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Lyricaltoast

Just finished 1L Single JD - Ask Me Anything

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Good idea creating this topic. I've been looking for a more academic side to 'ask a current student'. I'm coming into law school with a lot of schooling. This will be my 4th degree. It is either JD or PhD (humanities). I'm not considered a mature student. Basically after undergrad, I just went through with more school (I still question my sanity...!)

I was wondering if: 1) there is any multiple choice grading in any classes and 2) whether the LSAT determines how well you'll 'curve' in 1L. I'm asking this because I am not a natural multiple choice test taker to the point where I would avoid courses in undergrad using such format and take up essay/essay exam classes (hence grad school!). I would say I am a hardworking student given my commitment to studying and a natural love towards reading/writing. The LSAT was the first time where I studied hard for a test and didn't click at all (152)...much worse than my worst day with a multiple choice exam in undergrad (and I am reasonably used to grade deflation/different grading methods/institutions).

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1 hour ago, Meow5 said:

1) there is any multiple choice grading in any classes

Yes, but not that much, in my experience. In 1L I had a m/c section on my crim exam, and a m/c section on property, neither of which comprised more than 20% of the exam. In 2L I had one small elective course that was a 100% m/c final, and another class that had a m/c section... so out of 13 classes taken through two years, four courses had a m/c component. That being said, you can find/avoid m/c exams just as you did in undergrad.

 

1 hour ago, Meow5 said:

2) whether the LSAT determines how well you'll 'curve' in 1L.

I would say no, others may differ. Generally I believe the consensus is that the LSAT is not a strong correlation to law school success.

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On 6/14/2017 at 6:11 AM, Lyricaltoast said:

I couldn't help but notice that there was no recent AMA thread from any 1L Single JD's so I decided to start one!

As incoming students, there are probably tons of stuff you are curious about. I, along with others on this forum (I encourage other students to chime in!), will try to answer those questions to the best of our abilities. 

If by any chance you think your question is dumb (although it most likely isn't), you are more than welcome to shoot me a PM. One of the things that you will notice in law school is that most students will have the same questions as you, though they just can't bring themselves to ask because they think it'll make them look stupid. I just want to encourage everyone to ask questions!

Cheers 

 

Don't have a q of my own, but just wanted to say... Congrats on finishing 1L, Lyricaltoast! 

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1 hour ago, ElsbethTascioni said:

 

Don't have a q of my own, but just wanted to say... Congrats on finishing 1L, Lyricaltoast! 

Thanks, I really appreciate that! The year went by very quickly and I was done before I knew it. Three years of law school may seem daunting at first, but it really seems to fly by (according to upper years haha) and I think it's important for all of us to make the most of our time while we are able. 

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On 6/14/2017 at 8:08 AM, Lyricaltoast said:

1. Couple of general areas that I can think of at the top of my head are Sandwich street, downtown Windsor, Wyandotte street, University street, and Canterbury college (not sure if that's how you spell it). 

Personally, I lived close to Wyandotte street as that is where you will find restaurants and the printer store which students in Windsor frequently go to. Generally, unless people have cars, they tend to stay within walking distance from the law building (15-20minutes). 

2. I don't know if you're familiar with the law school grading curve, but Windsor, as well as most other schools I believe, adjusts to a B average. I didn't find the grading curve too bad to be honest. I did better than I expected and was above the curve for most of my courses. Do your readings, attend lectures, and take notes, and you should be fine. Obviously I'm oversimplifying the process a little, but you will develop the knowhow in a few months. It takes time to get there, so be patient with yourself and don't buy into the hype of law school and psyche yourself out. 

If you any other questions or anything you want me to talk about more in depth, let me know!

 

Hi Lyricaltoast,

1. I have been researching on places to live as well and have heard to generally avoid east of the Ambassador Bridge and parts of Sandwich? I've heard that Portofino condominiums and Harbourview (is that part of Sandwich?) are good locations too. I'm undecided whether or not to bring my car with me, would you recommend so?

2. Also, do you know recall how long it took before you were accepted to the FB group? I have tried to join the All Years and 1L (Single JD) group for over a week now but the only admin has not responded! Assuming there would be information there I'd really like to hope to be approved soon.

3. Do you know how I can be paired up with an upper year mentor?

4. Are there part time jobs available at the university, or in the Windsor area that a law student could pick up while studying? I've been working here and there since high school so it would kinda feel weird not to be making money. Though I've heard that with 1L you don't have much spare time outside of studying.

