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harveyspecter993

Hardest upper-year course to get an A in?

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9 minutes ago, thegoodlaw said:

Super nice guy and actually a great teacher. But he gave me my worst law school grade, and it still hurts 4 years on.

My worst one was with a practitioner who rarely showed up to class and was an all around terrible prof in every way. He is considered a top practitioner in an area I would like to work in. I hope one day I get to stick it to him in court. 

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7 hours ago, whoknows said:

My worst one was with a practitioner who rarely showed up to class and was an all around terrible prof in every way. He is considered a top practitioner in an area I would like to work in. I hope one day I get to stick it to him in court. 

Have had one of those. God I yearn for that day...

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19 hours ago, whoknows said:

My worst one was with a practitioner who rarely showed up to class and was an all around terrible prof in every way. He is considered a top practitioner in an area I would like to work in. I hope one day I get to stick it to him in court. 

I feel you, but if he couldn’t be bother to show up to the class, I would wager he’s also the type to send a junior to court, and never attend himself. 

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5 minutes ago, QuincyWagstaff said:

I feel you, but if he couldn’t be bother to show up to the class, I would wager he’s also the type to send a junior to court, and never attend himself. 

He'd be the type to send a junior to court on 2 hours notice without any information on the case, then fire them when the case wasn't run the way he'd envisioned.  

I actually actively wouldn't work at his firm because he's there. 

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My worst one was a trick question on a corporate transactions exam where the entire exam was a trick question. Good class otherwise though.

Irony is the real life case study used as inspiration is something I'm now quite familiar with in my practice.

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29 minutes ago, harveyspecter993 said:

Could anyone offer advice on summary-building  and general preparation for a (modified) closed book exam?  

What’s a modified closed book exam?

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5 minutes ago, FingersCr0ssed said:

What’s a modified closed book exam?

For one of my course's next semester you can't bring a standard summary to the exam. You're only allowed 5-10 pages of notes (can't say the exact number for obvious reasons)

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28 minutes ago, harveyspecter993 said:

For one of my course's next semester you can't bring a standard summary to the exam. You're only allowed 5-10 pages of notes (can't say the exact number for obvious reasons)

Strange. I’d bring the bright line tests and rules. I’d also stick to higher level concepts rather than having minute details on the page. Also, I’d aim to memorize some of those small details, or at least know them to an extent where they would pop into my head from seeing keywords on my summary.

Go for some small ass font and large margins while you’re at it.

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34 minutes ago, FingersCr0ssed said:

Strange. I’d bring the bright line tests and rules. I’d also stick to higher level concepts rather than having minute details on the page. Also, I’d aim to memorize some of those small details, or at least know them to an extent where they would pop into my head from seeing keywords on my summary.

Go for some small ass font and large margins while you’re at it.

I just checked the syllabus and we're not allowed to go below a size 10 font. Should be fun!

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1 hour ago, harveyspecter993 said:

For one of my course's next semester you can't bring a standard summary to the exam. You're only allowed 5-10 pages of notes (can't say the exact number for obvious reasons)

I had a professor who allowed only one (for a mid-term) or two (for the final) pages of double-sided notes. 

This is a great idea, IMO, for certain subjects. It forces students to think and analyze, by taking away the easier path of transcribing their course summary. 

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21 minutes ago, QuincyWagstaff said:

I had a professor who allowed only one (for a mid-term) or two (for the final) pages of double-sided notes. 

This is a great idea, IMO, for certain subjects. It forces students to think and analyze, by taking away the easier path of transcribing their course summary. 

But even on an open book exam simply transcribing your summary with little analysis will net you a B at best. 

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Summaries are more useful as a study tool than in an actual exam if you want to get the top mark. 

I must say this thread is bizarre, on the one hand you are asking about the most difficult upper year course to get an A in to "challenge yourself" and on the other you are asking basic questions about law exam writing. 

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10 minutes ago, harveyspecter993 said:

But even on an open book exam simply transcribing your summary with little analysis will net you a B at best. 

Yes, and that's the point: by limiting the materials, this approach can save poor exam writers from themselves by forcing them to apply the law, not just recite it. 

Of course, speaking about what grade a certain approach will "net you" isn't really relevant to this topic, because the goal is for all the exams to get better, for the students to learn/do more (and for the professor not to have to read pages and pages and pages of transcribed notes). 

Edited by QuincyWagstaff

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We wrote a completely closed book exam, it was an interesting experience. I'd expect our answers were all lower quality than in our other courses, but given the curve we all end up with the same grades anyways.

I can see in hindsight that it tests a slightly different skillset than a typical exam. It's more about focusing your thoughts. I did a framework anyways and didn't make a conscious effort to "memorize" that much, but I ended up slimming it down to a greater degree than I did in other courses. I had a lot fewer conditional branches in my algorithm, and more principle-based reasoning throughout so that I could adapt it to whatever the facts presented since I wouldn't necessarily have a case with the particular detail ready to argue a point.

I also did a few hours of flashcard work with basic ratios for citing the basic law, but since you can bring in some material you probably won't find that useful.

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52 minutes ago, Mal said:

I must say this thread is bizarre, on the one hand you are asking about the most difficult upper year course to get an A in to "challenge yourself" and on the other you are asking basic questions about law exam writing. 

See my comment earlier on.

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58 minutes ago, Mal said:

Summaries are more useful as a study tool than in an actual exam if you want to get the top mark. 

I must say this thread is bizarre, on the one hand you are asking about the most difficult upper year course to get an A in to "challenge yourself" and on the other you are asking basic questions about law exam writing. 

I've never done a (modified) closed book exam before so I'd rather ask all the questions I need to at an early stage. I also never asked about how to write an exam. 

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25 minutes ago, harveyspecter993 said:

I've never done a (modified) closed book exam before so I'd rather ask all the questions I need to at an early stage. I also never asked about how to write an exam. 

 

 

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1 minute ago, Mal said:

 

 

That was a different thread and by the way I stand by that question. I had three B range grades in 1L and I'm trying to get to back to my undergrad standards of minimum straight As.

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As an aside, I really hate closed book exams. My memory has its problems especially when trying to remember specific rules point-by-point or the names of cases. My worst grade in law school was from a closed book exam course. Meh

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