Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

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lawschoolsplit1984
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Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby lawschoolsplit1984 » Fri Mar 15, 2013 8:33 am

I got accepted to a school ranked in the 20s (25-29), had a high 173 LSAT and gpa slightly below 2.5. ?
Last edited by lawschoolsplit1984 on Thu Apr 11, 2013 11:21 am, edited 1 time in total.

rad lulz
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby rad lulz » Fri Mar 15, 2013 8:38 am

In short, no, because law exams are based on application of law to fact

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crumpetsandtea
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby crumpetsandtea » Fri Mar 15, 2013 8:42 am

Reading months ahead of everyone is dumb because you don't know what your professor will assign or expect you to take away from the case, and you'll just waste your time.

Taping lectures is only minimally helpful if you're REALLY slow at taking notes, because you can go bck over them to confirm what a professor said.

What I imagine would be most helpful:
- learn to take concise, to-the-point notes rapidly
- do all your reading and go to every class/pay attention
- learn how to issue spot on an exam (this won't come until you understand the material, though)
- start outlining a little early (but not TOO early)
- make a checklist
- ask 2Ls/3Ls who did well in your classes with your professor to help you go over PTs

delusional
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby delusional » Fri Mar 15, 2013 8:46 am

lawschoolsplit1984 wrote:I got accepted to a school ranked in the 20s (25-29), had a high 173 LSAT and gpa slightly below 2.5. There's really not much better I can do, since gpa is sealed and cant do much better on the LSAT, so the 20s ranked school was really the best I could do.

However, my goal is Top 14. Again, if I cant transfer (which everyone says is impossible) This school in the 20s, I will be happy graduating from, but I am more or less saying, if it happens great.

Of course, not everyone can be in the Top 10 percent. Only 10 percent of people can. However, arent there methods you can utilize to give you a leg up?

Like what if you begin reading ahead in the Spring and Summer before your classes begin in the Fall, and also I read that sometimes if you have a disability (like hearing problems) the professors with permission may allow you to tape record lectures.

So do you think if you read months ahead of everyone else, are able to tape record the lectures and play them over, and are friends with someone at the same school that did well IL, that you will have a slight advantage in placing in the top 10 percent? OR is still impossible?
I think it's definitely possible to do things that will help you in law school, but the problem is figuring out what those things are without knowing what will come naturally and what you will struggle with. Also, it might depend on how committed you are and what resources you have available to you. If you have a friend who can walk you through the basics of legal writing and then grade a couple "homework papers" and have you read some briefs as well, that can only help. But a friend like that is a very unique resource and it would take a lot of commitment from him/her and the student to get a meaningful advantage.

Also, contrary to TLS conventional wisdom, I fail to grasp how a subject like Civil Procedure cannot be studied, at least somewhat, before knowing what your professor will focus on. But again, you would be best off with a personal tutor rather than a hornbook. Or at least, I would have had no clue what was going on in a hornbook before my second semester.

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guano
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby guano » Fri Mar 15, 2013 8:53 am

lawschoolsplit1984 wrote:Like what if you begin reading ahead in the Spring and Summer before your classes begin in the Fall, and also I read that sometimes if you have a disability (like hearing problems) the professors with permission may allow you to tape record lectures.

So do you think if you read months ahead of everyone else, are able to tape record the lectures and play them over, and are friends with someone at the same school that did well IL, that you will have a slight advantage in placing in the top 10 percent? OR is still impossible?

no, you won't. There is very little you can gain by pre-reading substantive materials and it may actually harm you if you learn it incorrectly.

What you can work on is your writing; IRAC, CREAC, whatever, learning a proper writing style is more difficult than it seems and is a lot more helpful, particularly for open-book exams where you can pre-write your answers and just plug in the facts.

Find some well-written briefs or memos (preferably ones that got an A in law school) and start emulating the style.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Fri Mar 15, 2013 9:23 am

There is no point in reading up on subjects ahead of time. And even if you don't have a disability, some profs will let you tape lectures, but re-listening to lectures (unless you have to because of a disability, of course) has got to be the most inefficient study method of all time, especially given how many people don't go to class and teach themselves the law through reading/supplement.

Look, it sounds like what you want is someone to say, "YES, there ARE things you can do that will GUARANTEE you'll be in the top 10%!! (or at least SIGNIFICANTLY increase your chances!!!), and HERE THEY ARE!!!!" But no one can say that. There are no guarantees. You may be someone who gets how to take a law exam quickly. You may be someone who gets it slowly. You can't predict it, either way. So you can look around here for the various suggestions on how to study effectively, and think about which ones seem likely to work for you. But you can't hope that you're going to find a magic bullet that will guarantee your future performance, because you can't.

