Law school is a lot of work, but it’s also really rewarding. However, when you’re just starting out, it can be hard to know what exactly a “good” law student entails. After all, there are so many different types of people in law school. with so many different interests and goals that it’s easy to get lost track of the crowd. I’m going to tell you about some things that were helpful for me when I started law school. And hopefully, they’ll help you too! Also, if you are considering someone for law assignment help, it’s better to head out to someone professional who is aware of all the essentials required to deliver a perfect assignment.
The List of 10 Essentials You Should Know Before Becoming A Law Student
Law school is not college.
You’ll get used to this early on. Law school requires a lot more structure than college and you’ll need to be prepared for highly regimented class schedules, assignments and exams. All of which are given priority over hanging out with friends after class or getting involved in extracurricular activities that don’t relate directly to your coursework.
You may even find yourself spending an entire day in class without any breaks; this is called “continuous” rather than “discrete” teaching where students are expected to stay focused on their studies from the moment they enter until they leave.
Law school is also more competitive than other post-secondary education programs. The low acceptance rate (between 5%–15%) sends that message loud and clear! But what’s often overlooked is how expensive law school can be: tuition fees range between $30,000–50,000 per year depending on whether you live close enough to attend local institutions rather than national ones;
housing costs add another $10,000-$15,000 per year if need-based financial aid doesn’t cover everything; books cost roughly $1,500 each semester ($3K total); living expenses come out somewhere between $20-$25K per year (this figure depends largely upon your lifestyle).
When all is said and done? By graduation day you might have spent anywhere between $90K-$120K just getting through those three years!
Law school is not just like the movies and tv shows.
Law school is not just about going to class and studying. It’s also about networking and building relationships. In fact, law school is a lot more like real life than you might think. Law students have to learn how to be lawyers, which means learning how to ask questions, listen well, and analyze situations from multiple perspectives. All of which are skills that you’ll use once you open your own practice or join an established one. Since these are all things we’ve learned in our daily lives before entering law school (or even after), we’d say it’s pretty similar!
Being a good law student does not always come Naturally.
The truth is that being a good law student does not always come naturally. In fact, being a good law student requires hard work and lots of practice. You will have to study—a lot. And you will have to learn how to study as well as what you should be studying. Many students find that their natural learning style isn’t conducive to the kind of studying required for law school success (i.e., lots and lots of reading).
So if this sounds like you, don’t worry. You’re not alone! There are thousands of students just like you who struggled with their first year in law school because they didn’t know how best to approach their studies or how best to learn about legal topics in general. Fortunately for all aspiring lawyers out there, there’s plenty we can do now that we were previously unaware of. so we can get started on our journey with better preparation from the start!
Your grades are important, but they’re only part of your success in law school.
Most law schools use a four-point grading scale (A = 4 points, B = 3 points, C = 2 points, D = 1 point). Your GPA will be determined by taking the number of credits you are enrolled in multiplied by 4 and then dividing that number by the total number of credits you’ve completed.
Many students focus on their grades during the first year or two of law school because those grades can have an immediate impact on whether they graduate and whether they get into good jobs after graduation. However, your grades are only one part of your success in law school. And even more importantly, they’re only one part of your success in life after graduation!
In addition to studying hard and getting decent grades as an undergraduate student, there are many other factors that contribute to making it through law school:
- You need to balance between work and play outside of class time so that you stay focused on your studies without burning out
- You need a good support system from family members who believe in what you’re doing when others may not understand why anyone would want to become a lawyer.
Be nice to everyone, including the librarians.
The librarians are your friends. They can help you with all of your legal research needs. They’ll help you start with the books and articles that you need to read, they will help you find a case (or multiple cases) that is relevant to whatever it is that you’re writing about, and they will even teach you how to use the databases! If they don’t know the answer or solution to a problem that’s plaguing you, they’ll guide us towards another resource where we might be able to find the answer ourselves. They are incredibly kind people who want nothing more than for us law students to succeed in our studies by providing us with all of the tools necessary for success.
