LSAT Instructor: My First Week of Law Classes

Yuko Sin is an instructor and blogger for Blueprint LSAT Prep. He just started as a 1L at Columbia Law School, and is writing a series of law school-related posts about his experiences.

Classes – the graded, real kind – started this week at Columbia. Sure, we did go through three weeks of Legal Methods, but that’s a pass-fail class that everyone passes.

Among other things, you’re supposed to get your first cold-calls out of the way in Legal Methods. You see, at law school, professors don’t wait for someone to contribute to the class discussion. They call on people. So you’d better be ready.

Or not.

Class participation usually won’t figure into your final grade, so you can flub all your cold-calls, but you’d better have a high tolerance for public shaming.

One of the Legal Methods professors cold-called two unprepared students in a row and summarily kicked both of them out of class. Ouch.

My Legal Methods professor, let’s call him Professor D, never made a big deal about any unprepared students. I wasn’t sure what I thought about Professor D until the final day of class when he won me over. We both think that three years of law school is overkill.

For most law students, legal hiring happens one to two years before you graduate. This makes the expense of a third year at law school very questionable. Many, including our Constitutional Law Professor-in-Chief, think that we should get rid of the third year. Professor D seems to think that we could do without the other two as well. Swoon.

In D’s Legal Methods class we studied a death penalty case that he’s been working on for decades. We even got a call from the professor’s client during class. D thinks that, having made it through his Legal Methods class, we’re already prepared to go out and practice law. So if you ever kill someone in Alabama, let me know.

I start my day at 9 and I’m done with classes and reading by 5 or 6. There’s still free lunch every day, and the school is throwing us a huge party on Friday. Real classes aren’t too bad.

For more of Yuko’s law school journey see:

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