Articles published in September 2012

Free LSAT Events This Week: Oct. 1 – 7

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free gre
Here are the free LSAT events we’re holding this week.

10/3/12 – Washington, D.C. – Free Trial Class – 6:30-9:30 PM

10/3/12 – Los Angeles, CA – Free Trial Class – 6:30-9:30 PM

10/3/12 – Irvine, CA – Free Trial Class – 6:30-9:30 PM

10/4/12 – New York, NY – Free Trial Class – 6:30-9:30 PM

10/4/12 – Los Angeles, CA – Free Trial Class – 6:30-9:30 PM

10/4/12 – San Diego, CA – Free Trial Class – 6:30-9:30 PM

10/4/12 – Online – Free Trial Class – 6:30-9:30 PM

 

Looking for more free events? Check out our Free Events Listings Page.

 

 

Friday Links: The Economics of Law School, Career Options, Personal Statements and More

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Set the LSAT prep books aside for a minute or two and catch up on some of this week’s news about law school and the legal profession. Happy Friday!

Study from Nerd Wallet Finds Law School Still Worth Attending (JD Journal)

According to a new study from Nerd Wallet, paying top dollar for tuition is justifiable if you’re studying at a top-ranked law school.

The Economics of Law School (New York Times)

The New York Times takes a magnifying glass to the economics of law school to get a closer look at reform propositions, tuition, salary stats, and more.
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If You Can See Me, My Presence Is Not Assumed

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lsat cardinal rule

Yes, I'm a cardinal and yes, I rule. Your point?

In logical reasoning, if a question asks you the role of a given phrase in the argument, the answer to the question cannot be “an assumption,” no matter how accurately the rest of the answer choice describes the argument.

Recall the cardinal rule of assumptions: they are unstated. If a question is quoting a portion of text to you, that portion is stated. It cannot, therefore, be an assumption.

These questions that ask you to identify the function or role of a phrase or statement are pretty efficient to answer if you know what you’re looking for. If you identify the quoted phrase as a conclusion, you can knock out any answer choice that calls it premise, no matter how accurate anything else in that answer choice is. Likewise, if it’s a premise, you can get rid of any answer choice that calls it a conclusion.

But regardless of its role, you can always get rid of “assumption” answer choices for one reason: since it’s quoted, that’s impossible.

Check out PT64, S1, Q14 for an example.

Comparing Law Schools Just Got a Little Easier

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What’s the most important factor to consider when deciding where to attend law school? Location, class size, and tuition cost are important aspects of your decision. Then there are those pesky U.S. News & World Report  annual rankings – make of those what you will. In light of the current job market, however, more applicants are turning to job statistics to determine which law schools offer the highest promise of employment upon graduation.

It’s all a bit daunting, isn’t it? We feel your pain. Since all this research can be almost as time-consuming as completing the application itself, we thought it would be helpful to share NerdWallet’s new online copmarison tool that allows you to quickly compare different law schools based on employment stats provided by the American Bar Association. Users can choose to generate a chart that compares up to four—from a pool of 50—law schools at a time. The chart provides a side by side comparison, including each school’s average graduating class size and the percentage of graduates with a job. You can also see how many of these employed grads end up in a law firms, governmental positions, and other legal areas, as well as where they end up geographically.

Beyond the custom comparison charts, NerdWallet also invites users to click on the preset headings to reveal the list of law schools that are best for earning high salaries and which are best for placing students in a specific legal sector or getting a job in a certain geographic location. In case you’re curious, University of Michigan tops the salary chart with grads averaging $128,201, University of California, Davis has the highest rate of employment in the California area, and Columbia University boasts the highest percentage of students employed by a 501+ person law firm.  Where do you want to go to law school?

Free LSAT Events This Week: Sept. 24 – 30

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free gre
Here are the free LSAT events we’re holding this week.

9/24/12 – New Haven, CT – Free Trial Class – 6:30-9:30 PM

9/30/12 – Santa Clara, CA – Free Trial Class – 10:00 AM-1:00 PM

 

Looking for more free events? Check out our Free Events Listings Page.

Friday Roundup: Prepping for Class, Catching some Z’s, and Learning About the Law

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The October LSAT is just over two weeks away! Keep up your motivation with a few of this week’s top stories about life as a law student.

How Much Time Should You Spend Preparing for Class as a 1L? (The Girl’s Guide To Law School)

Doing the readings and prepping for class is only one piece of the puzzle. Here is some great advice for planning your daily schedule and handling your 1L workload.

