Student News

Academic Success Tip - Beware of Bad Advice

This week’s tips focus on bad advice that is often given out by well-intentioned students.  Critique these pieces of advice carefully and consider the alternatives.
Bad Advice:  You don’t have to study as hard for an open-book exam because you can look up anything that you want.


Why this advice is bad advice:

  • You will have very little time to look up anything during the exam.  Open-book exams are traps for the naïve.
  • If you are only generally familiar with the material, you will not have in-depth knowledge to spot all of the issues and to support your arguments.

Alternatives:

  • Treat an open-book exam with the same reverence as a closed-book exam.
  • Study the material so well that you “own it” rather than being generally familiar with it.  Then, you will not need to look up much.
  • If it is a code/rule course, you want to have a solid memory for at least a “condensed” version of a code section or rule because you will not have time to look up and read every code section or rule during the exam.
  • If a code/rule book is allowed, make sure you have extensive practice in using that source so you are efficient in its use if you must look something up.
  • Know exactly what the professor will allow you to bring to the exam and any restrictions on writing in books, etc.  Then, plan how to use those resources most efficiently and effectively and only when necessary.
  • Make good and creative use of tabs for code/rule books if allowed by the professor.

1Ls: Interested in Helping Moot Court Board with Pirtle-Washer?

This year's Pirtle-Washer Oral Advocacy Competition, the law school's premier internal oral advocacy competition, will begin this Saturday, October 22nd at 9 a.m. at the Jefferson County Hall of Justice. The competition is only open for 2L, 3L, and 4L students, but 1Ls can still help as bailiffs.

Serving as a bailiff at Pirtle-Washer is a great way to gain exposure to oral arguments, which you will have to do in the spring for BLS, and is also a great way to meet local attorneys. If you are interested in serving as a bailiff this Saturday, please attend a Moot Court Board meeting this Thursday, October 20th at 12:10 pm in Room 175.

If you are interested in being a bailiff, but cannot attend Thursday's meeting, email Eric Johnson at eljohn10@louisville.edu.

Welcome Reception for Howard Fineman (2011 Brandeis School of Law Alumni Fellow)

Students, faculty, and staff are all welcome to a meet and greet sponsored by the SBA to welcome back Mr. Howard Fineman.  The reception will be held on Thursday, October 27 from 1:45pm - 2:30pm in the Cox Lounge.  Light desserts will be served.  This is a great opportunity to meet one of our most distinguished graduates who is being named this year's Alumni Fellow.

 

Mr. Fineman is currently the Editorial Director of the AOL Huffington Post Media Group and also reports and writes on politics for the Huffington Post main site.  He also serves as a political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC, where he regularly appears on shows such as "Hardball with Chris Matthews", the "Rachel Maddow Show", and many others.  Prior to October of 2010, Mr. Fineman was a reporter, columnist, and editor for Newsweek.  In addition, he has written a book The Thirteen American Arguments", which was a national best seller in 2008. 

 

Please join us in welcoming back Mr. Fineman!  Email Kristie Wetterer with any questions.

Sign-Ups for Labor and Employment Law Moot Court Competition

*Submission Date Extended*

If you are a 2L, 3L, or 4L and would like to represent UofL in the Wagner Labor Law Moot Court Competition, now is the time to apply. The competition will be held in New York City in March 2012. Please email the following information to Professor Levinson (arlevi03@louisville.edu) while cc'ing Brittany Hampton (Blhamp25@gmail.com) on Monday, October 24th at noon:

1. Resume
2. Completed Labor Law Info Sheet (see below)
3. A one-page statement of interest including any past experience in labor and employment law

For tryouts, be prepared to argue both sides of Thompson v. North American Stainless found at http://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=7401240344092765062&hl=en&as_sdt=2&as_vis=1&oi=scholarr.

Professor Levinson or Professor Render will conduct tryouts the week of October 31st. Signups for tryout times will be available on the Moot Court Board Office door on October 24th.

If you have any questions, please email Brittany Hampton.

MCB Congrats!

Congratulations to Nathan Batey and Sarah Christianson for making the Animal Law Moot Court team! Thank you to everyone who tried out this year!

Lawlapalooza 2011 Commercial

Lawlapalooza 2011: I Rocked the Law, the Louisville legal community's band battle to benefit the Judge Ellen B. Ewing Memorial Fund, is Thursday, October 27 at the Phoenix Hill Tavern, 644 Baxter Avenue. Doors open at 6:00 p.m., first band starts at 7:00.

