Should I Take Evidence

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nrthwst4now

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Should I Take Evidence

Postby nrthwst4now » Sun Jan 06, 2019 6:36 pm

I am a 3L at Berkeley. Going into transactional work and taking a non-CA bar exam. Should I take evidence for the sole reason it could help with bar prep?

estefanchanning

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby estefanchanning » Sun Jan 06, 2019 7:49 pm

nrthwst4now wrote:I am a 3L at Berkeley. Going into transactional work and taking a non-CA bar exam. Should I take evidence for the sole reason it could help with bar prep?


Absolutely. This a no-brainer. Anyone who says otherwise either hasn't taken a bar exam or is Einstein.

estefanchanning

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby estefanchanning » Sun Jan 06, 2019 8:18 pm

I felt compelled to post twice to emphasize the importance of taking evidence during school. It ranks number one before any other subject in terms of importance and difficulty (ok maybe not before property, but it's close).

nixy

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby nixy » Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:27 pm

Eh, I don't think anyone should take anything solely for bar prep. If there isn't anything you'd rather take, go for it, but you don't have to.

BasilHallward

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby BasilHallward » Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:55 pm

nixy wrote:Eh, I don't think anyone should take anything solely for bar prep. If there isn't anything you'd rather take, go for it, but you don't have to.


Eh, I definitely disagree with this. Yes, some subjects are quite narrow in scope, like Oil & Gas in Texas, and can be learned in a very short period of time. This is not the case with evidence. It's a monster course, and yes, rather intuitive, once you get the hang of it. Long story short, you don't wanna crack this subject for the first time in preparing for the Bar. It's just a headache. Would it be the end of the world? Probably not. You know your study habits.

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SilvermanBarPrep

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby SilvermanBarPrep » Mon Jan 07, 2019 2:10 pm

It's tough to overstate how helpful it will be to take the course. Evidence will be so difficult to learn during the bar prep period while trying to learn all the other subjects.

--Sean (Silverman Bar Exam Tutoring)

Daboose

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby Daboose » Wed Jan 09, 2019 5:39 pm

I'm a transactional lawyer and I would highly recommend taking evidence - I think it is just one of the those subjects that every lawyer should have some understanding of. I'm surprised that it is not a required course.

That said, I don't think it would be that hard to learn for the bar if you had to. From what I remember - at least on the Texas bar - most of the evidence questions were relatively straightforward if you learned the fundamental rules, which your prep course will cover. You would just probably have to budget extra time to studying those sections because you would be learning it for the first time.

cam1992

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby cam1992 » Wed Jan 09, 2019 6:34 pm

FWIW I have no interest in litigation or anything in a court room (even though I was placed in a litigation group for next summer :oops: ), but I absolutely loved Evidence. It may have just been the professor, but it was my favorite course last semester and by far my favorite course so far in law school. I was not looking forward to taking the course, I only signed up for the bar, but I ended up finding it absolutely fascinating. You never know!

albanach

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby albanach » Wed Jan 09, 2019 8:30 pm

Yes, you should take Evidence.

Npret

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby Npret » Wed Jan 09, 2019 11:08 pm

What would you take instead? Evidence will make the bar exam easier. You already have a job, so I would take evidence and not have to worry about teaching it to yourself for the bar exam.

gregfootball2001

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby gregfootball2001 » Thu Jan 10, 2019 3:06 pm

It depends on your state. If it's a multiple-choice topic and an essay topic, then yes, it'll make your life much easier.

nrthwst4now

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby nrthwst4now » Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:39 am

Hi All! Thanks for the input. Decided to take evidence.

notrub14

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby notrub14 » Tue Jan 15, 2019 3:07 pm

I'm gonna disagree with most of the responses to this thread. I never took evidence, didn't even know what topics it included, and had no problem with it during bar prep. Several of my friends--including most that were going to do transactional work--also didn't take and also didn't have a problem. Maybe if you're someone who is at risk to fail the bar--low LSAT, bad grades, etc.--then it's advisable to take it. Otherwise just coast.

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby JHP » Mon Apr 01, 2019 3:36 pm

Sounds like OP decided to take evidence, but FWIW, for anyone else reading this thread, I'll put in another vote for taking evidence, at least on a pass/fail basis. While I don't think it's a "you must take this or you will fail this section on the bar exam" type course, I found that having read the rules (somewhat) thoroughly and having examples to remember right off the bat in my back pocket by the time studying and the exam rolled around was extremely helpful. It allowed me to focus a healthy amount on the evidence questions, but not so much so that I felt that I was taking away from other more personally troublesome areas on the exam. I felt more confident going into the exam on evidence questions because I knew that if I forgot what BARBRI told me about a rule, I would likely remember echos of the rule from class.

albanach

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby albanach » Mon Apr 01, 2019 4:32 pm

I'm also firmly in the take evidence camp. I think it's the most helpful non-required course when it comes to the bar.