Sleep and Grad School: How Important Is It For Students? (Psychology Today)

According to Psychology Today, sleep is the single most important health behavior we can engage in. Find out just how many hours you need per night and why your weekend sleep patterns may be hurting your cognitive performance.
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LOGICAL REASONING: The Ideal Inference is Right Under Your Nose

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Confession: last week in class, I nearly strangled a student. I leaned forward, pretended to put my hands around his neck, and then trembled in a strange way.*

Moments before, we’d had this conversation:

180px-Homer-simpson-chocking-bart-1

Homer Simpson does not have the LSAT score to teach for Manhattan LSAT

Mary: Why not (E), Sam?

Sam: I felt like it was already stated in the argument.

Mary: But it’s an inference question.

Sam: Yeah, but (E) was pretty much told to us already.

Mary: [Stared at him blankly.]

Sam: It’s like… right there in the argument already. Seemed too obvious.

Mary: [Kept staring.]

Sam: Is that… wrong?

Mary: EVERYBODY, SAM’S ANSWER IS (E), HE JUST DIDN’T REALIZE IT BEFORE.

Luckily, Sam and I are friends. (He’s reading this going, “not anymore.”)

Guys. Please listen. Do not eliminate an answer choice to an inference question because you think it was already stated in the argument. That’s like eliminating a strengthen answer choice because it strengthens too much, or an assumption answer choice because it was unstated. (If you just gasped at the idea of either of those, that’s a good sign.)

Your ideal inference answer choice? An exact replica of a sentence in the argument. Think about it: you’re trying to figure out what must be true. What must be true more than something you’ve been told word for word is true?

Of course, you will probably never see your ideal answer choice… you’ll have to settle for a close match with a synonym or two. But now that you know what you’re going for in a perfect world, no more “we already know that” as a reason for eliminating anything on inference questions, okay?

 

*True.

Free LSAT Events This Week: Sept. 17 – 23

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free gre
Here are the free LSAT events we’re holding this week.

9/19/12 – Online – Zen and the Art of LSAT – 8:00-10:00 PM

9/23/12 – New York, NY – Free Trial Class – 5:30-8:30 PM

9/23/12 – Online – Free Trial Class – 6:00-9:00 PM

 

Looking for more free events? Check out our Free Events Listings Page.

Friday Links: Law School Culture, Personal Statements, Understanding Law School Material, and More

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hot newsHave your days been filled with prep work for the October LSAT? If so, it’s time to take a quick break and treat yourself to some of this week’s top articles about law school and the legal profession.

What Most Law Students Forget to Do: Think About the Material (Law School Toolbox)

Spending your time typing, copying, and pasting will keep you busy but will not help you really know or understand the material in law school. Law School Toolbox offers some more efficient ways to prep for class, take class notes, and create study materials.

Fall Frenzy: Law Students Elbow for Summer Shot at Big Law Gig (The Wall Street Journal Law Blog)

Find out why good grades are no longer enough to guarantee 2L’s a job next summer in BigLaw.

What No One Tells You Before You Go To Law School: They Really Are Speaking Greek (Okay, Latin) (Ms. JD)

Alison Monahan, founder of The Girl’s Guide to Law School, explains why law school is a lot like foreign language immersion. When entering law school, expect to be exposed to a whole new language and a whole new culture.

Get Paid and Published for Law School Writings (Law Student Ally)

Maximize your law school experience by taking the opportunity to get your papers published while you’re still earning your J.D.

Telling Your Story: Include Emotional Thinking (jdMission)

As you’re drafting your law school personal statement, be sure to include emotional reflections and not just factual reports about what happened.

 

Best Lesson from New LSAC Data: Change Your Reach, Not Your Life Plan

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In case you missed it, the latest buzz in the law admissions world is that those of you applying might be advantaged this year thanks to the drop in applications Law Schoolamong high LSAT scorers. The basic idea is that a dearth of top applicants has made room at top schools for folks who wouldn’t normally squeeze in, which leaves more spots open in the tiers below for folks who wouldn’t normally be admitted at that level, and so on. (You know… like Reagan.)

But is this a reason to apply? I’ve written before and will again: don’t apply to law school unless you want to go. You shouldn’t apply just because your chances of getting into a higher ranked school have increased any more than you should become a doctor because one year you make a particularly strong med school applicant. You should become a doctor because you want to be one, and you should become a lawyer because you want to be one. For some reason, the common sense of this notion is more often forgotten in law than in other professions.

So what’s to be gained from this potential, newfound flexibility in law admissions? Well, if you already planned to apply, why not aim a little higher? Make your reach school a bit of a farther reach. Who knows? You could be surprised. If not, there’s always the circus — I hear their numbers are down this year.