LEEWS at top schools?

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LSATSCORES2012
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LEEWS at top schools?

Postby LSATSCORES2012 » Fri May 31, 2013 5:40 pm

I was glancing over this thread and saw that many people don't recommend LEEWS for students at top schools. Anyone have any thoughts on this? Do the quotes below still stand, or is it nonsense?

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.

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Hspeaksfriend
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby Hspeaksfriend » Fri May 31, 2013 5:53 pm

Interested in this as well

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Br3v
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby Br3v » Fri May 31, 2013 6:27 pm

Honestly I can't see there being much difference between test taking at a "top school" or the rest of the T50 or what have you.
LEEWS probably works or doesn't work to the same extent at any school.

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Lacepiece23
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby Lacepiece23 » Fri May 31, 2013 6:28 pm

I used it during the first semester. At a T14 did well last semester. I will say that if u know nothing about law school or law school exams I think LEEWS would be really great over the summer to get your feet wet. I really didn't like their premise counter premise thing just thought it took too much time and i could get all the issues without that step. However, some of the tips were helpful. I honestly think that LEEWS is best done before school. GTM is best done during the semester maybe even being read twice during the semester. And top 8 secrets is most effective the week before exams start.

FranklinSims
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby FranklinSims » Fri May 31, 2013 9:51 pm

LEEWS is good but it is better to study exams as closely related to your law school course :wink: :twisted: s as possible. I know several students at T2s and even T1's that swear by a private tutor that does just that (gives 1Ls the tools to take practice exams directed at their specific schools a :mrgreen: nd classes). Because they did so many practice exams throughout the semester with the tutor they nailed exams. Because of the extra guidance knew the law well enough to write exam responses while everyone else was reading cases and outlining. Also doingI exams thatas far infrom advance allowedso them to sityou down inher office hoursand with professorsthe and goover exam alreadyresponses reviewed with the tutor tothey get the professors feedback and input. The T2 students generally transferred and the T1 students got great 2Lto offers at big law. Bottom line LEEWS is cool but the more tailored the better.

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TaipeiMort
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby TaipeiMort » Fri May 31, 2013 10:16 pm

LEEWS, and Getting to Maybe are cute.

But, they aren't really going to help you that much.

The key to getting a really good grade in any class:

1. Talk to people who had the professor before, ask them exactly what he tests on-- especially successful students. The answer you want from them is 1) Just black letter law, or 2) he likes you to rewrite the policy he talks about in class, or 3) he likes you to weave obscure themes through your exam, etc. Basically, you want to know what floats the professor's boat.

2. Appropriate outlines from previous quarters, and continually use them to fill in holes in your outlines.

3. Read everything efficiently, don't waste too much time. IMO, briefing cases is aspie, but to each his own. I know this guy who is clerking for Scalia that briefed each case twice.

3. Take perfect notes on what the professor says in class. Ask him if anything that isn't mentioned in class will be on the exam. If not, study what he says in class. He usually wont test stuff that is not talked about in class without saying so.

4. Get your outlines done really, really earlier.

5. Prepare using as many former tests with explanations as possible. This is key. Some profs want you to write 30 pages to get an A. Others despise that and want brevity with correct spelling and grammar.

5a. Learn to type 120 wps accurately. Law school exams are like the NBA. There are a lot of great shooters in the league, but only one guy as physically dominant as stupid Lebron. The others are fine players, but they will never be as good as Lebron because they have physical barriers. If you can accurately type 120-140 wps, you are like Lebron, you will get better grades than your classmates simply because you can type much faster than them.

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thesealocust
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby thesealocust » Fri May 31, 2013 11:42 pm

You can learn a lot from reading LEEWS, because it's helpful to expose yourself to people trying to analyze/deconstruct law school exams, but I don't think attempting to rigidly follow/apply LEEWS will get you very far.

badaboom61
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby badaboom61 » Fri May 31, 2013 11:51 pm

LEEWS is generally helpful, and I would recommend listening to the tapes your 0L summer (worth it if you have nothing else to do for a day, which is probably true as a 0L). But it will not guarantee you law review.

