documenting my life, thoughts and tips, as a 20-something woman trying to figure out her life's true purpose

Thursday, December 05, 2013

The Wonders of Cue Cards

Having read The Bristol Tab's article entitled '14 things you'll only understand if you're a Law student' I can wholeheartedly say I resonated with all 14 things, however, numbers 1, 2 and 6 struck a cord.

During my studies I found it exceptionally hard to keep on top of lecture notes, do all the recommended readings (let's be honest nobody every read the entire list), seminar readings and to prepare for seminar classes. 

This struggle continued all through first year, until I found the beauties that are Cue Cards, that is right these little gems changed the game for me, especially in terms of digesting the a lot of legal information (who knew you could take that many notes in the space of any hour?).  

How I used Cue Cards

- After every and I mean every lecture I would re-read through my lecture notes, filling in any blanks that I had missed and adding further information using the core text book for that subject. 

- I would then re-read my notes again making sure I understood those niggling law terms, I cannot even begin to tell you how long I spent on Equity!

- Then I would write up my Cue Cards with the most important information, for example, with Criminal Law under each subject matter let us say 'Offences Against the Person Act 1861' I would write out important case names attributing to the Act; R v Brown, R v Donovan, R v Savage etc

- Having completed my cue cards I would then repeatedly revise them, attempting to learn the case names and link them to law. I would have my friends test me to see if I had correctly learnt the information until I could do so for all my cue cards. By doing this, I found I was able to remember a vast amount of information from a small trigger such as a case name or legal term.

Tips to using Cue Cards

1. This is the most important tip. Do not overflow your Cue Cards! I remember squinting to see some of my classmates cards as they had tried to squeeze as much information onto the card as possible. This is no good, keep the information short, concise this will make it easier to remember.

Some of my own Cue Cards

2. Use colours! My cue cards were a rainbow of colours and compared to my lecture notes which were dully scribbled in black or blue ink this encouraged me to use them a lot more. I also used colourful Sharpies to write them out. 

3. Actually use them. A few people I knew had the prettiest notes, in the most perfected handwriting, but having questioned them it was clear they had no understanding as to what they had just spent hours writing out! Do not let this be you, don't just to work for works sake actually take time to ensure you really understand what you are doing.

Be warned however, you must keep on top of writing up your cue cards, otherwise you'll soon find yourself drowning in a pool of blank, brightly coloured A5 sheets!

Hope this helps, if you have any questions please do leave a comment.

Yours Faithfully,

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