EDIT: Finished my first year with a 4.0

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legends159
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby legends159 » Wed Jan 28, 2009 10:19 pm

underdawg wrote:the 1000 pound elephant in the room: it has a lot to do with BEING SMART

no one wants to say it, but it's true

the person i know who studied the hardest did pretty bad


Well you gotta study hard and study smart. The studying smart part is out there if you research it. Heck i'll even link you: http://www.top-law-schools.com/success- ... chool.html There's one strategy.

It's the hard work and dedication that trips people up.

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underdawg
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby underdawg » Wed Jan 28, 2009 10:23 pm

ok experts

from my experience, people have more problems knowing what to study, or even understanding concepts

JeffBuckley
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby JeffBuckley » Thu Jan 29, 2009 11:13 am

Yeah, I think that's where studying old exams comes in.


For instance, I knew almost to a certainty that my Torts professor would have a res ipsa loquitor fact pattern on his exam after looking at a bunch of old exams.

JeffBuckley
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby JeffBuckley » Fri Jan 30, 2009 7:49 pm

I actually think that its the hard work that separates the wheat from the chaff.

I don't think I'm any smarter than the average law student.

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BradyToMoss
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby BradyToMoss » Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:35 pm

underdawg wrote:the 1000 pound elephant in the room: it has a lot to do with BEING SMART

no one wants to say it, but it's true

the person i know who studied the hardest did pretty bad


TCR. I know lots of people who worked relentlessly and did not do that great (and of course some that worked very hard and did great). Everyone at good law schools is smart, but some people just naturally get law and others won't no matter how hard they work.

bigben
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby bigben » Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:40 pm

BradyToMoss wrote:
underdawg wrote:the 1000 pound elephant in the room: it has a lot to do with BEING SMART

no one wants to say it, but it's true

the person i know who studied the hardest did pretty bad


TCR. I know lots of people who worked relentlessly and did not do that great (and of course some that worked very hard and did great). Everyone at good law schools is smart, but some people just naturally get law and others won't no matter how hard they work.



Hm...I think even if everyone "got" the law, there is still a good chance that about 50% of them would be in the bottom half of the class.

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A'nold
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby A'nold » Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:41 pm

PKSebben wrote:Vandy?

Harvard.

What mallard said.


TITONLYCR.

pdennis1000
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby pdennis1000 » Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:47 pm

JeffBuckley wrote:I go to a school ranked in the 40's. I may want to practice in TN after graduation.

I had the good fortune of finishing last semester at the top of my class with a 4.0.


But now, I have to at least consider the possibility of transferring to some of those schools that I didn't get into the first go-round.

Do you think that I'd have a chance to transfer to Vanderbilt? What's the highest my first semester of law school could take me in the USNWR rankings?


Is it worth the transfer stress, extra money (I have a nice scholarship at my current school), etc. . . to get a JD from Vandy as opposed to my current school?


Gotta agree with some of the others. Go ahead and put in a couple more transfer apps above Vandy. Shoot for the stars with that 4.0. I can only hope to achieve something like that during my first year.


Also, for everybody else:

What are the typical tranfer possibilities? Can a tier 3 person hope to jump into T14 or is more like:
top 20-50--->T14
T2--->top 50
etc...

I just have no background on this topic.
Last edited by pdennis1000 on Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

kiwislug
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby kiwislug » Thu Feb 05, 2009 5:51 pm

bigben wrote:Hm...I think even if everyone "got" the law, there is still a good chance that about 50% of them would be in the bottom half of the class.


:lol: <3

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Ali
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby Ali » Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:00 pm

JeffBuckley,

If you don't mind, what was your LSAT score??
I just want to see how it correlates to your 1L performance.

Thanks

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rayiner
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby rayiner » Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:23 pm

bigben wrote:
BradyToMoss wrote:
underdawg wrote:the 1000 pound elephant in the room: it has a lot to do with BEING SMART

no one wants to say it, but it's true

the person i know who studied the hardest did pretty bad


TCR. I know lots of people who worked relentlessly and did not do that great (and of course some that worked very hard and did great). Everyone at good law schools is smart, but some people just naturally get law and others won't no matter how hard they work.



Hm...I think even if everyone "got" the law, there is still a good chance that about 50% of them would be in the bottom half of the class.


