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Essay Workshop GOOD

Essay Workshop GOOD

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Published by Rob Ennis

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Categories:Types, Brochures
Published by: Rob Ennis on Jun 30, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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ESSAY WRITING A matter of being thorough on the essays; not a single issue. Focus on being thorough.

*** Focus on mini-outlines and use the large outlines only as reference. *** Use lecture notes properly. Make them count. *** The performance tests are critical (each is the equivalent of 2 essays) - Understand tasks that are necessary * Handwrite a few essays just in case…. (?) ** Only spend 1hr per question ** Do not scan the questions first! Start on Q1. *** Do the Barbri practice exams IRAC writing format Instructions: a) Issue spotting (look to the call of the question again after reading b) State the applicable legal rule (show you understand the rule by applying the rule) c) Start with the general rule (SPELL it out). d) Show you understand the relationships of the rules. a. Frequent cross-over questions implicate Professional Responsibility b. Follow the call of the question to identify cross-over issues e) Apply the law to the facts. f) Reason in logical and lawyer-like manner. Formulaic. a. Consider both sides of analysis. b. Tell the reader what the problems may be with application. g) Reach and state a conclusion. Be consistent. a. State the reasons that support the conclusions; discuss thoroughly. *** Impress the reader with how well you can apply the rules to the facts. Only give legal principles necessary to solve the problem. Apply each rule to the facts. *** Allow for a reconstruction of the fact pattern from the answer. Take it step-bystep and not copy and paste – APPLY APPLY APPLY. *** Not all issues are equal – give proper weight to the issues. More facts going to one issue the more time you spend. *** Unless told to use California law, use Multi state. - Cal law only subjects are:


o Community Property o Wills Cal and Federal rules for: o Evidence o Civil Procedure o Professional Responsibility

IRAC ISSUE - Use headings to flag the issue (e.g. legal topic or a ‘fact’) - Analyzing objectively - May choose to draft the issue as a question (e.g. “Whether Wilma’s letter will be admissible under the hearsay rule?”) - If we have a specific interrogatory, can use that as the overall heading. RULE - If you can’t remember rule, make it up - State as accurately as you can; the more you write the rule the more you will know it. o Handwrite the rules on flashcards - Minimize the number of rules you state; as this cuts down the application; make sure you are always applying to the facts. o Do not “front load” the rules APPLICATION - Juxtapose the facts with the rules. - Get key facts for particular rules. - Don’t assume reader knows anything about the facts! - Use “Here,…. (application)….” On new paragraph after the rule. CONCLUSION - Give a reasoned prediction on the outcome - They want to see affirmative lawyers. Be authoritative. - Based on law and facts, what is more likely outcome? How To Deal With PANIC A. NOW is the time to deal. B. Manipulate the language – see the victim, see the actor; construct something so you can work with the facts. a. USE the facts b. ACTIVELY ARGUE the facts c. REASON the facts when in doubt as to the rule d. Let the parties argue the facts, and the rules emerge

C. Go back to law: eliminate the subjects it is NOT D. Create structure. ** Know the subjects I need to spend more time on!!! *** For subjects on right column on Page 6 (of handout), they are ONLY tested on the essays portion; a. Spend the time first on the Cal Essay Practice Exam book, read the facts and answers over, look for issues. From there, go to CMR and lecture and get the law from there. b. Get factual context! c. Go over exams! a. Go to CAL BAR SITE; they have 2 answers per question for last ten years. d. Be STRONG on MBE subjects as they are usually 3 essays also. e. PR is tested almost every year. Be STRONG here. f. Don’t ignore the barbri practices!!!!

ESSAY WRITING PROCESS: PURPOSE: Is simply to communicate. Not assuming understanding. Support conclusions. Express reasoning. Don’t reduce analysis by focusing too much on interrogatory. But focus on the question asked. Read over facts like a story first. To understand story. Then read interrogatory. o Know the story; know what you are being asked. Then begin to outline. On separate sheet of paper. o List elements, juxtapose facts beside elements. Budget time relative to issues of importance.

*** Give 15mins to prepare the answer!!! Think through, to communicate well. ** Then execute. Plan + Execute For “planning”: Take sample questions, spend 15mins outlining, then check against a sample outline for pertinent issues. Repeat. Repeat in future.

PREPARING FOR THE EXAM Materials Management (pyramid): 1. Large outline; to 2. CMR; to 3. 1page per subject Try to condense information. No time to “outline” here. Can, however, make flashcards (but be judicious!). Only specific rules/points. CATCH UP WITH SCHEDULE!!! Balance time between SUBSTANTIVE REVIEW and ACTIVE APPLICATION. AMP/StudySmart etc Set aside 1hr each day to review something you have already reviewed! (reinforcement reviews). In evenings; at end of each day. PRACTICE: Evaluate; do not judge! CONDITION myself to be “online” at 9am. Look ahead to the bar.

*** GET THE MACRO PICTURE: Context is important – one page on torts on page 8 for all subjects, put on wall. ESSENTIAL SKILLS: 1. Knowledge of law 2. Application of law to facts (issue spotting and reasoning) 3. Structure (IRAC)

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