UTL_plz wrote:Is the LRWA class graded?
What are your thoughts on this class regarding workload, curriculum, etc.?
Does any of this depend on which professor you get?
How well does the class improve your writing? Obviously that will depend on how much work you put into it, but what is the quality and quantity of resources available to students?
LRWA is a beast. It is graded. Your fall grade is your memo, your spring grade is your brief. The class requires a great deal of work as there are ungraded assignments throughout each semester. You can't blow them off entirely because completion is required, but you'll learn how much effort you need to put into them. Here's a hint: not much. It's good practice, but don't quit reading for other classes to do your LRWA work.
The workload is roughly the same for each professor, but class experience varies pretty widely. Some professors have a reputation for being much more difficult than others. Just ask your mentors during orientation - they'll give you a good idea of whether you're in good shape or screwed.
The class was very helpful. It's 6 hours of research and writing practice. Since a lot of schools have 1-2 hours of pass/fail legal writing, I can't help but think that SMU students are better off from a practical standpoint.
That being said, I won't hide the fact that there are times in each semester that the class is just a beating. You will hate it at points. The brief is (by admission of virtually every 2L and 3L I know) the absolute worst part of law school. But you survive, you get it done, and you move on. It's a good class, but not a lot of fun.