Thanks in advance! I'll ask more questions as they arise. :)

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3 hours ago, Meow5 said:

Good idea creating this topic. I've been looking for a more academic side to 'ask a current student'. I'm coming into law school with a lot of schooling. This will be my 4th degree. It is either JD or PhD (humanities). I'm not considered a mature student. Basically after undergrad, I just went through with more school (I still question my sanity...!)

I was wondering if: 1) there is any multiple choice grading in any classes and 2) whether the LSAT determines how well you'll 'curve' in 1L. I'm asking this because I am not a natural multiple choice test taker to the point where I would avoid courses in undergrad using such format and take up essay/essay exam classes (hence grad school!). I would say I am a hardworking student given my commitment to studying and a natural love towards reading/writing. The LSAT was the first time where I studied hard for a test and didn't click at all (152)...much worse than my worst day with a multiple choice exam in undergrad (and I am reasonably used to grade deflation/different grading methods/institutions).

Wow that's pretty crazy! You'll likely find a few others with various degrees and experiences as well. Anywho, to answer your questions:

1) As BleedBlue has said, there are m/c components in exams/tests, although they are usually not significantly weighed. Especially for midterms and final exams, you'll find yourself answering either essay type questions or fact hypotheticals (A fact hypothetical exam is when you're given numerous facts of a situation and you have to apply the legal doctrines you have learned throughout the year/semester). With that being said, you may have tests/quizzes (not exams) that may be comprised of m/c and/or short answers. 

To share my in-depth experience, I had 2 tests (instead of a midterm) worth 15% each for property. We actually wrote 3 tests but our lowest grade got dropped so it was very fair. For the final in property, there was a m/c component that comprised I think 30% of the final exam. It's also worth noting that students had the option of opting out of the m/c component by writing a research paper (they still had to do the other chunk of the final) but this was not a popular route under the circumstances. Otherwise, I didn't have any other m/c in a final. All in all, I think it comes down to the prof and whether that prof likes giving m/c questions. I don't think you have to worry yourself too much about m/c! 

2) I also agree with BB in that your LSAT score is not a good representation of how well you will 'curve' in 1L. Personally, I strongly believe that LSAT scores have little correlation to law school success. I know people who had 160-165 LSAT scores who ended up on the curve (average). I can definitely relate to your concern because I also had a relatively poor LSAT score myself (154 or something like that). But despite that, I did pretty in 1L so I assure you, you have nothing to worry about! You're in law school now congrats! Let the horrible memories of LSAT prepping rest in peace. 

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40 minutes ago, ona194 said:

Hi Lyricaltoast,

1. I have been researching on places to live as well and have heard to generally avoid east of the Ambassador Bridge and parts of Sandwich? I've heard that Portofino condominiums and Harbourview (is that part of Sandwich?) are good locations too. I'm undecided whether or not to bring my car with me, would you recommend so?

2. Also, do you know recall how long it took before you were accepted to the FB group? I have tried to join the All Years and 1L (Single JD) group for over a week now but the only admin has not responded! Assuming there would be information there I'd really like to hope to be approved soon.

3. Do you know how I can be paired up with an upper year mentor?

4. Are there part time jobs available at the university, or in the Windsor area that a law student could pick up while studying? I've been working here and there since high school so it would kinda feel weird not to be making money. Though I've heard that with 1L you don't have much spare time outside of studying.

Thanks in advance! I'll ask more questions as they arise.

1. I do recall hearing from some people that the east side of the bridge and parts of Sandwich was kind of sketchy. I personally haven't been to the area enough times to give any meaningful input :(. As for a car..I personally think it will be helpful to have your car since the grocery stores tend to be pretty far from campus. If you decide to live a fair distance from the law building then i'd definitely recommend having your car. But even if you a walking distance, I think there are many merits to having your car (I didn't have a car but managed just fine though). Perhaps the best thing to do is bring your car in the beginning of the year and see how you feel about it afterwards. If you feel that you really don't need it, then you can always just leave it back home when you go back for Thanksgiving weekend. 

2. It shouldn't take too long I believe. Did either group prompt you to fill out any information? (Whether you're an incoming student or returning student, email, etc.) Because I believe you have to fill those out before you're invited into the group. If you didn't get any of that, then I would try shooting the admin a private message!

3. Yes. Shortly after school starts, all 1Ls are given an opportunity to apply for a mentor. The process is very simple and you're assigned a mentor a week or two afterwards. I highly recommend applying for a mentor! All of us upper years are eager to help incoming 1Ls and although we're more than willing to help, mentee or not, it's good to have your own mentor. 

