Realistic number/amount of study hours?

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geostuck
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Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby geostuck » Fri Jan 22, 2010 10:29 pm

Outside of class, how many hours, or average hours, do you or others spend a week studying during 1L?
60, 70, 80, 100, more? More on the weekends?

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vanwinkle
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Jan 22, 2010 10:33 pm

geostuck wrote:Outside of class, how many hours, or average hours, do you or others spend a week studying during 1L?
60, 70, 80, 100, more? More on the weekends?

:shock:

100 per week? Plus actually going to class? When would you sleep?!

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Big Shrimpin
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby Big Shrimpin » Fri Jan 22, 2010 10:44 pm

At least 120 hrs/wk outside of class. Sleep 2 hrs/night. NBD!

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Philo38
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby Philo38 » Fri Jan 22, 2010 10:46 pm

geostuck wrote:Outside of class, how many hours, or average hours, do you or others spend a week studying during 1L?
60, 70, 80, 100, more? More on the weekends?


. . . I'm hoping 60 hours p/week isnt the minimum.

geostuck
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby geostuck » Fri Jan 22, 2010 10:50 pm

Yea, it was/is a serious question.... for those actually doing it.

100 hours is 14 a day, so I guess it would be "with" class. I was told of some doing or claiming 100 at T4.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Jan 22, 2010 10:53 pm

Honestly, I don't think I was studying more than 8 hours a day even when I was cramming before finals. I was telling myself I was studying more than that, but taking "breaks" that tended to last a while in between cramming sessions.

There's no fucking way someone is studying 100 hours per week and staying sane.

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beesknees
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby beesknees » Fri Jan 22, 2010 11:05 pm

From my experience in school to this point thus far, many of the students putting in ridiculous hours are either lying or grossly exaggerating (ie including Starbucks runs, Facebook sessions, and library chats as study time). They also tended to not be the top students and had no idea about the concept of efficiency.

Don't get me wrong, for all but the most gifted/lucky, putting in hard work and diligent study is necessary for top grades. However, I think there's a point of ridiculousness where people are just studying either to say they're studying and freak people out or they're not studying efficiently.

But then again, I've not experience 1L yet.

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Big Shrimpin
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby Big Shrimpin » Fri Jan 22, 2010 11:08 pm

I was kidding OP, however. Study time is probably subjective.

All kidding aside--the amount of time spent outside of class is a relative metric. Each person has an individual study style, but do not assume that more work = better grades. Everybody has an anecdote about not studying and getting good grades or studying to death and hitting the median. Study until you get it, or until you think you get it. Write it down, and study it again. Each class is slightly different, and different professors are looking for different things so speaking with each professor can help. Some classes warrant supplement use and some do not (based on my experience and how professors teach/write questions). Supplements can make studying easier or more difficult, but the extra perspective on the material can help.

The caveat is efficiency (unless you are half human, half robot). The perfect paradigm would be to study exactly what is relevant and nothing that is irrelevant. However, any rational person knows (or should know) that perfect study time allocation is impossible and the entire thing is an experiment. I study lots (to me, at least)--probably 50-60 hours per week outside class--but doing so this past semester was an estimating experiment for me. For some, that is way too much or not quite enough. I did better than a vast majority of my class this past semester, so I guess I got lucky on my estimate.

Therefore, study time is probably subjective. Good luck dooder! 8)

LSATfromNC
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby LSATfromNC » Fri Jan 22, 2010 11:15 pm

I "plan" to only do school stuff between 8am and 5pm Monday through Friday. And once finals roll around I will study on weekends also. I am going to treat it like a job and hope my wife doesn't divorce me!

geostuck
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby geostuck » Fri Jan 22, 2010 11:24 pm

Yea, I figure the people claiming 100 hours are those on facebook every 15 minutes, TLS, ipod, etc... I had considered living in another city and commuting (4 hours by car and 1 by plane) on the weekends to see the family. Looks like that is out.

Being older, I've found working 14+ hours a day is not uncommon, and of course, I'm not talking about 7-11 or landscaping.

