Another 0L prep topic

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delusional
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Another 0L prep topic

Postby delusional » Sun Apr 10, 2011 2:41 pm

Soooo after thousands of topics on what 0Ls ought to study or not study, I'm still wondering the following.

It seems like three months ago, all of the wizened 1 and 2Ls were responding grizzledly that you don't need to think about the subject material before turning up in late August. Then, someone mentioned GTM, and a few veterans said, "okay, maaaaybe GTM." By now, maybe because the time is approaching, it seems like we're up to LEEWS, GTM, a little Chemerinsky, and a thorough understanding of the material that each course will present. So, on a scale of one to ten, with one being "the same amount of knowledge as you walked out of the LSAT with" and ten being "Richard Posner's twin brother, just more adequately prepared", what should 0Ls know?

Next question - are higher ranked schools substantively more difficult, or is any greater difficulty based solely on the curve being applied to more highly qualified students?

Last question, related to the above - how screwed is a guy who learned little in Ugrad, worked a job that hasn't required him to think in years, LSATted his way into YHS, and doesn't know the first thing about law?

dakatz
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby dakatz » Sun Apr 10, 2011 2:50 pm

delusional wrote:Soooo after thousands of topics on what 0Ls ought to study or not study, I'm still wondering the following.

It seems like three months ago, all of the wizened 1 and 2Ls were responding grizzledly that you don't need to think about the subject material before turning up in late August. Then, someone mentioned GTM, and a few veterans said, "okay, maaaaybe GTM." By now, maybe because the time is approaching, it seems like we're up to LEEWS, GTM, a little Chemerinsky, and a thorough understanding of the material that each course will present. So, on a scale of one to ten, with one being "the same amount of knowledge as you walked out of the LSAT with" and ten being "Richard Posner's twin brother, just more adequately prepared", what should 0Ls know?

Next question - are higher ranked schools substantively more difficult, or is any greater difficulty based solely on the curve being applied to more highly qualified students?

Last question, related to the above - how screwed is a guy who learned little in Ugrad, worked a job that hasn't required him to think in years, LSATted his way into YHS, and doesn't know the first thing about law?


1. I posted this in another thread, but the principle applies here. Once and for all (even though I know I will have to post this again and again), here is what "prep" you should do over 0L summer:

--Read GTM, maybe listen to LEEWS
--Read every "success in law school" thread to figure out what worked for other people
--Spruce up your resume
--Make cover letter templates
--Take some time to self-reflect so that you go into law school with a good idea of what you wish to get out of it and how you will use it to reach your goals
--Practice typing, and try and become as fast a typer as possible
--Network with alumni. Make some contacts via phone calls, emails, etc. This can be invaluable in securing 1L summer internship and beyond

Notice how NONE of this involves substantive prep? These things are GUARANTEED to help you in law school, some in direct ways, and some more indirectly. These are the things that will give you the edge over your supposedly "smart" classmates who run to prep books over 0L summer. Its all about staying one step ahead, and the next step isn't always obvious and intuitive. Well, I'm giving you the roadmap here. I urge you to take advantage of it.

2. The material is the same at every school. It is the competition that changes because the students get smarter. But don't overstate the difference. For example, the difference between students at UVA and students at Illinois is about 3 LSAT points. While the schools are in different "tiers" in most peoples' minds, the competition level will be the same. There will be absolutely no noticeable difference in the talent of the students. Though there might very well be a difference if you compare a T14 to a lower T2 school.

3. You don't need to know the law before coming to law school, nor should you know the law before coming to law school.

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powerlawyer06
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby powerlawyer06 » Sun Apr 10, 2011 2:57 pm

dakatz wrote:--Read every "success in law school" thread to figure out what worked for other people.


I like your advice. In OPs defense though...other "success in law school" threads advocate reading E&Es and other 1L content books.

dakatz
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby dakatz » Sun Apr 10, 2011 3:00 pm

powerlawyer06 wrote:
dakatz wrote:--Read every "success in law school" thread to figure out what worked for other people.


I like your advice. In OPs defense though...other "success in law school" threads advocate reading E&Es and other 1L content books.


