[Old thread - from fall 2014] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

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thesealocust
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[Old thread - from fall 2014] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby thesealocust » Sun Aug 24, 2014 11:18 pm

[OLD THREAD - I'm offering the course again for fall 2016! This is an old thread, you can see the details of this year's course here: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=266538


======== old 2014 info below this line ===========


[ENROLLMENT STATUS: The first class is full and underway - thanks everyone! If you're still interested, feel free to reach out and I'll put you on the wait-list]

As detailed in my prior thread (see here), I am starting a business devoted to teaching law school exam preparation and strategy. Enrollment begins today, and I will keep it open until I hit 20 students (more than 20 expressed interest, but I'll be taking people first come/first serve from when I post this thread). Details about the service, the cost, and my background are below.

The business will be dedicated to demystifying law school and getting you the best 1L grades possible. Law professors notoriously "hide the ball" and don't make it clear how to succeed on their exams. One of my professors likened law exams to spending a semester reading about the history of swimming and then getting thrown into a pool. The exercise of cold calls, reading dozens of old cases, discussing the minute details of each fact pattern, etc. has more to do with amorphously teaching you how to "think like a lawyer" than with actually preparing you to receive good grades.

The "secret" I discovered is that law professors largely look for the same thing on exams (application of law to fact), and grade their exams in a largely consistent way. Getting an A just means getting a lot of points - but the professors will never tell you how to do that directly. By turning the process on its head, and asking "how can I use this to get points on a law school exam?" as you go through each case, prepare your outlines, and study, I believe you can give yourself a huge edge. Many people devote absurd amounts of time to studying the law in hopes it will get them good grades, only to discover that grades are based more on the skill of taking the exam than on the level of substantive preparation.

I want to teach you that skill. I want to help you practice that skill. I want to remove all the bullshit and uncertainty and mind-games, and help you refine the abilities you will need to impress the hell out of your professors come exam time, then reap the huge rewards our industry rains on those who ace first year exams.

The service

Below is a non-exhaustive list of the services I will provide:

Study strategy: I will create a guide to reading cases, preparing for class, selecting/using supplements, and making outlines. We can then work one-on-one to tailor your approach based on your professors and your learning style. Additionally, you will get examples of my outlines, case briefs, and class notes. This will be initially distributed September 15th.

Exam strategy: I've already written short guides (linked in the bottom of this post), but will prepare a substantially more in-depth guide to taking law school exams with an eye to maximizing the points you receive. I will also give you my research on exams - stories, anecdotes, and articles I have collected over the years. This will all be distributed mid-October.

We will also discuss exactly how to approach each of your professors as you get to them, and I'll send weekly emails with pointers and tips (more on that below).

Outline review: As you prepare your outlines, send them to me for review. I'll give you pointers on organizing and synthesizing information in the way that will be most helpful for you on the exam.

Practice exams: I will work with you on practice exams, with two specific approaches. I think this is the most important and highest value aspect of the service:

Group exam: Around half-way through the semester, I will prepare a practice exam for everyone to take. It will be based on a short segment of law all (or most) of you are taking first semester.

After everyone has taken it, I will grade them all, and provide detailed feedback. By dissecting that exam question and everyone's approach to it, you'll gain exposure to exactly how exams are prepared and graded, and be in a position to work on and apply those skills right out the gate your first semester.

Individual exams: I will also grade and review practice exams that you take based on your specific courses. We can work together on how to prepare for them and when to take them to get the most out of the experience. I expect this will mostly occur in November, but I'll of course look earlier if you get there earlier!

Weekly updates: I'll send an email to the group (blind copied - your privacy is extremely important to me) with pointers, thoughts and exam strategy tips each week as you progress through the semester. The first weekly email will go out September 15th.

Life coaching: I will make myself completely available to you - you'll have my email, gchat, and cell. Every neurotic/anxious question you have will be answered quickly and thoroughly. The primary focus will be on crushing 1L exams, but no topic is off limits. You can pick my brain on jobs, law review, class selection, that cute boy/girl who sits next to you in civ pro, etc.


Cost

Tuition is $900, payable in three easy installments of $300. The first will be due upon signing up, the second November 1st, and the third December 1st.

For reference, this is substantially cheaper than Kaplan's private LSAT tutoring (15 hours for $2,599) or barbri bar review (NY bar review course is $3,895), and is in the ballpark of many commercial LSAT courses.

You'll have me on retainer from the moment you sign up until you finish your last exam this fall - no hourly rates, no limits. I'll be dedicated to helping you crush 1L, see it driven before you, and hear the lamentations of its women.


About me

I am “Scribe” and “TheSeaLocust” on TLS, and had the highest GPA my 1L year at a T14. While a student I was on law review and heavily involved in the law school comedy show, and worked for a federal judge and as a research assistant. After law school I worked at a "V5" law firm practicing corporate law.

I'm an attorney, but this fall my plan is to focus on this business. In the winter I'll be transitioning to another job, but this is my short term priority.

Once you are interested in signing up and send me a PM, I'll send you more details of my background.


