Saturday, 7 January 2012
Case cards are a particularly useful tool for law students. It's useful to have a VERY brief outline of the facts and key legal points established by a particular leading case. (A word of warning - volume is the enemy of the student who wishes to be effective - don't do too many cases, concentrate on the cases that you are likely to need for the exam - a thousand case cards looks impressive, but may not concentrate the mind! Similarly, don't try and write as much as you possibly can - in the smallest writing. Condensing the information is the key to successful recall)
One of my students introduced me last year to "Quizlet" an internet based tool for creating cards; revising & testing oneself; and sharing with colleagues. He, and some other Open University students collaborated in developing some revision cards which they then shared and tested each other on. I strongly commend such activities - it makes learning more fun & discussion can (and does) arise which enhances every participants understanding of the subject matter.
Revision cards are useful not just for learning cases - but definitions, or quotations, for dates & translated words. I've started using them for my own leisure and professional use. Quizlet allows you to make your own cards - and if you choose, to share them with everyone - or with a defined group of colleagues. It also allows you to find existing card sets.
So if you are taking an exam in 2012 - make your resolution to improve your results by using revision cards. The ones you make yourself are the most useful (because you are forced to condense information - a key to successful memory). Using cards made by others can be useful, but less effective (I for example found on Quizlet a set of cards, each of which has the name; state and photograph of a member of the current US Senate - and use it to improve my recall of faces (not my strongest point) and linking Senators to their States. I am developing myself some MindMaps which link together other pieces of information (Committee assignments; dates of birth; other political achievements and interests).
If you want to try Quizlet out - go to http://quizlet.com/.
I have set up groups to share course related cards for my Open University Students on the W200 and W201 courses. If you'd like to join one of the groups
- English Legal System (for W200)
- UK Constitutional Law (for W200 and W201)
- UK Law of Obligations (for W200)
- EU Law (for W200)
- UK Admin Law (for W201)
- UK Criminal Law (for W201)
please drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll add you to the groups you wish to join.