law school with a set plan that you are now changing in ways described above, or is it studying in law school more of trial and error throughout the whole semester?


for me it was lots of trial and error throughout the semester.


I realized during the first week of school that my set 1L Gunner Plan wasn't going to work. Perhaps I'm an unusual case on TLS, but I found the learning curve rather steep in the first month. Consequently, it was difficult for me to get ahead and then outline. As superserial pointed out, it was a lot of trial-and-error. This may not be the case for you. Just be conscious of whether you're synthesizing the information throughout the year, and make time to review throughout the year (somehow).

DURS
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby DURS » Mon Dec 28, 2009 6:41 pm

joobacca wrote:
DURS wrote:I'm going to finish outlining earlier so that I have more time for practice exams. I'm also going to go to office hours more often. I started in mid-November and found speaking 1 on 1 with the professor very useful in determining what they were looking for on an exam or in the memo.

hope this doesn't sound too stupid, but how to do go about prying such information?
do you come in with general questions and just look for shit when the professor talks?


I would usually go in with very specific questions, and then continue asking questions to get a read on the professor. Professors (at least the ones I had) don't just come out and say "I want this on an exam". Instead, professors would indicate what they preferred. My CivPro professor liked Erie analysis done a certain way. By going to office hours and asking him questions about it, I found out what he really wanted. It was kind of shocking at first, since he really didn't go over it that way in his lecture.

BTW - I haven't received grades so take this with a large grain of salt.

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dresden doll
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby dresden doll » Mon Dec 28, 2009 6:46 pm

To counterpoint all those swearing to do less work in the very beginning, I've decided I'd frontload once the school resumes. I did nothing whatsoever until the middle of November and I'm pretty certain my grades will wind up kicking my ass as the result. I'm not much for feverish cramming week before the D day.

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thesealocust
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby thesealocust » Mon Dec 28, 2009 6:53 pm

I want to contribute to this thread, but I'm trying to hold back on self-assessing until I get grades.

If I got good grades, the best thing I did was trying to deconstruct law school exams in a general way to learn how to take them and what professors were looking for. Hopefully that won't go away, so I'll have more time to drink. If I got median or worse grades, then I'll have to figure out where that process went wrong, or what else was lacking from my strategy.

I echo what others have said about not being able to assault 1L with a fixed plan. As a 0L you have no idea how your brain works, how the classes you will take will work, or how the two will interact. You have to stay loose.

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excelsiorcaelo
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby excelsiorcaelo » Mon Dec 28, 2009 7:02 pm

I, too, think it's kind of pointless to reassess one's study habits before grades are in. However, if I do well, my laid-back lifestyle will be vindicated, and I won't change it. And if I don't do so well... I probably won't change anything in any case!

I definitely plan to continue my strategy of not making any of my own outlines. I wrote my own briefs for the first two weeks of the semester--I won't write any of my own briefs this time around. In fact, I've seriously been considering reading just books of case briefs instead of actual casebooks. But we'll see. I might have just enough pride as a student that I won't let myself sink that far.

nickwar
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby nickwar » Mon Dec 28, 2009 7:05 pm

Do Mon/Tues/maybe Wed. reading on the weekends. I did this the last 2 weeks of the semester and it cut my stress level in half. I would recommend doing so.

No laptop. I either surf the internet or mindlessly type what is said. I retain much more with pen/paper.

I'm going to care less about how others are preparing/performing. I spent way too much time worrying about why classmates' outlines and notes were three times as long as mine. Your success is dependent on how others perform, but you really only have enough time to worry about your own performance. Plus I think I made the right decision about half the "taboo" things I did from day one like not briefing cases. There's no formula for success in law school it seems.

More time doing practice problems. I pretty much skipped practice problems for my first exam and felt half as well prepared as I did for my later ones. Plus, every single test of mine had a hypo nearly identical to one in my E&Es. The E&E problems and explanations are obviously shorter, but they are a great guide for how to approach a similar problem on a real test.

