2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

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dj_roomba
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2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby dj_roomba » Sat Nov 09, 2013 1:29 pm

I know studying is not perfectly correlated with grades, which is why I'm asking this question.
I'm wondering if all my work will somehow lead to a grade less than a B+, which would suck.

A lot of people around me says the material is "easy". Even after studying more than my peers, I still feel like I'm lacking in understanding for certain concepts. I get the gist of things but I have still have questions about certain complex details. It feels like people around me study less but "get it", while I don't.
For example, I get the gist of parol evidence rule but not all the intricacies. It seems like there are endless details and applications to it, and I have so many questions. Other people say it's very simple, which leaves me confused.

Any 2L, 3Ls put their work in (~5+ hours/day during semester and considerably more during exam times) and STILL get less than a B+? What would you have done differently (besides PTs; I'm not concerned yet since I'm not ready to take them). I'm not at that point of PTs yet but I want to know how I can improve on my studying to prepare for those.


Basically, I guess I'm worried I'm putting in the hours but will have nothing to show for it.

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northwood
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby northwood » Sat Nov 09, 2013 1:55 pm

its not what you know, its how you apply it to the fact pattern.

Everyone will know the BLL cold. not everyone will apply it to the facts properly, or do so in a matter that pleases the professor. some want to have a discussion on all elements of a rule, others, only elements that are in themselves issues.

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mr. wednesday
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby mr. wednesday » Sat Nov 09, 2013 2:18 pm

Of course people put in work and still get poor grades. Some of the hardest working people I knew in law school were near the bottom of the class consistently because they didn't do well in timed essay exams, or did do well but not as well as everyone else, or whatever other reason. And some of the people at the top of the class were out drinking every night.

Probably practice tests from your professor are the best resource, even though that's not what you want to hear.

JDot
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby JDot » Sat Nov 09, 2013 2:38 pm

I'm a 1L so take this with a grain of salt, but it seems it's really just knowing how to take a law school test well. We just got our practice civ pro exams back (they don't count unfortunately) and I got an A. I honestly barely studied at all because I knew it didn't count and still did better than mostly everyone else. During the summer prior to law school I read Getting to Maybe, both of John Delaney's exam books, did LEEWS, and read some BarBri book about 1L exams. I guarantee a lot of people knew the material better than me, but I also guarantee I knew how to properly write a law school exam better than them. I highly suggest reading some of those books I mentioned above. EVERYONE will know the material come finals, but the As go to those that know how to properly write an exam. I obviously have no clue what grades I'll get come December, but that A in the civ pro practice exam definitely leads me to believe that my knowledge of exam writing is paying off.

mr.hands
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby mr.hands » Sat Nov 09, 2013 2:44 pm

OP, are you studying for 5 hours a day in addition to classes? Holy shit...

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brotherdarkness
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby brotherdarkness » Sat Nov 09, 2013 2:48 pm

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Last edited by brotherdarkness on Fri Mar 28, 2014 9:50 am, edited 1 time in total.

mr.hands
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby mr.hands » Sat Nov 09, 2013 3:01 pm

brotherdarkness wrote:
mr.hands wrote:OP, are you studying for 5 hours a day in addition to classes? Holy shit...


It's November and, for 1Ls, 5 hours/day is far from "[h]oly shit" status.


oooh because i skimmed the title of the thread, i assumed OP was a 2L who was worried about grades (for clerking or some other random reason). That makes much more sense

OP, all that's in your control is your studying and exam prep. Don't worry about anything else.

shock259
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby shock259 » Sat Nov 09, 2013 3:16 pm

Knowing how to apply facts to law > knowing weird intricacies of the parol evidence rule.

Just know the basic doctrine, and be able to take a fact pattern and apply it to the law. Which exception will apply? Argue that it does apply. Switch hats and pretend you are the other attorney. Argue that it does not apply. Move on to the next relevant exception. Rinse, repeat.

Your exam will not give you an area of settled law. There won't be an obscure case that settles the matter definitively. You'll have to argue both sides, and made a conclusion.

Read Getting to Maybe if you haven't already. It sounds like you are too focused on the law itself and not focused enough on the exam.

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RemyMarathe
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby RemyMarathe » Sat Nov 09, 2013 10:43 pm

dj_roomba wrote:(~5+ hours/day during semester and considerably more during exam times) and STILL get less than a B+?



Just to be clear, we're talking 5+ hours of work a day early semester (including mainly prep/reading for class),
OR 5+ hours of studying (as in reviewing earlier material, doing hypos, practice exams, etc.)?

