Favorite Study Tips & Supplements

So if you’ve read any of my blog posts, you know I am really compulsive about my studying and notes! In addition to my ridiculously meticulous binder, here are a couple other study tips I use in my classes:

 

  • Prewritten Rule Statements 
    • This is something I didn’t do 1st semester and I think made a big difference for 2nd semester. I think this is such a basic study tip – everyone does this – but honestly it was so helpful once I finally caught on. Basically, for every concept I pre-wrote the rule in a really clear and concise sentence. I kept it separate from my outline and just had about 2 pages at the beginning of my binder with my rules for quick reference. They aren’t super eloquent but here’s a short example of how I broke them down.Screen Shot 2019-05-31 at 3.12.52 PM
  • Rule Sections in My Outline 
    • For classes where we were working from a rule book (civ pro, professional responsibility, con law),  I liked to have the rules at the beginning of each section of my outline for quick reference. So for example, on my con law outline, at the beginning of each section I would insert a box with the relevant rules in my own words. It was helpful and served as a sort of checklist of all the things I needed to mention when I got to that issue. See the picture below for an example of one of my sections!
    • Screen Shot 2019-05-31 at 3.53.44 PM.png
  • Hypothetical Charts 
    • When professors take the time to make up their own hypotheticals in class, WRITE THEM DOWN. Frequently professors will re-write or edit their own class hypos on the exam. I made a separate document with every class hypo. During the exam if I had a similar issue, I could go to my sheet and say okay, “this case is like X hypo from class where Y happened, however this 1 fact is different so the answer in this case is actually A because…” The comparison of what we did in class and how changing a certain fact affected the outcome was a good way to show my knowledge of the material. Below is one of the pages from my “hypo outline.”
    • Screen Shot 2019-05-31 at 3.17.19 PM.png
  • Case Spreadsheets 
    • If you’ve read my earlier posts, you probably know I am a sociopath that briefs every case. Why am I this compulsive? However, I turned all of these into spread sheets, which was really easy because the work was practically done. But like hypos, cases are often also changed slightly and used. I created an excel sheet and then made tabs for every section at the bottom. It’s honestly not very sophisticated and I know a ton of people that did this, but I did find them useful. I also color coded the cases for full cases v. note cases and added in other rules if that case departed from the rule, etc.
    • Screen Shot 2019-05-31 at 3.20.27 PM.pngScreen Shot 2019-05-31 at 3.20.48 PM.png
  • Questions & Answers 
    • I ordered the Q&A books off of Amazon because my library didn’t have them. They aren’t a good supplement for actually teaching and explaining the rule because they just have practice problems. However, the answers to the practice problems are SO HELPFUL and so good at explaining the rule and how it applied to different fact patterns. A couple friends chipped in and shared these. Also, I like the hard copy, but my study group got the digital copy and we would put them on someone’s TV or a big screen in the law school and go through them together. This was also really helpful. I hate buying supplements in law school because I am BROKE AF, but the Q&A are pretty cheap especially if you split them.
  • Law in a Flash 
    • My library had these flash cards but they were always checked out. Luckily, one of my friends had a set so I borrowed hers and our group would do them together. These were my favorite to just have them around. I’ve done them by the pool and in the bathtub. Sometimes I need a break but cannot bring myself to leave the law school. These were a good way to get in some light studying in a comfy spot when you just can’t anymore. I know you can get them used on Amazon and they’re sort of an expense, but honestly they are super worth the money.
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