Less complaining. I expected law school and students (not all of them) to be different. I still have way more contempt than I should for the mouthbreathers whose only goal in life is to be as miserable as possible as quickly as possible, but I'm going to keep my mouth shut about it this semester. There's only so much ridiculing to be done. It's easier to just ignore the douchebags who tell me it's a good thing X got sick because now he'll do worse on the final. The real world requires personality as well as success.

Better eating habits. By the end of the semester I was eating one big meal a day and probably taking in more calories from alcohol than from food. In turn I was sick at least twice as often as I usually am, and this affected my work. Plus I lost a lot of good weight.

Less class. I understand it's great to go to class and learn the professor's preferences, but my god most class days are useless. Spending 15 minutes waiting for a classmate to find the answer to an irrelevant question is not my definition of quality learning time. I went to nearly every class last semester. I'll take more days off this semester.

More office hours. I didn't go to a single office hour last semester. It's not that I want to weasel my way into my professors' hearts, but I should have taken advantage of being able to talk to experts in the field who could have significant advice for my future career. Plus I actually really liked my professors. It would be good to get to know them out of the classroom.

I think that's about it. I'm just looking forward to the fact we get to drop 2 classes this semester. Last semester was a 6-class nightmare. Four classes should be much more manageable.

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20160810
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby 20160810 » Mon Dec 28, 2009 7:09 pm

If you have the self-control to stay off the internet in class, more power to you. If you are like me, you will be switching to pen and paper next semester instead.

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excelsiorcaelo
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby excelsiorcaelo » Mon Dec 28, 2009 7:09 pm

nickwar wrote:Last semester was a 6-class nightmare. Four classes should be much more manageable.

What?! I've never even heard of such a thing. I thought we were unusual for having 5 classes (LRW 2 hours/week and 4 substantive classes at 4 hours/week).

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CE2JD
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby CE2JD » Mon Dec 28, 2009 7:38 pm

I don't know what to change yet because I don't have my grades. I used slightly different study strategies for each of my classes.

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dresden doll
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby dresden doll » Mon Dec 28, 2009 7:53 pm

excelsiorcaelo wrote:
nickwar wrote:Last semester was a 6-class nightmare. Four classes should be much more manageable.

What?! I've never even heard of such a thing. I thought we were unusual for having 5 classes (LRW 2 hours/week and 4 substantive classes at 4 hours/week).


We had the same.

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emilybeth
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby emilybeth » Mon Dec 28, 2009 8:12 pm

(1) Back up my shit like clockwork, as reconstructing seven weeks of notes after a (literal) computer crash was awful, and made the semester much more arduous for me. Hooray 1TB external harddrive Christmas gift.

(2) FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, EMILY, DO NOT FALL BEHIND ON THE READING. Playing catchup, even a couple days' worth of catchup, is hell.

(3) Like others have said, start outlining a little earlier to allow for more time to synthesize the material & do practice exams at the end of it all.

Any evaluations beyond that will have to wait until grades come in.

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panda
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby panda » Mon Dec 28, 2009 8:23 pm

im also going to wait for my grades before truly deciding what i will change, but the things i know i will change:

start outlining very very early on.. and then near the end of the semester try to bring it all together, rather than waiting and doing it all near finals period when i should have been just studying the material, and taking practice exams

not focus so much on the details of cases and look for the general rules only

not waste so much time perusing the readings and every useless detail, when what i will only end up using is what the professor discusses in class. use the extra time to outline, and enjoy life.


one thing i won't change: taking verbatim notes in class. forces me to pay attention, and when i don't understand something, there is nothing like having the lecture accessible, esp. near the end of the semester when it all starts coming together. (it was esp. helpful in civ pro..)

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Kohinoor
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby Kohinoor » Mon Dec 28, 2009 8:43 pm

SoftBoiledLife wrote:If you have the self-control to stay off the internet in class, more power to you. If you are like me, you will be switching to pen and paper next semester instead.

This.

