After Grades - What did we learn?

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Inygma
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby Inygma » Wed Jan 20, 2010 9:57 pm

Cavalier wrote:^ Congrats! For me, grades have been rather predictable in a sense. Obviously I had no idea what they would be (like most people I figured they could be anywhere from a B- to an A), but on some finals I thought I did a lot better than on others, and my grades have confirmed that. So I am not surprised at which class I did the best in and which class I did the worst in.

Maybe contracts will surprise me, when it comes out...


Hopefully surprise you or hopefully not?

pithypike
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby pithypike » Wed Jan 20, 2010 10:03 pm

1. No word limit >>>> word limit.

2. The more supplements the better.

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sayan
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby sayan » Thu Jan 21, 2010 2:21 am

pithypike wrote:1. No word limit >>>> word limit.

2. The more supplements the better.


Hey pithy, will you ever consider making a 1L guide as good as your legendary LSAT guide? :D

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Unemployed
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby Unemployed » Thu Jan 21, 2010 2:35 am

Did all the readings, but no outlining, study group, or any other such nonsense. Took class notes but did not use any. Picked up LEEWS and E&E's 3 weeks before exam period. Had 10 pg cheatsheets/flowcharts for each class. Grades: So far, so good.

What did I learn? Law school exam is yet another "eloquent bullshitting" contest.

What helped, or would have helped?
Ivy UG: one of the best trainings one can receive in eloquent bullshitting
Liberal arts major: same reason as above.
Econ major: really helps for torts, K, property, plus same reason as above
Typing school: self-explanatory

I'm really happy, but also very disillusioned.

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edcrane
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby edcrane » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:54 am

Unemployed wrote:What did I learn? Law school exam is yet another "eloquent bullshitting" contest.


What a peculiar description. I mean that would make perfect sense if you spent the semester taking "Shakespeare and the Law" and other seminars, but "eloquent bullshit" is that last thing that comes to mind when I think about civ pro or contracts.

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Unemployed
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby Unemployed » Thu Jan 21, 2010 9:24 am

edcrane wrote:
Unemployed wrote:What did I learn? Law school exam is yet another "eloquent bullshitting" contest.


What a peculiar description. I mean that would make perfect sense if you spent the semester taking "Shakespeare and the Law" and other seminars, but "eloquent bullshit" is that last thing that comes to mind when I think about civ pro or contracts.


Oops - I definitely meant to say I meant to say "elegant" instead of "eloquent" in both instances, although "elegant" probably runs into the same objection.

My theory is that at least at my school, 90% of the people are not graded on substance - most people spot most of the issues and write intelligibly. What sets an A- exam apart from a B/B+ one is not substance but rather efficiency and style.

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RVP11
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby RVP11 » Thu Jan 21, 2010 11:41 am

Unemployed wrote:
edcrane wrote:
Unemployed wrote:What did I learn? Law school exam is yet another "eloquent bullshitting" contest.


What a peculiar description. I mean that would make perfect sense if you spent the semester taking "Shakespeare and the Law" and other seminars, but "eloquent bullshit" is that last thing that comes to mind when I think about civ pro or contracts.


Oops - I definitely meant to say I meant to say "elegant" instead of "eloquent" in both instances, although "elegant" probably runs into the same objection.

My theory is that at least at my school, 90% of the people are not graded on substance - most people spot most of the issues and write intelligibly. What sets an A- exam apart from a B/B+ one is not substance but rather efficiency and style.


Strongly disagree on style. But you have a point on "efficiency." I think you'll get more points for 3,000 words that spot ~10 issues than you would for 5,000 words that discuss the same ~10 issues.

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thesealocust
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby thesealocust » Thu Jan 21, 2010 11:51 am

nm
Last edited by thesealocust on Wed Jun 30, 2010 11:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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rayiner
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby rayiner » Thu Jan 21, 2010 12:00 pm

YMMV. I went over my torts exam with my prof, and he told me exacly where I lost points, and it was all vey clear, not fuzzy stuff like style. Interestingly, most of the points I missed were things that related right to the class lectures. He'd mention something, and I'd be like: "oh, it's like that case we read!"