There are a variety of sources which will help you do well on law exams - LEEWS, Getting to Maybe, John Delaney's books, E&E's, old outlines, talking to current students, etc. Don't expect any one to get you there, but take all of them and try to digest them all as a whole. There's no surefire formula for grading onto law review at a top school, but you can at least put together all the tools that will or at least may help you do well.

shock259
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby shock259 » Sat Jun 01, 2013 9:41 am

thesealocust wrote:You can learn a lot from reading LEEWS, because it's helpful to expose yourself to people trying to analyze/deconstruct law school exams, but I don't think attempting to rigidly follow/apply LEEWS will get you very far.


This x100000.

There is some useful info in LEEWS. The general structure and the way of thinking about issues is great. But a lot of the program is fluffy and unnecessarily rigid. The program seems designed to help assuage the fears of someone who steps into a law school exams and panics.

So listen to it, glean from it what you think is useful, and move on. Don't stick to the rigid formula he proposes if it feels uncomfortable.

Also, I can't imagine that the effectiveness of the program differs at a top school versus a T1/T2. I've been to both (transfer). Shit ain't that different. All I see in that thread is conjecture with a hint of elitism.

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Lacepiece23
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby Lacepiece23 » Sat Jun 01, 2013 11:36 am

shock259 wrote:
thesealocust wrote:You can learn a lot from reading LEEWS, because it's helpful to expose yourself to people trying to analyze/deconstruct law school exams, but I don't think attempting to rigidly follow/apply LEEWS will get you very far.


This x100000.

There is some useful info in LEEWS. The general structure and the way of thinking about issues is great. But a lot of the program is fluffy and unnecessarily rigid. The program seems designed to help assuage the fears of someone who steps into a law school exams and panics.

So listen to it, glean from it what you think is useful, and move on. Don't stick to the rigid formula he proposes if it feels uncomfortable.

Also, I can't imagine that the effectiveness of the program differs at a top school versus a T1/T2. I've been to both (transfer). Shit ain't that different. All I see in that thread is conjecture with a hint of elitism.


Yeah I agree with this statement x10000 a lot of ppl at my school think that because they go to a t14 everyone at t2's is retarded. Thats not the case. I work with ppl at a law firm from my local T2 and they are very smart and qualified. The top ppl from those schools are no joke.

westphillybandr
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby westphillybandr » Sat Jun 01, 2013 12:17 pm

TaipeiMort wrote:LEEWS, and Getting to Maybe are cute.

But, they aren't really going to help you that much.

The key to getting a really good grade in any class:

1. Talk to people who had the professor before, ask them exactly what he tests on-- especially successful students. The answer you want from them is 1) Just black letter law, or 2) he likes you to rewrite the policy he talks about in class, or 3) he likes you to weave obscure themes through your exam, etc. Basically, you want to know what floats the professor's boat.

2. Appropriate outlines from previous quarters, and continually use them to fill in holes in your outlines.

3. Read everything efficiently, don't waste too much time. IMO, briefing cases is aspie, but to each his own. I know this guy who is clerking for Scalia that briefed each case twice.

3. Take perfect notes on what the professor says in class. Ask him if anything that isn't mentioned in class will be on the exam. If not, study what he says in class. He usually wont test stuff that is not talked about in class without saying so.

4. Get your outlines done really, really earlier.

5. Prepare using as many former tests with explanations as possible. This is key. Some profs want you to write 30 pages to get an A. Others despise that and want brevity with correct spelling and grammar.

5a. Learn to type 120 wps accurately. Law school exams are like the NBA. There are a lot of great shooters in the league, but only one guy as physically dominant as stupid Lebron. The others are fine players, but they will never be as good as Lebron because they have physical barriers. If you can accurately type 120-140 wps, you are like Lebron, you will get better grades than your classmates simply because you can type much faster than them.

gunners are fun

portaprokoss
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby portaprokoss » Sat Jun 01, 2013 12:23 pm

FWIW, I had a Michigan professor tell me that he can instantly tell when an exam was written with an "exam writing system" and that those answers are very annoying to read.

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TaipeiMort
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby TaipeiMort » Sat Jun 01, 2013 12:32 pm

westphillybandr wrote:
TaipeiMort wrote:LEEWS, and Getting to Maybe are cute.

But, they aren't really going to help you that much.

The key to getting a really good grade in any class:

1. Talk to people who had the professor before, ask them exactly what he tests on-- especially successful students. The answer you want from them is 1) Just black letter law, or 2) he likes you to rewrite the policy he talks about in class, or 3) he likes you to weave obscure themes through your exam, etc. Basically, you want to know what floats the professor's boat.

