If I could do my first semester over again...

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BradyToMoss
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby BradyToMoss » Thu Dec 18, 2008 3:44 pm

underdawg wrote:best advice ever: DO THE PRACTICE QUESTIONS in the E&E's, or at least read the answers. some of the most important stuff is hidden in there...


TITCR. Makes the issues in the exam's fact pattern pop out right away when you see the same type of thing going. Both the CivPro and Torts E&E do an excellent job in the question section of helping you identify the nuances and critical issues in relation to the rules.

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silver11
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby silver11 » Thu Dec 18, 2008 3:48 pm

So should I read E&E before school starts or wait till after?

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Grad_Student
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby Grad_Student » Thu Dec 18, 2008 3:53 pm

If I could do my first semester over again, I wouldn't

1.5L
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby 1.5L » Thu Dec 18, 2008 5:27 pm

...
Last edited by 1.5L on Fri Jun 19, 2009 6:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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BradyToMoss
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby BradyToMoss » Thu Dec 18, 2008 6:10 pm

1.5L wrote:Things I Won't Change
1. Study for about 4.5 - 5.5 hours daily
2. Not work at night and get at least eight hours of sleep
3. Not work on Saturdays and Sundays, except before an LRW assignment is due
4. Brief all cases, except in criminal law
5. Outline throughout the semester
6. Think about "will this help me on the final?" as a filter for outlining and note-taking
7. Study for exams mainly by doing old exam problems
8. Avoid study groups until finals
9. Avoid the complainers: people are way too negative about law school

Things I Would Change
1. Become more involved in groups and social events
2. Not brief cases for classes like criminal law
3. Put more effort into ungraded midterms
4. Take practice exams earlier in the semester to get a feel for what to focus on


I tend to ignore advice from people who are spending 5 hours a day outside of class in the first half of the semester. If you spend that amount of time and aren't in the top 5% you just are not working efficiently at all.

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underdawg
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby underdawg » Thu Dec 18, 2008 8:45 pm

douche alert~!

RTR10
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby RTR10 » Thu Dec 18, 2008 10:31 pm

SenatorDoherty wrote: I tend to ignore advice from people who are spending 5 hours a day outside of class in the first half of the semester. If you spend that amount of time and aren't in the top 5% you just are not working efficiently at all.
Some people just don't do well on exams. It's not necessarily about efficiency. Some people genuinely have to work harder to understand the material. Stop being such a jackass.

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lmondragon
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby lmondragon » Fri Dec 19, 2008 2:51 am

ajlrf03 wrote:
SenatorDoherty wrote: I tend to ignore advice from people who are spending 5 hours a day outside of class in the first half of the semester. If you spend that amount of time and aren't in the top 5% you just are not working efficiently at all.
Some people just don't do well on exams. It's not necessarily about efficiency. Some people genuinely have to work harder to understand the material. Stop being such a jackass.

you sound boring. (not you senator!)

underdawg wrote:douche alert~!

pick a place. im coming to your side of town! <3

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CookNbyTheBooK
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby CookNbyTheBooK » Fri Dec 19, 2008 2:19 pm

Learn to type faster. I just got styled on in my one in class final, knew what to say...was typing non stop...sucked

06072010
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby 06072010 » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:20 pm


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CookNbyTheBooK
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby CookNbyTheBooK » Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:31 pm



lol thank you for that

snotrocket
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby snotrocket » Sat Dec 20, 2008 2:14 am

So far, only two things I feel safe in saying I would do again:

1) Study for your last exam first.

Three days between exams seems like a lot when you're looking at it from a month away. It's not. I don't know yet whether anything I did will yield where it counts (in grades). But I do know that if I hadn't spent a week doing focused exam prep on Ks before classes ended, then I would have gone into the exam with no more than about 12 hours of concentrated review. Also, the further you get into those last couple of ugly weeks, the more people will shut down, so that last exam may be your best chance to climb the curve a little. Once classes end, things just come unhinged, and you will be sucked into spending all your time on whatever horror is next at hand. You will also be be wrecked for 12-18 hours after each exam (at least I was), so you have precious little time to do anything that is left undone for the second and third in line.

2) Put as much time as you can stand into your legal writing assignments.

Lots of people will say it's stupid to do any more than you can possibly get away with for a P/F class. But this class -- and nowhere else in 1L -- is where you are really going to learn to "think like a lawyer." Doctrinal classes are going to bury you in cases (100 in three months on my Ks syllabus), and by the time you even get half a sense what one of them means, you're on to the next one. In legal writing you have the chance to learn how to read a line of a half-dozen or so related cases in depth, all from the same jurisdiction and on the same point of law. And you will learn how to form that flock of scattered, half-baked, rambling, contradictory "holdings" into a solid, working legal argument. It is damn hard learning the difference between stating a point and arguing a point, and here is where you have the chance to spend enough time on one point to learn that.

The one problem with this is that there are good legal writing instructors and there are awful ones. I learned more in legal writing than in any other class, including in areas that are crucial to being able to study productively for and function coherently on final exams. That was entirely due to having an outstanding legal writing instructor who was a practicing litigator for years, and who gave endless amounts of solid, direct, useful advice -- no silly games or tedious, self-indulgent academic diatribes. One of our other sections had an instructor who went out of their way to make the class a hateful, pointless chore. In that spot, I probably would have gone the route of doing the least I could to get by.

3) Commit two or three hours a week, every week, to a substantial pro-bono or service activity.

