Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Professors and the Socratic Method

I am ahead in my reading this week so I thought I would do a rare (lately anyway) midweek post on what my professors are like.

Prof Torts is really nice and funny, he is a visiting professor but has taught at our school before. So far in class he mostly takes volunteers, and when he does call on someone who hasn't volunteered it is because they volunteered before and the question he is asking is related to what they said before. He occasionally pokes fun of people's answers if they are off-base, but in a very good-natured way.

Our Contracts professor is an economist and not a lawyer, but has been teaching contracts in law school for a very long time. In class he selects one person for each case (randomly, no advance notice) and sticks with them for all questions related to that case. Only if they can't answer does he look for a volunteer. It is actually a very safe class to volunteer in because you are not likely to get a follow up question since he will always go back to the original person after he gets an acceptable answer.

Prof Civ Pro has taught at our school before as a visiting professor, but is here permanently for the first time this year. She is the scariest, not because she is mean -- she isn't -- but because it is sometimes difficult to figure out what she is asking and she seems to expect you to remember the smallest details about the cases (like things the court said in a footnote). She does cold calling as well as taking volunteers.

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