I'm not at a a t14 so maybe it's different, but does anyone put up the latter effort? I only recently started outlining and "studying," but was spending five hours a day on school before that (reading cases and supplements mainly, no practice exams or review).

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby Tiago Splitter » Sat Nov 09, 2013 10:45 pm

RemyMarathe wrote:
dj_roomba wrote:(~5+ hours/day during semester and considerably more during exam times) and STILL get less than a B+?



Just to be clear, we're talking 5+ hours of work a day early semester (including mainly prep/reading for class),
OR 5+ hours of studying (as in reviewing earlier material, doing hypos, practice exams, etc.)?

I'm not at a a t14 so maybe it's different, but does anyone put up the latter effort? I only recently started outlining and "studying," but was spending five hours a day on school before that (reading cases and supplements mainly, no practice exams or review).

I don't think anyone puts 5 hours of day into studying outside of class, even as a 1L. And I'm sure that even among those who do some get B's since that's like 40% of the class on a typical 3.3 curve.

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RemyMarathe
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby RemyMarathe » Sat Nov 09, 2013 10:47 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:I don't think anyone puts 5 hours of day into studying outside of class, even as a 1L. And I'm sure that even among those who do some get B's since that's like 40% of the class on a typical 3.3 curve.


Ha good to hear. I was beginning to think I've been talking past people when we talk about "studying."

09042014
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby 09042014 » Sat Nov 09, 2013 11:29 pm

JDot wrote:I'm a 1L so take this with a grain of salt, but it seems it's really just knowing how to take a law school test well. We just got our practice civ pro exams back (they don't count unfortunately) and I got an A. I honestly barely studied at all because I knew it didn't count and still did better than mostly everyone else. During the summer prior to law school I read Getting to Maybe, both of John Delaney's exam books, did LEEWS, and read some BarBri book about 1L exams. I guarantee a lot of people knew the material better than me, but I also guarantee I knew how to properly write a law school exam better than them. I highly suggest reading some of those books I mentioned above. EVERYONE will know the material come finals, but the As go to those that know how to properly write an exam. I obviously have no clue what grades I'll get come December, but that A in the civ pro practice exam definitely leads me to believe that my knowledge of exam writing is paying off.


FYI people will start figuring out how to take tests. Especially after a midterm. You need to learn the material almost 100 percent by finals.

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brotherdarkness
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby brotherdarkness » Sat Nov 09, 2013 11:54 pm

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Last edited by brotherdarkness on Fri Mar 28, 2014 9:50 am, edited 1 time in total.

dj_roomba
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby dj_roomba » Sun Nov 10, 2013 3:12 am

What makes me uneasy is the fact that there is just so much material. TLS says everyone knows BLL cold but I guess I find it very difficult. I'm caught up on outlining but looking back, there's so much material that I feel like I'll forget. And we still have a month ahead.

Also, on top of that, worrying about how to get better on exam-writing is just overwhelming.

I'm putting in 6-12 hours a day now and it barely feels enough.

I think the BIGGEST factor though, is that one of my professors doesn't teach us BLL. In fact, his lecture is 99% useless. He doesn't TEACH at all. I'm totally lost in the class because of this. My entire outline has maybe 1% from his lecture.

Sorry I guess I'm just ranting now.

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2014
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby 2014 » Sun Nov 10, 2013 10:21 am

The exam I went into most prepared last year I median'd which depending on your school might be <B+. It happens, no idea what she was going for on the test, butI don't think I could have done anything different to prepare. These are the situations that make people on TLS say never assume you will be top X%, because there's so much uncertainty.

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stillwater
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby stillwater » Sun Nov 10, 2013 10:38 am

dj_roomba wrote:What makes me uneasy is the fact that there is just so much material. TLS says everyone knows BLL cold but I guess I find it very difficult. I'm caught up on outlining but looking back, there's so much material that I feel like I'll forget. And we still have a month ahead.

Also, on top of that, worrying about how to get better on exam-writing is just overwhelming.

I'm putting in 6-12 hours a day now and it barely feels enough.

I think the BIGGEST factor though, is that one of my professors doesn't teach us BLL. In fact, his lecture is 99% useless. He doesn't TEACH at all. I'm totally lost in the class because of this. My entire outline has maybe 1% from his lecture.

Sorry I guess I'm just ranting now.


just find a good supplement and 2L/3L's outline and you should be fine. these classes actually pose an opportunity for you to beat the curve because everyone else is getting as little information in class as you are.

