Here are the quotes that got me thinking before I ordered the book:
legends159 wrote:LEEWS does nothing if you go to a top school. The strategies involved and advice given are too simple and nothing new if you've been on TLS and read some of the articles on how to do well. I suggest just reading the TLS threads on how to do well in LS. Those are better than anything you can buy and helped me do extremely well my 1L year.
It might help if you go to a school that doesn't expect too much analysis from its students (no offense--this is what a professor who teaches at a tier 2 school who also teaches at UCLA has said) or from those who have no idea what a law school exam is like. But aside from these, it's a complete waste of money. I listened to the tapes once and it was a waste of ten hours.
Some people swear by it, but really they're just extremely hard workers and any strategy would've helped them succeed.
LEEWS doesn't seem to be so effective for top law schools, I have heard of a lot of people who did well with it - but they've all been at lower ranked law schools. I've also known a ton of kids at Northwestern who took LEEWS, and just from conversation - they don't seem to have done that well. You really have to make a sophisticated legal argument (analysis) to diff. yourself from the other equally effective issue spotters at top law schools, I don't think LEEWS trained me in terms of how to construct an awesome analysis. Leews "Effective but ugly" method doesn't really work when the professor specifically says they want good writing - and 5 out of my 7 profs through 1L wanted good writing and spelled that out.
I did LEEWS in Fall, got so-so results, dropped it ENTIRELY in the Spring term, and I had a monster term.
Read the TLS guides and save the money for E&E. Of course naive 0Ls who are freaking out will spend the money and then bitch about it after their 1L year about how it wasn't that helpful.
to whoever asked - I did Northwestern 1L year - I've practiced exam-taking with about over a dozen kids from my section, and I was blown away by the quality of their analysis when we compared notes, which makes the LEEWS method (which btw shortchanges a lot of things where a number of points lie) kinda useless. Issue spotting is easier than actually formulating and presenting a strong legal argument. Sure, you can jump from party to party and see things from BOTH SIDES' perspective, but that has nothing to do with advocating a strong argument for either side. I found LEEWS lacking in this latter aspect, which really impresses professors.
You can't really compete with high quality analysis by just spotting an issue and arguing it two ways, while not getting bogged down by the time, which is basically what LEEWS is - a time-managed approach to arguing in the alternative . . . I basically studied the living crap out of all the cases and knew what each case stood for during my second term, I practiced a ton of cases - but mostly focused on making really strong legal arguments which my professor had clued us in on during class. LEEWS is helpful if you're competing in a checklist issue-spotter method, but although profs at Northwestern said thats exactly what they were doing - I found out that my grades improved more - the more I deviated from the LEEWS methods.
Analysis is key and is what will differentiate you from other students. Most students at top schools know how to spot issues. It's easy and almost intuitive for most people who are intelligent enough to get in. However, the analysis and the ability to make compelling arguments is much harder and not something that LEEWS teaches. At best LEEWS is an introduction to exam taking. Something I would recommend if it were free since it really doesn't hold a candle to the free TLS guides written by people who rocked their 1L year, not some guy who went to Yale (which doesn't have grades) 20-30 years ago.