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Academic Success Tip - Create Your Own Case Briefs for Every Case You Read

Case briefing is a formalized way of taking notes on your reading in preparation for class.  Creating your own case briefs is important for several reasons:  (1) you will be better prepared for class discussion; (2) you will develop the analytical skills that are critical to success on exams; (3) you will crystallize your understanding of the case; (4) you will be able to review a group of related cases easily and efficiently without having to rely on your memory or having to re-read cases; and (5) you can use your briefs and class notes to create your course outlines.   Do not make the mistake that many law students make during the fall semester - they brief only sporadically or stop briefing completely because they believe it is too time-consuming.  The task of case briefing is worth the added time and effort, and it will actually save you time when it counts - when preparing for exams!

December 2010 Graduates - Deadline to Apply for a Degree

Wednesday, September 15, 2010, is the deadline to apply for a December 2010 degree.

Be sure to do a degree check to make sure that you have all your requirements for graduation.  If you have questions, please contact Barbara Thompson.

August 20: Last Day to Add a Class or Change to Audit

Friday, August 20, is the last day to add a class or change to an audit.  Please refer to the School of Law's academic calendar for other dates.

Academic Success Tip - Start Your Day Early and On Time

The work day typically begins between 8:00 and 9:00 AM and so should your study day.  A good rule of thumb is to spend three hours studying (outside of class) for every hour of class time.  This translates into between 45 and 50 hours per week studying pre-class and post-class (30 to 38 hours if you are in the part-time program).  Considering the number of hours you will spend studying, it may not be possible to get everything done in the evening, even if you are a "night owl."  Night time studying may have worked in college, in part, because you rarely spent 40 to 50 hours preparing for classes.  So, try to start your study day early and work during the daylight hours.

Professor Marcosson Quoted in "Time" Magazine

Professor Marcosson was recently quoted in a Time magazine article, "Why California's Gay-Marriage Ban Was Upended" (August 5, 2010).

"The opinion is strong, first because it is carefully grounded in the factual record made by the parties," constitutional scholar Samuel Marcosson of the Louis D. Brandeis School of Law tells TIME. "Judge Walker used the combination of fundamental rights and equal-protection analysis. I don't think there is a better federal constitutional argument to be made. The question is whether we currently have a Supreme Court truly prepared to rule in favor of these arguments."

The article was written by Michael A. Lindenberger, a 2006 graduate of the University of Louisville's Louis D. Brandeis School of Law.

Notice of UofL's Smoke-Free Campus Policy

***Starting Tuesday, June 1, 2010, the designated smoking areas ceased to exist and the policy will be fully enforced on all campuses.

On November 19, 2009 the University of Louisville instituted a policy that prohibits smoking on all campuses.

There are many reasons why we've instituted this policy:

- Public health: Smoking harms both the smoker and people around the smoker.
- Employee satisfaction: More and more UofL employees are complaining about walking through smoke to enter buildings and about cigarette butt litter.
- Inequity: Many employees also have pointed out the inequity in having a smoking ban only on one campus.

Smoking is an individual choice. This, however, may be an opportunity for many of you who want to stop smoking. Both our Get Healthy Now employee health management initiative and our Campus Health Center can connect you with classes and products that can help you quit. Humana has made a generous offer to partially cover the costs of smoking cessation support, so we will offer an array of products, including pills, patches and gum, as well as behavioral support to people who want to quit. 

Shirley Willihnganz
University Provost

Congratulations to Twelve Upper-Division Law Students Selected to be Academic Fellows

The Director of Academic Success is pleased to announce that the following 12 upper-division law students have been chosen to serve as Academic Fellows in the fall:

Amanda Anderson
Sarah Clay
Elisabeth Fitzpatrick
John Friend
Vince Kline
Mookie Lewis
Greg Mayes
Brittany McKenna
Sarah Potter
Thom Stevens
Amanda Warford
Ryan Wood

Brandeis Academic Fellows are responsible for facilitating weekly structured study group sessions in Contracts for all first-year students.  The 12 Academic Fellows were selected based on their solid academic records, interpersonal skills, maturity, and genuine willingness to assist first-year law students learn effective law school study skills.

Academic Success Tip - Take Control of Your Studying Before Too Much Time Flies By

  • Designate one place in your apartment where you will have your law school study center.  Organize all of your casebooks, study aids, dictionaries, binders, notebooks, and other study materials in this one spot.  When you finish with a binder or casebook or stapler, return it to its place.  You will waste less time searching for your law school materials if you have one spot for everything.
  • Make a shopping list of what study materials you need and stock your apartment study center now.  Buy extra notepads, pens, ink cartridges, printer paper, paper clips, and other materials.  By anticipating your needs for the semester, you can avoid multiple or panicked trips to the office supply store later.  Also, you may be able to save money by buying bulk quantities instead of separate purchases of the items over time. 
  • Lay out everything you will need the next day before you go to bed.  It is easier to get organized while you can think calmly about the items you need for each class.  Grabbing up items as you rush out the door will likely lead to not having everything you need once you arrive at school.
  • Purchase a large dry erase board for your study center if you think it will help you.  Visual learners often benefit greatly from a dry erase board with multiple colors of markers.  Create flowcharts, IRAC outlines for practice question answers, or other information initially on a dry erase board.  You can add, delete, and modify until you are happy with the result.  Then, you can copy the final version on to the computer or paper.  Some students use the dry erase board for calendaring and listing “to do” items. 
  • Use monthly and weekly schedules and daily “to do” lists to organize yourself.  The monthly schedule can be used for deadlines and assigning daily tasks to meet the deadlines on time.  The weekly schedule can be used to design a study schedule that can be repeated most weeks to make certain you are getting all study tasks done each week.   “To do” lists can be used to prioritize the most important tasks each day.

Annual BLSA Back to School Cookout

You're invited to the Annual Black Law Students Association Back to School Cookout!

Saturday August 14, 2010
12-5 PM
Thurman Hutchinson Park on River Road

RSVP to Courtney Phelps and indicate the number of guest coming.

Seminar on Advanced Issues in Labor and Employment Law (Levinson)

Seminar on Advanced Issues in Labor and Employment Law.   Professor Levinson will teach a seminar on “Advanced Issues in Labor and Employment Law” this spring if there is sufficient interest among students.  The prerequisite is either Employment Law or Labor Law, or under special circumstances, by permission of the instructor .  If you are interested, please contact Professor Levinson at or 502-852-0794.

Course Description

This course covers advanced issues in labor and employment law that are of interest to the enrolled students, who are welcome to suggest topics.  The course may deal with 1) issues of democracy and self-governance in the workplace, 2)  workplace privacy issues, 3)  the role of international law in resolving employment and labor disputes, 4) the intersection between labor and employment laws, 5) the rise of alternative dispute resolution, 6) alternative visions for a more meaningful system to resolve labor and employment disputes, 7) the intersection between labor and employment and environmental issues, 8) regulation of workplace bullying, 9) envisioning the rights of the disabled as civil rights, 10) issues of transgendered people in the workplace, 11) lifestyle discrimination 12) accommodating work family balance in the workplace, 13) employment issues raised by downsizing or bankruptcy, 14) the significance of certain rules of professional responsibility in an employment practice, or 15) assessing recently passed federal or state employment legislation and pending legislation.

In addition to learning about doctrinal and practical labor and employment law issues, the seminar addresses the process of writing and publishing a seminar paper.  Each student will write a seminar paper on an advanced labor or employment law issue.  The paper may satisfy writing the requirement.