How is competition and group work/study handled?

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jwinaz
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How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby jwinaz » Tue Jan 22, 2013 6:17 am

With law school grading more or less pitting students against each other on a curve, how do you guys handle things like group study/work? I'm guessing many students work alone, but I've heard of people doing study groups as well. And also just instances of people asking you for help possibly (even if they're not in a specific study grp of yours). ...How do you guys approach the issue of competition in these situations?

And, also, it'd be really interesting to hear how competition is handled generally as well. I imagine everyone wants to do well and come out "on top" at their respective schools and classes, but at the same time desiring to form some genuine friendships with their peers. What tips might you have for learning to balance these two goals?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and perspective.

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dietcoke0
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby dietcoke0 » Tue Jan 22, 2013 10:32 am

Largely depends on the people and the school, but mostly everyone is in the same savage ride, and unless there is personal differences not related to school, no one desires others to fail. As far as study groups go, it's a collaborative efforts, and each person generally wants the others to do well too. Study groups aren't all that big, and not 1-2-3-4 people are going to affect your position on the curve (at least not that much).

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Icculus
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby Icculus » Tue Jan 22, 2013 10:37 am

jwinaz wrote:With law school grading more or less pitting students against each other on a curve, how do you guys handle things like group study/work? I'm guessing many students work alone, but I've heard of people doing study groups as well. And also just instances of people asking you for help possibly (even if they're not in a specific study grp of yours). ...How do you guys approach the issue of competition in these situations?

And, also, it'd be really interesting to hear how competition is handled generally as well. I imagine everyone wants to do well and come out "on top" at their respective schools and classes, but at the same time desiring to form some genuine friendships with their peers. What tips might you have for learning to balance these two goals?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and perspective.


Seriously? Just be nice to people. If people ask for help, help them. Odds are your answer to a question or help on an assignment is not going to be the difference in the outcome. I share notes/study guides/etc with anyone who asks.

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Ludo!
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby Ludo! » Tue Jan 22, 2013 10:47 am

I think small focused study groups with people who have the same work ethic as you are really helpful. I was never worried about helping my competition because the sessions helped me get better too. And it's not like you need to be keeping the answers secret or anything like that. The things that will separate your exam and get an A are not things somebody could possibly steal from you if you study with them

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dingbat
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby dingbat » Tue Jan 22, 2013 11:16 am

jwinaz wrote:With law school grading more or less pitting students against each other on a curve, how do you guys handle things like group study/work? I'm guessing many students work alone, but I've heard of people doing study groups as well. And also just instances of people asking you for help possibly (even if they're not in a specific study grp of yours). ...How do you guys approach the issue of competition in these situations?

And, also, it'd be really interesting to hear how competition is handled generally as well. I imagine everyone wants to do well and come out "on top" at their respective schools and classes, but at the same time desiring to form some genuine friendships with their peers. What tips might you have for learning to balance these two goals?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and perspective.

In life, you do better through friendly competition than by cutthroat behavior. You never know when your adversary will become your partner, or other way around. If you're the kind of person who would rather screw someone else over than succeed on your own merits, the real world will eat you up and spit you out.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Jan 22, 2013 11:48 am

I'm sure it depends on the school, but at mine, everyone was chill and willing to help each other out. Competition for jobs was probably more stressful than the studying stress, just because it was a small market and lots of people were applying for the same things. You just can't let it get to you.

Personally, I figure what goes around, comes around. I'd rather lose helping someone else out than win by stepping on other people. (Okay, there's probably a limit to that... but it's not reached in law school study groups.)

Swimp
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby Swimp » Tue Jan 22, 2013 11:49 am

dingbat wrote:If you're the kind of person who would rather screw someone else over than succeed on your own merits, the real world will eat you up and spit you out.


I'm not a cutthroat d-bag, but the quoted text above is objectively false.

