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ConfusedCalgarian

Does any law school actually have a quiet law library?

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This was not meant as a troll post, or to stir up debate. I am asking this seriously. I have recently landed a job, and I feel more confident in wanting to switch schools (I'm already at a different province than the city the job is in) purely for the inability to study in the library. I have read here somewhere that this appears to be a problem at a lot of schools. Does anyone go to a school that they would describe as having a healthy study environment?

Our library is filled with non law students (SNAILS) who bring their food in and watch videos half the time, only to get up and answer their phone every 30 minutes, continuing the conversation as they exit the library. Or they will move to a desk next to you and start smashing their fingers on their laptops so the whole desk vibrates. Or they will There are a very small number of law students who are part of the problem, maybe one or two people, but aside from that it's entirely the snails. This isn't some elitist law student crap, I am very serious. I cannot actually study at my own university, and that used to be my primary study location. I of course go home right after class ends, but I am very unproductive in between classes because I have the attention span of a goldfish. 

I'm especially interested in hearing about the Western schools. Cheers.

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19 minutes ago, ConfusedCalgarian said:

This was not meant as a troll post, or to stir up debate. I am asking this seriously. I have recently landed a job, and I feel more confident in wanting to switch schools (I'm already at a different province than the city the job is in) purely for the inability to study in the library. I have read here somewhere that this appears to be a problem at a lot of schools. Does anyone go to a school that they would describe as having a healthy study environment?

Our library is filled with non law students (SNAILS) who bring their food in and watch videos half the time, only to get up and answer their phone every 30 minutes, continuing the conversation as they exit the library. Or they will move to a desk next to you and start smashing their fingers on their laptops so the whole desk vibrates. Or they will There are a very small number of law students who are part of the problem, maybe one or two people, but aside from that it's entirely the snails. This isn't some elitist law student crap, I am very serious. I cannot actually study at my own university, and that used to be my primary study location. I of course go home right after class ends, but I am very unproductive in between classes because I have the attention span of a goldfish. 

I'm especially interested in hearing about the Western schools. Cheers.

Dal, not a western school.

Our library isn't super quiet. But I bought a pair of earplugs, and found that easier than transferring. 

Edit: not trying to be flippant - I feel your pain. But I think noise in libraries is something that you might be expected to bear at most schools. I would also recommend noise cancelling headphones. 

Edited by realpseudonym
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I've never had a bad experience at McGill's law library. 

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Osgoode's Law Library is very quiet and they just recently have been really enforcing the no non-law students rule so there are only serious students within being very quiet and respectful to others study needs.

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As a 0L, I wouldn't mind knowing what University you are attending at that has the distractions. Not that I would let that deter me but I am interested nonetheless.

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Wow, this is actually very good to hear. I don't know if I want to tarnish my schools name, but it is awful here. Not to mention, the layout of the library is awful as it's also used as a hallway between buildings, and it's a massive open space so sound travels everywhere.

 

I have tried earplugs, they don't get rid of the bass sounds, which can be just as frequent. It also doesn't help with the constant movement on the desks. I had to move today because someone sits down right across from me (connected desks), constantly shaking the keyboard. As I walk out, he's watching netflix and eating lunch. It's unbelievable. I have heard of it being a problem at other schools though, but it's good to hear there are exceptions.

 

You guys actually have a no non-law student policy? That is fantastic. 

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If you're okay with wearing those big over the head ear-muffs (the ones construction workers wear) then give those a try. They'll definitely fu... up your hair if you have them on for extended periods, but if that's not an issue then go for it. They block everything. I used to wear them all the time and it's ridiculous how much noise they block out. 

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If you're in a large enough city, just head to a public library. I didn't own a computer for a year or so and no internet for about half of my last year in undergrad - local public library was always quiet, always available, always had computers free. I did the same in 1L when my computer was busted (obviously not by my own incompetence). 

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And people say law students are scumbag elitists..

 

I know you explicitly said it's not about that, but it is. Law students also do literally all those things. You just happen to notice when the person is reading something novel as opposed to Denning go off about a new test again.

 

And shame on Osgoode for that policy. Libraries should be free and open to all (university libraries to university students at large).

 

If people really are being that bothersome, just politely tell them to shut it. If that doesn't work, tell someone who works there (though rarely does it get there; "snails" and law students alike generally appreciate when they're being ass holes and quiet down.)

