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Can anyone who has done part time or known someone who has done 1L part time help me out?

I'm considering doing the first year part time. As a person with a disability and as someone who only took at most 4 courses at a time in undergrad and in grad school,  the 7-8 courses sort of scares me - I'm someone who benefits from needing extra time to complete things. I'm prone to high stress which isn't good for my mental health condition. However, it crossed my mind that I could be freaking out over nothing. The 7-8 courses may be alot of work but ultimately manageable. My fear is that if I drop down to part time, where I would by contrast only have 3-4 courses, there won't be enough work and I'll get bored. I also lose the chance to progress at the same speed as my cohort, which I care less about but still something to consider, as 1L part time is completed over two years instead of one full year.

Before making my decision to choose full time or part time, I'd like to know what I'm getting myself into in terms of the workload for 1L and whether it is manageable, or worth doing part time over two years.

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1 hour ago, capitalttruth said:

 

I think that you can also consider applying to academic accommodation as you may be eligible for garnering the accommodation.

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I have a friend who did part time through first year (he is still in first year) - I think he took 2 classes each semester. He also had two other jobs. I think he enjoyed his time and it was what he was expecting, a much smaller school workload to complement his existing jobs.

 

 

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, throwaway1001 said:

I have a friend who did part time through first year (he is still in first year) - I think he took 2 classes each semester. He also had two other jobs. I think he enjoyed his time and it was what he was expecting, a much smaller school workload to complement his existing jobs.

 

 

The thing is, I won't be working part time. To ensure focus and to ensure I do the best I can, I'm only going to be doing law school and law school related stuff. My first year will be four courses: Constitutional, Contracts, Legal Writing, and the first year Thematic course. Second year (to finish 1L) will be Criminal, Torts, Property, and Dispute Resolution. 

I'm just a little worried that only taking 3-4 courses at a time will not be enough work and I will get bored. However, I think this will allow me to work at my own pace and be more thorough in my courses, allowing me to read everything, even some recommended readings. Depending on what EC's are available remotely, I can spend my time doing that as well.

Edited by capitalttruth

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12 minutes ago, capitalttruth said:

The thing is, I won't be working part time. To ensure focus and to ensure I do the best I can, I'm only going to be doing law school and law school related stuff. My first year will be four courses: Constitutional, Contracts, Legal Writing, and the first year Thematic course. Second year (to finish 1L) will be Criminal, Torts, Property, and Dispute Resolution. 

I'm just a little worried that only taking 3-4 courses at a time will not be enough work and I will get bored. However, I think this will allow me to work at my own pace and be more thorough in my courses, allowing me to read everything, even some recommended readings. Depending on what EC's are available remotely, I can spend my time doing that as well.

Its really up to you! Personally, I would get bored quickly with just 2 courses but like you mention you will live and breath those 2 courses for the duration of the semester, so you will have more time to read and re-read things at your own pace. Try it out and worse case, you can adapt later :)

I have a feeling ProBono will likely be available remotely, so you have that!

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Here are some details about 1L courses that may help you:

Thematic courses are only offered in the winter semesters and are only one semester long.

Dispute Resolution is only (to my knowledge) offered during the January Intensive Term - but you will have some classes and P/F assignments due during the Fall term. 

Property is only (to my knowledge) offered during the fall semester and is only one semester long, 10% of your property grade will be assessed through a group "quiz" during your January Dispute Resolution class.

The rest of the courses for 1L are year round, with a break during the January Term.

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Considering @throwaway1001 and @theboy's comments, it makes me think dropping down to part time may be leaving me without a lot to do. I'll phrase this another way: If I were to do full time 1L, if I have no other commitments, will I be able to do all of my readings for each class without being overwhelmed? I want to read and brief every case, take notes in class to prepare my own outlines. I understand this is a highly subjective question to answer, but people seem to do it all the time, so it seems like my worries may be overblown. Were you able to keep up with all of the reading in 1L?