Its one of those situations where you have to sift out the necessary from the sufficient. Allow me to explain. Many people who have great success in law school do MANY things to succeed. They are the ultra-type A's who leave no rock unturned. They read the prep books because of their personality type and their inability to take a breathe before diving right in. If you are in law school now, then you know the kind of people I am talking about.

The people who write the success in law school threads didn't do well because they did 0L prep. They did well because of the numerous other things they did over the course of the year. Its a shame that the threads don't really make this clear.

09042014
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby 09042014 » Sun Apr 10, 2011 3:01 pm

powerlawyer06 wrote:
dakatz wrote:--Read every "success in law school" thread to figure out what worked for other people.


I like your advice. In OPs defense though...other "success in law school" threads advocate reading E&Es and other 1L content books.


You aren't going to remember what you read in Oct let alone what you read in June.

Also reading the Torts and Civ Pro E&E would have taught me things my prof didn't agree with. Mentioning prox cause on my torts exam would have brutalized my grade.

keg411
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby keg411 » Sun Apr 10, 2011 3:04 pm

You can read GTM, but it won't make sense. Read the "how to do well in law school" threads and try to formulate a plan for yourself about how you want to approach studying (know there is no "wrong" or "right" way). I know nothing about LEEWS, but it might be helpful if you know you suck at writing and organization. Maybe read some "fun" books, like One L or "The Nine" or (my favorite) "The Brethren" (by Bob Woodward). Reflect on why you want to go to law school, have a fun summer, and keep a positive mindset.

You don't need to do anything else.

ETA: Just because "some" threads advocate doing substantive prep doesn't mean you need to do it. Everyone needs to figure it out for themselves. For instance, I'm actually in lawl school and don't use the E&E series at all because I prefer other books or books my profs recommend.

thwalls
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby thwalls » Sun Apr 10, 2011 3:07 pm

Here's how you prepare for law school:

1. Read Getting to Maybe, but only give it a cursory once-over. I did, and all of my professors wanted IRAC anyway. The book is useless without some context which you won't have until halfway through your first semester.

2. Don't read any substantive law prior to actually attending your classes. It won't give you a step up on your competition because the teacher may not even be teaching what you're reading. Case in point, my contracts professor stated from the beginning that we will receive no credit on the final for information outside the syllabus. I'm not saying that all professors are that way, but a contract/torts/etc. final is based on the syllabus of that class, not on the law as a whole (That's what the bar exam is for...j/k).

3. HAVE FUN! You're life will enter a world of suck once law school starts, mostly because of LRW. Go out and get drunk, meet exotic and new people, do stupid things that you won't be able to do once classes start.

4. Read the books that YOU want to read.

5. Don't listen to what other 0Ls are doing because it won't effect you.

6. Get off TLS and go outside. Preferably go for a run. Since law school started I put on few pounds, but since I'm married it's somewhat acceptable. Coffee and soft pretzels do not make for an ideal diet. However, if you supplement with a multivitamin you can stave off scurvy.

7. I'll say it one more time. Go out and have fun and hit law school fresh with an open mind.

But lets face it. You won't listen to this advice. You're a 0L, you think you can get an A average by being more prepared than the next guy when classes start. But you know what, I think people can change. I think you're going to heed this advice and and start playing ultimate frisbee this summer, where you'll have some fun, drink some beer, and wake up on a strangers dining room table. That's real fun. That's what cool people do before law school.

thwalls
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby thwalls » Sun Apr 10, 2011 3:08 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
powerlawyer06 wrote:
dakatz wrote:--Read every "success in law school" thread to figure out what worked for other people.


I like your advice. In OPs defense though...other "success in law school" threads advocate reading E&Es and other 1L content books.


You aren't going to remember what you read in Oct let alone what you read in June.

Also reading the Torts and Civ Pro E&E would have taught me things my prof didn't agree with. Mentioning prox cause on my torts exam would have brutalized my grade.


Not to jack the thread but my prof destroyed my Torts grade with four words: 2000 word limit.

