Asking Profs About Exams

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manbearwig
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Asking Profs About Exams

Postby manbearwig » Sat Aug 28, 2010 9:58 pm

I know it's only the first week, but if, in the next week or so, I went to the professors' office hours and asked about exam format, would that be okay? Except for one, none has said or posted (on blackboard) anything about exams. I'd just like to know if it's essay/multiple choice/short answer, take home/in class, and open or closed book. Is it too soon/too "gunnerish" to ask now?

Also, would it be too up front to ask about what we should be taking away from each class? For example, ask if we should know facts about individual cases or if we just need to know black letter law, maybe with a case name to back it up.

Thanks!

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skoobily doobily
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Re: Asking Profs About Exams

Postby skoobily doobily » Sat Aug 28, 2010 10:42 pm

I've already gone to office hours because i've been confused what to "take away" from a set of cases. Also, if you're worried about something being "gunnerish" the mere fact that you've thought about it and still cant tell if it is or not means it probably isn't. Sure it isn't important now but if you're really just curious it won't hurt to ask.

revolution724
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Re: Asking Profs About Exams

Postby revolution724 » Sat Aug 28, 2010 10:47 pm

I don't think it's a problem to ask about exam format. Lots of professors tell you the exam format up front in the syllabus. Plus, sometimes professors post old exams online. I worked for a prof who distributed previous years' exams with sample answers during the first week. Go for it.

On your second question, about what you should take away from each class - you can ask, but I wouldn't necessarily expect a direct answer.

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manbearwig
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Re: Asking Profs About Exams

Postby manbearwig » Sat Aug 28, 2010 11:05 pm

revolution724 wrote:I don't think it's a problem to ask about exam format. Lots of professors tell you the exam format up front in the syllabus. Plus, sometimes professors post old exams online. I worked for a prof who distributed previous years' exams with sample answers during the first week. Go for it.

On your second question, about what you should take away from each class - you can ask, but I wouldn't necessarily expect a direct answer.


Surprisingly, only one prof included anything important about the exams, and he posted previous ones on blackboard. The others haven't said anything, and their syllabuses aren't helpful at all.

Yeah, I'm kind of betting on some kind of side-stepping answer, if anything, but I'm guessing it's worth a shot. If anything, I hope if they tell me the exam formats, I can kind of guess what type of notes I should be taking.

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presh
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Re: Asking Profs About Exams

Postby presh » Sat Aug 28, 2010 11:11 pm

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Last edited by presh on Sun Dec 27, 2015 11:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

270910
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Re: Asking Profs About Exams

Postby 270910 » Sat Aug 28, 2010 11:30 pm

ahahaha. Law professors love to tell you nothing about their exams. They have secret tree house lairs where they gather to relish in how little they disclose about their exams.

Most will give you a practice exam or questions of some kind later in the semester, but I wouldn't expect much beyond that. The best entry into this discussion would be to ask about format in terms of open/closed note - that information matters to you much earlier than any other question, but broaches the subject none the less.

If your school has an exam database you can look the info up for yourselves too.

Edit to add: All law school courses and exams are identical. You'll get a fact pattern and have to respond to it. The existence of multiple choice questions or other oddities can't be controlled for well, but some variation will inevitably exist. Still, one prime reason profs don't tell you much is there really is a standard format most adhere to in one form or another.




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