Professor Jim Gash had an idea just over a year ago that turned into a successful academic support event in January 2013. We rinsed and repeated the event yesterday afternoon.
Professor Gash noted that upper division students often continue the same essay-writing mistakes on final exams that they made during their first year of law school. His thesis was that these students, for the most part, never get the opportunity to compare papers that receive high marks with those that receive low marks. So, we invited all 1Ls who were interested to attend a workshop to give them this exact opportunity.
Professor Gash made copies of anonymous student essays from last semester’s Torts exam, ranging from high scores to low scores, and handed them out to the 1Ls that chose to attend the workshop, along with the essay exam and scoring sheet. After a brief lecture on essay-writing, Professor Gash gave the students quiet time to read all of the essays and rank them. Professor Gash’s initial thesis held true — that it is possible for every student to see the difference in essays that will receive more points than others. The next step is that students who can see the difference can DO it, too!
I thought yesterday’s session was a wonderful opportunity for students, and I am indebted to Professor Gash for the idea and for the time devoted to serving our students. I am convinced that it will prove beneficial for many.
Assistant Dean for Student Life