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cinephile
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby cinephile » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:07 pm

Swimp wrote:
dingbat wrote:If you're the kind of person who would rather screw someone else over than succeed on your own merits, the real world will eat you up and spit you out.


I'm not a cutthroat d-bag, but the quoted text above is objectively false.


I'm not so sure about that. I took a practical course last semester with mock transactions and let's just say that some of the students in the class developed bad reputations and it made it very difficult for them to succeed as the course went on and everyone was wary of working with them.

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Icculus
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby Icculus » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:13 pm

cinephile wrote:
Swimp wrote:
dingbat wrote:If you're the kind of person who would rather screw someone else over than succeed on your own merits, the real world will eat you up and spit you out.


I'm not a cutthroat d-bag, but the quoted text above is objectively false.


I'm not so sure about that. I took a practical course last semester with mock transactions and let's just say that some of the students in the class developed bad reputations and it made it very difficult for them to succeed as the course went on and everyone was wary of working with them.


If you get a reputation for screwing people over no one will ever want to work with you. In every adult job I have had there were people who no one would work with because they just fucked people over first chance they got. You don't need to be warm and sunshiney, but people need to want to work with you, and part of this is people knowing that you compete fair and square. Unless you go into politics, then I think everyone expects you to lie to them. If you cannot succed on your own merits eventually it catches up with you. (except maybe in the field of education, where principles are more politician than anything else and generally have no idea what the hell is actually going on in the building.)

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20130312
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby 20130312 » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:16 pm

I think study groups are totally pointless, but I do them anyway so that I'm not "that guy."

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Ludo!
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby Ludo! » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:18 pm

InGoodFaith wrote:I think study groups are totally pointless, but I do them anyway so that I'm not "that guy."


I wouldn't care about being that guy. But you don't even think their helpful for comparing practice exam answers? That was where I thought their value was

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20130312
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby 20130312 » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:21 pm

Ludovico Technique wrote:
InGoodFaith wrote:I think study groups are totally pointless, but I do them anyway so that I'm not "that guy."


I wouldn't care about being that guy. But you don't even think their helpful for comparing practice exam answers? That was where I thought their value was

Okay maybe I was a bit hyperbolic. The problem isn't that they're useless, it's that it's an inefficient way to study. Comparing answers helps, but it seemed like we got about ten minutes of real work in over a period of an hour or two.

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kalvano
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby kalvano » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:21 pm

I never found study groups that helpful.

And now I'm being forced to be in one.

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ph14
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby ph14 » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:27 pm

kalvano wrote:I never found study groups that helpful.

And now I'm being forced to be in one.


How are you being forced to be in one?

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notedgarfigaro
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby notedgarfigaro » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:29 pm

I wouldn't recommend semester long study groups unless you need social interaction, but having a small group to spend an afternoon going over practice exams/reviewing the course is immensely helpful to me at least (and I'm a lone wolf usually).

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kalvano
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby kalvano » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:30 pm

ph14 wrote:
kalvano wrote:I never found study groups that helpful.

And now I'm being forced to be in one.


How are you being forced to be in one?


Sorry, that's kind of a derail. The PR professor I hate is forcing us to work in groups and write a reflection paper about our group work.

I've never found group work to be helpful. I study better alone. Maybe 15 minutes or so to bounce thoughts off a couple other people, but that's about it.
Last edited by kalvano on Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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ph14
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby ph14 » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:31 pm

kalvano wrote:
ph14 wrote:
kalvano wrote:I never found study groups that helpful.

And now I'm being forced to be in one.


How are you being forced to be in one?


Sorry, that's kind of a derail. The PR professor I hate is forcing us to work in groups and write a reflection paper about our group work.


That sucks. A "reflection paper"? What is this, middle school?

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kalvano
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby kalvano » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:32 pm

ph14 wrote:
kalvano wrote:
ph14 wrote:
kalvano wrote:I never found study groups that helpful.

And now I'm being forced to be in one.


