Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Sitting Strategy

As I've written about before, there's a strategy involved in attending law school classes. If your professor happens to call on you on a day when you're unprepared, the result is an embarrassing barrage of questions like "Ms. Nichols, why aren't you prepared today? Why don't you know this material, Ms. Nichols?"

So we do what we can to avoid that. Part of my strategy is the pre-emptive strike theory, in which I raise my hand whenever I'm prepared so I won't be cold-called on a day when I'm unprepared. But there's also a way to sit that makes you less likely to be called on. Don't put your arms anywhere near your head; don't play with your earrings, don't play with your hair. Keep your eyes squarely on your laptop, and discreetly try to hide your face while effecting a facial expression like you're concentrating.

It works most of the time. If you are called on and you don't know the answer, I really don't know how to advise you. You're on your own at that point.


Anonymous said...

I think you posted this with the assumption that none of your profs read your blog.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm...sounds a little bizarre, to say the least. ALL of your professors love to harangue their students the way you describe? Sounds a little sadistic to me.
I have never experienced that during my (current) law school career, and have never seen a fellow student browbeaten like that by a professor for not being prepared.
Why can't you simply say when you are called on, but unprepared, "I'll pass today"? It works in my school.
I can see professors pressing you like that only if you attempt to play a game whereby you try to fake your way through the discussion, as if you had read the material. That rarely works. But if you are upfront about not having prepared (and you don't abuse the privilege of passing), why are your profs treating you like that? Sounds a little off to me.