My dad, when he first started, was gone for what seemed like 8 years and claimed to work 128 hours a day. He enjoyed reminding us of it every chance he got. I found later, it was closer to 18 hours of work, but his count started from the minute he woke up until bed, and included bs like, working out, lunch, driving, golf, etc. Turns out, since he was 'thinking about work' he was working. Anhyhow, I'm just looking to define a realistic schedule. I'd actually like to see my kids.

I suppose it's like the homeless junkies claiming to do $1500 of smack every week... slightly overstated.

coot master
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby coot master » Sat Jan 23, 2010 1:22 am

with class, anywhere from 6 hours a day to 12-13, depends on what time of year it is and how much you care.

dakatz
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby dakatz » Sat Jan 23, 2010 1:32 am

On a recent school visit, someone asked about the amount of studying and reading involved, and the professor said that you could expect 2-3 hours of reading for every hour in class.

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wardboro
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby wardboro » Sat Jan 23, 2010 1:37 am

At my T1 state school, on a regular week, a lot of folks are doing about 40-50 hours between class and study. Before papers/projects are due or immediately before/during finals, then 80 hrs/week is probably realistic, but this is only sustainable for a week or two at a time.

That said, if people had to distill their study hours down to billable hours (and class-time counts as billable and is included in this figure) then most people (the median students) are probably doing more like 30-35 hours a week during the regular season and 60-70 hours a week during crunchtime.

Top students are probably getting in 40-50 billable study/class hours a week during the regular season. A few in the top ten, however, are smart enough that even with a lackluster study effort they still get great grades.

On a recent school visit, someone asked about the amount of studying and reading involved, and the professor said that you could expect 2-3 hours of reading for every hour in class.


At my school this is not realistic for most classes. 20 pages of reading per class period is a safe average. After you get the hang of things, you shouldn't need more than 45-90 concerted minutes to read through 20 pages while taking some notes on the side. Con law will have longer reading assignments.

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presh
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby presh » Sat Jan 23, 2010 1:51 am

.
Last edited by presh on Tue Dec 22, 2015 2:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

BobSacamano
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby BobSacamano » Sat Jan 23, 2010 11:04 am

I'm going to guess that I do about 2-3 hours of work a day outside of class. I spread it out throughout the day by doing reading in between classes, so it feels even less than that. Obviously it depends on the day (one day this semester I have four classes, the next two) and where you are in your classes. For example, you may have two Torts cases a paragraph long for one class, which won't take you more than 10 minutes to read. Another day, especially later in the semester, you might have 5-7 cases to read, ranging from one page to three. Supreme Court cases are going to take you a lot longer to read because they're longer and often really complicated, so classes like Con Law and Civ Pro will have more time-consuming assignments.

Honestly, anyone who says they do 100 hours of work a week is obviously lying, and someone who says 60 hours is likely exaggerating. Things will pick up towards the end of the semester, which will coincide nicely with your LRW memo and finals preparation (not really...). A lot of my friends spend hours upon hours in the library... talking and surfing the internet. I did my 2-3 hours of work a day and did more than fine.

geostuck
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby geostuck » Sat Jan 23, 2010 2:42 pm

I recall the 2-3 hours of studying for each hour of class time as an undergrad... but of course, it was way off. Anyhow, thanks for the input.

If the LSAT is any indicator, I'll need more time than the average law student. I’m glad to hear a 100 hours is outrageous. Too many stories!

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Aberzombie1892
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby Aberzombie1892 » Sat Jan 23, 2010 3:01 pm

geostuck wrote:Outside of class, how many hours, or average hours, do you or others spend a week studying during 1L?
60, 70, 80, 100, more? More on the weekends?


It various dramatically from person to person.

Questions you would have to ask would include:

Do you actually brief cases?
If so, do you go for complete understanding of the holding or do you simply read for the rule the court used?
Do you outline on a daily/weekly basis?
If not, do you wait until the month before finals/the days inbetween finals to do so?
How rigorous is the LRW program at your law school? (i.e. is it pass/fail or graded?, do you have many assignments? etc.)
Do most of your professors use the traditional Socratic Method?
If not, what do they do?
Do they allow you to say "pass?"
Do you receive grades for your first semester? (only for Yale students)

I think that covers everything.

