OP, if you know enough to "decide [your] method," why do you need us to rank the 0L prep? To put it another way, why, in one breath, do you think you know more than us and, in another, you know you do not know as much as us? If you can answer that question coherently, I will rank the prep.
didn't know so many people were so sensitive to the issue of other people doing some 0L prep. I'm almost afraid to reply and keep this thread alive for risk of my own safety and ya'lls blood pressure. ;P
I don't think i know more than ya'll, hence my reaching out for advice. I just prefer some methods that ya'll disagree with. i respect that ya'll disagree with 0L prep, and i'm sure you have good reasons. altho i think of some of ya'll like to see how witty you can be, hoping others will +1 you, then read your replies over and over while you jerk off to how cool/genius
you are. Others i'm sure just want to pass on your learned experience. I have noted both, and appreciate the latter.
i know that most people on this forum discourage 0L prep. But those who encourage it, i.e. the NYU students article, make sense to me. That's why I prefaced my question with the observation that I understand the opposing arguments. And somehow I have this feeling that this will end up being another thread about why not to 0L prep (I can direct ya'll to other threads about whether to 0L prep if you can't find them
Ok...i didn't read PLS and buy into it like a time-share pitch. I'm not trying to memorize black letter rules or explore all the nuances in hornbooks. Nor do I plan on showing off my 0L prep when classes start (as some of you have so astutely inferenced from my original post. ;P). I just want to leisurely read some very intro book to each course, just so I can see what its about. Like, generally what is strict liability; not what is joinder rule 7aII-c and how does it compare to rule 12biii. And another piece of advice that makes sense to me from this site, is that being good at legal writing and analyzing hypo's is great for tests/grades, and most people don't know what/how legal writing/analysis is when they start classes. So I'm gonna do some basic how-to-legal writing stuff and maybe practice it a little. i know profs will tell me what to learn and how to learn it, so i'm not going to memorize the wrong version of the elements of some rule. i'm just talking big picture here.
i think the material is pretty interesting, most of it at least. and i'm an avid reader - i'm at all times reading a non fiction and fiction book concurrently. I'm just putting down the 'germs, guns and steel' books for intro to criminal law. I'm not killing myself here or burning myself out. Which is why I asked which subjects would be most important, since i doubt i'll have time to do a book for each course.
If you think all subjects (including legal writing), are a wash (either because they don't help at all or if they all help the same) then by all means say so. I partially asked because the people who advocate 0L prep don't say if some courses are better than others. But I have seen some people who oppose 0L prep say things like "... would be as productive as con law 0L prep" - so it registered that maybe for some reason I don't understand, some courses are more conductive to an introductory acquaintance than others are.
ok... much more than I wanted to have to explain, but maybe now I can get an answer.
Look, if you want to 'prep', stay away from the substantive stuff. First, its entirely possible that your professor won't even cover whatever it is you read. Second, your professor will most assuredly have his/her own quirks to teaching the material. This is what will get you points, not what a hornbook said. Third, you may not learn it properly, and as others have said, you will have to undo it.
You say you aren't burning yourself out, but you do run the risk if you try to do any real prep work. I'd stay away from even the intro books for the first and second reasons I listed above. More importantly though, its just a wash (to use your term) to try and gain an understanding of the law before you start actually learning the law. You need to know it, both at a macro and micro level, in order for it to make any real sense. For example, you mention learning about strict liability. However, it is one thing to know the concept, but to really make sense of it, you need to place it in its proper context. That would be (someone with better knowledge than I please correct me) among the various ways of holding a party accountable for their actions, and even that needs to be placed in its context, and so on. It does no good to have all these concepts and doctrines floating in your head without them being grounded in something. And based on your statements, you will try to ground them, which will put you in the position of having to un"learn" them.
Now, if you still want to read something law related before you start school, I would recommend 'The Problems of Jurisprudence'. It is by Judge Posner. Get familiar with the name, you will hear it spoken by many, sometimes with scorn, often with reverence. This book is gold for getting a quick run down of jurisprudence, and is applicable across all classes. Maybe read up on the backgrounds of both former influential and current SCOTUS Justices, as you will be reading many SCOTUS cases. Learning a bit about legal history could help too, particularly if you already have an understanding of American and world history to place it in its proper context. Learning about utilitarianism as a school of philosophy (not in any great depth, but do know the major theories of Mill and Bentham) may also help you. Beyond getting a basic familiarity with jurisprudence (which is not specifically taught in the 1L year, although I would argue it should be a required course), as well as a broad picture of the people and forces that have shaped the law, there is no real benefit conferred by prepping.
That being said, you would be even better served by just hanging out with your friends. You'll have plenty of time for actual, structured learning in August.