(Besides, if there were all these mythical ways to get a leg up on everyone else - well, everyone would be using them. But 9 out of 10 people still won't be in the top 10%.)

This isn't to say you won't be in the top 10%. Just that you can't predict something like that.

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Lincoln
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby Lincoln » Fri Mar 15, 2013 9:40 am

Read and understand Plain English for Lawyers. Writing is really the only thing you can work on in advance. Based on the OP -- an admittedly poor representation of a person's writing ability -- you could use some work on it.

LaBarrister
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby LaBarrister » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:56 am

Lincoln wrote:Read and understand Plain English for Lawyers. Writing is really the only thing you can work on in advance. Based on the OP -- an admittedly poor representation of a person's writing ability -- you could use some work on it.

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Bildungsroman
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby Bildungsroman » Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:59 am

Don't read for classes a semester early. If you have that time and energy to study, spend it on material you'll be tested on in the current semester. No point barreling through one hurdle so you can get a head start on jumping the next one.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Fri Mar 15, 2013 11:00 am

LaBarrister wrote:
Lincoln wrote:Read and understand Plain English for Lawyers. Writing is really the only thing you can work on in advance. Based on the OP -- an admittedly poor representation of a person's writing ability -- you could use some work on it.

Aren't you a 0L?

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Lincoln
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby Lincoln » Sun Mar 17, 2013 5:51 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
LaBarrister wrote:
Lincoln wrote:Read and understand Plain English for Lawyers. Writing is really the only thing you can work on in advance. Based on the OP -- an admittedly poor representation of a person's writing ability -- you could use some work on it.

Aren't you a 0L?


Are you asking LaBarrister or me? I'm a 3L, fwiw.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Mar 17, 2013 6:02 pm

Lincoln wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:
LaBarrister wrote:
Lincoln wrote:Read and understand Plain English for Lawyers. Writing is really the only thing you can work on in advance. Based on the OP -- an admittedly poor representation of a person's writing ability -- you could use some work on it.

Aren't you a 0L?


Are you asking LaBarrister or me? I'm a 3L, fwiw.

Yep, I was referring to LaBarrister. Sorry to be unclear.

envisciguy
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby envisciguy » Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:30 am

Reading substantive material ahead of time is a complete waste of time. First of all, you won't know what to take away from the cases, or even which cases your professor will want you to read. Even if you do read the right cases, how much will you really remember?

Some professors will record every class they teach without being asked, but listening to lectures a second time isn't really practical. 3+ hours of extra work each day to listen to your classes a second time doesn't really leave you with much time to do everything else you'll have to do.

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Lacepiece23
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby Lacepiece23 » Mon Mar 18, 2013 2:33 am

delusional wrote:
lawschoolsplit1984 wrote:I got accepted to a school ranked in the 20s (25-29), had a high 173 LSAT and gpa slightly below 2.5. There's really not much better I can do, since gpa is sealed and cant do much better on the LSAT, so the 20s ranked school was really the best I could do.

However, my goal is Top 14. Again, if I cant transfer (which everyone says is impossible) This school in the 20s, I will be happy graduating from, but I am more or less saying, if it happens great.

Of course, not everyone can be in the Top 10 percent. Only 10 percent of people can. However, arent there methods you can utilize to give you a leg up?

Like what if you begin reading ahead in the Spring and Summer before your classes begin in the Fall, and also I read that sometimes if you have a disability (like hearing problems) the professors with permission may allow you to tape record lectures.

So do you think if you read months ahead of everyone else, are able to tape record the lectures and play them over, and are friends with someone at the same school that did well IL, that you will have a slight advantage in placing in the top 10 percent? OR is still impossible?

Also, contrary to TLS conventional wisdom, I fail to grasp how a subject like Civil Procedure cannot be studied, at least somewhat, before knowing what your professor will focus on. .


Only other person who I've heard say this on TlS. I think watching freer's vids for civ pro would have made a world of difference. While the rest of the class is lost you know exactly what is going on in lecture. Hell I learned the whole class from him eventually anyway.

squonk
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby squonk » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:19 pm

Digging this thread up because I have something else to ask. I picked up Getting to Maybe and Garner's Elements of Legal Style online, and they both seem pretty useful (though they seem like they'll be a lot more useful as reminders/references than as "prep material.") Is there any point in looking through any of the E&E books during the summer, or is it just a total waste of time? I've seen Glannon's Civ Pro mentioned as useful, but I also plan on spending most of my pre-law school summer not having my nose constantly in a book.

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skw
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby skw » Wed Apr 03, 2013 4:32 pm

squonk wrote:Digging this thread up because I have something else to ask. I picked up Getting to Maybe and Garner's Elements of Legal Style online, and they both seem pretty useful (though they seem like they'll be a lot more useful as reminders/references than as "prep material.") Is there any point in looking through any of the E&E books during the summer, or is it just a total waste of time? I've seen Glannon's Civ Pro mentioned as useful, but I also plan on spending most of my pre-law school summer not having my nose constantly in a book.