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Aeroplane
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby Aeroplane » Thu Jan 21, 2010 12:58 pm

thesealocust wrote:
JSUVA2012 wrote:Strongly disagree on style. But you have a point on "efficiency." I think you'll get more points for 3,000 words that spot ~10 issues than you would for 5,000 words that discuss the same ~10 issues.


None of the research I have done indicates that this is true in the general sense. It's possible some professors award points at the end of the day for concision, style, etc. Professors I've talked to about exam scoring as well as information I've read from professors on blogs or some such all indicate that length is basically irrelevant.

'length' is not to be confused with 'relevance', however. Most professors I've heard from mentioned explicitly that if they see tons of tangential or irrelevant information, it sours their impression of the exam and makes them think the student doesn't know what he or she is doing.

There are plenty of posts on TLS (Arrow comes to mind) of people writing 9-10K words and getting As. There are plenty on TLS of writing exams half that length or less and getting As. I've made two posts recently about quotes from law professors that suggest exam score and length tend to be more or less uncorrelated.
My two professors who gave issue spotters said that they strive to award points regardless of style or efficiency, BUT they both cautioned that professors grade a lot of lengthy exams consecutively and that as a practical matter poor style/over-wordiness can lead to the professor misunderstanding or even missing parts of an answer and ultimately awarding fewer points as a result.

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superserial
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby superserial » Thu Jan 21, 2010 1:26 pm

my contracts professor explicitly allocated 1/5th of our points to writing style.

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edcrane
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby edcrane » Thu Jan 21, 2010 2:25 pm

Aeroplane wrote:
thesealocust wrote:
JSUVA2012 wrote:Strongly disagree on style. But you have a point on "efficiency." I think you'll get more points for 3,000 words that spot ~10 issues than you would for 5,000 words that discuss the same ~10 issues.


None of the research I have done indicates that this is true in the general sense. It's possible some professors award points at the end of the day for concision, style, etc. Professors I've talked to about exam scoring as well as information I've read from professors on blogs or some such all indicate that length is basically irrelevant.

'length' is not to be confused with 'relevance', however. Most professors I've heard from mentioned explicitly that if they see tons of tangential or irrelevant information, it sours their impression of the exam and makes them think the student doesn't know what he or she is doing.

There are plenty of posts on TLS (Arrow comes to mind) of people writing 9-10K words and getting As. There are plenty on TLS of writing exams half that length or less and getting As. I've made two posts recently about quotes from law professors that suggest exam score and length tend to be more or less uncorrelated.
My two professors who gave issue spotters said that they strive to award points regardless of style or efficiency, BUT they both cautioned that professors grade a lot of lengthy exams consecutively and that as a practical matter poor style/over-wordiness can lead to the professor misunderstanding or even missing parts of an answer and ultimately awarding fewer points as a result.


That sounds about right. I think some people can be verbose without adversely affecting their grades but many cannot (I count myself in the latter group).

As to points for style, I will concede that professors have various grading methodologies, some of which may consider style/eloquence to a nontrivial extent. But every A and A+ exam I've written has been ugly and mechanical and has contained almost no bullshit. I've found that simply racking up points (i.e., spotting issues, succinctly stating rules, producing concise but correct analysis) has usually been sufficient to get to the top of the exam pile.
Last edited by edcrane on Thu Jan 21, 2010 5:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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BradyToMoss
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby BradyToMoss » Thu Jan 21, 2010 4:08 pm

Unemployed wrote:
Oops - I definitely meant to say I meant to say "elegant" instead of "eloquent" in both instances, although "elegant" probably runs into the same objection.

My theory is that at least at my school, 90% of the people are not graded on substance - most people spot most of the issues and write intelligibly. What sets an A- exam apart from a B/B+ one is not substance but rather efficiency and style.


This is terribly wrong. Most people don't spot most of the issues. And many of those who do spot most of the issues fail to properly analyze all of those issues. Some miss facts here or there that could provide a plausible counter-argument for one of the issues. Style has very little to do with your score on these exams (efficiency matters, but only to the extent that your inefficiency prevents you from more fully discussion the issues at hand in the allotted time).

Connelly
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby Connelly » Thu Jan 21, 2010 4:53 pm

A few professors showed us model answers that looked like they were nearly typed as texts. They can't expect Cardozo or Holmes in 3 hours.