4. I'm actually not too certain about that as I personally don't know any 1Ls that worked part time at the university. You might be able to find something in the university (Windsor library, etc) but I'm doubtful there's anything for 1Ls at the faculty of law. I recommend that you do not work in 1L unless you're in dire financial need. It's somewhat true that there isn't much spare time in 1L. As a result, whatever spare time you do have, it's important to take that time to relax and do whatever it is that you enjoy. If you really do want to work, then at least let the fall semester go by first. If you feel like you can manage a part-time job on top of that, you can look for something during the winter semester. 

Also, if you are trying to work because you really need the money, don't forget that you can always apply for bursaries! 

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37 minutes ago, Lyricaltoast said:

1. I do recall hearing from some people that the east side of the bridge and parts of Sandwich was kind of sketchy. I personally haven't been to the area enough times to give any meaningful input . As for a car..I personally think it will be helpful to have your car since the grocery stores tend to be pretty far from campus. If you decide to live a fair distance from the law building then i'd definitely recommend having your car. But even if you a walking distance, I think there are many merits to having your car (I didn't have a car but managed just fine though). Perhaps the best thing to do is bring your car in the beginning of the year and see how you feel about it afterwards. If you feel that you really don't need it, then you can always just leave it back home when you go back for Thanksgiving weekend. 

2. It shouldn't take too long I believe. Did either group prompt you to fill out any information? (Whether you're an incoming student or returning student, email, etc.) Because I believe you have to fill those out before you're invited into the group. If you didn't get any of that, then I would try shooting the admin a private message!

3. Yes. Shortly after school starts, all 1Ls are given an opportunity to apply for a mentor. The process is very simple and you're assigned a mentor a week or two afterwards. I highly recommend applying for a mentor! All of us upper years are eager to help incoming 1Ls and although we're more than willing to help, mentee or not, it's good to have your own mentor. 

4. I'm actually not too certain about that as I personally don't know any 1Ls that worked part time at the university. You might be able to find something in the university (Windsor library, etc) but I'm doubtful there's anything for 1Ls at the faculty of law. I recommend that you do not work in 1L unless you're in dire financial need. It's somewhat true that there isn't much spare time in 1L. As a result, whatever spare time you do have, it's important to take that time to relax and do whatever it is that you enjoy. If you really do want to work, then at least let the fall semester go by first. If you feel like you can manage a part-time job on top of that, you can look for something during the winter semester. 

Also, if you are trying to work because you really need the money, don't forget that you can always apply for bursaries! 

Thanks for your information! I forgot to mention I'm from BC so I'd have to ship my car over... :( I did fill out some information before requesting to join the FB groups (incoming student, firm accepting, and name/email used to apply) and also private messaged but nothing yet. I guess I'll have to wait.

Also, I have another question! What is PILS week? We don't get the study week in November off like 2L and 3L students?

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28 minutes ago, ona194 said:

Also, I have another question! What is PILS week? We don't get the study week in November off like 2L and 3L students?

I don't remember what the acronym stands for but that's not important. It's a mandatory pass/fail component of a course called Access to Justice. For PILS week all 1Ls are divided up into groups of 8-9ish students. Each group is assigned a position either for the plaintiff or the defendant (your group is essentially firm representing your client). Throughout the week you will be doing research, meeting with the other firm (which you will be paired with), client interview (a drama student acts as a client), and by the end of it your group will draft a memo. Think of the whole thing as a firm simulation. 

You don't have classes during PILS week but you are required to meet up with your group everyday to work on your PILS material. This year PILS week overlaps with your reading week so that's kind of lame. On the bright side, you will have a 3 week break in the winter! We had a reading week but our PILS week was during the break so 1Ls had to come back to school a week earlier than upper years. I personally think having an actual reading week is better but considering you're from BC and assuming you'll be going back home for winter, having the full 3 weeks break is good too. PILS week is not that stressful because no one is going to really fail. Some students do take it more seriously than others but you could honestly just cruise through it. Although you will be putting in work everyday, you'll still have time to do readings/assignments so it's not all that bad. 

 

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13 hours ago, ona194 said:

Hi Lyricaltoast,

1. I have been researching on places to live as well and have heard to generally avoid east of the Ambassador Bridge and parts of Sandwich? I've heard that Portofino condominiums and Harbourview (is that part of Sandwich?) are good locations too. I'm undecided whether or not to bring my car with me, would you recommend so?

