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163: Common Legal Essay Analysis Problems and How to Solve Them: Some of the biggest mistakes students make in writing legal essays and how to fix them

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Welcome back to the Law School Toolbox podcast! Today, we're talking about some common problems that we see in the analysis section of legal essays, whether from 1Ls or all the way to the bar exam. Conveniently, we have some suggestions for solving these problems! In this episode, we discuss: Common mistake number 1: Not systematically laying out the elements Attack plans – what are they and how can they help you improve your essay analysis Don’t forget about terms of art – don’t write two paragraphs when two words will do Another common and big mistake – missing issues – remember the FACTS are there for a reason The best way to learn to identify issues from facts – PRACTICE Two big DON’Ts – don’t ignore counterarguments and don’t forget the conclusion BECAUSE you might lose big points How to better organize your essay to make it easier for the grader to read RESOURCES: Wondering What an Attack Plan is? ( Podcast Episode 139: How to Issue Spot an Exam Question (w/Live Example) ( Tips for Using Facts on Final Exams ( The Value of Issue Spotting and Strategies to Improve Your Skills ( It’s Almost Finals! Are You Getting the Most out of Your Study Time? ( Where Can You Find Sample Law School Essay Exams? ( How to Write a Law School Exam: Deal with the Ambiguity ( The Single Most Important Word in a Law School Exam Answer ( How to Organize Your Exam Answers ( From Bare Bones to Meaty Analysis: How to Skeleton Outline Your Essay ( Episode Transcript: Download the Transcript ( If you enjoy the podcast, we'd love a nice review and/or rating on Apple Podcasts ( or your favorite listening app. And feel free to reach out to us directly. You can always reach us via the contact form on the Law School Toolbox website ( If you're concerned about the bar exam, check out our sister site, the Bar Exam Toolbox ( You can also sign up for our weekly podcast newsletter ( to make sure you never miss an episode! Thanks for listening! Alison & Lee

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