2. Appropriate outlines from previous quarters, and continually use them to fill in holes in your outlines.

3. Read everything efficiently, don't waste too much time. IMO, briefing cases is aspie, but to each his own. I know this guy who is clerking for Scalia that briefed each case twice.

3. Take perfect notes on what the professor says in class. Ask him if anything that isn't mentioned in class will be on the exam. If not, study what he says in class. He usually wont test stuff that is not talked about in class without saying so.

4. Get your outlines done really, really earlier.

5. Prepare using as many former tests with explanations as possible. This is key. Some profs want you to write 30 pages to get an A. Others despise that and want brevity with correct spelling and grammar.

5a. Learn to type 120 wps accurately. Law school exams are like the NBA. There are a lot of great shooters in the league, but only one guy as physically dominant as stupid Lebron. The others are fine players, but they will never be as good as Lebron because they have physical barriers. If you can accurately type 120-140 wps, you are like Lebron, you will get better grades than your classmates simply because you can type much faster than them.

gunners are fun


Bro, you are probably gonna get a crap GPA.

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AllDangle
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby AllDangle » Sat Jun 01, 2013 1:24 pm

Tag

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YYZ
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby YYZ » Sat Jun 01, 2013 2:08 pm

Follow the basic advice and read very few pre-law school books. GTM and 1L of a Ride are enough in my opinion. Doing things like LEEWS are not going to give you a leg up on your competition. During 1L, your professors will guide you on how to answer their exam questions. The approach is likely to vary among professors. If the professor doesn't tell the class how to answer exam questions (e.g. IRAC), you need to ask the question in class or during office hours.

The main thing to do this summer is take care of any issues in your life that can't wait until December. Try to do car repairs, visit family and friends, dentist appointments, etc. before school starts. I would recommend limiting non-law school distractions during the first semester.

This summer, if you have lots of fun things you want to do, please do not avoid those activities in lieu of 0L preparation.

westphillybandr
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby westphillybandr » Sat Jun 01, 2013 6:56 pm

TaipeiMort wrote:
westphillybandr wrote:
TaipeiMort wrote:LEEWS, and Getting to Maybe are cute.

But, they aren't really going to help you that much.

The key to getting a really good grade in any class:

1. Talk to people who had the professor before, ask them exactly what he tests on-- especially successful students. The answer you want from them is 1) Just black letter law, or 2) he likes you to rewrite the policy he talks about in class, or 3) he likes you to weave obscure themes through your exam, etc. Basically, you want to know what floats the professor's boat.

2. Appropriate outlines from previous quarters, and continually use them to fill in holes in your outlines.

3. Read everything efficiently, don't waste too much time. IMO, briefing cases is aspie, but to each his own. I know this guy who is clerking for Scalia that briefed each case twice.

3. Take perfect notes on what the professor says in class. Ask him if anything that isn't mentioned in class will be on the exam. If not, study what he says in class. He usually wont test stuff that is not talked about in class without saying so.

4. Get your outlines done really, really earlier.

5. Prepare using as many former tests with explanations as possible. This is key. Some profs want you to write 30 pages to get an A. Others despise that and want brevity with correct spelling and grammar.

5a. Learn to type 120 wps accurately. Law school exams are like the NBA. There are a lot of great shooters in the league, but only one guy as physically dominant as stupid Lebron. The others are fine players, but they will never be as good as Lebron because they have physical barriers. If you can accurately type 120-140 wps, you are like Lebron, you will get better grades than your classmates simply because you can type much faster than them.

gunners are fun


Bro, you are probably gonna get a crap GPA.


They are also very pleasant people.

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TaipeiMort
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby TaipeiMort » Sat Jun 01, 2013 8:08 pm

westphillybandr wrote:
TaipeiMort wrote:
westphillybandr wrote:
TaipeiMort wrote:LEEWS, and Getting to Maybe are cute.

But, they aren't really going to help you that much.

The key to getting a really good grade in any class:

1. Talk to people who had the professor before, ask them exactly what he tests on-- especially successful students. The answer you want from them is 1) Just black letter law, or 2) he likes you to rewrite the policy he talks about in class, or 3) he likes you to weave obscure themes through your exam, etc. Basically, you want to know what floats the professor's boat.