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kellycane
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby kellycane » Sun Apr 10, 2011 9:28 pm

dakatz wrote:1. I posted this in another thread, but the principle applies here. Once and for all (even though I know I will have to post this again and again), here is what "prep" you should do over 0L summer:

--Read GTM, maybe listen to LEEWS
--Read every "success in law school" thread to figure out what worked for other people
--Spruce up your resume
--Make cover letter templates
--Take some time to self-reflect so that you go into law school with a good idea of what you wish to get out of it and how you will use it to reach your goals
--Practice typing, and try and become as fast a typer as possible
--Network with alumni. Make some contacts via phone calls, emails, etc. This can be invaluable in securing 1L summer internship and beyond


I'm sorry, but I'm a little confused about this bit of advice. Are you suggesting we cold-call/e-mail random alumni before law school starts? Is there some specific way we should be choosing which alumni to contact? What would you recommend saying that would give 0Ls any advantage come 1L internships?

Thanks for any clarification!

tlslsnlsp
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby tlslsnlsp » Sun Apr 10, 2011 9:48 pm

any advice on making cover letter templates?

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MoS
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby MoS » Sun Apr 10, 2011 10:05 pm

I think looking over GTM is a good idea. I didn't read it closely, but I looked at it. Its more helpful once you have some classes under your belt.

I agree read what you want, but make sure to read a lot it will get your mind in shape. If you want to read law school related things, I read half and E&E over summer, I think it set my expectations for law school. I don't think it gave so much a leg up substantively, but mentally it helped because I could see a the process. Logic for lawyers is good. And I had a prof say he would recommend all law students read Ronald Dworkin's Empire of Law before coming to law school.

Brushing up your resume and getting cover letters ready is golden advice, because CSO cannot touch those things until Nov, and you want to get your apps in as soon after Dec. 1 as you can. You won't have a lot of time to do that once school starts.

Make sure to enjoy summer, so if the prep gets stressful stop. If you enjoy it, then do more.

blsingindisguise
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby blsingindisguise » Sun Apr 10, 2011 11:23 pm

I'm usually an advocate of doing very little 0L prep. In large part this is because I didn't do anything and I landed top 5%. Honestly if you actually go to class, take notes and do the reading all semester it's hard to imagine how you could possibly fill even MORE time prepping the course material in advance. There's only so much of it.

I will say, though, that I wish I had a little more general background on legal proceedings just for context's sake. I think civil procedure, for example, would have been easier if I had actually had some sense of the progression of a case. Some professors have their students read books like A Civil Action just to get that feel for things, and I could see reading something like that before school -- it would be entertaining and you wouldn't be potentially confusing yourself. Some American History might make nice background reading for con law. Maybe some continental philosophy like Locke and Hobbes and Bentham, since that stuff forms the background for a lot of legal thinking. Maybe some foundational economic texts.

Law school courses -- the good ones -- really are designed to give you everything you need for the exam. And the occasional incompetent professor can be overcome with the help of a study aide and a former student's outline.

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MoS
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby MoS » Mon Apr 11, 2011 11:23 pm

blsingindisguise wrote:I'm usually an advocate of doing very little 0L prep. In large part this is because I didn't do anything and I landed top 5%. Honestly if you actually go to class, take notes and do the reading all semester it's hard to imagine how you could possibly fill even MORE time prepping the course material in advance. There's only so much of it.

I will say, though, that I wish I had a little more general background on legal proceedings just for context's sake. I think civil procedure, for example, would have been easier if I had actually had some sense of the progression of a case. Some professors have their students read books like A Civil Action just to get that feel for things, and I could see reading something like that before school -- it would be entertaining and you wouldn't be potentially confusing yourself. Some American History might make nice background reading for con law. Maybe some continental philosophy like Locke and Hobbes and Bentham, since that stuff forms the background for a lot of legal thinking. Maybe some foundational economic texts.

Law school courses -- the good ones -- really are designed to give you everything you need for the exam. And the occasional incompetent professor can be overcome with the help of a study aide and a former student's outline.


This is for the most part true. Law school tests are based on the topic (maybe 15%) and the processor (85%). No two classes are the same. No one supplement will substitute for your professor, unless your professor is just worthless. The key to taking an law school exam is to know what types of things your professor wants to hear. So take note of the professor's phrasing of the law and common questions or themes they bring up.

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OutCold
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby OutCold » Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:56 pm

I agree 100% with the "relax and enjoy your last summer advice" but...

http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=152439

itimgtd
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Re: Another 0L prep topic

Postby itimgtd » Tue May 03, 2011 5:56 am

thanks for the info law students!




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