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The Law School Toolbox Podcast: Tools for Law Students from 1L to the Bar Exam, and Beyond

The Law School Toolbox podcast is an engaging show for law students about law school, the bar exam, legal careers, and life. Each week, we offer practical tips and advice on academic matters, careers, and more. The Law School Toolbox podcast is hosted by opinionated law school and bar exam experts Alison Monahan and Lee Burgess. You might not always agree with us, but we guarantee you won’t be bored listening! Our goal is to impart useful, actionable advice in an entertaining manner. Join us! And, if you have an opinion on the show, please drop by and offer a review. We’re here to help, and we’d love to hear from you!
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The Law School Toolbox Podcast: Tools for Law Students from 1L to the Bar Exam, and Beyond
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Now displaying: Category: pre-law
May 6, 2019

Welcome back to the Law School Toolbox podcast! Today, we're talking about what to do (and what not to do) over the summer to prepare for your 1L year.

In this episode we discuss:

  • Sharing your thoughts and setting expectations with family, friends, and significant others, as well as asking them for help if necessary
  • Whether you should take a law school prep class or read outlines before classes start
  • How to get in the right frame of mind for the law school experience
  • Why a short trip before school starts can be great for clearing your head and re-energizing your body
  • Tips for setting up your home and study space efficiently, plus ways to streamline chores so they take up less of your time when school starts
  • Why you need a budget before school starts
  • Last but not least, finding job opportunities to make some extra cash during the school year or breaks from school

Resources:

Download the Transcript 
(https://lawschooltoolbox.com/episode-195-what-to-do-the-summer-before-law-school/)

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on Apple Podcasts (https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/law-school-toolbox-podcast/id1027603976) or your favorite listening app. And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). If you're concerned about the bar exam, check out our sister site, the Bar Exam Toolbox (http://barexamtoolbox.com/). You can also sign up for our weekly podcast newsletter (https://lawschooltoolbox.com/get-law-school-podcast-updates/) to make sure you never miss an episode!

Thanks for listening!

Alison & Lee

Apr 22, 2019

Welcome back to the Law School Toolbox podcast! Today, we’re talking about books related to the legal system that you might want to read during the summer before starting law school. These books are interesting, and you might even learn something in the process!

In this episode we discuss:

  • Non-fiction stories about famous lawyers and judges
  • Classics on the law school experience
  • Recommended thrillers developed around legal issues
  • Books that will help you get into a positive, productive mindset - not just for law school, but in general
  • Legal-related authors whose body of work is worth exploring
  • Why casebooks, hornbooks, commercial outlines, and the E&E series can be overwhelming and confusing to read in preparation for law school, so you can skip them for now

Resources:

Download the Transcript (https://lawschooltoolbox.com/episode-193-books-to-read-before-law-school/)

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on Apple Podcasts (https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/law-school-toolbox-podcast/id1027603976) or your favorite listening app. And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). If you're concerned about the bar exam, check out our sister site, the Bar Exam Toolbox (http://barexamtoolbox.com/). You can also sign up for our weekly podcast newsletter (https://lawschooltoolbox.com/get-law-school-podcast-updates/) to make sure you never miss an episode!

Thanks for listening!

Alison & Lee

Nov 26, 2018

Welcome back to the Law School Toolbox podcast! Today, we're talking with Nathan Fox, LSAT expert and founder of Fox LSAT, about some changes coming soon to the LSAT.

In this episode we discuss:

  • The upcoming changes to the LSAT in July and September of 2019
  • Why you should basically never cancel your LSAT score
  • The economics of taking the LSAT
  • What the changes mean for students studying for the LSAT right now
  • Why every point in your LSAT score really matters
  • Smart digital tools for LSAT prep

Resources:

Download the Transcript (https://lawschooltoolbox.com/episode-174-lsat-updates-w-nathan-fox/)

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on Apple Podcasts (https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/law-school-toolbox-podcast/id1027603976) or your favorite listening app. And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). If you're concerned about the bar exam, check out our sister site, the Bar Exam Toolbox (http://barexamtoolbox.com/). You can also sign up for our weekly podcast newsletter (https://lawschooltoolbox.com/get-law-school-podcast-updates/) to make sure you never miss an episode! 

Thanks for listening!

Alison & Lee

Jun 18, 2018

Welcome back to the Law School Toolbox podcast! Today we're counting down our top ten episodes for incoming 1Ls. This list is good listening for anyone, but especially for those getting ready to start law school in the fall. If law school's coming up soon, here are some episodes we recommend you check out!

