No doubt, preparing for law school exams, especially your first set of these assessments, is a challenging experience. But many law students have survived this process not much worse for wear, so don’t panic!
As noted here previously, the law library has a variety of study aids available. Here is a sample of some of the other potentially useful resources providing suggestions for exam preparation and writing:
Best of Luck!
One Ls—You may find helpful the short essay titled How to Read a Legal Opinion: A Guide for New Law Students written by GW Law Professor Orin Kerr. According to the abstract:
This essay is designed to help new law students prepare for the first few weeks of class. It explains what judicial opinions are, how they are structured, and what law students should look for when reading them.
In a previous post, we discussed the controvery sparked by David Segal’s commentary on law schools. Bloomberg Law has made available a video interview in which David Segal shares more of his views regarding the “crazy” business of law schools.
While the blawgosphere provides its own critiques of legal education, attack this institution on the front page of a major newspaper, and suddenly swords are drawn!
In case you missed it, the front page of last Sunday’s New York Times featured an article titled: What They Don’t Teach Law Students: Lawyering. The article critcizes the dearth of practical skills training in law schools and argues that this has become increasingly intolerable for employers, clients, as well a new graduates in the tight economy. It also focuses on costs associated with rewarding production of legal scholarship rather than teaching excellence.
- Brian Leiter’s Law School Reports calls the article a “hatchet job” full of cliches, inaccuracies, anti-intellectualism etc.
- The Volokh Conspiracy notes “there’s a lot worth criticizing” in the article but finds merits in the piece as well.
- Prawfs Blawg calls the article ”A Recipe for Trashing Legal Scholarship” describing the “ingredients” as “half-baked.”
The issues here are nothing new. Law school curriculum, especially the relatively limited focus on teaching practical lawyering skills, has long been the subject of debate. But this debate isn’t generally highlighted on the front page of the New York Times. Perhaps for law students, this discussion will help inform course selections or even make the time devoted to LRWA assignments seem a tiny bit less onerous?
While ultimately which law school classes prove most useful will depend on each individual’s career interests and the quality of the course, a recent survey of George Washington Law alumni about recommended elective curriculum may be of interest to blog readers.
The top 3 courses recommended by the 576 survey respondents were not surprizing:
- Evidence (27%)
- Administrative Law (21%)
- Corporations (18%)
The complete survey results may be found here. Hat tip The Volokh Conspiracy Blog.
The American Bar Association has published a 28-page guide titled: How to Survive the First Year of Law School. It includes information about studying, exams, activities, and career planning.
Hat tip Pence Law Library.