How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

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masterthearts
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How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby masterthearts » Wed Jan 27, 2010 11:25 pm

Just dropped a class at cornell because there seems to be about 500 pages of reading a week, and several papers plus a research paper. Plus the topic didn't seem all that interesting. If I'm backing out of such a class, then will I be able to handle law school? I have a 3.8 gpa so far and graduate in 1.5 years. If I can't see reading 500 pages per week, then should I bother going to law school? I don't think I would like any other field, however.

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Georgiana
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Georgiana » Sun Jan 31, 2010 2:10 pm

masterthearts wrote:Just dropped a class at cornell because there seems to be about 500 pages of reading a week, and several papers plus a research paper. Plus the topic didn't seem all that interesting. If I'm backing out of such a class, then will I be able to handle law school? I have a 3.8 gpa so far and graduate in 1.5 years. If I can't see reading 500 pages per week, then should I bother going to law school? I don't think I would like any other field, however.

Law school is a lot of work. And during 1L pretty much all of that work is reading. I'm not sure whether you are exaggerating the 500 pages/week for one class... Law school classes for 1Ls generally assign anywhere from 20-40 pages per class meeting and (at my school) there are 12 class meetings per week total during the first semester. This puts you at 240-480 pages per week, and on average you'd probably end up somewhere in the middle with 300-400 pages per week just for class. You'll probably be reading hornbooks etc. on your own and also doing legal writing assignments. I can't tell you what you can handle... but if you're going to go to law school, you better be able to motivate yourself to read.
Last edited by Georgiana on Sun Jan 31, 2010 2:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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rayiner
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby rayiner » Sun Jan 31, 2010 2:20 pm

I had maybe 150 pages of reading per week during my first semester at NU. This semester is heavier, maybe about 300 pages per week. Legal writing assignments happen, but are too few and far between to really change things overly much.

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Aeroplane
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Aeroplane » Sun Jan 31, 2010 2:27 pm

I think we had about 10-25 pages/class and there were 9 classes/week last semester. Other than doing the reading, law school is as much work as you make it. If all you want to do is pass w/C's, you could get by on 10-20 mins/night for class prep, and a few hours of cramming before each exam. If you want to do well, you'll have to do more than that. The exact amount of "more" varies highly among individuals.

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rayiner
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby rayiner » Sun Jan 31, 2010 2:35 pm

Aeroplane wrote:I think we had about 10-25 pages/class and there were 9 classes/week last semester. Other than doing the reading, law school is as much work as you make it. If all you want to do is pass w/C's, you could get by on 10-20 mins/night for class prep, and a few hours of cramming before each exam. If you want to do well, you'll have to do more than that. The exact amount of "more" varies highly among individuals.


15. :?

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Aeroplane
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Aeroplane » Sun Jan 31, 2010 2:41 pm

rayiner wrote:
Aeroplane wrote:I think we had about 10-25 pages/class and there were 9 classes/week last semester. Other than doing the reading, law school is as much work as you make it. If all you want to do is pass w/C's, you could get by on 10-20 mins/night for class prep, and a few hours of cramming before each exam. If you want to do well, you'll have to do more than that. The exact amount of "more" varies highly among individuals.
15. :?
Hehe. Sorry bout that.

Ignatius J. Reilly
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Ignatius J. Reilly » Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:56 pm

500 pages per week in one class? I do not believe that.

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los blancos
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby los blancos » Sun Jan 31, 2010 7:09 pm

Aeroplane wrote:I think we had about 10-25 pages/class and there were 9 classes/week last semester. Other than doing the reading, law school is as much work as you make it. If all you want to do is pass w/C's, you could get by on 10-20 mins/night for class prep, and a few hours of cramming before each exam. If you want to do well, you'll have to do more than that. The exact amount of "more" varies highly among individuals.


I'm going to Mich. :mrgreen:

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vanwinkle
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby vanwinkle » Sun Jan 31, 2010 7:25 pm

masterthearts wrote:Just dropped a class at cornell because there seems to be about 500 pages of reading a week, and several papers plus a research paper. Plus the topic didn't seem all that interesting. If I'm backing out of such a class, then will I be able to handle law school? I have a 3.8 gpa so far and graduate in 1.5 years. If I can't see reading 500 pages per week, then should I bother going to law school? I don't think I would like any other field, however.

You won't have 500 pages of reading a week in any one class. However, in each of your 5 classes you'll have 100 pages of reading a week. HTH.