E&Es, Glannon's, or other substantive supplements are a waste of time before 1L. Enjoy your free time while you have it. It is about to evaporate.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed Apr 03, 2013 5:01 pm

skw wrote:
squonk wrote:Digging this thread up because I have something else to ask. I picked up Getting to Maybe and Garner's Elements of Legal Style online, and they both seem pretty useful (though they seem like they'll be a lot more useful as reminders/references than as "prep material.") Is there any point in looking through any of the E&E books during the summer, or is it just a total waste of time? I've seen Glannon's Civ Pro mentioned as useful, but I also plan on spending most of my pre-law school summer not having my nose constantly in a book.


E&Es, Glannon's, or other substantive supplements are a waste of time before 1L. Enjoy your free time while you have it. It is about to evaporate.

Yeah, it's not that they're going to lead you wrong - they can be useful during the semester. But you won't know what your prof is going to cover/emphasize before you get to the class. I read some of the Contracts E&E before 1L and it turned out we only covered about 5% of what I read. So even if I'd understood what I was reading and remembered it, it wouldn't have helped me.

AP-375
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby AP-375 » Wed Apr 03, 2013 5:18 pm

Yo man. I sure believe there are ways to improve the odds dramatically, but like a lot of facets of law school, the answer is not in the substantive learning. I'd read and absorb Getting to Maybe, read and absorb all of the How to Do Well threads, then make your own (flexible) law school plan, and commit to working very hard and very smart. There, Top 10%.

utlaw2007
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby utlaw2007 » Wed Apr 03, 2013 5:25 pm

rad lulz wrote:In short, no, because law exams are based on application of law to fact


I studied my a$$ off and got median that first semester, probably, in part, because I wrote my exams instead of typed them. I was an older student. I had never typed exams before so that was foreign to me. Plus I could write extremely fast. But writing is no match for typing. That being said, top 10% is going to depend on your abilities, the students at your school, and your professor. No amount of reading before hand is going to help unless you read Getting to Maybe or something very similar. But please do not read the cases or supplements unless you like wasting time.

Some people can process that new info amazingly fast. I didn't master the material until a bit later. It just depends on your abilities. Sure, there are things you can do to increase your chances. But the increase of your top 10% chances will be small.

I refused to get stressed about law school. I was like everyone else that first semester. But after that, I put it on cruise control. Stressing doesn't help. Working hard does, but don't stress about it. You can't do anything about your top 10% chances until you are in law school. I think your focus should be to do the best you can. And if you are in the top 10%, fine. If not, so be it. I think that attitude will lessen your stress and help you perform better.

bananapeanutbutter
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby bananapeanutbutter » Wed Apr 03, 2013 6:43 pm

What is CREAC?

squonk
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby squonk » Wed Apr 03, 2013 6:45 pm

Thanks. I'm really happy to hear that I don't have to stress over this stuff the summer before. More time to enjoy myself. And needless to say, I've been dumping all the Law Preview ads I've been getting in the trash.

bananapeanutbutter
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby bananapeanutbutter » Wed Apr 03, 2013 6:48 pm

I found it was a benefit, personally. I think somebody telling you, you need to put in 60 hours a week or you won't get a job forces you to simply out-hour most people. There'd be too much temptation to just go with the flow, and work the same as everyone else without it.

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quiver
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby quiver » Wed Apr 03, 2013 10:25 pm

I agree with what everyone else has said ITT. To add, if you want to work on anything as a 0L, work on your typing speed. There's debate as to how much one's typing speed correlates with good grades, but it definitely can't hurt.

bananapeanutbutter
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby bananapeanutbutter » Wed Apr 03, 2013 10:41 pm

quiver wrote:I agree with what everyone else has said ITT. To add, if you want to work on anything as a 0L, work on your typing speed. There's debate as to how much one's typing speed correlates with good grades, but it definitely can't hurt.

I find it's normally used when people refuse to accept certain peers as their intellectual equals, so therefore the grading is flawed. there's something to be said for thinking and applying quickly, and not self doubting. it isn't just typing gibberish that's getting the points.

squonk
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Re: Will these things give you a leg up in doing well 1L ?

Postby squonk » Wed Apr 03, 2013 11:30 pm

bananapeanutbutter wrote:I found it was a benefit, personally. I think somebody telling you, you need to put in 60 hours a week or you won't get a job forces you to simply out-hour most people. There'd be too much temptation to just go with the flow, and work the same as everyone else without it.


Sure, but I already know I'll have to put in 60+ hours a week. I don't need to pay somebody to tell me that.




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