Time is a precious commodity in law school. Law students are always looking for shortcuts; however, shortcuts are not the answer. Instead, you want to use your time more efficiently and effectively. Here are some suggestions:
- Learn the material as you read it rather than highlight it to learn later. Ask questions while you read. Make margin notes as you read. Brief the case or make additional notes to emphasize the main points and big picture of the topic after you finish reading. If you only do cursory "survival" reading, you will have to re-read for learning later which means double work.
- Review what you have read before class. By reviewing, you reinforce your learning. You will be able to follow in class better. You will recognize what is important for note taking rather than taking down everything the professor says. You will be able to respond to questions more easily. Your confidence level about the material will increase.
- Be more efficient and effective in taking class notes. Listen carefully in class. Take down the main points rather than frantically writing or typing verbatim notes. Use consistent symbols and abbreviations in your notes.
- Review your class notes within 24 hours. Fill in gaps. Organize the notes if needed. Note any questions that you have. If you wait to review your notes until you are outlining, you will have less recall of the material.
- Regularly review material. We forget 80% of what we learn in 2 weeks if we do not review. Regular review of your outlines will mean less cramming at the end of the semester. You save time ultimately by not re-learning. You gain deeper understanding. You have less stress at exam time.
- Look for the big picture at the end of each sub-topic and topic. Do not wait until pre-exam studying to pull the course together. Synthesize the cases that you have read on a sub-topic: how are they different and similar. Determine the main points that you need to cull from cases for the sub-topic or topic. Analyze how the sub-topics or topics are inter-related.
- Ask the professors questions as soon as you can. Do not store up questions like a squirrel storing nuts for winter. The sooner you get your questions answered, the greater your comprehension of current material. New topics often build on understanding of prior topics. Unanswered questions merely lead to more confusion and less learning.
Today, Friday, August 20, is the last day to add a class or change to an audit. If you need any approvals, please contact Barbara Thompson is Student Records before 4:00 p.m. today.
Professor Lewis' Domestic Relations class meeting for Thursday, August 19 is canceled. Starting Tuesday, August 24, Professor Lewis' Domestic Relations section will merge with Professor DeMuth's Domestic Relations section. Both classes will move to Room 175 starting Tuesday, August 24, and Professor DeMuth will teach the combined section. Professor Jones' Torts I class will move to Room 075.
All first year students entering the School of Law in the fall semester of 2009 or thereafter must receive at least one (1) credit hour of an upper division professional skills class or experience. Fall 2010 courses that satisfy the skills requirement are marked “SK” in the “Notes” column of the Class Schedule and a separate schedule of qualifying skills courses is included in the course registration packet.
SK courses on the Fall 2010 Schedule are:
• Accounting and Finance for Lawyers - canceled
• Externship:- Criminal Justice I (Prosecution)
• Externship:- Legal Aid
• Externship:- Tax ( IRS)
• Externship:-KY Innocent Project - canceled
• Externship:-Technology Transfer
• Labor Law
• Law Clinic I
• SEM. Arbitration Practice & Procedure
• SEM. Drafting
• Trial Practice (two classes)
Accounting and Finance for Lawyers, Prof. Blackburn, has recently been added to the schedule. You may register for this course online, but if you have had more than three credit hours of accounting since high school, you must contact Professor Blackburn before registering.
The Spring 2011 class schedule will be posted soon and skills courses will be identified on the schedule.
SK courses tentatively scheduled for Spring 2011 are:
• Advanced Legal Research
• Comparative Constitutional Law
• Estate Planning
• Externship: Crim. Justice-Defense
• Externship: Crim. Justice-Prosecution
• Externship: Immigration
• Externship: Legal Aid II
• Externship: Tax
• Externship: Technology Transfer
• Land Use and Planning Law
• Law Clinic I
• Mortgage Foreclosure Law
• SEM:-Written Advocacy
• SEM:- Drafting
• SEM:- Problems in Corporation Law
• Trial Practice (two classes)
The Skills Requirement, as adopted by the faculty, is not yet included in the Student Handbook. It is copied here:
“RESOLVED FURTHER that the following new paragraph (paragraph II (M)) is added as a graduation requirement to the Student Handbook.
II (M). Upper Division Skills Experience
All students must complete a substantial skills experience after completing 22 hours or more of course work.
1. The skills requirement may be fulfilled by successful completion of a course, seminar, clinic, extramural advocacy competition or externship designated as a “skills” experience by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. Work done in satisfaction of the Public Service graduation requirement may not satisfy the Skills requirement.
2. Courses, seminars, extramural advocacy competitions and externships designated as “skills experiences” shall be those which provide substantial instruction in professional lawyering skills. Such skills may include trial and appellate advocacy, dispute resolution, counseling, interviewing, negotiating, problem solving, factual investigation, organization and management of legal work, drafting, or other professional lawyering skills.
3. A student may not satisfy the skills requirement during the same course or seminar in which she satisfies the upper division writing requirement or the Perspective requirement. If the satisfaction of the skills requirement involves the production of written work product, that written work product must not be submitted for credit in any other course or seminar or in satisfaction of any other requirement of the School of Law.
4. To satisfy the skills requirement, the course, seminar, externship or clinic shall contain the equivalent of at least one (1) credit hour of skills training and the student's performance of those skills must be assessed by the instructor or supervisor as part of the experience. Assessment will include substantial, documented feedback to the student regarding the quality of her performance and opportunity, as appropriate, to improve her skills performance in the course of the experience.
5. The faculty member supervising the fulfillment of the skills requirement shall submit to the Student Records Office at the end of each semester the names of the persons who have fulfilled the skills requirement and the grades earned by each student. A student shall not satisfy the skills requirement in a graded course unless the student earns a grade of "C" or higher in the course, or in a pass/fail course unless the student receives a grade of “pass.” The Student Records Office shall note the fulfillment of the skills requirement on each student's academic record.”