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harveyspecter993

Hardest upper-year course to get an A in?

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12 minutes ago, Ryn said:

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

Looking back in hindsight, would you have approached the course any differently?

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5 minutes ago, harveyspecter993 said:

Looking back in hindsight, would you have approached the course any differently?

I'm not sure I could have. I studied quite a lot for it and understood the concepts, I thought, rather well. The exam itself required a lot of detail that I simply could not recall fully accurately. If I had my notes it would have been trivial to apply the facts to the rules, but we were expected to remember entire statutes and regulations, which I just have difficulty doing. I didn't get a lot of practice in undergrad either because my major (business) was very much applying what we learned to certain hypothetical scenarios and not a lot of regurgitating information. 

I think in closed-book courses, people who have good memories or some training in memorization can outperform those who don't quite easily. I like the idea of open book exams in general because then the ability to recall things to the minute detail becomes moot.

If I had to take the exam now, I probably would do a lot better, though, simply because I've had practice in real life. I still have to check the rules every now and then but I actually remember quite well now from having done so many transactions involving them. 

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On 12/18/2019 at 2:16 PM, harveyspecter993 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.

I mean, good luck. We almost all get a few Bs though, just the way it is.

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On 12/18/2019 at 12:08 PM, 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. 

Yeah, I had a prof who let us bring in a double-sided one page summary. It forced us to dig through our materials and decide on what we'll actually need to know for the exam. That's a really useful process. It's good to do in law school. And, being able to information down to the absolute bare essentials is a skill that's carrying over into practice, as I'm trying to cut twenty page facta and briefs down into the seven or eight page range. 

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48 minutes ago, easttowest said:

I mean, good luck. We almost all get a few Bs though, just the way it is.

To say nothing of the logical inconsistency between trying to get back to straight As and trying to challenge oneself. 

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On 12/18/2019 at 12:08 PM, 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. 

Allowing aid sheets used to be thing (I'm thinking university program before law school), the rules at the time required one double-sided handwritten aid sheet (for those courses that allowed them), so there was no minimum font size. Because of messy handwriting I asked one prof for permission to use a printer, which he gave, and when he was present at the exam and saw my 4-6 point laser-printed aid sheet (really more of a security blanket at that point!) he laughed and asked if he could show it to others after the exam.

On 12/18/2019 at 2:35 PM, Ryn said:

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

Same here (about the closed book exams and memory). Which made preparing for the closed-book NY bar (previous version, not the current one) tortuous.

My worst mark had nothing to do with being closed book, it was in a course taught by a practitioner, generally they seemed to mark to a lower curve than other profs and instructors. I would have appealed but it was the last term, I didn't want to come back over the summer to first meet with the prof (as the first step of the process, to review the exam) who'd been unreasonable in other ways also.

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29 minutes ago, BlockedQuebecois said:

To say nothing of the logical inconsistency between trying to get back to straight As and trying to challenge oneself. 

While I generally agree, there are some instances (easy course but highest mark a B+, versus difficult course but prof more willing to give As) in which someone planning on working hard and challenging themselves would be better off with the more challenging option.

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On 12/18/2019 at 2:59 PM, Ryn said:

I'm not sure I could have. I studied quite a lot for it and understood the concepts, I thought, rather well. The exam itself required a lot of detail that I simply could not recall fully accurately. If I had my notes it would have been trivial to apply the facts to the rules, but we were expected to remember entire statutes and regulations, which I just have difficulty doing. I didn't get a lot of practice in undergrad either because my major (business) was very much applying what we learned to certain hypothetical scenarios and not a lot of regurgitating information. 

I think in closed-book courses, people who have good memories or some training in memorization can outperform those who don't quite easily. I like the idea of open book exams in general because then the ability to recall things to the minute detail becomes moot.

If I had to take the exam now, I probably would do a lot better, though, simply because I've had practice in real life. I still have to check the rules every now and then but I actually remember quite well now from having done so many transactions involving them. 

Can you tell who the prof was so I can avoid such an experience? 

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53 minutes ago, krnprykt said:

Can you tell who the prof was so I can avoid such an experience? 

The prof retired so you don't have to worry about it.

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