 

Lastly, you don't own that space. So if someone is typing furiously because they're stressed/anxious/writing a take home/writing a letter home saying they're home sick then be appreciative of the fact that the person is probably stressing out and or working hard just like you and everyone else. You don't have a right to be free of reasonable interference in a library. If you want that, go build your own damn private library.

Edited by pzabbythesecond
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2 hours ago, Abii said:

If you're okay with wearing those big over the head ear-muffs (the ones construction workers wear) then give those a try. They'll definitely fu... up your hair if you have them on for extended periods, but if that's not an issue then go for it. They block everything. I used to wear them all the time and it's ridiculous how much noise they block out. 

I don't recommend them, and not solely for aesthetics. Most of them get incredibly hot underneath (unless the construction ones are built differently from ones meant for shooting) and you'll want to take them off within the hour. They also require a decent amount of clamping pressure to fully seal, and that begins to get fatiguing at about the same rate.

And OP, get over the fact that I use my keyboard aggressively. I grew up on a very high travel keyboard, and I won't apologize for my rapidfire typing, I've got shit to do. I'm not going to slow down because it's annoying you. It's one thing to get annoyed if the sound is intentional, like those who leave the software keyboard click on, but I don't choose a laptop on the basis of key noise. This is the equivalent of getting frustrated at someone's furious scratching of the paper as they write.

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Try exploring campus a bit. During my undergrad the main library for my faculty was constantly full of loud students doing group work or just hanging out. Eventually I found a spot in the annex that was almost always empty and so quiet you could hear a pin drop.

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I find that studying in a semi-noisy environment more accurately reflects working and doesn't make me seem like a pompous whiny shit who couldn't be bothered to do my own work some where else if I didn't like the noise levels in the venue I chose to study in.

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The above poster makes a valid point. You're going to have a tough time down the road if some loud typing bothers you so much. 

Moving/transferring to avoid a little noise is a bit wild. You really can't find an alternative study location between classes? I'm assuming you have a laptop, and are on a campus with Wifi. Find an empty classroom and study in it between classes, they don't lock the doors and if people start coming in for a class just switch to the next classroom. Sounds easier than transferring and moving. Oh my 

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10 hours ago, pzabbythesecond said:

And people say law students are scumbag elitists..

 

I know you explicitly said it's not about that, but it is. Law students also do literally all those things. You just happen to notice when the person is reading something novel as opposed to Denning go off about a new test again.

 

And shame on Osgoode for that policy. Libraries should be free and open to all (university libraries to university students at large).

 

If people really are being that bothersome, just politely tell them to shut it. If that doesn't work, tell someone who works there (though rarely does it get there; "snails" and law students alike generally appreciate when they're being ass holes and quiet down.)

 

Lastly, you don't own that space. So if someone is typing furiously because they're stressed/anxious/writing a take home/writing a letter home saying they're home sick then be appreciative of the fact that the person is probably stressing out and or working hard just like you and everyone else. You don't have a right to be free of reasonable interference in a library. If you want that, go build your own damn private library.

I don't see how me having an inability to study at school makes me 'scumbag' or 'elitest', as it's a very commonly cited problem here. You say that law students regularly do those things, but they don't. There's been a handful of times I have ever seen one of the law students do something like that, but they rarely do. If they did, I would think that they are also being rude. 

 

You make it seem simple, that I should just get up in the middle of my study session in the middle of a library, and ask people to quiet down. How is this possible when you have dozens of people doing it? All at various levels of noise? Is it reasonable for me to enter dozens of potentially conflict prone situations? People say something when it's really bad, but it's just easier to go home. 

 

The furious typer I was referring to was watching netflix, so i presume he was just typing something on facebook. This is a completely normal practice here. How did you get to the emotional angle of him writing his family? He was watching netflix and eating loudly. I saw it. By the way, almost everyone at my school has mentioned it at least once, so it's not just me. I just have a worse attention span than most, so it effects me worse. I know you want to defend them, but I'm not sure you realize how bad it has gotten. By the way, many of the snails are great and don't say a word, but it's this general entitled attitude you see everywhere. I'm not saying "I don't want to be seeing lowly non law-students when I'm studying", I'm saying, in my current law school, for the first time in my academic career, I cannot learn outside of a lecture. The snails regularly use our classrooms for study groups as well. The only thing that works is headphones with music, but that's also distracting, just less so.

 

The fact is, if I have any time in between class, it's pretty much useless now. This has pushed me back academically, to the point it's a variable in a school choice. I have tried absolutely everything, except the full size noise cancelling headphones. I might need to invest in one of those, since the other ones I bought don't seem to do the trick.