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kurla88
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby kurla88 » Sun Jan 31, 2010 7:36 pm

masterthearts wrote:Just dropped a class at cornell because there seems to be about 500 pages of reading a week, and several papers plus a research paper. Plus the topic didn't seem all that interesting. If I'm backing out of such a class, then will I be able to handle law school? I have a 3.8 gpa so far and graduate in 1.5 years. If I can't see reading 500 pages per week, then should I bother going to law school? I don't think I would like any other field, however.


Success in life is all about gaming the system. I sincerely doubt any UG class requires you to read 500 pages a week (and certainly no law class does) but it's just irrational to stay in such a class if you're not interested and it's way more work than what you can get out of it. Think of it this way:

(1) If something was interesting/worthwhile/financially rewarding enough, would you be willing to really put in the effort and do a ton of work?
(2) If the answer to (1) is yes, could law be that something?

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Grizz
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Grizz » Sun Jan 31, 2010 7:40 pm

Ignatius J. Reilly wrote:500 pages per week in one class? I do not believe that.


I took a grad school history class while in undergrad, and the reading was normally 300-600 pages per week, average probably 400. Perhaps OP is in a grad class.

showNprove
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby showNprove » Sun Jan 31, 2010 7:43 pm

I would say that I had about 250 pages a week, total. You'll be fine.

Bankhead
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Bankhead » Sun Jan 31, 2010 8:24 pm

I dropped about 20 classes in undergrad because they were too difficult/time consuming (literally had over 10 W's on my transcript) and I've done well in law school so far.

Snooker
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Snooker » Sun Jan 31, 2010 10:57 pm

it is not really a lot of work so much as highly competitive. The professors don't assign a lot of reading, so students tend to re-read, look at hornbooks, do hypos, practice tests, etc. in order to gain an edge. Probably, if they did 1/4 the work they'd get the same grade. But nobody in their right mind would risk that.

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Cupidity
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Cupidity » Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:01 pm

Hah!

3 of my 7 classes require 70-100 pages of reading a night each
1 of them requires I brief at least 3 cases--and legit brief, not book-brief
And the other three all have work as well.

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nativedelta
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby nativedelta » Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:03 pm

If you don't like dense, long reading, you won't like law school. There is a class at my school called Law and Literature that requires reading 15 books in 14 weeks of school plus 3 shorter papers. And we're not talking about short novels. Moby Dick is on that list. So for one class alone, you're looking at bare minimum 300 pages a week. And that class is considered a "breeze 3L class."

Learn to love the written word or pick another profession. :)

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RVP11
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby RVP11 » Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:17 pm

nativedelta wrote:If you don't like dense, long reading, you won't like law school. There is a class at my school called Law and Literature that requires reading 15 books in 14 weeks of school plus 3 shorter papers. And we're not talking about short novels. Moby Dick is on that list. So for one class alone, you're looking at bare minimum 300 pages a week. And that class is considered a "breeze 3L class."

Learn to love the written word or pick another profession. :)


This post is why you don't take classes like "Law and Literature."

I've yet to have a class with more than ~70 pages of reading per week.

Snooker
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Snooker » Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:37 pm

nativedelta wrote:If you don't like dense, long reading, you won't like law school. There is a class at my school called Law and Literature that requires reading 15 books in 14 weeks of school plus 3 shorter papers. And we're not talking about short novels. Moby Dick is on that list. So for one class alone, you're looking at bare minimum 300 pages a week. And that class is considered a "breeze 3L class."

Learn to love the written word or pick another profession. :)


The really ironic thing about law school is seeing all these foreign students with 7th grade reading levels rocking top 20% at top 10 schools and top 20 schools. Literary skill seems to have little to do with the tests here. I've gotten lots of reports about these students from across the country and it always boggles my mind.

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RudeDudewithAttitude
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby RudeDudewithAttitude » Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:50 pm

Personally, I hated long dense reading in undergrad and I really like law school. I think the difference is that the dense reading in undergrad felt like busy work. I knew that most of the classes would not be relevant to my career.

Motivation and drive are the keys to success in law school. OP needs to figure out of he/she is inherently lazy or only selectively lazy.

Renzo
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Renzo » Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:59 pm

Snooker wrote:
nativedelta wrote:If you don't like dense, long reading, you won't like law school. There is a class at my school called Law and Literature that requires reading 15 books in 14 weeks of school plus 3 shorter papers. And we're not talking about short novels. Moby Dick is on that list. So for one class alone, you're looking at bare minimum 300 pages a week. And that class is considered a "breeze 3L class."

