How Do I Prepare for Second Semester of Law School?
Many students email us right around now and ask us how to prepare for their second semester of law school over winter break. Some of them are very nervous about how finals went. Others realize that their study plans first semester were not ideal for succeeding on law school final exams and they want to make some serious changes. If you are wondering what to do over winter break to prepare for second semester of law school, here are some great steps to take.
NOTE: If you are taking the Michigan bar exam, click here for a super-detailed post on the law school classes that will prepare you for the bar exam in Michigan. If you are not taking the Michigan bar exam , keep reading!
If you are signing up for your 2L or 3L classes, you may be wondering what law school classes will prepare you for the bar exam. It is wise to take classes that will prepare you for the bar exam as it maximizes your chances of passing the bar exam the first time you take it.
Our advice is as follows: first, try to take any law school class that will prepare you for the MBE − that is, the “multistate bar exam”, or multiple choice portion of the bar exam. Many of these are related to your 1L classes. (Consequently, studying for the MBE will also likely help you on the essay portion of the bar exam, since many times the subjects are double-tested on the MBE and the essay portion.) Continue reading
Many law students and graduated law students struggle to find a job after law school. It is no secret that the legal job market is at an all-time low. Law students and new lawyers compete for the few jobs that have openings. If you find yourself to be one of many unemployed law students or lawyers in this competitive job market, below are some tips on how to get a job after law school. Before you read the list of ideas about how to get a job after law school, keep these few tips in mind:
First, remember that whatever job you do now does not have to be the job you do for the rest of your life. You can find something that works now and keep your eye on other options. Be open-minded, especially when you are just starting your search!
Second, be strategic in which options you run with. Remember that you do not have to go down the list and try all of these job strategies at once. Pick a few, and if those don’t work, come back and pick some more options!
Lastly, it is a good idea to brainstorm while you are reading this list. See if any ideas come to you. Are there any people you should reach out to? Do you know deep down that you have to clean up your resume? Write down a few things to do this week, and then do them!
The bar exam is just around the corner! Here are some last-minute bar exam tips to help you. We’ve divided them up into last-minute essay tips, last-minute tips for the multiple choice section, and general tips.
Last Minute Bar Exam Tips for Essays:
Here are some last-minute tips for getting the most points on the essay portion of the bar exam:
- Spell it out for the grader. For example, on a Criminal Procedure question, don’t just say: “it was an impermissible search of the defendant’s car.” Instead, start by talking about the Fourth Amendment. Then talk about how it applies to searches by a government agent. Then talk about the search at hand as well as any exceptions. Doing this will help you with the next point . . .
- Write long essay answers. You cannot get points for something that is not there. Write complete answers that state the rules, apply them to the facts, and conclude. If you write a half-page answer do not expect full points.
- Use paragraph breaks and headings. Make it easy for the grader to see that you know what you are talking about. Do not write one huge long paragraph. No grader will want to filter through. Instead, make it easy for the grader to give you points.
- Underline and bold key words. Graders want it to be easy to find the rule statements, analysis, and conclusion. Bold or underline anything you know is correct. (If you are not sure you are correct, though, don’t bold anything!) This will draw attention to what you know.
- When you are done writing your essays, review the fact pattern again. It is a good idea to always look back to the fact pattern and ask yourself: “Are there any arguments the parties made that I did not address?” and “Are there any important facts in the fact pattern that I did not address?” If a party makes an argument that you did not address, address it! If there is, say, an entire paragraph that you said nothing about, go back and say something about it! This can get you a lot of points!
Here are last-minute multiple choice tips for picking the right answer:
On the morning of your final exam, there are a few things you should do. Here is a law school final exam day checklist of things to consider doing the morning of your final exam.
1. Eat a healthy breakfast. Include some carbs, some protein, and some caffeine (if you are used to it…but don’t overdo it!)
2. Read some news articles or do something to get your brain working, but not anything that is too intense. (Some people do crossword puzzles or sudoku!) Continue reading
Have you been thinking about which classes you want to take your remaining semesters of law school? Do you want your classes to have the added bonus of preparing you for the Michigan bar exam?
If you are taking the Michigan Bar Exam and you want your classes to double as a good source of bar exam preparation, you might wonder which classes are worth your time and which classes are not. We will explain which classes will be the most helpful to you – and why – in this blog post.