You need to learn to study alone, but don’t study in isolation.
Learning to study alone means learning to study on your own, not in isolation. A lot of law students take the “study alone” thing too far and end up avoiding their classmates altogether, which can be counterproductive when it comes time to take exams and do research projects. Your fellow students are a valuable resource: they are potential study partners, tutors, study buddies (or “buddies”), club leaders and more.
While most people find it easier to learn in groups than by themselves, there’s something special about being able to work through problems without the support of another person’s questions or comments. If you’re fine to have others around while studying, we hope that everyone is quiet. It may take some practice at first before you really start working independently.
The curve isn’t evil; it’s math’s!
The first time you hear someone mention the curve, it might make you think of school punishment. But that couldn’t be further from the truth! The curve is actually just a way of making sure everyone is on the same page.
Let’s say that there are four sections for a semester-long course: A, B, C and D. When professors teach these courses, they give assignments and exams at separate times. So their students don’t have access to others’ work. Until it’s time for them to turn in their own assignments or take an exam themselves. By using the “curve” (or grading rubric), professors can compare all of this work together at once instead of individually grading each person who submits theirs on time. Which would be completely impossible given how many students there are at law school!
Find your own method of studying and stick with it even if it seems weird.
To be successful in law school, you’ll have to become an expert at studying on your own. You won’t have professors guiding you through the material and quizzing you on what you’ve learned – instead, it’s up to you to figure out how best to learn the information and retain it for exams.
That means figuring out what works for YOU as an individual. Some people are visual learners who need to see the materials laid out in front of them; others learn better when they can hear things in detail (and often re-explained) aloud by another person;
some find that making flashcards is helpful for memorization, and still, others rely on seeing things written down multiple times before they remember them well enough to recite them during an exam. It’s important not only that each student knows his/her strengths but also that he or she knows how best he/she likes his or her learning style accommodated!
As with anything else in life, don’t be afraid of being different. You may find that whatever method works best for YOU is completely different from anyone else’s! And if one method doesn’t work out? Don’t give up – keep trying other methods until one stick!
Learn how to read cases and give up on reading every word.
This is probably the most important thing I wish I knew before starting law school. If you want to be a good lawyer and not waste time reading something that isn’t relevant, you need to learn how to quote cases properly. When quoting a case, there are only two things that matter: (1) what the court said; and (2) what does it mean?. It doesn’t matter if there’s an argument about whether we should listen to Justice Scalia or Justice Ginsburg. What matters for your professor isn’t which side won. But, whether their reasoning was sound enough to persuade anyone who read it with an open mind.
Getting a law job means more than summer jobs and OCI interviews.
Law school isn’t just about getting into a good law firm. It’s about learning how to be a lawyer and think like one. The first few years of law school are all about training you to think like a lawyer. Not just on exams but in your everyday life as well. They’re also great for learning how to research and write like a lawyer. So that when you get out of school, you’ll be able to apply those skills in your day job. At the office or courthouse.
When I got my summer job with an immigration law firm after graduating from UVA School of Law. I didn’t feel ready because I hadn’t learned anything about immigration law during my time at UVaSLAW. But now that we’ve entered our third year of practice together. And many other aspects of our lives have been affected by this experience. I’m glad we took advantage of every opportunity available during our first two years.
Law school is challenging, but you can be successful there if you know what to expect.
You will have to work hard. Law school is not for the faint of heart. Or those who aren’t willing to put in the time and effort required to master a new skill set. But if you can learn the art of self-direction. Or discipline and organisation enough for law school (and life), then you’ll be way ahead of your peers when it comes time for exams!
The best way to succeed in law school is by preparing early and knowing what to expect. You’ll have to study hard, but you can do it if you follow these tips. The curve isn’t an evil plot by professors to keep students down; instead, it is a method of grading that reflects how well your classmates did on each assignment. And remember that summer jobs and OCI interviews are just one part of getting a job after graduation. It also requires networking with alumni who can refer to people like you!