2. Appropriate outlines from previous quarters, and continually use them to fill in holes in your outlines.

3. Read everything efficiently, don't waste too much time. IMO, briefing cases is aspie, but to each his own. I know this guy who is clerking for Scalia that briefed each case twice.

3. Take perfect notes on what the professor says in class. Ask him if anything that isn't mentioned in class will be on the exam. If not, study what he says in class. He usually wont test stuff that is not talked about in class without saying so.

4. Get your outlines done really, really earlier.

5. Prepare using as many former tests with explanations as possible. This is key. Some profs want you to write 30 pages to get an A. Others despise that and want brevity with correct spelling and grammar.

5a. Learn to type 120 wps accurately. Law school exams are like the NBA. There are a lot of great shooters in the league, but only one guy as physically dominant as stupid Lebron. The others are fine players, but they will never be as good as Lebron because they have physical barriers. If you can accurately type 120-140 wps, you are like Lebron, you will get better grades than your classmates simply because you can type much faster than them.

gunners are fun


Bro, you are probably gonna get a crap GPA.


They are also very pleasant people.


What's your plan besides making fun of gunners? Also, lol if you think this is a gunner's plan. This is minimum to get median at CCN.

westphillybandr
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby westphillybandr » Sat Jun 01, 2013 8:39 pm

TaipeiMort wrote:
What's your plan besides making fun of gunners? Also, lol if you think this is a gunner's plan. This is minimum to get median at CCN.



Some of this stuff is completely useless. To each his own. I'm done with 1L. Hope this worked out for you.

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Devlin
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby Devlin » Mon Jun 03, 2013 6:44 pm

I did LEEWS and Getting to Maybe and ended up at 15%. Not sure how helpful it was because a lot of it was common sense in my opinion.

Legen..waitforit
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby Legen..waitforit » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:04 pm

tag

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MrSparkle
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby MrSparkle » Sat Jul 20, 2013 11:41 pm

Rising 2L at T10, with LR.

I think I did pretty much everything (LEEWS, GTM, Law Preview [for free], 8 Secrets to Top Exam Performance or whatever, Glannon's Torts E&E exam primer).

Tried to follow all that together 1st semester with 30-50 practice tests, did substantially above median. Second semester I just did whatever without thinking about any technique, and did slightly better.

My conclusion is that LEEWS/LP is fancy IRAC/CIRAC. But these are only the beginning, and only the roughest of rules of thumb. I don't think those methods are any better than the advice threads on TLS. You must be able to write clearly, concisely, and in an easy-to-follow analytical order. Almost anyone at a top school can do this going in. I think the difference was being able to take a step back and look at the big picture, and framing the entire analysis around some overarching idea or conclusion, and judging the strength of all the positions/conclusions for every issue. A good exam answer gestures from a hilltop and says, "Here is the world, now take a walk with me" rather than "Here's the tree, there's a squirrel, it's brown. Let's now look at that babbling brook. There's some water in it."

So on a good test "IRAC" might sometimes look like IRRRRAAC or IRRR(IR(IRAC)AC)AC. A more average test will be like IRAC-IRAC-IRAC. At least that's how I feel based on how I did.

Of course, KNOW YOUR PROF.

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bk1
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby bk1 » Sat Jul 20, 2013 11:49 pm

lol at all the quotes in OP that talk about about how 1L exam answers were "sophisticated" or "brilliant" or whatever. lol just lol.

shock259
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby shock259 » Sun Jul 21, 2013 9:22 am

MrSparkle wrote:Tried to follow all that together 1st semester with 30-50 practice tests...


wat

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Devlin
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby Devlin » Mon Jul 22, 2013 11:18 am

MrSparkle wrote:Of course, KNOW YOUR PROF.


This. If I would have followed LEEWS or IRAC or any other generic outline for my K professor I would not have received the grade I did. You must do practice exams and show your answers to your professors. If you do not do that you are really selling yourself short.

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anacharsis
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Re: LEEWS at top schools?

Postby anacharsis » Mon Jul 29, 2013 2:52 pm

Anyone know where to find more hypotheticals with legal "toolboxes," aka the relevant legal principles included with the hypotheticals?

As most of you know, LEEWS had a few of these. I've worked through them and I imagine that they'll be helpful.

Are there any more?




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