How much does structure matter?

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johansantana21
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How much does structure matter?

Postby johansantana21 » Tue Nov 22, 2011 11:55 pm

On the law school exam? If it's by point structure does it matter if your structure is all over the place as long as you have the relevant issues and analysis in there?

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Extension_Cord
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Re: How much does structure matter?

Postby Extension_Cord » Wed Nov 23, 2011 12:01 am

johansantana21 wrote:On the law school exam? If it's by point structure does it matter if your structure is all over the place as long as you have the relevant issues and analysis in there?


Ask your professor.

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AlexanderSupertramp
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Re: How much does structure matter?

Postby AlexanderSupertramp » Wed Nov 23, 2011 12:14 am

Yeah. My Torts professor is very big on IRAC structure in a very crisp methodical way, sounds almost juvenile to me but that's what she wants. Contracts would rather have rule- then a back and forth as to which party would argue what then how the court should rule.

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NeighborGuy
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Re: How much does structure matter?

Postby NeighborGuy » Wed Nov 23, 2011 12:38 am

Extension_Cord wrote:
johansantana21 wrote:On the law school exam? If it's by point structure does it matter if your structure is all over the place as long as you have the relevant issues and analysis in there?


Ask your professor.


This, but I imagine most profs. aren't going to spend time struggling to decipher an incomprehensible exam. Part of being a lawyer is being able to communicate your ideas clearly.

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5ky
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Re: How much does structure matter?

Postby 5ky » Wed Nov 23, 2011 12:54 am

NeighborGuy wrote:
Extension_Cord wrote:
johansantana21 wrote:On the law school exam? If it's by point structure does it matter if your structure is all over the place as long as you have the relevant issues and analysis in there?


Ask your professor.


This, but I imagine most profs. aren't going to spend time struggling to decipher an incomprehensible exam. Part of being a lawyer is being able to communicate your ideas clearly.


+1. I did best on the exams where I used headings and subheadings liberally, but your mileage may vary. That's closer to a professor preference, but clearly delineated sections of issues/analysis can be quite helpful. Professors read the exams very quickly.

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MrPapagiorgio
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Re: How much does structure matter?

Postby MrPapagiorgio » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:16 am

I am going to reiterate two points mentioned above: professor-dependent and clear and concise structure > a jarbled mess.

My contracts professor wants the exam answers to be very methodical, and if you answer something out of order he has stated that he will only give partial credit.
My civ pro professor has an ordered grading key, but will give you full credit as long as you hit the issue.
My torts professor doesn't give two shits as long as you have all the issues spotted.
(in case you were wondering, my crim professor doesn't care about order because the exam is designed so that nobody can finish it in 3 hours)

As a concluding point about good organization: the arguments will be easier to follow and if you are methodical, organized and concise, obviously your answer will come across stronger (provided that your analysis is on point). For example, on a torts issue-spotter, if you talk about duty, breach, causation, damages and defenses in an order that makes no fucking sense, then you answer will not be as strong as another student who provided an answer in a step-by-step process.

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kalvano
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Re: How much does structure matter?

Postby kalvano » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:40 am

Structure is very important. Use headings and organize things by legal issue.

shock259
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Re: How much does structure matter?

Postby shock259 » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:42 am

I'm skeptical of professors that say they don't care at all about format. At some level, it is going to affect how they grade your work.

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kalvano
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Re: How much does structure matter?

Postby kalvano » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:48 am

If you're reading 100+ exams and you get someone that thinks they James Joyce and write it all in one sentence versus someone who has clear headings and says "THIS IS WHAT I AM GOING TO TALK ABOUT IN THIS SECTION"...who do you think the professor is going to be more inclined to give a better grade to?

It can't possibly hurt to organize everything. It migh hurt not to.




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