4. Are there part time jobs available at the university, or in the Windsor area that a law student could pick up while studying? I've been working here and there since high school so it would kinda feel weird not to be making money. Though I've heard that with 1L you don't have much spare time outside of studying.

Hi Ona194 I just selected the portions I could respond to and Lyricaltoast has done a good job of addressing most of them. 

1) I live in Sandwich Town and actually quite like it. Most people opt to live a little bit closer, or on the other side of campus because its closer to downtown that direction, however its pretty affordable, still walking distance to the school, and there are a couple of really great pubs. The walk is about 15 minutes to the law building but there's also a bus route through it so you can get to class in 5 minutes when its snowing or raining.  However, I would not recommend going any further west than Mill St. it does start to get a bit dodgy.

I have a car in Windsor and find it really useful especially since I don't like to study on campus so it gives me more options. That being said, shipping your car sounds like a lot of work/money. I'm sure you would be able to make friends with someone with a car, and your bus pass is included in your student fees so if you find a place near a bus route you should be okay for groceries.

4) I would second Lyricaltoasts recommendation that you do not work during 1L for a couple of reasons. The first being that if the motivation is financial, Windsor Law does have a lot of financial support available in the form of bursaries. You're starting a program that makes you think and study differently than most undergrad programs, give yourself some time to adjust and see how manageable your time is. The second reason I would say is that Windsor has a lot of unpaid opportunities that would arguably do more to boost your resume. Things like pro bono and the legal aid clinic would be a more productive use of your extra time as it will help you gain more legal related skills. Aside from those there are many Windsor law clubs and committees to join which will help you better get to know your classmates and upper years as well as also boost your resume a bit. While these things aren't paid they could be more beneficial than working part time in the long run.

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18 hours ago, Lyricaltoast said:

I don't remember what the acronym stands for but that's not important. It's a mandatory pass/fail component of a course called Access to Justice. For PILS week all 1Ls are divided up into groups of 8-9ish students. Each group is assigned a position either for the plaintiff or the defendant (your group is essentially firm representing your client). Throughout the week you will be doing research, meeting with the other firm (which you will be paired with), client interview (a drama student acts as a client), and by the end of it your group will draft a memo. Think of the whole thing as a firm simulation. 

You don't have classes during PILS week but you are required to meet up with your group everyday to work on your PILS material. This year PILS week overlaps with your reading week so that's kind of lame. On the bright side, you will have a 3 week break in the winter! We had a reading week but our PILS week was during the break so 1Ls had to come back to school a week earlier than upper years. I personally think having an actual reading week is better but considering you're from BC and assuming you'll be going back home for winter, having the full 3 weeks break is good too. PILS week is not that stressful because no one is going to really fail. Some students do take it more seriously than others but you could honestly just cruise through it. Although you will be putting in work everyday, you'll still have time to do readings/assignments so it's not all that bad. 

 

Hey Lyricaltoast,

I found this calendar in another thread and maybe I'm reading this wrong, but how do you know 1L's have 3 week break in the winter already? Dec 21 to Jan 8?

https://www.uwindsor.ca/law/academic-coordinator/sites/uwindsor.ca.law.academic-coordinator/files/2016-2017_sessional_dates_for_law_for_posting.pdf

7 hours ago, litigationstation said:

Hi Ona194 I just selected the portions I could respond to and Lyricaltoast has done a good job of addressing most of them. 

1) I live in Sandwich Town and actually quite like it. Most people opt to live a little bit closer, or on the other side of campus because its closer to downtown that direction, however its pretty affordable, still walking distance to the school, and there are a couple of really great pubs. The walk is about 15 minutes to the law building but there's also a bus route through it so you can get to class in 5 minutes when its snowing or raining.  However, I would not recommend going any further west than Mill St. it does start to get a bit dodgy.

I have a car in Windsor and find it really useful especially since I don't like to study on campus so it gives me more options. That being said, shipping your car sounds like a lot of work/money. I'm sure you would be able to make friends with someone with a car, and your bus pass is included in your student fees so if you find a place near a bus route you should be okay for groceries.