In this episode, we discuss:

  • Money issues to think about before starting law school from negotiating scholarship offers (yes, you can do this!) and the realities of law school debt to creating a budget and what you should or should not buy before you start law school
  • Ways to prepare for the transition to law school mentally and emotionally, as well as academically
  • How to set yourself up for success BEFORE starting law school and how to survive your first month
  • Why is law school so hard?
  • Special concerns of non-traditional and first-generation law students

RESOURCES:

Episode Transcript: Download the Transcript (https://lawschooltoolbox.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/LST-Ep-151-Top-10-Podcast-Episodes-for-Incoming-1Ls.pdf)

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on Apple Podcasts (https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/law-school-toolbox-podcast/id1027603976) or your favorite listening app. And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). If you're concerned about the bar exam, check out our sister site, the Bar Exam Toolbox (http://barexamtoolbox.com/). You can also sign up for our weekly podcast newsletter to make sure you never miss an episode! 

Thanks for listening!

Alison & Lee

Oct 16, 2017

Welcome back to the Law School Toolbox Podcast! Today we're discussing tips for applying to law school with two application experts: Doretta McGinnis, who is also a tutor for us at the Law School Toolbox and the Bar Exam Toolbox, and Ned Luce. Doretta and Ned are independent educational consultants with a focus on undergrad and law school admissions. Together, they founded Admission Logic.

In this episode, we discuss:

  • Should you apply to law school? And where?
  • Admissions trends in the aftermath of the financial crash in 2008
  • ABA law school disclosures and how to best use them in your application process
  • Latest information on law school admissions criteria
  • How to approach the writing components in law school admissions vs. undergrad
  • The function of the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) and Credential Assembly Service (CAS)
  • Tips for applying to an LLM program

Resources:

Episode Transcript: Download the Transcript  (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/Episode-119-law-school-applications2.pdf)

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on iTunes  (https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/law-school-toolbox-podcast/id1027603976) (or your listening platform of choice). And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). If you're concerned about the bar exam, check out our sister site, the Bar Exam Toolbox (http://barexamtoolbox.com/).

Thanks for listening!

Alison & Lee

Jul 3, 2017

Welcome to The Law School Toolbox Podcast. Today we're talking about shopping for law school essentials, everything from backpacks to highlighters. Law school is expensive, so make sure you are being savvy with your purchases!

In this episode, we discuss:

  • How to carry all of your stuff
  • Whether to buy a new computer immediately
  • The law school locker situation
  • Do you need a briefcase?
  • The best notebooks and binders, and why you'll need a rainbow of highlighters
  • How to best use technology
  • The benefits of note-taking software
  • Handling life necessities, like your wardrobe, lunch boxes, and household items
  • Ways to let other people help you stock up on what you need
  • How to streamline purchasing so you don't have to waste time during the semester

Resources:

Episode Transcript: Download the Transcript  (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/Episode-104-What-to-Buy.pdf)

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on iTunes  (https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/law-school-toolbox-podcast/id1027603976) (or your listening platform of choice). And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). If you're concerned about the bar exam, check out our sister site, the Bar Exam Toolbox (http://barexamtoolbox.com/).

Thanks for listening!

Alison & Lee

May 15, 2017

Welcome back! Today, we’re talking with Nathan Fox, founder of Fox LSAT, about the future of the LSAT. The test is, in large part, the same as it has always been and it has enjoyed a protracted monopoly in the law school admissions process, but could that be changing? Tune in for more!

In this episode, we discuss:

  • New “competition” for the LSAT: Harvard will begin accepting GRE scores in lieu of LSAT scores in their admissions process
  • The reasoning and possible motivation behind the change
  • Ways in which the LSAT and GRE are similar and different
  • How this change might affect candidates in the law school admissions process and the future of law school admissions, generally
  • The incorporation of technology in the digital LSAT pilot program taking place this year
  • Signs along your LSAT journey that might indicate you’re better off choosing another path – and there’s nothing wrong with that!

Resources:

Episode Transcript: Download the Transcript  (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Episode-97-The-LSAT-with-Nathan-Fox.pdf)

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on iTunes  (https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/law-school-toolbox-podcast/id1027603976) (or your listening platform of choice). And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). If you're concerned about the bar exam, check out our sister site, the Bar Exam Toolbox (http://barexamtoolbox.com/).

Thanks for listening!

Alison & Lee

Apr 10, 2017

Welcome back! Today, we’re answering the top questions we get from incoming 1Ls and we're talking about the bottom line: money. For many people, talking about money is taboo, uncouth, or just uncomfortable, but if you’re planning to go to law school, it better be a key factor in your decision-making process. You got into law school, but how are you going to pay for it? The financial decisions you make now can have rippling effects long after graduation.

In this episode, we discuss:

  • When you should take scholarship money over a more prestigious, but more expensive, school
  • When and how to negotiate your scholarship offers
  • The reality of student loans: how much should you take out, disbursement, repayment, and the impact of interest
  • Alternative sources of loans and scholarships, and getting support from your “village”
  • How to budget as a law student
  • Thrifty life hacks and side hustles to save money and get paid in law school
  • What’s reasonable and necessary with respect to bar expenses and bar loans

Resources:

Episode Transcript: Download the Transcript (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Episode_92_-_Top_Incoming_1L_Questions_Money-1.pdf)

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on iTunes (or your listening platform of choice). And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). If you're concerned about the bar exam, check out our sister site, the Bar Exam Toolbox (http://barexamtoolbox.com/).