Learn to love the written word or pick another profession. :)


The really ironic thing about law school is seeing all these foreign students with 7th grade reading levels rocking top 20% at top 10 schools and top 20 schools. Literary skill seems to have little to do with the tests here. I've gotten lots of reports about these students from across the country and it always boggles my mind.

Fuck, man. I was sitting in a very math-heavy econ class once upon a time, and the girl sitting next to me during a lecture got all confused looking, whipped out a pocket-sized Chinese-English electronic dictionary, then made an "ah-ha" face and began scribbling notes. Do you have any idea how demoralizing it is to know that someone who can't understand the language is doing better than you????

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Genki
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Genki » Mon Feb 01, 2010 12:22 am

Ignatius J. Reilly wrote:500 pages per week in one class? I do not believe that.


Took a political science class that had readings that varied from 300-500 pages a week. There were a couple times that our assignment for the next class would be to read a 400 page book between Monday and Wednesday and be prepared to discuss the author's theories and argumentative flaws, so I believe the OP when (s)he claimed the class had 500 pages a week.

The class I took wasn't as difficult as it sounds though. First of all, the books were much easier to read and not nearly as dense as the scholarly journal articles that made up the reading of many of my other classes. Also, since the readings were so long, the teacher didn't expect us to retain all of the details. That allowed us to skim over large parts of the books just to make sure that we got the main points of the theory and could identify the author's reasoning.

You can't judge the difficulty of a class or the time commitment solely on the number of pages per week. Other classes that only required 100-150 pages per week but were all really dense readings were more difficult in my opinion.

DukeHopeful
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby DukeHopeful » Mon Feb 01, 2010 12:27 am

Wait, you mean people actually do the assigned readings in UG? :shock:

NotMyRealName09
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Mon Feb 01, 2010 3:23 am

You will work harder in law school than in undergrad. Period. I don't care what undergrad school, your course of study, etc. In law school you will be shut off from the world for weeks on end, or else you are doing it wrong. (And if you did that in undergrad, you have failed to appreciate your youth). I simply do not care how hard you study in undergrad - in law school you will have to study like you've never studied before, or you will not do well.

I mean, the 500 pages / week you have to read in undergrad? Bullshit. You skim that shit, you read it once, you take little notes in the margins, because you will not be asked to discuss the details contained on page 356, you will be asked to discuss themes and issues, not details. And the prof will tell you what in that 500 pages is important. In law school, you'll read 350-450 or so pages a week (total for all classes), and the devil is in the details. Much different and more intense. And as a 1L, you'll probably want to read cases twice, at least during first semester. (Or at least until the import of cases begins to emerge like one of those "seeing-eye" illusion books. I swear, now it is just like that - the rule floats above the text!)

If your undergrad workload is intimidating you, law school will be even more intimidating. Read faster.

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Aeroplane
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Aeroplane » Mon Feb 01, 2010 8:43 am

NotMyRealName09 wrote:You will work harder in law school than in undergrad. Period. I don't care what undergrad school, your course of study, etc. In law school you will be shut off from the world for weeks on end, or else you are doing it wrong. (And if you did that in undergrad, you have failed to appreciate your youth). I simply do not care how hard you study in undergrad - in law school you will have to study like you've never studied before, or you will not do well.

I mean, the 500 pages / week you have to read in undergrad? Bullshit. You skim that shit, you read it once, you take little notes in the margins, because you will not be asked to discuss the details contained on page 356, you will be asked to discuss themes and issues, not details. And the prof will tell you what in that 500 pages is important. In law school, you'll read 350-450 or so pages a week (total for all classes), and the devil is in the details. Much different and more intense. And as a 1L, you'll probably want to read cases twice, at least during first semester. (Or at least until the import of cases begins to emerge like one of those "seeing-eye" illusion books. I swear, now it is just like that - the rule floats above the text!)

If your undergrad workload is intimidating you, law school will be even more intimidating. Read faster.

-1 for most of this.

Snooker
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Re: How much work is law school. I just dropped a class

Postby Snooker » Mon Feb 01, 2010 9:52 am

Those foreign students are way better at math than Americans are. Unfortunately law exams test the mathematical-logic skill extremely heavily, and people who had our high school math down by the middle of junior high are way ahead of us there. Real lawyering obviously depends a lot on language skills, which should indicate that the current system has its share of flaws.




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