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5 minutes ago, ConfusedCalgarian said:

I don't see how me having an inability to study at school makes me 'scumbag' or 'elitest', as it's a very commonly cited problem here. You say that law students regularly do those things, but they don't. There's been a handful of times I have ever seen one of the law students do something like that, but they rarely do. If they did, I would think that they are also being rude. 

 

You make it seem simple, that I should just get up in the middle of my study session in the middle of a library, and ask people to quiet down. How is this possible when you have dozens of people doing it? All at various levels of noise? Is it reasonable for me to enter dozens of potentially conflict prone situations? People say something when it's really bad, but it's just easier to go home. 

 

The furious typer I was referring to was watching netflix, so i presume he was just typing something on facebook. This is a completely normal practice here. How did you get to the emotional angle of him writing his family? He was watching netflix and eating loudly. I saw it. By the way, almost everyone at my school has mentioned it at least once, so it's not just me. I just have a worse attention span than most, so it effects me worse. I know you want to defend them, but I'm not sure you realize how bad it has gotten. By the way, many of the snails are great and don't say a word, but it's this general entitled attitude you see everywhere. I'm not saying "I don't want to be seeing lowly non law-students when I'm studying", I'm saying, in my current law school, for the first time in my academic career, I cannot learn outside of a lecture. The snails regularly use our classrooms for study groups as well. The only thing that works is headphones with music, but that's also distracting, just less so.

 

The fact is, if I have any time in between class, it's pretty much useless now. This has pushed me back academically, to the point it's a variable in a school choice. I have tried absolutely everything, except the full size noise cancelling headphones. I might need to invest in one of those, since the other ones I bought don't seem to do the trick.

Sorry, but @pzabbythesecond is right. Loud conversations (telephone or otherwise) are one thing, as would be Netflix noises blaring out of someone's headphones, and you would absolutely be justified in asking them to quiet down in such circumstances. But you're taking issue with how people are typing? At my university, all students' fees went toward all university libraries - I'd be surprised if it's different elsewhere. They have the same right to be there as you do, and you don't get to deem whether they are using the space acceptably. If you have truly searched all over campus for a suitably quiet spot and haven't found one, I think that's a pretty good indicator that your expectations are unrealistic, and I expect you'll have trouble being productive in, say, a busy office, where many lawyers work with lots of sound around them.

Your complaint seems to be that you don't like working at home, you prefer to work in the law library, and you expect everyone else to bend their own habits to accommodate your exact preferences for a workspace. I'm not sure the entitlement problem is with everyone else...

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18 hours ago, ConfusedCalgarian said:

Our library is filled with non law students (SNAILS) who bring their food in and watch videos half the time, only to get up and answer their phone every 30 minutes, continuing the conversation as they exit the library. Or they will move to a desk next to you and start smashing their fingers on their laptops so the whole desk vibrates. Or they will There are a very small number of law students who are part of the problem, maybe one or two people, but aside from that it's entirely the snails. This isn't some elitist law student crap, I am very serious. I cannot actually study at my own university, and that used to be my primary study location. I of course go home right after class ends, but I am very unproductive in between classes because I have the attention span of a goldfish. 

I think some of the above posts are a bit harsh, but completely understand where they’re coming from for the most part. Your library environment sounds like a quiet work environment. I highly suggest you get used to it, and if you think you can’t change your mindset because you can. I personally went through this process years ago. Easier than you might expect, and it’s a really bad look (to say the least) to only be learning how to cope with noise once you get into the work env.

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28 minutes ago, barelylegal said:

But you're taking issue with how people are typing? At my university, all students' fees went toward all university libraries - I'd be surprised if it's different elsewhere. They have the same right to be there as you do, and you don't get to deem whether they are using the space acceptably.

Not to mention the fact that tuition, depending on province, only covers around 25% of the costs of running a university.  A significant bulk of their funding comes from tax dollars.

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We have the same problem at Ottawa. SNAILS and young civil law students talk, eat, take phone calls, and watch videos in the library. The librarians are lazy af and don't do anything about it. In 1L I would ask students to please be quiet, but after a while it became a losing battle, as so many students talk in the library.

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FWIW lakeheads law library is incredibly quiet, we’re off the main campus so no SNAILS, and we have a small class population so it’s pretty empty most of the time, and everyone is super respectful of each other in there. 

 

 

Con: our library hours are hot garbage. 

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