Prior works

* Law school exam guide (this won a ~prestigious~ TLS content competition award): http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/v ... 2&t=120673
* Article on getting points on exams, with examples: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=199175
* 1L anxiety meditation retreat: http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/v ... 3&t=216920
* OCI / legal recruitment guide: http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/v ... 3&t=161018
* Maybe you should drop out of law school (honesty!): http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/v ... 3&t=175022


How to sign up

(1) Send me a PM indicating you're interested in signing up (or email me if you have my email from prior correspondence)

(2) I will confirm there's still space, and respond with personal details (my name/rank/serial number, email address, information on how to pay, etc.)

(3) Send me the first installment and give me your contact info

(4) You're enrolled! I'll send materials out from then on via email, and be at your service until you're done with your last exam this fall.


FAQ

When does it start?

I'll be open for questions as soon as you sign up. The first weekly email, which will contain the guide to studying as well as my old outlines and reference materials, will go out September 15th (of course, if you sign up later than that, I'll get you "up to speed" on all materials that have gone out previously!)

Why do you think this will work?

Most law students never really understand why they got the grades they got - good or bad. I spent a huge amount of time my 1L year and beyond trying to deconstruct that mystery by researching the experience other people had and picking the brains of my classmates and professors. It paid of for me in a big way, and the people I have helped on TLS and IRL have also obtained strong results.

I think the first year of law school "hides the ball" and is organized more as a tournament than as an educational system. Law professors (and many lawyer) place a lot of value on its ability as a sorting mechanism. I believe that is equal parts toxic and silly, but since the belief is out there, there is tremendous value to knocking 1L out of the park. I don't think it's that hard, I think there's just little instruction and guidance. My experience leads me to believe that focus on exam preparation can significantly improve outcomes.

How much time do you expect to dedicate to each student?

This business is my primary focus for the next few months. When exams are close and you have more questions and materials for me to review (practice exams, outlines, etc.) I wouldn't be surprised if this took me more than 40 hours per week, but I also expect there will be weeks where you are busy or don't have questions and won't need as much from me. I'll be spending a lot of time early in the semester preparing materials for later in the semester.

How much extra work will it be for me as a law student?

Not much! Part of what I will emphasize is that furiously studying the law isn't as important as preparing for the exams. In fact, having me help you focus your effort might save you time - instead of reading a hornbook for each class as an outlet for your anxiety, you can concentrate on exam prep.

Is this all you're doing with your life? What else are you up to?

I'll be traveling and doing this exclusively for the next few months. Or as Desert Fox so eloquently put it, I'll be teaching 1Ls IRAC, living in a van by the river, and eating pizza :lol:

I have another gig lined up for the winter, but it won't be full-time until fall exams are over.

Who are you?

I don't intend for this to be an anonymous business on my end - if you're interested and send me a PM, I'll introduce myself.

Will this be private?

Absolutely. I won't introduce you to my other students or publish the names (real or on TLS) of the students I'm working with under any circumstances. You can gun in private.

OMG that's too expensive!

I think that my unique skills and background coupled with the importance of 1L grades make this a good value, but I realize not everyone will agree.

The total cost for a semester of my services will be less than you spend on books + supplements your first year, and less than a third of one week of summer associate salary. It's a lot of money, but I am committed to making it worth it for you.

Also, for what it's worth, right now as a lawyer I bill almost $600 an hour, so just think of what a discount you'll be getting me for relative to my corporate clients ;)

I'm not a 1L, can I still sign up?

Yes! Please understand that this is tailored to first year students though. The highest value I can provide will be from the focus on learning how to crush law school exams from the very beginning.

I'm not at a U.S. law school, can I still sign up?

No - I really don't have any idea how legal education outside of the U.S. works (I have had people ask!)

Do you accept bitcoin?

No. I mean... look, I guess I could, if you're desperate for me to? But realistically this is going to be personal check and/or paypal.
Last edited by thesealocust on Sat Jul 16, 2016 11:35 am, edited 14 times in total.

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Scribe
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby Scribe » Sun Aug 24, 2014 11:46 pm

[Reserved / posting to confirm that TheSeaLocust (OP) and Scribe (me) are the same person. I plan on running this through email primarily, but will participate in this thread as TheSeaLocust]

Mal Reynolds
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby Mal Reynolds » Sun Aug 24, 2014 11:58 pm

Good luck bro. Seems like a great deal.

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alpha kenny body
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby alpha kenny body » Mon Aug 25, 2014 12:03 am

Good luck bro

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thesealocust
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby thesealocust » Mon Aug 25, 2014 12:10 am

Thanks! Apparently a bunch of 1Ls are still awake and eager, I've already gotten a bunch of commitments :shock:

I'm really looking forward to this. I'm obviously not entirely right in the head, but I think it's going to be a lot of fun...

Mal Reynolds
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby Mal Reynolds » Mon Aug 25, 2014 12:12 am

Come on 1Ls show yourselves.

ABClawyer
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby ABClawyer » Mon Aug 25, 2014 12:16 am

I already signed up. Thanks so much for doing this man...God bless you

swizzlestix
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby swizzlestix » Mon Aug 25, 2014 12:19 am

haha I'm one of those overly-eager 1Ls!