Have any of you noticed different requirements for take-homes with respect to how they are written more so than with in-class exams? I had my first take-home this semester and hated that I couldn't just let myself answer it like a normal exam.

eth3n
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby eth3n » Thu Jan 21, 2010 5:00 pm

superserial wrote:my contracts professor explicitly allocated 1/5th of our points to writing style.


Mine said the same, but to make up for it they said our personal failures in math when calculating damages would not go against our grade :lol:

chitown825
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby chitown825 » Thu Jan 21, 2010 5:11 pm

[redacted]
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LoyolaLaw2012
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby LoyolaLaw2012 » Thu Jan 21, 2010 5:12 pm

I learned that the LSAT doesn't necessarily measure your success in law school.

chitown825
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby chitown825 » Thu Jan 21, 2010 5:15 pm

LoyolaLaw2012 wrote:I learned that the LSAT doesn't necessarily measure your success in law school.


That's because you don't need to actually know anything to perform on the LSAT. You can game it by taking enough practice tests and/or spending enough money on study programs.

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Big Shrimpin
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby Big Shrimpin » Thu Jan 21, 2010 7:20 pm

.
Last edited by Big Shrimpin on Sat Feb 20, 2010 1:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

Bankhead
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby Bankhead » Thu Jan 21, 2010 7:49 pm

LoyolaLaw2012 wrote:I learned that the LSAT doesn't necessarily measure your success in law school.


+10

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dresden doll
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby dresden doll » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:03 pm

Bankhead wrote:
LoyolaLaw2012 wrote:I learned that the LSAT doesn't necessarily measure your success in law school.


+10


Uh, that's your lesson? You needed to get through the first semester of law school in order to figure out that being at the 75th percentile of your school's range doesn't guarantee top quarter class rank? Really now.

I thought that the whole point was to distinguish people with more natural ability but that once you got to school, you still needed to invest a great deal of effort, lest you be outperformed by a high GPA/lower LSAT hard worker.

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sawwaverunner
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby sawwaverunner » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:04 pm

Big Shrimpin wrote:top 15% at T2 after first semester--killself? Dropout? Buckle down?

I think I aged about a decade waiting for grades to be released.

My lesson: One class can tank the ship.


Cmon... A.) that is a good class rank; B.) clearly you have to look at what you did wrong in the "tanked" class; and C.) Buckle down.

Aside from that, very nice job. Don't let TLS skew your view of what constitutes good and bad grades. If you are bent on seeing this as something bad, then so be it. Aside from that though, try and be happy about your performance, taking into consideration that graduating in the top 5% and making law review are still both very much in your grasp.

eth3n
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby eth3n » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:10 pm

Big Shrimpin wrote:top 15% at T2 after first semester--killself? Dropout? Buckle down?

I think I aged about a decade waiting for grades to be released.

My lesson: One class can tank the ship.


I feel you on the one class part.

#1 - BASE YOUR DECISION ON YOUR PERSONAL FINANCIAL SITUATION
Are you paying sticker? Will you only accept biglaw? What will your debt be?
If you will be in huge amounts of debt, I think you know the answer cause almost every single post says that bigmoney jobs are very very hard to get ITE (assuming no special circumstances), especially from anything past T14 if you arent the shining star of your year.

Do the math, if it is economically unfeasible for you to continue if you can't get biglaw job, might be smart to cut your losses. Do not assume you will bring up the grades. If you have a scholly, or you will be in tiny debt/you have your own money, fuck it do what you want, if you can find a job THAT YOU ENJOY reasonably obtainable with top 1/3 of your school, go for it.

The biglaw hysteria is a money issue. Some people are paying out the nose for their education (150k+) and its value is dropping fast.
Last edited by eth3n on Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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vanwinkle
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby vanwinkle » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:11 pm

Big Shrimpin wrote:My lesson: One class can tank the ship.

So tragically true. :evil:

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samiseaborn
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Re: After Grades - What did we learn?

Postby samiseaborn » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:33 pm

Big Shrimpin wrote:top 15% at T2 after first semester--killself? Dropout? Buckle down?

I think I aged about a decade waiting for grades to be released.

My lesson: One class can tank the ship.


I sympathize. I'm going with buckled down... and hope enough people in the top 10% choke this semester. Evil, but necessary.




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