4) I would second Lyricaltoasts recommendation that you do not work during 1L for a couple of reasons. The first being that if the motivation is financial, Windsor Law does have a lot of financial support available in the form of bursaries. You're starting a program that makes you think and study differently than most undergrad programs, give yourself some time to adjust and see how manageable your time is. The second reason I would say is that Windsor has a lot of unpaid opportunities that would arguably do more to boost your resume. Things like pro bono and the legal aid clinic would be a more productive use of your extra time as it will help you gain more legal related skills. Aside from those there are many Windsor law clubs and committees to join which will help you better get to know your classmates and upper years as well as also boost your resume a bit. While these things aren't paid they could be more beneficial than working part time in the long run.

Hi litigationstation,

How is the public transit in Windsor - do they come often between your place to campus, or say downtown? You're right, shipping my car will be costly and take a lot of effort, and on second thought I probably won't do so anymore. I can't wait to get involved with pro bono and legal clinics, I just hope I don't get swamped with extracurriculars like I did in undergrad (because I was too eager to be part of everything haha)

--

Thanks to both of you, I really appreciate it!

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3 hours ago, ona194 said:

Hey Lyricaltoast,

I found this calendar in another thread and maybe I'm reading this wrong, but how do you know 1L's have 3 week break in the winter already? Dec 21 to Jan 8?

https://www.uwindsor.ca/law/academic-coordinator/sites/uwindsor.ca.law.academic-coordinator/files/2016-2017_sessional_dates_for_law_for_posting.pdf

 

I can't remember too clearly but I recall the break being something like 2-3 weeks. I also think our exams ended before the 21st (I think formally the end of first year exams are the 21st, but everyone finishes before that). What I do remember is that PILS week started on January 2nd or 3rd. 

Perhaps litigationstation could shed some light on this issue (assuming he/she just finished 1L)

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I did just finish 1L, I do remember we had a two week break and were back a week before the rest of the students because of PILS so lyricaltoast would be right in you having a 3 week break over Christmas. That being said they may change it, I'm not sure on that. 

As for the transit near me I find it's pretty good. Bus every 15 minutes to get to campus and there is one going the other way towards grocery stores. There's also the option of taking an Uber if you're planning to load up on groceries and don't want to lug them on the bus. I only really used it to get to class on days when the weather was bad or I was late but there were people that lived in areas further away like Walkerville that relied on it to get to class without problems. 

 

When you look on Google maps at any places you're considering it shows any bus stops and schedules nearby. I would recommend checking the routes you would need if you plan on relying on it to get to classes or grocery stores. 

I'm glad to hear you're excited to get involved! 

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On 6/15/2017 at 7:17 PM, Lyricaltoast said:

I also agree with BB in that your LSAT score is not a good representation of how well you will 'curve' in 1L. Personally, I strongly believe that LSAT scores have little correlation to law school success. I know people who had 160-165 LSAT scores who ended up on the curve (average). I can definitely relate to your concern because I also had a relatively poor LSAT score myself (154 or something like that). But despite that, I did pretty in 1L so I assure you, you have nothing to worry about! You're in law school now congrats! Let the horrible memories of LSAT prepping rest in peace. 

This is extremely reassuring to actually hear from a 1L rather than bias spam/studies from LSAT prep companies I've been receiving all year...definitely lessens my anxiety going in! 

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Hi, I was wondering if you or anyone here had any insight regarding living at Alumni Hall or Canterbury college? I'm currently trying to decide between the two!

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On 6/23/2017 at 4:23 AM, Mylifeisajoke said:

Hi, I was wondering if you or anyone here had any insight regarding living at Alumni Hall or Canterbury college? I'm currently trying to decide between the two!

I can't offer much knowledge regarding Alumni Hall but I did have a few friends who lived at Canterbury. They seemed to like it due to the convenience of being extremely close to the law building. Also, I think there are more law students residing in Canterbury (whether that is a pro/con is subjective). However, it is a bit pricey and I don't think the apartment is furnished. Overall, I'd probably choose Canterbury over Alumni Hall! Hopefully there will be someone else who can share any personal experience

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On 6/23/2017 at 4:23 AM, Mylifeisajoke said:

Hi, I was wondering if you or anyone here had any insight regarding living at Alumni Hall or Canterbury college? I'm currently trying to decide between the two!

I can't offer much knowledge regarding Alumni Hall but I did have a few friends who lived at Canterbury. They seemed to like it due to the convenience of being extremely close to the law building. Also, I think there are more law students residing in Canterbury (whether that is a pro/con is subjective). However, it is a bit pricey and I don't think the apartment is furnished. Overall, I'd probably choose Canterbury over Alumni Hall! Hopefully there will be someone else who can share any personal experience

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