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Every branch of law has an established hornbook that is the most highly regarded in the field e. This is the hornbook you should buy, and it can be found by asking around or using the internet. The only exception to this rule is if your professor or the author of your casebook wrote a hornbook on the Law school scholarship essay.
If this is the case, you must certainly buy that hornbook. Hornbooks are typically to pages. They are your real textbook for the course.
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A casebook is a maze in which the reader is somehow expected to be able parse through in order to obtain both rules and the big picture. It does not work. While other students read a page casebook, I only quickly read the casebook and instead focus my time on reading a page hornbook.
We both invest the same amount of time, but the hornbook is about answers or a set of debatable answers and not about questions. By reading the hornbook, you will get a summary of the entire area of law and not just a set of sampled points that your professor chooses.
If the professor were only to test on material directly covered in class, there would be no problem skipping these hornbook sections.
The reality is, however, that a professor will quickly touch on a lot of things and expect you to have made connections and leaps from his comments. Sometimes, this would be nearly impossible to do so given the materials discussed in class. However, the hornbook likely covered the material in more depth.
Also, sometimes professors will model a test question on a somewhat famous case that has been academically debated that is not in your casebook. The other book that is your co-textbook is any rule book that the teacher relies on.
Along with the hornbook, this is your true textbook.
Often they will be surprised when the Civil Procedure test is nothing but a test on how well you can apply the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure or the related statutes. You need to look at former tests from each of your professors and see what is going to be needed.
In all classes I have had so far, knowledge of something like the Uniform Commercial Code, a Restatement, or the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure has been a major key to exam success.
The extracted rules of cases and the rule book or restatement are the weapons for test day; the hornbook teaches you how these weapons are used and what they are, and doing practice tests teaches you how to use these weapons.
Do not forget that the rule book is a weapon for test day that is equal to or exceeds the utility of rules from cases. They are simple quick summary guides that give you a big picture of the class and have some problems to test your understanding.
I find this to be an essential tool, if only for the questions alone. Without this big picture, you get less out of reading the hornbook, which is very detailed.
The case summary book is a fast guide to your casebook. As pointed out earlier, your casebook, in my opinion, aids you minimally in test preparation. However, the central rule of a case is an essential weapon for use on the test. However, if you are reading the court opinions like I suggest, it should only be some factual nuance that should trip you up in class.
You should not be wasting time perfecting factual nuances for recital in class.
A fourth book, a policy book, is essential in classes that are heavily policy-focused and have a policy essay or expect policy commentary while answering a classic fact pattern.
In the later case, I will often throw policy in the conclusion of an argument to determine which way an issue will be resolved when the analysis otherwise does not clearly point to resolving the issue in a specific way. For example, in Contracts, we were informed that a policy essay would be on the exam.
Most students used the basic policy tools taught in class to piece together a reasonable answer to the question.
The very brightest students likely used these tools better than anyone else and got an A or A- level essay for this portion of the exam.
Instead, I located a non-required policy book by the author of our casebook.
In this policy book were a series of law review articles and scholarly pieces covering policy analysis on all areas of contracts. In my outline I summarized this book as a series of arguments with pros and cons to each situation.
As expected, on test day, I got a question involving policy analysis of standard form contracts that required some critical thinking.
Using both my own ideas and ideas from two of the essays from the book, I was able to write a very strong policy essay. Two groups of people wrote A and A- essays that day.The Reach Cambridge scholarship essay competition is designed for academically excellent high school students aged between 15 and 17 who would otherwise not .
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