Personally, I feel as though I will end up doing about 40 hours this semester. 50ish first semester.

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chadwick218
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby chadwick218 » Sat Jan 23, 2010 3:05 pm

Looking back on last semester, excluding going to class, I estimate that I "actually" studied on average 50 hours / week depsite being on campus 80+ hours / week.

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UFMatt
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby UFMatt » Sat Jan 23, 2010 3:20 pm

Including class, I'm hoping that 60 hours per week or less will be required. This is assuming that time is spent efficiently. By that I mean not only distraction-free studying, but also studying the material pertinent to the exam. I refuse to abandon exercise and also need to spend time with my wife.

geostuck
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby geostuck » Sat Jan 23, 2010 8:13 pm

Difficult to ask myself these questions, since I haven't a clue. I'm just trying to get a general idea.

Aberzombie1892 wrote:
geostuck wrote:Outside of class, how many hours, or average hours, do you or others spend a week studying during 1L?
60, 70, 80, 100, more? More on the weekends?


It various dramatically from person to person.

Questions you would have to ask would include:

Do you actually brief cases?
If so, do you go for complete understanding of the holding or do you simply read for the rule the court used?
Do you outline on a daily/weekly basis?
If not, do you wait until the month before finals/the days inbetween finals to do so?
How rigorous is the LRW program at your law school? (i.e. is it pass/fail or graded?, do you have many assignments? etc.)
Do most of your professors use the traditional Socratic Method?
If not, what do they do?
Do they allow you to say "pass?"
Do you receive grades for your first semester? (only for Yale students)

I think that covers everything.

Personally, I feel as though I will end up doing about 40 hours this semester. 50ish first semester.

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ihatelaw
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby ihatelaw » Sat Jan 23, 2010 8:25 pm

Generally, I don't study more than 1 - 2 hours a day + class. However, that number will go up closer to finals. Last semester I learned that studying a lot in the first month isn't worth it but even more important its a recipe for burning out later in the semester when studying is worth a lot more. Also, efficiency is key. People forget how much they can get done in an hour since most people study with a laptop/internet/gchat.

My plan this semester is keep up 1 - 3 hours outside of class until about mid-February and then start outlining more on occasion. The last month before finals should involve an increase in studying and the 2 or 3 weeks before the exam generally went about 6 - 8 hours a day based on how many practice exams I was taking. I don't think studying 8 hours a day from day 1 is a good idea. Maybe I just don't have the motivation/discipline to do that but I found that getting good grades doesn't require that either.

Esc
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby Esc » Sat Jan 23, 2010 8:34 pm

I've never understood why people attempt to calculate their number of hours studied, let alone care about said number.

geostuck
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby geostuck » Sat Jan 23, 2010 8:39 pm

Esc wrote:I've never understood why people attempt to calculate their number of hours studied, let alone care about said number.


Maybe I can help you understand, at least from my perspective. Not being twenty-two and with other obligations in life, I need to get a rough idea of my time. I'd love to have complete freedom, but getting a general idea will help me with planning.

Esc
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby Esc » Sat Jan 23, 2010 9:23 pm

geostuck wrote:
Esc wrote:I've never understood why people attempt to calculate their number of hours studied, let alone care about said number.


Maybe I can help you understand, at least from my perspective. Not being twenty-two and with other obligations in life, I need to get a rough idea of my time. I'd love to have complete freedom, but getting a general idea will help me with planning.


I feel that study time is an arbitrary metric, one that varies in quantity and quality by individual. It has little practical meaning. Suffice it to say that if you care about your grades, and you should, you'll be spending a good portion of your free time studying. The amount of time will increase as the time remaining in the semester decreases. And people who have work, family, extracurricular, or other responsibilities will likely be stressed out and pulled in all directions.

Your comments about being twenty-two, loving to have complete freedom, and "helping me understand" are not very endearing, by the way.

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TheTopBloke
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Re: Realistic number/amount of study hours?

Postby TheTopBloke » Sat Jan 23, 2010 9:42 pm

8 hours per day, no more no less.




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