However, on top of that, it's helpful for all sorts of lawyering later on. Assuming you don't make partner, what are your later career plans? If you're in-house, even on the transactional side, you're going to touch on litigation sometimes. An understanding evidence is helpful if you're going to be managing litigation attorneys. And if you make CLO/GC, you will absolutely be interacting with litigators and managing litigation.

lawgirl3521

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby lawgirl3521 » Mon Apr 01, 2019 5:02 pm

I think whether taking Evidence will be helpful depends quite a bit on the quality of professor teaching the course. My Evidence (and Civ Pro and Property) professors did not teach anything relevant to passing the bar. For example, we spent EIGHT weeks studying nothing but the Erie Doctrine in Civ Pro and another SIX on nothing but International Shoe - and when I say "nothing", I literally mean nothing else but International Shoe was even mentioned as an aside. For me, those classes were so highly - and needlessly - theoretical that they were not in the least bit helpful to passing the bar - I basically learned those three subjects from scratch while doing bar prep and scored well in each by the end of bar prep.

If, on the other hand, your peers can recommend a professor that has a solid reputation for teaching useful material that is relevant to passing the bar exam, then I would definitely take those courses. By my 3L year, I was only taking courses from professors that had solid reputations for effectively communicating the law to law students, regardless if the class was a bar exam class - the rest just became a waste of time, imo.

FND

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby FND » Tue Apr 02, 2019 11:41 am

I did not take Evidence in law school, and don't regret it. I generally don't recommend taking a class just because it's on the bar, but, if there's one exception, it'd be Evidence.

If there's nothing that you consider more important, absolutely, take Evidence. But, if you, for example, are going into an M&A practice group and haven't taken M&A, take M&A instead.

JHP

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby JHP » Tue Apr 02, 2019 12:16 pm

lawgirl3521 wrote:I think whether taking Evidence will be helpful depends quite a bit on the quality of professor teaching the course. My Evidence (and Civ Pro and Property) professors did not teach anything relevant to passing the bar. For example, we spent EIGHT weeks studying nothing but the Erie Doctrine in Civ Pro and another SIX on nothing but International Shoe - and when I say "nothing", I literally mean nothing else but International Shoe was even mentioned as an aside. For me, those classes were so highly - and needlessly - theoretical that they were not in the least bit helpful to passing the bar - I basically learned those three subjects from scratch while doing bar prep and scored well in each by the end of bar prep.

If, on the other hand, your peers can recommend a professor that has a solid reputation for teaching useful material that is relevant to passing the bar exam, then I would definitely take those courses. By my 3L year, I was only taking courses from professors that had solid reputations for effectively communicating the law to law students, regardless if the class was a bar exam class - the rest just became a waste of time, imo.


Mm this is a solid point--part of why my evidence course was so particularly helpful was my instructor eschewed the philosophical/white tower way of thinking about/teaching evidence, and it was exceptionally practical and "how would this actually play out in a court" rather than "what is the holding of this case and why are our evidence laws the way they are."

Bingo_Bongo

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby Bingo_Bongo » Thu Apr 04, 2019 12:40 am

If Evidence is an elective course (it was required at my school), it's probably the most useful elective bar tested course to take. I agree with the other posters who said you can learn it on your own during bar prep, but that's true of any subject. You could teach yourself contracts, conlaw, or even property if you needed to. It just won't be very fun tackling such a massive (and often arcane and counter-intuitive) topic for the very first time when you're trying to review and cram every other subject a few weeks before the bar.

I found Evidence to be very confusing at first. However, once I got a hang of it, it became super easy. It was probably one of the easiest subjects to review for bar prep (I was consistently answering 100% m/c right), but it wouldn't have been if I were tackling the subject for the first time.

And if you're taking the CA bar definitely take it. CA tests BOTH the CA Code and Federal rules, so you especially don't want to be learning two different sets of laws on a brand new subject during bar prep.

dabigchina

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Re: Should I Take Evidence

Postby dabigchina » Fri Apr 05, 2019 2:01 pm

probably not helpful for OP anymore, but I didn't take it before the CA bar exam and I passed.

Is it helpful? Maybe.
Is it necessary? No.



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