1L BOOTCAMP

1L Bootcamp is a practical workbook with tips and exercises to prepare you for law school success and your essay exams. It was written and compiled by 4 MSL professors – Professor Michael Coyne, Professor Joseph Devlin, Professor Ursula Furi-Perry and Professor Peter Malaguti.

The book offers four vitally important keys to academic success in law school:

  • Essential Information: Each chapter includes information about the substantive law you need to know in order to succeed in law school and on law school essay exams. The book also details what professors are looking for when grading exams.
  • Structure: The book breaks your preparation down into eight manageable lessons and offers the structured method you need for focused study.
  • Feedback: The book includes annotated sample answers to each essay question.
  • Practice: The book includes many exercises and sample essays on which you can practice your writing and hone your skills.

You’ll find the following components in the book:

  • Each chapter addresses a specific writing or study skill, as well as a specific substantive area tested on most essay exams. For example, a chapter may address the skill of outlining and at the same time, offer tips for approaching Civil Procedure questions. By using this book, you will improve your writing one skill at a time while reviewing the law one substantive area at a time.
  • Each chapter contains an overview of applicable substantive topics to review. The chapters also offer concrete exam tips for approaching essay questions in each substantive area covered in the book.
  • Each chapter includes S.O.U.N.D. Advice: important tips for succeeding on law school essays, customized to each topic tested by essay exams. Each chapter also includes S.O.U.N.D. Bytes: complete sentences that phrase the applicable principles of law on the top concepts that you need to memorize. Finally, each chapter includes space for S.O.U.N.D. Byte Practice: opportunities to formulate your own S.O.U.N.D. Bytes in order to help you memorize the applicable principles of law and state them in an organized and readable manner on the essay exam.
  • Each chapter gives tips for honing the specific study or writing skill that’s addressed in the chapter, and includes one to three exercises to help you hone that skill. Use the exercises to focus on honing one skill at a time- for example, focus on outlining and organizing your thoughts one week, then paragraph construction and essay organization another week. You’ll notice your study, writing, and test taking skills improve one skill at a time. The book also teaches you the TAAC method of analysis: constructing readable paragraphs by clearly stating your Thesis or issue statement; Applicable principles of law; Application of the law to the facts; and Conclusion.

Each chapter includes an essay question for practice, along with annotated sample answers in the back of the book. Use the practice essays to continue honing your issue spotting and essay writing skills throughout your preparation for your exams. While the exercises focus on a specific skill, the practice essays make you “put it all together” and focus on law school essay exam preparation.


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