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How To Do Your Best on Law School Exams shows you, step-by-step, how to practice and excel at the two core law-exam tasks: spotting issues and resolving them with succinct lawyerly arguments. This popular and widely recommended Book emerged from teaching countless courses and grading thousands of exams over many years at the New York University Law School and at the City University Law School. In building-block detail, it shows you how to practice decoding of the typical multi-issue exam essay. It enables you to add an exam lens to your learning and outlining, so that you are practicing issue-spotting and step-by-step writing of lawyerly exam arguments throughout the semester and also illustrates many blunders that constantly appear on law exams. It includes many actual exam problems with illustrative "A" and occasional poor answers, and detailed comments explaining why exam arguments are excellent, mediocre or poor.
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I'm Professor John Delaney, the author of this Exam book as well as Learning Legal Reasoning and Learning Criminal Law As Advocacy Argument. I wrote all three books to aid in piercing the obscurity, mystification and the "hide-the-ball" teaching that is still practiced in so much of legal pedagogy.
Many first-year students do not know that law schools do not give college-type exams and therefore that college exam skills and LSAT skills are definitely not the skills you need to excel on law-school exams. They are also unaware that you are not systematically taught exam-taking skills in most law schools. In addition, many beginning students do not know that law exams do not flow directly from the assigned materials and classroom discussion. They are therefore surprised and in many instances dismayed when their grades are mediocre or worse.
Look at the article in the `Amapedia' section for my essay about law school exams. The "Inside the Book" section also includes Chapter One from this Exam book as well as its "Detailed Table of Contents." In addition, I have posted my responses to nine commonly asked questions about the challenging law school classroom and sixteen questions about preparing for the different and difficult law school exams in the Amapedia section of the Learning Legal Reasoning Amazon page. This Exam book helps students to learn and practice the two key skills you need to excel on these exams: issue-spotting and then the writing of succinct legal arguments to resolve each spotted issue. All three books emerge from thirty years of law school teaching at two law schools (N.Y.U. and CUNY).About the Author:
A law professor for thirty years, John Delaney taught criminal law, advanced criminal law, comparative criminal law, international criminal law, and other courses to law school students and students in masters and doctoral degree programs at the New York University School of Law. He then taught criminal law, advanced criminal law, the First Amendment, the Fourteenth Amendment, Jurisprudence and other courses at the City University of New York Law School.
Learning Legal Reasoning, How To Do Your Best On Law School Exams and Learning Criminal Law as Advocacy Argument emerged from these decades of teaching and reflecting on what students most need to succeed and what is lacking in law school pedagogy. Professor Delaney is also the author of law review articles and the general editor of nine other books, mostly about comparative law, in the American Series of Foreign Penal Codes. Prior to teaching, Professor Delaney conducted approximately one thousand trials and he wrote and argued more than one hundred and fifty appeals. Unlike many professors and others, John blends early intensive trial and appellate practice with thirty years of law school teaching, including writing hundreds of exams and grading thousands. His books are informed by this extensive practice, teaching and grading. Now retired, John continues his teaching through his books and in continuing e-mail communication with law school students who ask him for advice, especially about exams. He is an aspiring organic gardener in the Catskill region of New York and bread baker.
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