Hindsight: What are the top 10 things I wish I would have known about law school.

Posted on 10-06-2014 by
Tags: new lawyers , Law school , law students , Latest Headlines & Stories

Hindsight is 20/20- we say that a lot, but what if you could help people in the future? That is what this article by the guardian.com is doing as they list the 10 Things They Wish They’d Had Known Before Becoming a Law Student. Here is their list of useful tips:

1.Career Prospects
Getting a job is getting harder for graduates as some firms are reducing training contracts and even eliminating their next intake of trainees. But the best students get work, so work hard now.

2. There’s so much reading
There is a lot of reading, so be prepared for long, hard hours of studying. Here’s a tip: Case summaries… and Coffee! Not energy drinks, which can have harmful additives.

3. Work hard, work smart, be organized
Be very organized from the start and focus on being efficient, then the workload will be easier. Plan ahead and keep the end goal of “knowing the law so you can correctly apply it” in mind.

4. Everyone will want free legal advice
Just because you are a law student does not mean you know the “ins” and “outs” of the legal realm. Unfortunately for you, your friends will still ask you for legal advice. If you do give advice, make sure to have a disclaimer.

5. Life revolves around your next tutorial or research training
The more effort you put into tutorials and training classes, the more you will learn.

Law school is intense
You and your classmates will always be in competition for the best grade on each exam. Some students become extremely defensive and do everything they can purely for personal gain at the expense of others. This is rare, but law school can be a bit like being on "The Apprentice" competing against others in a high pressure environment with backstabbing and drama!

7. Law books cost a fortune
You won’t be the only one who is taking a beating during school. Be prepared for your wallet to be hurting as well. “Essential textbooks” have cost people around $650 in their first year. Check for eBooks or loose leaf versions of your case books.

8. Did I really choose the right degree?
A law degree will stretch you to the limits, and will have you questioning whether you made the right choice. Before you consider changing directions, reach out to an attorney or a mentor and see what motivated them to stay the course. 

9. The jump from A-levels to law school
Don’t be discouraged if you see your grades take a fall as you make the jump from A-levels to law school. This process of learning and understanding takes time to get used to.

10. Social stereotypes of law students
Here are a few phrases you might hear because of law student stereotypes:

"Oh, you're studying law? Maybe you can help me out someday if I get into trouble."

"Well, I see you've sold your soul to the devil for riches."

"How can you defend someone you know to be guilty? You lawyers are heartless and cold-blooded."

Is there anything else you would include in the list above? Feel free to share your comment in the ‘Join the Conversation’ text box at the bottom of this string.


Posted on : 11 Oct 2014 10:08 PM

The jump from learning the law to applying it in the real world can be huge. Obtaining practice experience as a student through pro bono work, internships, and clinics is helpful to landing a job and becoming practice-ready.

Posted on : 12 Oct 2014 11:09 PM

I wish I knew how to get a job

Bryan Lafferty
Bryan Lafferty
Posted on : 13 Oct 2014 3:46 AM

Law students like their coffee: black, strong, and administered through an IV.

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