Dear Law Student,

The first year of law school is, for many people, one of the most significant transitions of their adult life. Law school demands a lot as it helps you make the transition from your prior identity as student (or as some other occupational role) to your new identity as an attorney. To meet the demands of law school, it is often helpful to have the big picture before you begin – a sense of what it is you are trying to do as you prepare for classes, participate in those classes, review and prepare for exams, take exams, and then begin the cycle once again.

Law School Materials for Success is designed to give you the essentials of that process. It is purposefully brief – most law students do not have the time for an extensive examination of the study of law school. Rather, they need a source for some basic, critical advice and some pointers on where to go for more if necessary. That is what this book and the accompanying podcasts are designed to provide.

Each chapter of the book focuses on a different aspect of law school learning. I have observed that many students who have not performed as well as they would like in law school are missing some key academic rung on the ladder of academic skills. For example, they are preparing for and participating in class very well, but they haven’t learned how to effectively translate that learning into the review necessary to perform well on exams. Or they do quite well in all the stages of law school learning up to the crucial exams – where they are missing some fundamental skill or understanding of what is being asked of them. By working through each of these chapters and comparing your approach to law school learning to the suggestions presented here, you can master law school learning and achieve success.

I hope that you find these materials helpful as an overview of law school method before you begin your first year, or as a refresher resource you can consult quickly and easily as you proceed through law school. I am always interested in your ideas and feedback. My email is


Barb Glesner Fines





Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

Law School Materials for Success by Barbara Glesner Fines is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.