Owsley Brown and UofL Brandeis School of Law

The Louisville community noted with sadness the passing of Owsley Brown on September 26, 2011.  Much has been written about the many ways in which his life affected our community.  This impact ranged from his support of the arts, environmental issues, culture of the state, corporate citizenship, and historic preservation.

Owsley Brown’s civic engagement touched the Louis D. Brandeis School of Law as well.  Five years ago, on November 13, 2006, the law school celebrated the 150th birthday of Louis D. Brandeis, for whom our law school is named.  Owsley and Christy Brown were major underwriters and supporters of the occasion, which included the publication of Brandeis at 150: The Louisville Perspective.  They also hosted a dinner for speakers, conference planners, and Brandeis family members at their beautiful home, which had once been owned by Louis Brandeis’s brother, Alfred.  Justice Brandeis’s descendants (3 grandchildren and several great-grandchildren) were there along with many local descendants of his brother, including Charles Tachau (L’48), Jean Tachau Haas, and David Tachau.

Owsley and Christy Brown again supported a Brandeis celebration event at the law school in May 2009, at the unveiling of Rob Shetterly’s portrait of Justice Brandeis.  Their underwriting funded both the event itself and the reproductions of the portrait that were made for display at the law school and at Central High School’s Law and Government Magnet classroom.  The law school’s reproduction is prominently displayed in the student commons area.

The Louis D. Brandeis School of Law community like so many others, expresses our gratitude for Owsley Brown’s interest in Justice Brandeis, and we share our sadness that Owsley Brown is no longer with us.

1Ls: Interested in Helping Moot Court Board with Pirtle-Washer?

This year's Pirtle-Washer Oral Advocacy Competition, the law school's premier internal oral advocacy competition, will begin this Saturday, October 22nd at 9 a.m. at the Jefferson County Hall of Justice.  The competition is only open for 2L, 3L, and 4L students, but 1Ls can still help as bailiffs. 

Serving as a bailiff at Pirtle-Washer is a great way to gain exposure to oral arguments, which you will have to do in the spring for BLS, and is also a great way to meet local attorneys.  If you are interested in serving as a bailiff this Saturday, please attend a Moot Court Board meeting this Thursday, October 20th at 12:10 pm in Room 175

If you are interested in being a bailiff, but cannot attend Thursday's meeting, email Eric Johnson at eljohn10@louisville.edu.

Bar Exam Panel - Next Thursday

Upper division students:  Join several recent UofL Law graduates on Thursday, October 27, for a panel discussion regarding the Kentucky and Indiana bar exams – what to expect; the application process; bar review options; handling stress; preparing financially; and much more.  All panelists are eager to share their experiences with you in preparing for, taking, and successfully passing the bar exam.  Dean Ballard will also provide attendees with important information on deadlines and helpful information to complete the bar exam application. The session will begin at 12:10 p.m., in Room 275.  Lunch will be provided.

Academic Success Tip - Beware of Bad Advice

This week’s tips focus on bad advice that is often given out by well-intentioned students.  Critique these pieces of advice carefully and consider the alternatives.

Bad advice:  When you have someone else’s outline for the course, you don’t need to make your own outline.

Why this advice is bad advice:

  • Having the outline of someone else who did well in a course does not mean that you will do well in the course.  You will only do well if you know the material in-depth and understand it and can apply it.  Having an outline from an anonymous source is even less positive because you do not know if the student who created it did well in the course.
  • An outline matches someone else’s learning styles and may not match how you learn material.  It also does not tell you how to apply the material to new fact scenarios – the very essence of law school exams.
  • Outlines of other students are shortcuts that avoid your having to process the information yourself.  Processing the information through your own outlines increases understanding and retention of material.
  • Outlines from prior years may not include changes in the law, changes in the professor’s approach to a subject, and changes in textbooks.  Unless you are carefully taking notes and outlining, you may miss important changes since the last time the professor taught the course.
  • When each member of a study group outlines one course and then gives her/his outline to the other study group members, the same type of problems can result.  Each study group member will know the course s/he outlined very well.  Each study group member will only have a partial understanding of the other courses.

Alternatives:

  • If you have not already done so, begin NOW to process material and make your own outlines.  Use any outlines you have depended upon up to now only as comparisons.
  • Consider whether you can condense material before you put it in your own outlines so that you will not have to condense your outlines later.
  • Be efficient and effective in making your own outlines: do not include everything – include the important things that give you the bigger picture and inter-relationships.
  • Consider whether flowcharts and other visuals will be helpful for you as a way to condense the material and understand the “big picture” of the course.