First year, round two

Law classes are back in session today. After a relaxing (but busy) Christmas break, I know I’m not the only one interested to see what the semester ahead will hold.

Some of it will be familiar ground. Five of our six first-year classes are eight month courses, meaning we’re continuing with the same classes and professors for most of our course load. The one switch comes as Regulatory State finished in December, and will be replaced with Transnational Law.

I expect a few other changes this term, changes of  a more subtle kind. After a gruelling round of December “practice” exams, I’m guessing that some students will change their study habits and priorities in class. I’ve already been told of fellow students who will stop bringing their “distracting” laptops to class.

We’ve been warned repeatedly by the faculty that we’ll likely receive lower grades than we expect, which makes sense given the grading policy. It will likely both dampen some moods and spur others to work harder. January 17 is our grade release day, so we don’t find out anything until then – and then we get all the (probably worse than expected) news, all at once.

Still, this is balanced by the repeated reminders that a) nobody fails out of law school, unless they really try to, and b) everybody’s grades – not just at UBC, but at schools across Canada – are kept to a B/B- average, which levels the playing field considerably.

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