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Posted (edited)
19 minutes ago, capitalttruth said:

Considering @throwaway1001 and @theboy's comments, it makes me think dropping down to part time may be leaving me without a lot to do. I'll phrase this another way: If I were to do full time 1L, if I have no other commitments, will I be able to do all of my readings for each class without being overwhelmed? I want to read and brief every case, take notes in class to prepare my own outlines. I understand this is a highly subjective question to answer, but people seem to do it all the time, so it seems like my worries may be overblown. Were you able to keep up with all of the reading in 1L?

If you want to work "hard" yes. I did all my readings and made my own outlines. I have other friends who got by only on summaries but that's "cheating" if you ask me. With a full course load and doing all the readings and outlines, I found it overwhelming the first semester only when I stopped at xmas. I was literally almost exclusively doing law school stuff. I pulled back second semester when I started to see what worked for me and what did not. Its a highly subjective experience.

Disclaimer: PCLF student but I doubt reading amount or material differs significantly. 

Edited by throwaway1001

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17 minutes ago, capitalttruth said:

Considering @throwaway1001 and @theboy's comments, it makes me think dropping down to part time may be leaving me without a lot to do. I'll phrase this another way: If I were to do full time 1L, if I have no other commitments, will I be able to do all of my readings for each class without being overwhelmed? I want to read and brief every case, take notes in class to prepare my own outlines. I understand this is a highly subjective question to answer, but people seem to do it all the time, so it seems like my worries may be overblown. Were you able to keep up with all of the reading in 1L?

I do not know, but do we really need to brief "every case"? I am not sure...

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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, ArchivesandMuseums said:

I do not know, but do we really need to brief "every case"? I am not sure...

I did it. I don't think I ever used someone else's summary for a case. I did use their final notes to puff up mines. Some people do all the summaries and some don't. At the end of the day, its about if you understand the issues (but if you ask me, those people are only setting themselves up to fail). The only class where we had "volume cases" was Contract.

Disclaimer : 1L PCLF

Edited by throwaway1001
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13 minutes ago, ArchivesandMuseums said:

I do not know, but do we really need to brief "every case"? I am not sure...

It really depends on what type of learner you are.

I certainly did not read and brief every case myself. I used upper year's summaries to assist myself in making my own summaries and notes because the cases are the same and I didn't find the cost/benefit of doing it myself worth it for specific cases/classes. I read + briefed cases that I did not understand through summaries or that I needed for a class.

But everyones different. Could I have gotten better grades if I read and briefed every case for every class myself? Maybe, maybe not. It all depends on your learning style - in my opinion, however, reading + briefing EVERY case for EVERY course is not required to be successful.

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Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, throwaway1001 said:

If you want to work "hard" yes. I did all my readings and made my own outlines. I have other friends who got by only on summaries but that's "cheating" if you ask me.

 

24 minutes ago, throwaway1001 said:

I did it. I don't think I ever used someone else's summary for a case. I did use their final notes to puff up mines.

How is one "cheating" but not the other? By your definition of cheating, isn't the first merely cheating more than the second?

Edited by ProfReader
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26 minutes ago, throwaway1001 said:

If you want to work "hard" yes. I did all my readings and made my own outlines. I have other friends who got by only on summaries but that's "cheating" if you ask me. With a full course load and doing all the readings and outlines, I found it overwhelming the first semester only when I stopped at xmas. I was literally almost exclusively doing law school stuff. I pulled back second semester when I started to see what worked for me and what did not. Its a highly subjective experience.

Disclaimer: PCLF student but I doubt reading amount or material differs significantly. 

Lol, what in the world are you talking about?

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Also a 1L PCLF here (full time).

I read every case and made my own outlines for all classes. However, I did not brief cases as I found it mostly a waste of time. Personally, I found the workload underwhelming and had plenty of time for doing other things.

