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Law School Pressure — When Does it Hit? How Do I Cope?

ExamsKansas City School of Law Professor Barbara Glesner Fines wrote a great article discussing the sources of Law School and Stress, such as—Stress

  • feeling pushed to learn massive amounts of information quickly
  • the requirement to learn on your own
  • the fact that there are often no right answers
  • exam pressure
  • being socialized into a profession
  • and more

It also presents personal sources of stress for law school students, such as—

  • lack of time
  • lack of money
  • lack of exercise (too much time sitting)
  • unhealthy eating
  • and these sources of stress during other life challenges (engagement, medical treatment, marriage, divorce, raising a family, etc.)

Next, the article also discusses symptoms of law school stress, such as—

  • sickness
  • worry
  • relationship problems
  • poor choices
  • anger
  • depression
  • and more

Finally, the article presents a valuable four-point plan to deal with law school stress. I wish I had read Law School and Stress before my first year of law school. I believe it would help incoming law students and their loved ones to know what they will be going through and ways to deal with it.

Leave a Comment

  • Jack April 10, 2008, 12:22 am

    I’m attending a business law class and it’s driving me nuts already. There’s so much to memorize and my teacher doesn’t explain anything. The exam is beyond simple definitions. Most of my exam questions are application or implication base, which are never discussed in class!!
    My teacher stand by his decision, I’m prepare to just take a C and forget about it.

  • admin April 10, 2008, 4:56 pm

    Jack: You’ve raised a good point. Every law professor has a different style. Have you considered meeting in your professor’s office to run some hypothetical questions by him? In that way, you can see how he would answer and get a better understanding of his style. Of course, this assumes that the problem is one of style. If the problem is learning the subject, and it’s hard to learn from his style, you might consider (1) learning from another source like a study aid or hornbook, or (2) dropping the class, which might be better than having a low grade. Either way, I realize it’s frustrating.

    If it helps, know that a large number of law students encounter at least one law professor that they don’t connect with. Maybe that’s just human nature. The good news is, you can be sure to never take this professor again.