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Academic Success Tip - Handling Pressure

Determine your current areas of confusion and get help now.  Concepts often build on one another – if you wait too long, you will be hopelessly lost.  Review your briefs and class notes and determine what questions you have at this time.  Talk with classmates who understand the material.  Ask professors questions.  Use a study aid to clarify a topic.

USPS Unveils the Brandeis Stamp

On September 22, the United States Postal Service released a series of four new postage stamps commemmorating great United States Supreme Court Justices, including one featuring the law school's namesake Louis D. Brandeis.  The other honorees are William Brennan,  Felix Frankfurter, and Joseph Story.  A story in Legal Times discusses the offering and notes that Thurgood Marshall's son will be at the dedication, along with Chief Justice John Roberts. 

The USPS site provides this mini-biography of Brandeis: “Louis D. Brandeis was the associate justice most responsible for helping the Supreme Court shape the tools it needed to interpret the Constitution in light of the sociological and economic conditions of the 20th century. “If we would guide by the light of reason,” he once exhorted his colleagues, “we must let our minds be bold.” A progressive and champion of reform, Brandeis devoted his life to social justice. He defended the right of every citizen to speak freely, and his groundbreaking conception of the right to privacy continues to impact legal thought today.”

Both Professor Kurt X. Metzmeier and Professor Scott Campbell contributed to this story. More photos and commentary are available at each of their blogs.

 

 

Louisville Law Defeats UK College of Law

Photo Credit: Scott Hite, LexisNexis

Dateline—September 18th, 2009 UK Intramural Fields—Lexington, Kentucky

Led by the passing combination of UofL School of Law Quarterback Blake Bowling to receiver Jared Key, the law school football team defeated their arch rival UK College of Law last Friday evening 13-6 in Lexington.    

The Bowling to Key passing combination resulted in an 18 yard reception in the first half followed by a 22 yard second half touchdown that turned out to be the difference in a heavily, defensive struggle by both teams.

The Cardinal Law defense was spectacular limiting the Cats to over 4, separate  4-and-outs while intercepting them twice, once by Josh Speirs and another by Jerred Kelly.  Kelly’s interception late in the game turned out to be the game winning stop by the visiting Cards.  

The Cardinal victory was the third in a row over their arch rivals in this annual competition held on the same weekend as the UofL vs. UofL football game.  

Academic Success Tip - Handling Pressure

Do not waste valuable study time between classes.  Take a hard look at how you use the ½-hour, 1-hour, and 2-hour chunks of time during your day when you are not in class.  If you spend all of that time chatting with friends or running errands or deciding what to do next, you will automatically make your evening more stressful because you have accomplished nothing during the day on your reading or other projects.

Winner - Academic Success Drawing

Thank you to all first-year law students who completed an evaluation for the Structured Study Group program.  The winner of a 1 GB Flash Drive is Ross Jordan.  Please claim your prize from the Academic Success Office, Room 212, by Wednesday.

Academic Success Tip - Handling Pressure

It is amazing that we are beginning the sixth week of the semester!  Some of your professors may have started to speed up in class and cover more pages.  You may be working on your first graded writing assignment for BLS, preparing for a practice exam, studying for a mid-term, or all of the above.  What can you do to re-group after these first five weeks if you are feeling pressured by the workload or are worrying that you are already behind in your studying?  This week's tips will provide suggestions on how to handle pressure.   

  • Do not stop reading for classes because you have other projects or assignments due soon.  Carve out time for the projects around your reading for classes.  If you focus on papers or projects and ignore class reading, you will then be confused in class and behind in your reading.  If you do not know how to find time for both reading and other tasks, make an appointment with the Director of Academic Success for help with time management.

Winner - Academic Success Drawing

Thank you to all first-year law students who completed an evaluation for the Structured Study Group program.  The winner of two tickets to Lawlapalooza on October 1, 2009, at Phoenix Hill Tavern is Ellen Berg.  Please claim your prize from the Academic Success Office, Room 212, by Tuesday.  

Academic Success Tip - Reserve Time for Outlining

Congratulations!  You have just completed your fifth week of law school.  If you have not done so already, reserve time THIS weekend to begin your outlines for each course - do not wait!  We forget 80% of what we learn within two weeks if we do not review; by outlining regularly and reviewing your outline often, you will retain more information and not have to re-learn it.  If you are unsure how to start your outline, consider using the topics and sub-topics in your course syllabus or in the general table of contents in your casebook as a framework.  Remember that you want to focus on the bigger picture of the course and fit the parts into that bigger picture; avoid a case-based outline.  If you have already started outlining your courses, keep up the good work and reserve time this weekend to supplement those outlines.

Commemorating Constitution Day

The United States Constitution is not only the basic law of the United States. It has also inspired politicians, philosophers, and ordinary people around the world. Scholars have devoted intense attention to the Constitution, its interpretation by the Supreme Court of the United States, and its impact on the American people.

Constitutional law forms an important part of the Law School's curriculum and research agenda. University of Louisville faculty members have devoted considerable attention to the Constitution, its interpretation, and its social meaning. Lawyers with diverse practices and specializations share a background in constitutional law, which in turn unites the practicing bar in a common civil culture based on the Constitution and its role in American history and politics.

The Law School therefore takes great pride in presenting an annual commemoration of Constitution Day on behalf of the entire University of Louisville. This year's program consists of two video presentations. In the first video, Law School faculty discuss the appointment of Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Professors Laura Rothstein, Judith Fischer, Luke Milligan, Samuel Marcosson, and Cedric Merlin Powell and Dean Jim Chen, joined by Professor John McGinnis of the Northwestern University School of Law, ponder the significance of Justice Sotomayor's arrival on the nation's highest court. In the second video, Professor Joseph Tomain presents Fleeting Expletives and the Shadow of the First Amendment.

We invite other institutions, throughout the Commonwealth of Kentucky and elsewhere, to link to this page and to use its resources in their efforts to commemorate Constitution Day. In addition, we invite students, graduates, and friends of the Law School and of the University of Louisville at large to treat this page as a standing guide to constitutional law. The resources section of this page includes a 21-question constitutional scavenger hunt and a photo gallery depicting constitutional controversies throughout American history.

Finally, we are pleased to provide archives of the Law School's Constitution Day programs from 2008 and 2007.

Academic Success Tip - Using Graphics in Your Outlines

When you supplement your course outlines this week, consider what graphics may work for you to help with the bigger picture, the analysis, and the synthesis of the material; some examples of graphics are:

  • Tables with material in rows and columns
  • Decision trees – flow charts with questions and yes/no choices to work through the analysis
  • Tree diagrams – the main concept is the trunk and the sub-topics (and beyond) branch off
  • Legal diagrams – the main concept starts in the center of the page and lines connect outwards to the sub-topics and beyond
  • Balloon diagrams – similar to the legal diagram using balloons to hold concepts and sub-topics instead of lines alone
  • Mind mapping – use pictures and shapes to brainstorm about the interconnections
  • Venn diagrams to show the overlap between several concepts
  • Time lines for chronological events
  • Columns of material to show connections and progression