How do I succeed in law school?

Tips for Law School Success
Tags: 1L, final exams, law school success
Jun 13, 2023

Team LSData here with unsolicited tips for law school, curated by a top 10% HLS grad.

Topic of the week: How do I succeed in law school?

Work hard. Work smart. Success in law school requires dedication, discipline, and strategy. Your post-law school outcomes will largely rely on two factors: your grades and your networking.

Law School Grades: For most law schools, the only grades you receive will be from a single final exam at the end of each course. There’s no homework, no midterm, just the final exam, which is usually a 3-hour in-class essay. Your goal from day 1 should be to crush your finals.

  1. Be dedicated: Law school isn't just a sequel to your college days—it's where you prep for your future career. Treat it like a full-time job, not just an extension of college. Your mindset should be to dedicate at least 40 hours per week to school.
  2. Be disciplined: Like I said, treat law school like a job. Don't skip your 8am Contracts class because you're hungover, and don't procrastinate on your readings to binge watch The Office for the fourth time.
  3. Be strategic: Your job is to crush your exams, not to memorize the facts of every case, not to answer every cold call perfectly, and not even to do all the assigned readings. Understand what your professors are teaching, but more importantly, figure out what their exams are asking, and what kind of answers they want from you.

Key Tips:

  1. Learn your professors' preferences: Each has their own teaching style and grading criteria. Understand what they expect in exam answers. Some professors prefer an in-depth analysis to demonstrate mastery of fine detail, while others want concise and direct answers that show a holistic understanding of how all the pieces fit together. Consider asking your professors during office hours. Or better yet, hit up the student exam bank for exams that received top marks. Read them and emulate them on your exam.
  2. Concentrate on key legal concepts: Avoid memorizing every case detail; instead, understand the key principles behind them.
  3. Prioritize wisely: The heavy workload in law school demands efficient prioritization. Focus on what matters most to your grades and long-term goals. Balance between readings, classes, and extracurricular activities. Don't try to do everything. You'll burn out.

Remember, your goal is not to be the most well-read or the most participative in class (don’t be a gunner), but to get the best grades possible on your exams. Focus your energy and resources towards this goal.

Next week’s topic: What should I be doing this summer to prep for 1L?

LSD+ has everything you need to take your studies to the next level and crush your 1L exams. We offer over 50,000 case briefs; each with an integrated legal dictionary and deep dive tool that make it as easy as possible to prepare for class. Plus, with millions more cases at your fingertips, you'll be prepared for whatever the professor throws at you. Our short video summaries make studying efficient, so you can effectively use your time - on the bus or in the library. Learn more or subscribe to LSD+ today.

cryptanon HLS '22 & LSD creator

Tech-focused creator of LSD.Law. I built LSD while applying to law school. I saw unequal access to knowledge and built LSD to level the playing field and help applicants make thoughtful, well-informed decisions in the application process.


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[] ararara
Sorry, thanks, I’m kind of projecting here but I hope it’s helpful
@ararara: should I retake this nov
[] ararara
Because of your goals probably but that also depends on what you’re pt-ing/if you feel like 170 is your ceiling
It’s definitely not lmfao I never got below 173 on a PT after my diagnostic
averaged 176 on the ~10 PTs I took prior to august
No idea where I went wrong
^felt this so much. This is how I feel about the sept lsat
Damn I feel that, my average was 176 too but I have an eye issue that decided to become an issue the test week so I could not read at all on RC
I think I did poorly on my RC, the first passage was all theoretical about a Spanish author & ya boy has a touch of the tism if you feel me, connecting author purpose & how they feel about things emotionally has always been my weak spot
If I could get 4 straight science passages that would be absolutely bomb lmao
Wish me luck on my WashU interview tomorrow guys. so nervous!
youre a beast, no luck needed
Thank you SAM.
@EmptyGoat: Science passages are the best, I still pull from my bank of random facts I got from reading those. But reading about different authors or music people would kill me
You got this my dude :)
@EmptyGoat: you won’t have to retake cause you are going to get in to uva
[] trox99
@ClerkHopeful: trust the advice I’ve given you!! And most of all, trust yourself. Your numbers are incredible. Just be yourself and let your personality shine.
[] ararara
Ik we keep saying this every day but I love you all
@OptimalTenderCucumber: you’re the best ty <3
& we love you more ararara
[] ararara
@empty jump in the water and eat Jaws! F this test.
[] trox99
You guys are all winners in my book
[] trox9
Even me?:)
[] ararara
How did this begin where there are two trox(s)??
Logging in back here for the first time in a while. In 1L but good luck everybody! It's worth it :)
[] ararara
@emu make sure to live it up for the rest of us!!
[] trox99
Emu, you are a legend
[] trox9
@ararara: don’t worry about it
[] ararara
@trox sorry! Kinda tired and not thinking! Wanted to make sure nobody was trolling your good name.
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