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Posted (edited)

I'm sorry to harp on about this but it's an important decision that I have to see all sides of before making. It sounds like, from the information I've received here, that I can do a full time schedule, do all of my readings, make outlines and study for exams, without feeling overwhelmed. Especially considering I will have accommodations, namely extra time on exams and assignments - if I need it. I just have to consider that I've never done a full time course load like this, especially with such a steep learning curve. I've only done a full time course load toward the end of my undergraduate work, and I imagine law school will be a lot more difficult than that. In grad school, there was a lot of reading but we only had 3 courses a term. The idea of falling behind due to feeling overwhelmed sort of scares me.

I could drop down to part time but it 2-3 courses a term may not be enough work and I will not progress as the same speed as my cohort. The only thing I worry about is potentially becoming overwhelmed with the amount of work and I don't do as well. Lower grades = less opportunities for the jobs I want. Some people have told me on this forum that grades are important but not the be all end all, however I'd still like to get the best grades I can. 

The learning strategist I talked to this week said I can try the first three weeks full time to see if I can get an impression of the workload, and then if I feel overwhelmed, I can drop down to part time by the end of September and get half of my tuition back. She added the caveat that 3 weeks may not be enough time to get an accurate impression of how intense the workload is toward exam time. But I feel like I can mitigate the workload of exam time if I stay on top of readings and begin outlining/practicing older exams early on, once I get somewhat of an understanding of the material. Certainly, the notion that I will have no other commitments means that I can pour all of my time and resources into studying is encouraging.

Definitely gives me something to think about before registration in June.

Edited by capitalttruth

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1 hour ago, capitalttruth said:

I just have to consider that I've never done a full time course load like this, especially with such a steep learning curve.

Hi! I'm not a UOttawa student but I stumbled across this and wanted to let you know that I also did only 4 courses per term in undergrad but found 7 courses manageable in 1L. I even ended the year with a higher GPA than I had in undergrad. I believe being graded on a curve as well as having year-long courses made it slightly easier than expected. Winter break and reading breaks provide opportunities to catch up and/or get ahead.

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7 hours ago, capitalttruth said:

I'm sorry to harp on about this but it's an important decision that I have to see all sides of before making. It sounds like, from the information I've received here, that I can do a full time schedule, do all of my readings, make outlines and study for exams, without feeling overwhelmed. Especially considering I will have accommodations, namely extra time on exams and assignments - if I need it. I just have to consider that I've never done a full time course load like this, especially with such a steep learning curve. I've only done a full time course load toward the end of my undergraduate work, and I imagine law school will be a lot more difficult than that. In grad school, there was a lot of reading but we only had 3 courses a term. The idea of falling behind due to feeling overwhelmed sort of scares me.

I could drop down to part time but it 2-3 courses a term may not be enough work and I will not progress as the same speed as my cohort. The only thing I worry about is potentially becoming overwhelmed with the amount of work and I don't do as well. Lower grades = less opportunities for the jobs I want. Some people have told me on this forum that grades are important but not the be all end all, however I'd still like to get the best grades I can. 

The learning strategist I talked to this week said I can try the first three weeks full time to see if I can get an impression of the workload, and then if I feel overwhelmed, I can drop down to part time by the end of September and get half of my tuition back. She added the caveat that 3 weeks may not be enough time to get an accurate impression of how intense the workload is toward exam time. But I feel like I can mitigate the workload of exam time if I stay on top of readings and begin outlining/practicing older exams early on, once I get somewhat of an understanding of the material. Certainly, the notion that I will have no other commitments means that I can pour all of my time and resources into studying is encouraging.

Definitely gives me something to think about before registration in June.

Contact the accessibility office to find out what type of accommodations are available

 https://www.uottawa.ca/respect/en/accessibility

 

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Posted (edited)
21 hours ago, easttowest said:

Lol, what in the world are you talking about?

Do you simply disagree or did you not understand?

Edited by throwaway1001

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