Monday, December 03, 2007


My first set of law school exams are coming up. For anyone who's not in law school or who hasn't had the good (ha) fortune to have gone through this process, I'll tell you a little bit about our exams. I have four exams: Torts, Criminal Law, Contracts and Civil Procedure. Each exam is four hours long, and yes, it does take the entire four hours.

The good news is that they're spread out over about three weeks, so we have plenty of time to study. Two of my exams are open book and open note, and two are closed. However, having an open book exam doesn't necessarily help you out. The tests are graded on a pretty strict curve, so we're all directly competing with each other. If an exam is easy to you, then it's also probably easy to everyone else. That means the standard of performance is raised, because you still have to do better than almost everyone else to get an A. A good exam answer one year may be a poor one the next; it just depends on how well you do compared to everyone else.

This environment fosters some cutthroat competition. Thankfully, I haven't experienced any sabotage attempts at Alabama, but I've heard stories of students ripping out pages of books in the library or hiding them so other students can't find the book they need. Anything to get ahead, right? No wonder lawyers have such bad reputations.

My first exam is Torts on Wednesday. Our professor, Susan Randall (who I have a girl crush on) is doing a question and answer session for us this morning. She went to Columbia for law school and (like me) she was a philosophy major in college. Clearly we were meant for each other.

1 comment:

Silly Little Law Student said...

Just be thankful that the powers that be are merciful on you 1Ls and you have 4 exams spread out through 3 weeks [and I assume you didn't have to learn ALL of Civ Pro in an entire semester like my school did].

When you're a 2L.... your exam schedule suddenly becomes 5 exams on top of each other and crammed into 8 days. Bring. It. On.