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Attax
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby Attax » Mon Aug 25, 2014 6:44 am

You are even getting the lurkers to come out for this one!

notgreat
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby notgreat » Mon Aug 25, 2014 6:50 am

Good luck with the business, bro. Kind of bummed you didn't start it last year.

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thesealocust
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby thesealocust » Mon Aug 25, 2014 10:07 am

Thanks everyone!

I'm kind of in shock at the response - half the slots are gone already :shock:

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ManoftheHour
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby ManoftheHour » Mon Aug 25, 2014 11:37 am

swizzlestix wrote:haha I'm one of those overly-eager 1Ls!

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2014
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby 2014 » Mon Aug 25, 2014 7:30 pm

Good luck! I'd have considered signing up as a 1L

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thesealocust
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby thesealocust » Tue Aug 26, 2014 8:34 am

18 slots claimed and 2 remain...

For everyone who has signed up already, I'll send around the enrollment form and more details by the end of the week.

Looking forward to getting started!

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thesealocust
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby thesealocust » Thu Aug 28, 2014 11:59 am

First class is full - thanks to everyone, and looking forward to getting started (the enrollment forms will go out via email later today)!

If anyone is still interested, feel free to reach out and I'll add you to the wait-list.

jk148706
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby jk148706 » Thu Aug 28, 2014 8:22 pm

thesealocust wrote:First class is full - thanks to everyone, and looking forward to getting started (the enrollment forms will go out via email later today)!

If anyone is still interested, feel free to reach out and I'll add you to the wait-list.


i can't stomach the idea of riding another wait list

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thesealocust
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby thesealocust » Wed Oct 22, 2014 1:41 pm

Everything is humming along - we're about to get into practice exams, which I'm unreasonably excited about :D

Uncertain at the moment if I'll run a similar service for the Spring semester, but it's tempting. Also talking with a professor about writing a book, which would be truly hilarious if not irredeemably nerdy...

Mal Reynolds
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby Mal Reynolds » Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:08 pm

How has your life been doing this? Sounds pretty 180.

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patogordo
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby patogordo » Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:12 pm

any tenure track opportunities at sealocust university?

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thesealocust
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby thesealocust » Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:16 pm

Mal Reynolds wrote:How has your life been doing this? Sounds pretty 180.


It's been completely 180. I really like working with everyone, so even though I still sometimes work nights/weekends/mornings to handle calls or finish large pieces of the project, it's so much easier than nights/weekends/mornings used to be. I'm making the choice and doing it because I want to, and the intensity comes and goes instead of being non-stop, life-crushing frenzy. And even though I'm throwing my back into this project, I haven't needed to do 100 hour weeks. Which is nice. And means significantly more motorcycling, gym attendance, life maintenance (slow cooking some chicken right now), dog snuggling, and socializing. Which is also nice.

I'm seriously tempted to just double down on this for the spring instead of rejoining society. Living in a van by the river and teaching 1Ls how to IRAC isn't a bad life.

patogordo wrote:any tenure track opportunities at sealocust university?


I doubt the business model would scale well yet - maybe by next fall it will be franchise time though 8)
Last edited by thesealocust on Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Mal Reynolds
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby Mal Reynolds » Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:17 pm

That sounds wonderful.

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Attax
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby Attax » Wed Oct 22, 2014 5:55 pm

thesealocust wrote:
I'm seriously tempted to just double down on this for the spring instead of rejoining society. Living in a van by the river and teaching 1Ls how to IRAC isn't a bad life.


As a 1L who appreciates the assistance in learning to IRAC, wanna trade? You come IRAC and I van/motorcycle/gym.

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thesealocust
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby thesealocust » Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:18 pm

Attax wrote:
thesealocust wrote:
I'm seriously tempted to just double down on this for the spring instead of rejoining society. Living in a van by the river and teaching 1Ls how to IRAC isn't a bad life.


As a 1L who appreciates the assistance in learning to IRAC, wanna trade? You come IRAC and I van/motorcycle/gym.


Maybe once you're not a 1L anymore :lol: 2L and 3L can be pretty great...

AReasonableMan
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby AReasonableMan » Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:33 pm

Is it just you? Are there classes? What do you do for different professors? Were you law review at UVA? Not grilling. I'm legitimately curious.

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Attax
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Re: [Open for Business] TheSeaLocust's 1L Exam Strategy Tutoring

Postby Attax » Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:40 pm

thesealocust wrote:
Attax wrote:
thesealocust wrote:
I'm seriously tempted to just double down on this for the spring instead of rejoining society. Living in a van by the river and teaching 1Ls how to IRAC isn't a bad life.


As a 1L who appreciates the assistance in learning to IRAC, wanna trade? You come IRAC and I van/motorcycle/gym.


Maybe once you're not a 1L anymore :lol: 2L and 3L can be pretty great...


It really hasn't been all that bad. Maybe because I have plenty of discourse from you telling me to not worry, to chill out about what everyone else is saying/doing. Sometimes that's the best advice I need at the time!




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