Does everyone get the law though? Without the curve, everyone would get good grades and be a successful lawyer? I find it difficult to believe that law is unlike every other field in having classrooms full of superstars. In every endeavor, there are people who are just better at the task at hand than others. Even when there are barriers to entry, like LSAT scores or GPAs, there is still an ordering of capability within every group. Now I'm not saying that it's easy to predict, via LSAT score or GPA, who will demonstrate the most ability, but that doesn't mean that there isn't some intrinsic ordering. I'd argue that the Gaussian distribution of exam performance is intrinsic to exams themselves, and the "curve" is simply a mapping of that distribution to point values. I think it is silly to imply that it is an arbitrary extrinsic ordering applied to a dataset that does not have an intrinsic one.

I'll give an anecdotal example. In some of my UG classes, there was no "curve" per-se. The exam was simply curved so the median student only got, say, 2/3s of the questions correct, and the "curve" was just a mapping from point values to letter grades. Now, everyone in these classes were smart. The SAT average for the school was ~1300 and most of the students had been top-10% in their high-schools. In the engineering department, and in that major in particular, the numbers were even better. Yet, on test after test, there was that normal distribution. Your 1300/3.7 median student would pull a 73, and there would be some whiz who got a 95 and 15% of the class would get a 60 or below and have to retake or drop the major. Nearly everybody was a good student and worked hard, but that didn't change the fact that some people were just better at astrophysics than others and the exams were hard enough to distinguish that fact.
Last edited by rayiner on Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

SoCal123
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby SoCal123 » Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:32 pm

This is an interesting thread.

My advice is to ask yourself what path you think will allow you the greatest personal growth. If you transfer, you will lose out on growth opportunities like law review and moot court. Do not devalue the importance of these experiences. They come around once in a lifetime.

If you transfer to another school, you may find that you are on the outside looking in, rather than on the inside looking out.

Grasshopper.

:D

huckabees
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby huckabees » Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:53 pm

Yes, very interesting thread.

I bet the OP has some great opportunities and will very likely be able to transfer into a T14.

Cool discussion on intelligence vs. studying.

What I find a little weird is that many people equate studying with learning the hard facts and what the literature/professors say, whereas "intelligence" is having good intuition or conceptual understanding.

However, studying more can lead to greater "intelligence", so they are pretty closely tied.

Having said that, I get what people mean when they say that some people's studying go to waste because they are not absorbing the information in the right manner.

I'd also be interested in hearing more about what people think makes for great 1L grades...

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RVP11
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby RVP11 » Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:58 pm

rayiner wrote:Now, everyone in these classes were smart.


:lol: at this sentence.

:wink:

Ohioboy115
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby Ohioboy115 » Thu Feb 05, 2009 7:01 pm

You should at least put in a couple apps (sounds like you want vandy, do that and maybe one or two T14) and see what happens. It'll be 200 bucks to maybe get into an amazing school that you'd never dream of transferring from. Skys the limit!

cannoneer
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby cannoneer » Thu Feb 05, 2009 7:06 pm

PKSebben wrote:Every transfer I know was considered for or received need aid. I know transfer at most of the T25.


Did you fill out a Need Access form to be considered for need aid? Would you be okay for need-based aid even if you filed it after the second semester?

JeffBuckley
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby JeffBuckley » Thu Feb 05, 2009 7:08 pm

I have a difficult time believing that I'd be accepted to Harvard, even if I pulled a 4.0 next semester, too (which, coincidentally, ain't gonna happen), by sheer virtue of my LSAT score (163).


But you all collectively seem to have a better understanding of these transfer issues than I do. So, maybe I'll put in an application anyway. Just for shits and giggles.

cannoneer
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby cannoneer » Thu Feb 05, 2009 7:16 pm

...
Last edited by cannoneer on Sat Jul 18, 2009 11:35 am, edited 1 time in total.

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rayiner
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby rayiner » Thu Feb 05, 2009 7:17 pm

jsporter wrote:
rayiner wrote:Now, everyone in these classes were smart.


:lol: at this sentence.

:wink:


Well, almost everyone. Except me of course.

bigben
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby bigben » Thu Feb 05, 2009 7:30 pm

rayiner wrote:
bigben wrote:
BradyToMoss wrote:
underdawg wrote:the 1000 pound elephant in the room: it has a lot to do with BEING SMART

no one wants to say it, but it's true

the person i know who studied the hardest did pretty bad


TCR. I know lots of people who worked relentlessly and did not do that great (and of course some that worked very hard and did great). Everyone at good law schools is smart, but some people just naturally get law and others won't no matter how hard they work.



Hm...I think even if everyone "got" the law, there is still a good chance that about 50% of them would be in the bottom half of the class.