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bruinfan10
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby bruinfan10 » Sun Nov 10, 2013 12:06 pm

Desert Fox wrote:FYI people will start figuring out how to take tests. Especially after a midterm. You need to learn the material almost 100 percent by finals.

Meh, I think you're overselling it. I never learned the material that comprehensively and I placed well. The depth of information people demonstrate on a 3-hour pressure cooker exam is shockingly low; it doesn't take much knowledge to beat strivers if you don't freak out on the exam.

Therefore...
stillwater wrote:just find a good supplement and 2L/3L's outline and you should be fine. these classes actually pose an opportunity for you to beat the curve because everyone else is getting as little information in class as you are.

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MrSparkle
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby MrSparkle » Sun Nov 10, 2013 4:23 pm

JDot wrote:I'm a 1L so take this with a grain of salt, but it seems it's really just knowing how to take a law school test well. We just got our practice civ pro exams back (they don't count unfortunately) and I got an A. I honestly barely studied at all because I knew it didn't count and still did better than mostly everyone else. During the summer prior to law school I read Getting to Maybe, both of John Delaney's exam books, did LEEWS, and read some BarBri book about 1L exams. I guarantee a lot of people knew the material better than me, but I also guarantee I knew how to properly write a law school exam better than them. I highly suggest reading some of those books I mentioned above. EVERYONE will know the material come finals, but the As go to those that know how to properly write an exam. I obviously have no clue what grades I'll get come December, but that A in the civ pro practice exam definitely leads me to believe that my knowledge of exam writing is paying off.


(2L at T14, top %%, LR, etc. etc.): I'm convinced there isn't a "proper" way to write an exam. What matters is how CLEAR it is. IMO, out of all of those exam tips books, GTM is the best one, but GTM emphasizes the trap of IRAC. I completely agree - it is a trap. You just have to use what your prof taught you, and write it in a clear way. I'm a big proponent of giving broad overviews before delving in so there is context and weight assigned to each issue - this is what a REAL lawyer would do for a client. So imagine you're giving advice and lay it out in a coherent, logical manner. If I had to put it into a formula, I'd say, very loosely, CIRAC - conclusion first. But sometimes it'll look like CIRIRIRAC or like CIIIRAC.

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Lexaholik
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Re: 2L/3Ls - have you ever "put your work in" and still got <B+?

Postby Lexaholik » Mon Nov 11, 2013 4:46 pm

dj_roomba wrote:I know studying is not perfectly correlated with grades, which is why I'm asking this question.
I'm wondering if all my work will somehow lead to a grade less than a B+, which would suck.

A lot of people around me says the material is "easy". Even after studying more than my peers, I still feel like I'm lacking in understanding for certain concepts. I get the gist of things but I have still have questions about certain complex details. It feels like people around me study less but "get it", while I don't.
For example, I get the gist of parol evidence rule but not all the intricacies. It seems like there are endless details and applications to it, and I have so many questions. Other people say it's very simple, which leaves me confused.

Any 2L, 3Ls put their work in (~5+ hours/day during semester and considerably more during exam times) and STILL get less than a B+? What would you have done differently (besides PTs; I'm not concerned yet since I'm not ready to take them). I'm not at that point of PTs yet but I want to know how I can improve on my studying to prepare for those.


Basically, I guess I'm worried I'm putting in the hours but will have nothing to show for it.


what year are you? if you're a 1L, then relax, you don't know if you're good or bad at this law school game yet. if you're a 2L or 3L then here's my advice.

it's not so much "getting it" or "not getting it." the fact is that whatever law school tests comes easier/more naturally to certain people. (i suspect it's easier for those who scored higher on the LSAT, but have no conclusive evidence) in law school i was not one of the "naturals", so like you, i'd study so much more than my friends (similar amounts to you) and still end up with just a B. (spoiler alert: after law school i was a federal clerk and now i'm a biglaw associate)

the real question you should ask yourself is: "given my inadequacies, what should i do to max out my grades?" on this front, there is much you can do, including:

- asking the "smart" kids for their law exam answers to see what they look like
- meeting with professors so they can tear apart your previous exams and explain what you did wrong
- talking things over with top performing 2Ls and 3Ls to see how they approach exam prep, including outlining, class participation, and practice exams. here, flattery will take you far.

the material may be tough for you to understand completely, but the approach to law school and exams isn't rocket science. do what works for you, get feedback from those you admire. wash, rinse, repeat. don't give up, and sooner or later you will reap the rewards.

in law, like much of life, there's no guarantee you will have anything to show for all the hard work you've done. but strangely the harder you work, the luckier you'll get.




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