If you can get into clinics as a 1L, then that's a great start. Like legal writing, this will teach you more about the law in two hours a week than you will learn from all the rest of the silly crap you do in the first year combined. If you don't have access to clinics, then sign up with some organization like Street Law or just volunteer with a student group or a local agency that does real legal work. Do some research and writing, client intakes, basic pleadings, outreach and education -- whatever. Lets face it, if you don't do this, then you're just going to piss away most of those couple of hours playing Wii, getting blitzed, or just plain procrastinating anyway, because nobody ever studies as much as they should (or at least as much as they think they should). When you find yourself solidly in the middle of that 90% who don't wind up in the top 10%, you better have something to show what you did with all that time that you obviously did not spend rocking the curve.

Don't get me wrong -- grades come first, because this is after all law school. But remember that there is such a thing as diminishing returns to spending all of your time studying. After a certain point, the people doing unreal amounts of work keep going just because they have no idea what they should be doing, but they think that more work can never hurt, no matter how senseless it is. A lot of 1Ls will do almost no productive community or volunteer service their first semester, because they're afraid to "overcommit." But you will find endless ways to "commit" to avoiding all of the work that you know you should be doing at every turn. And there will always be more that you could do, no matter how much you get done. Make sure at least some of those hours that you spend avoiding law school will leave you with something more interesting than "J.D. Candidate, May 2011," to fill out that shiny new section of your resume.

--

Ok, so that's three things. I'm saving anything else until grades come back.

thruruby
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Re:

Postby thruruby » Tue May 05, 2009 7:37 pm

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Last edited by thruruby on Tue Dec 27, 2011 7:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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ruraljuror
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby ruraljuror » Tue May 05, 2009 7:43 pm

Tagging so I can come back to this, and wondering if I should get the EEs right now?

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TTT-LS
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby TTT-LS » Tue May 05, 2009 8:10 pm

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Last edited by TTT-LS on Mon Jun 21, 2010 3:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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BradyToMoss
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby BradyToMoss » Wed May 06, 2009 12:13 am

ruraljuror wrote:Tagging so I can come back to this, and wondering if I should get the EEs right now?


you should get drunk right now, and as often as possible for that matter this summer. Your liver will get nearly a month's break from thanksgiving to christmas, use (abuse?) it while you can.

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Son of Cicero
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby Son of Cicero » Thu May 07, 2009 11:06 pm

Son of Cicero wrote:Hindsight revision #1:
I would have spent all of my criminal law study time focusing on the material from the last 5 weeks of class.

Same with Property this time. Our issue-spotter focused almost entirely on 3 of the 22 units we studied this semester. All 3 of these came from the final 6 units listed on the syllabus - nothing from before the start of April.

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BradyToMoss
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby BradyToMoss » Fri May 08, 2009 12:23 am

Son of Cicero wrote:
Son of Cicero wrote:Hindsight revision #1:
I would have spent all of my criminal law study time focusing on the material from the last 5 weeks of class.

Same with Property this time. Our issue-spotter focused almost entirely on 3 of the 22 units we studied this semester. All 3 of these came from the final 6 units listed on the syllabus - nothing from before the start of April.


Was it ED/Regulatory takings at the end? I would have been pissed...

whydontyoublogit
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby whydontyoublogit » Fri May 08, 2009 10:53 am

I wouldn't do anything differently at all. Did the reading, worked a ton of practice exams, did some supplement practice problems, created my own outline and did very well.

I did the exact same thing in the spring semester and I can only hope that my grades will come out the same.

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Radio King
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby Radio King » Fri May 08, 2009 11:12 am

I wish I'd gone to more office hours earlier in the semester. I went a lot towards the end of both semesters, but it was predictably packed. Would have been nice to get to know the professors more, both for networking and potential recommendations.

MissMiddie
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby MissMiddie » Fri May 08, 2009 11:16 am

Great thread, guys--thanks for bringing it back to life after late December.

tcortez
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby tcortez » Mon May 11, 2009 4:48 pm

ruraljuror wrote:Tagging so I can come back to this, and wondering if I should get the EEs right now?


Yea I def plan on chillin this summer but I also want to be prepared, even if just a tad bit. If a nerd like me were to get EE's for the summer, what would be recommeded? I just dont wanna walk into class in the fall and be completely overwhelmed.

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BradyToMoss
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby BradyToMoss » Mon May 11, 2009 8:01 pm

Check if the professor requires the casebook for the exam, if not, save $150.

Find an old outline from the professor before the semester starts, just follow along with the outline in class instead of taking notes, editing as necessary.

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Radio King
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby Radio King » Tue May 12, 2009 12:31 pm

tcortez wrote:
ruraljuror wrote:Tagging so I can come back to this, and wondering if I should get the EEs right now?


Yea I def plan on chillin this summer but I also want to be prepared, even if just a tad bit. If a nerd like me were to get EE's for the summer, what would be recommeded? I just dont wanna walk into class in the fall and be completely overwhelmed.


First, don't worry about studying over the summer. You won't be behind by not studying- you should spend you summer doing what you won't have time to do in law school.

That being said, if you want to simply get the supplements over the summer, here's what I'd recommend:
E&Es for civ pro, torts, and crim; Understanding Property from Lexis or the Property E&E; Chemerinsky for con law; and Chirelstein for contracts (Concepts and Case Analysis series, aka the "boat book")

If you insist on reading them over the summer, I'd read them in order of the subjects that are likely to be most foreign to you coming into law school. That is: civ pro, torts, property, contracts, con law, and crim law. Start with the subjects you'll have first semester, if you know already.

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Z'Barron
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Re: If I could do my first semester over again...

Postby Z'Barron » Thu May 21, 2009 3:28 pm

To the OP: This is golden!

+100!




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