How are you being forced to be in one?


Sorry, that's kind of a derail. The PR professor I hate is forcing us to work in groups and write a reflection paper about our group work.


That sucks. A "reflection paper"? What is this, middle school?


If you'd like to hear more about her, check out the 3LOL thread about a week ago or so.

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Icculus
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby Icculus » Tue Jan 22, 2013 12:34 pm

ph14 wrote:
kalvano wrote:
ph14 wrote:
kalvano wrote:I never found study groups that helpful.

And now I'm being forced to be in one.


How are you being forced to be in one?


Sorry, that's kind of a derail. The PR professor I hate is forcing us to work in groups and write a reflection paper about our group work.


That sucks. A "reflection paper"? What is this, middle school?


I am not a huge fan of group work. As for study groups, I usually just meet with a few of my friends during reading week and we compare practice answers, outlines, etc. Nothing too crazy. I could never do one of those semester long study groups.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:10 pm

Icculus wrote:If you get a reputation for screwing people over no one will ever want to work with you. In every adult job I have had there were people who no one would work with because they just fucked people over first chance they got. You don't need to be warm and sunshiney, but people need to want to work with you, and part of this is people knowing that you compete fair and square. Unless you go into politics, then I think everyone expects you to lie to them. If you cannot succeed on your own merits eventually it catches up with you. (except maybe in the field of education, where principles are more politician than anything else and generally have no idea what the hell is actually going on in the building.)

Everyone may expect politicians to lie, but I will say one of the most universally-hated members of my law school class is trying to go into politics, and I and everyone I know spread the word about his awfulness at every opportunity. Just because politicians say what they think you want to hear doesn't mean that someone who is egregiously awful is going to succeed in becoming one. (Basically agreeing with you, though. If people know you fuck them over, no one will work with you.)

Anyway. I only did group study for doing practice exams at the end of the semester. And you have to pick your group carefully - my small group (3 people) once joined a bigger group (10? 11? people) to go over an exam in one class and we (small group) thought we were going to kill someone by the end. Over about 5 people is way too big. Avoid the drama queens. And studying with people I wasn't friends with always worked best for me (not people like the classmate above - just not all my close buddies), because we kept it about the work, rather than socializing. (Usually it would be one good friend, and random people she rounded up that I didn't know well.)

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Icculus
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Re: How is competition and group work/study handled?

Postby Icculus » Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:35 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
Icculus wrote:If you get a reputation for screwing people over no one will ever want to work with you. In every adult job I have had there were people who no one would work with because they just fucked people over first chance they got. You don't need to be warm and sunshiney, but people need to want to work with you, and part of this is people knowing that you compete fair and square. Unless you go into politics, then I think everyone expects you to lie to them. If you cannot succeed on your own merits eventually it catches up with you. (except maybe in the field of education, where principles are more politician than anything else and generally have no idea what the hell is actually going on in the building.)

Everyone may expect politicians to lie, but I will say one of the most universally-hated members of my law school class is trying to go into politics, and I and everyone I know spread the word about his awfulness at every opportunity. Just because politicians say what they think you want to hear doesn't mean that someone who is egregiously awful is going to succeed in becoming one. (Basically agreeing with you, though. If people know you fuck them over, no one will work with you.)

Anyway. I only did group study for doing practice exams at the end of the semester. And you have to pick your group carefully - my small group (3 people) once joined a bigger group (10? 11? people) to go over an exam in one class and we (small group) thought we were going to kill someone by the end. Over about 5 people is way too big. Avoid the drama queens. And studying with people I wasn't friends with always worked best for me (not people like the classmate above - just not all my close buddies), because we kept it about the work, rather than socializing. (Usually it would be one good friend, and random people she rounded up that I didn't know well.)


Yeah, I just like taking the opportunity to slam pols, they drive me nuts. Though I agree, pols need to be able to lie to your face while at the same time making you fall in love with them.




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