Thanks for listening!

Alison & Lee

Mar 20, 2017

Welcome back! Today, we’re talking with Keri Clapp, professor and tutor for the Law School Toolbox and Bar Exam Toolbox, about important considerations to keep in mind as you make the transition from undergrad to law school. Keri, who teaches at both the undergraduate and law school level, offers her unique perspective to help us bring to light the key differences so you know what’s in store.

In this episode, we discuss:

  • Differences between undergrad and law school teaching methods, course materials, and study habits
  • How struggling with the material is normal and part of the learning process
  • What it means to “think like a lawyer”
  • Overcoming the initial resistance to, and awkwardness of, legal writing
  • Understanding social and lifestyle differences
  • Informational interviews and other ways to get a taste for what it’s really like to be a law student and a lawyer before you take the plunge
  • The importance of knowing yourself and your learning style

Resources:

Episode Transcript: Download the Transcript

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on iTunes (or your listening platform of choice). And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). If you're concerned about the bar exam, check out our sister site, the Bar Exam Toolbox (http://barexamtoolbox.com/).

Thanks for listening!

Alison & Lee

Nov 28, 2016

Welcome back! Today we are talking about a very important topic -- who should go to law school? People have a variety of reasons for going to law school, but the real question is -- should YOU go? We'll help you figure that out.

In this episode we discuss:

  • What do lawyers really do?
  • What is law school like?
  • Questions to ask yourself before you apply to law school
  • Ways to learn about the legal profession
  • Ways to test out a legal career
  • The people you should talk to before making the big decision
  • Being realistic about money, time, the bar exam, and employment
  • The importance of figuring out what you're good at and what you like
  • Should you go to law school just because you think you'd be "good at it"?
  • Why you shouldn't go to law school because you don't know what else to do
  • Drawbacks to consider when going to law school
  • Will you be happy as a lawyer?
  • What to do if you're on the fence about law school 
  • The importance of examining your values and how they would line up with law school and a legal career
  • Running the numbers -- is law school worth it?

Resources

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on iTunes. And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact).

Thanks for listening!

Alison & Lee

May 16, 2016

Welcome back! Today we’re talking about some surprising LSAT myths with Nathan Fox, founder of Fox LSAT. 

In this episode we discuss:

Nathan shares his top myths about the LSAT (some of which are pretty surprising!):

         1. You should only take it once

         2. You need to finish the sections to score well

         3. You should closely monitor your time

         4. The logic games are hard

In addition:

  • Nathan shares his personal story about why he shouldn't have gone to law school
  • How scholarships work in relationship to how well you do on the LSAT
  • What do law school admissions people really care about? 
  • Alison shares her story about the LSAT and the mistakes she made
  • How to build up endurance for the LSAT
  • Why you need to practice the easy questions as much as the hard ones
  • The importance of the practice exam
  • When you should take the LSAT
  • Why you shouldn't fear the logic games
  • Tips to improve your LSAT score

Resources: 

Thanks for listening!

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on iTunes. And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). 

Enjoy! And best of luck with the LSAT.

Alison & Lee

 

Apr 4, 2016

Welcome back! Today we're talking about what incoming law school students should be doing or thinking about this summer to get ready for law school (if anything!).

Before you go overboard and pre-read supplements for every class, stop! Take a breath, and use our strategies to get ready for your first year of law school in style, without ruining your whole summer. 

In this episode we discuss:

  • Lee and Alison share their experiences getting ready for law school
  • Finding housing that fits your lifestyle and needs
  • Thinking about your creature comforts
  • What do you really need to buy? (It's less than you think!)
  • Why you may not want to run out and buy a new laptop right away
  • Preparing the people in your life for your new law school life
  • Setting boundaries for loved ones 
  • The right way to leave your current job
  • What academic preparations do you need to make?
  • What supplements should you read (and which ones not to)?
  • Why it's important to start thinking about your legal career now, before school starts

Resources:

Thanks for listening!

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on iTunes. And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). 

Enjoy! And best of luck in law school.

Alison & Lee

Feb 22, 2016

Welcome back! Today we are going to be talking about one of the most important decisions you will make as a lawyer - which law school to go to. If you are a pre-law struggling with your decision, we've got tips on how to critically evaluate your choices to make the best decision for you. 

In this episode we discuss:

  • How to dig into the law school data to make an informed decision on which law school to attend
  • What do law school rankings really mean? 
  • Being thoughtful about the opportunities you want and location you want to be in
  • Why Lee and Alison chose the schools they did
  • The importance of spending time on campus, meeting professors, and questioning students and recent graduates
  • Managing the cost of law school and scholarship tips
  • Should you attend an alternative law school (online, part-time)?
  • Why maybe you should just be a barista!

Resources:

Thanks for listening!

If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on iTunes. And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website (http://lawschooltoolbox.com/contact). 

Enjoy!

Alison & Lee

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