In most law school seminars, the instruction of legal writing usually gets broken down into technical details. However, legal writing—just like every other form of writing—is more art than science. You must learn how to tell a story, appeal to an audience, and—after you’ve gotten the mechanics of analysis down—trust your instincts. Over almost a decade of
Wise choices of law school courses can optimize grades and increase preparation for the bar exam and future legal practice.
The semester’s halfway point is fast approaching. Students need to take stock now and begin serious exam preparation. First, analyze three aspects of your academics to gather information for planning your studies. Then, determine the study priorities for each course and choose appropriate study strategies to accomplish those priorities. Analyze your
Many law students never outlined courses when they were undergraduates because tests were frequent and noncumulative so cramming from class notes worked well. Infrequent law school-style exams make cramming from class notes and briefs unwise. First, one exam covering 15 weeks of material translates to hundreds of pages of briefs and
Realize that law school requires a different commitment to your studies. For many law students, prior college courses were not essential to their futures. They could cram at the end of the semester, “brain dump” for a good grade, and then forget what they learned because they never planned to
Taking courses that will give you an edge in your (so-far) chosen specialty is just one smart way to choose electives.
There are techniques to improve your exam results in May. If you implement them diligently, your grades can increase with any exam format.
“Study groups” are a long-standing tradition in law school. The term, however, is a misnomer; law students actually complete daily class preparation alone. They later use study group time to review and consolidate course material.
What is the most important lawyerly skill you might acquire in law school? I say it's the art of reading cases knowledgeably––especially cases involving textual interpretation. It’s unfortunate that textual interpretation is largely neglected in legal education. Professor Mary Ann Glendon of has written: “Most of our fellow citizens . .
Law class and note-taking requires different strategies than undergraduate classes because of format, content, and pace differences.