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mallard
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby mallard » Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:05 pm

Based on exams, you guys decided to pay more attention in class? How does that work?

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joobacca
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby joobacca » Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:13 pm

mallard wrote:Based on exams, you guys decided to pay more attention in class? How does that work?

i'm taking a different approach to class that might require me to pay attention more but focus less on certain stuff
so the radar will be on but the brain/typing won't happen unless i feel its warranted
commercial outlines covered the vast majority of shit covered in class. i just need to tweak it to fit my professors' phrases and maybe slightly different analysis

so... i guess i'll blank out when we're some tedious shit like going over fine details in the facts
anything policy will be written down, anything repeated especially over multiple classes
otherwise i will be staring at some chick

i really need to see my grades

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Kohinoor
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby Kohinoor » Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:16 pm

mallard wrote:Based on exams, you guys decided to pay more attention in class? How does that work?

Bejeweled increases my grades even less than random professor rambling.

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jawsthegreat
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby jawsthegreat » Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:22 pm

So there is not enough important information being said in class to leave you at a disadvantage for using pen and paper?

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CE2JD
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby CE2JD » Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:28 pm

jawsthegreat wrote:So there is not enough important information being said in class to leave you at a disadvantage for using pen and paper?


It really depends on the class.

My CivPro prof was a didactic machine gun. He spoke very quickly in bullet points and, while he occasionally repeated the important points, he rarely (if ever) got sidetracked into something that wasn't a core concept of the material.

My Torts class time was a joke. I'd say about 20% was useful, and only 5% was absolutely essential. Others in my section might say even less than 5% was essential. He basically told jokes and random stories during class.

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jawsthegreat
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby jawsthegreat » Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:31 pm

CE2JD wrote:
jawsthegreat wrote:So there is not enough important information being said in class to leave you at a disadvantage for using pen and paper?


It really depends on the class.

My CivPro prof was a didactic machine gun. He spoke very quickly in bullet points and, while he occasionally repeated the important points, he rarely (if ever) got sidetracked into something that wasn't a core concept of the material.

My Torts prof was a joke. I'd say about 20% of class time was useful, and only 5% was absolutely essential. Others in my section might say even less than 5% was essential. He basically told jokes and random stories during class.



Lol, did you find it easier to prepare for the exam in Civpro or torts based on the class style?

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underachiever
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby underachiever » Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:39 pm

Drink more & worry less

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CE2JD
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Re: 1Ls: What are you changing for next semester?

Postby CE2JD » Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:39 pm

jawsthegreat wrote:
CE2JD wrote:
jawsthegreat wrote:So there is not enough important information being said in class to leave you at a disadvantage for using pen and paper?


It really depends on the class.

My CivPro prof was a didactic machine gun. He spoke very quickly in bullet points and, while he occasionally repeated the important points, he rarely (if ever) got sidetracked into something that wasn't a core concept of the material.

My Torts prof was a joke. I'd say about 20% of class time was useful, and only 5% was absolutely essential. Others in my section might say even less than 5% was essential. He basically told jokes and random stories during class.


Lol, did you find it easier to prepare for the exam in Civpro or torts based on the class style?


I found it harder to study for Torts for several reasons.

1) My Torts professor completely left out several major topics like product liability and only briefly touched on other topics like damages. So I figured that using most supplements would be useless (except for Ken Abraham's supplement on Torts which was a gold mine) because I'd have to search through for things we actually talked about and then skip over the subsections which we spent zero time on in class.
2) The topics which we DID spend a lot of class time were sometimes treated similiarly to how the casebook treated them, but often my professor would emphasize and analyzes certain concepts in a... unique way. I found that the material we spent time on in class was covered almost exclusively on the final exam.
3) For the above reasons I found it ultimately useful and necessary to spend more time correlating what we read in the casebook with what he emphasized in class. But this took much more time than what I did for CivPro because my CivPro prof basically gave us everything we needed to know on a silver platter via our class notes.
Last edited by CE2JD on Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.




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