FROM A FORMER LAW LECTURER
To Help You Survive Law School
Wondering how you can get a first class degree in law? You are not alone. Getting a first in law school isn't just an intrinsic reward that you are going to cherish all your life, it also has real advantages that you can capitalise on in your career. Higher grades might open up more professional opportunities for you, especially if you are just starting out in law, and provide you with a springboard that helps you get ahead of the curve. Here are a few practical tips you can implement to get a first class degree in law school.
Follow a proven study strategy
Unless you have an airtight plan that earned you first class grades in other law school subjects, it's better to stick to tried and tested strategies. Instead of experimenting, which can lead to a waste of both time and energy, identify a proven study strategy that works for you and attempt to follow it as closely as possible throughout your degree.
Yes, the sheer amount of study work in law school can be intimidating but don't get overwhelmed. Make a plan, prioritise, and come up with a to-do list for every week. Then just make sure to follow your plan so that you can accomplish the milestones you have set. At the very least, you can start by using the following steps:
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Select your study materials strategically
The second key factor that will help you get a first-class degree in law school is a careful selection of your study materials. If you are working hard but not studying the right books, notes, or guides, that can affect your grade. That's why it is essential to select your study content strategically and stick to it. The ideal way to start is with the revision of notes and guides. These provide you with the important study content in a simpler and more understandable manner with many examples and illustrations.
Follow up your revisions with the skimming of selected textbook chapters to build your knowledge and perception of the law. Some of the key aspects that your study materials should have included the following:
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Go deep into the topic for essays
One of the key components of studying law to get a first-class degree is to be detail-oriented. Although you will not get the opportunity to study everything in-depth, when it comes to essays, you need to rely on all the materials you have and study them thoroughly. Instead of getting distracted by complementary topics, maintain your focus and concentration on the essentials of your essay topic.
This strategy will allow you to develop a far better understanding of high priority topics that are more likely to appear in your tests and exams. This is why you need in-depth and comprehensive preparation for essay topics. Apart from that, essay topics often prepare you for the real-world application of law as they are related to your interpretation. Instead of just memorising the sections, you develop the ability to understand the cause behind them and how to apply those sections in real life.
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Focus on selected topics for exams
You need to complete your final preparation well before your exams because you won't have time to revise everything and focus on every subject during the examination period. When exams are around the corner, the best strategy is to revise only 2 to 4 highly important topics for every subject instead of attempting to revise everything. Put all of your focus on those key topics and areas that are highly critical and make sure you have a complete grasp of those topics.
This strategy may not seem ideal but it works because of a number of reasons. During exams, you simply won't have enough time to revise everything. Also, what is likely to happen is that you will end up retaining much less information than what you have revised. This will lead to poor preparation right before the exam, especially if you don’t have a good revision guide to revise from which only focuses on the most crucial information for each topic. That's why instead of trying to focus on everything, put all of your time and efforts into topics that are the most important. This way you will have a better chance of succeeding in getting high grades.
Getting a first class degree in law school may be a bit of a challenge, but it's not rocket science and it definitely can be done. With careful planning, disciplined and strategic studying, smart revision techniques, and an in-depth understanding of essential topics, you can place yourself in a better position to get a first class degree. Many students do it every year, so why can't you?