Does everyone get the law though? Without the curve, everyone would get good grades and be a successful lawyer? I find it difficult to believe that law is unlike every other field in having classrooms full of superstars. In every endeavor, there are people who are just better at the task at hand than others. Even when there are barriers to entry, like LSAT scores or GPAs, there is still an ordering of capability within every group. Now I'm not saying that it's easy to predict, via LSAT score or GPA, who will demonstrate the most ability, but that doesn't mean that there isn't some intrinsic ordering. I'd argue that the Gaussian distribution of exam performance is intrinsic to exams themselves, and the "curve" is simply a mapping of that distribution to point values. I think it is silly to imply that it is an arbitrary extrinsic ordering applied to a dataset that does not have an intrinsic one.

I'll give an anecdotal example. In some of my UG classes, there was no "curve" per-se. The exam was simply curved so the median student only got, say, 2/3s of the questions correct, and the "curve" was just a mapping from point values to letter grades. Now, everyone in these classes were smart. The SAT average for the school was ~1300 and most of the students had been top-10% in their high-schools. In the engineering department, and in that major in particular, the numbers were even better. Yet, on test after test, there was that normal distribution. Your 1300/3.7 median student would pull a 73, and there would be some whiz who got a 95 and 15% of the class would get a 60 or below and have to retake or drop the major. Nearly everybody was a good student and worked hard, but that didn't change the fact that some people were just better at astrophysics than others and the exams were hard enough to distinguish that fact.



I didn't say grades are arbitrary; they measure something. But it's not a grouping of people who naturally "get" the law and people who never will. At least not at top schools, and I doubt it's much like that at other schools either.

bigben
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby bigben » Thu Feb 05, 2009 7:31 pm

JeffBuckley wrote:I have a difficult time believing that I'd be accepted to Harvard, even if I pulled a 4.0 next semester, too (which, coincidentally, ain't gonna happen), by sheer virtue of my LSAT score (163).


But you all collectively seem to have a better understanding of these transfer issues than I do. So, maybe I'll put in an application anyway. Just for shits and giggles.


If no one said it already all you need to do is study the data in the transferapps group on Yahoo.

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rayiner
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby rayiner » Thu Feb 05, 2009 7:48 pm

bigben wrote:I didn't say grades are arbitrary; they measure something. But it's not a grouping of people who naturally "get" the law and people who never will. At least not at top schools, and I doubt it's much like that at other schools either.


Your comment definitely implied that you felt that the curve imposed an arbitrary ordering. Beyond that, I'll contest your claim that exams don't measure people who "get the law". The question, again, is one of where the bar is set. Most students at a T30 school are probably smart enough to be able to learn and understand the rules. I doubt, however, that all of them can master them to a point where they can apply them quickly in unfamiliar scenarios. And it would seem to me that this is exactly what a law school exam measures.

To return to my previous anecdote, in my engineering classes most people knew the material. This was not enough to consistently get you an A. The people who got A's on a regular basis were the ones that had mastered the material so well that they could apply it to unforeseen scenarios. People who didn't get A's complained that the exams were nothing like the homework, but that missed the point of the whole exercise. The goal of the exam was to identify those people who would be good candidates for the graduate program, where they would have to apply their knowledge to genuinely novel scenarios. Your median B-student would make a fine engineer, applying well-understood rules to well-understood problems, but it was the exceptional people, the ones who could derive the differential equations of flight dynamics from first principles in 30 minutes*, who could do innovative research.

That being said, I'm a 0L, so what do I know? I just find it difficult to believe that law isn't like, well, everything else in the world. I've worked in engineering since I finished high-school, and you could always find a distribution. On any given question, some people were just stumped, some people got an answer, but only after running the math, and some people could do an estimate in their head in five minutes that was within 10% of the answer the second group spent an hour computing.

*) That was actually one of the qualifying exams for the PhD program.

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SoxyPirate
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby SoxyPirate » Thu Feb 05, 2009 8:05 pm

rayiner wrote:
jsporter wrote:
rayiner wrote:Now, everyone in these classes were smart.


:lol: at this sentence.

:wink:


Well, almost everyone. Except me of course.


I think jsporter was pointing out the irony of the poor grammar...

JeffBuckley
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby JeffBuckley » Thu Feb 05, 2009 8:31 pm

Haha.

I didn't catch that on my first read.

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BradyToMoss
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Re: So I Made a 4.0 my First Semester in Law School

Postby BradyToMoss » Thu Feb 05, 2009 9:51 pm

I still disagree. Even at the top schools some kids naturally get it and others don't.




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