by Michelle Prendergast, 1L
CALI: Computer Assisted Learning Instruction
The CALI lessons online are not going to be for everyone. They give you an exam-type hypothetical and have you answer it, sometimes from several different perspectives. For example, the lesson on claim preclusion asks you to apply the black-letter law, policy, and the development of courts not requiring mutuality for collateral estoppel. The lessons are time intensive. While they are extremely helpful for exam preparation, as they require you to answer questions much like you would on an exam, they are time prohibitive, in my opinion. Each lesson is between one and two hours long. For me, devoting that much time to analyze my mastery of one topic is just not likely to happen. Close to exams, I just don’t see it being a wise allocation of time for me. However, if you have the time, I think it would be of great benefit. It's probably something you could consider earlier in the semester, devoting some time to mastery of the subject after it’s been covered in class.
Civil Procedure (7th ed.)
Jack Friedenthal and Arthur Miller
KF8840 .F73 2008
Sum & Substance: Quick Review Series
The Quick Review series will be helpful to structure an outline. It is a lot like a treatise in its in depth treatment of the applicable standards of civil procedure, but it also helps by breaking down the basic rules in an easily understandable way. The section topics include illustrations through hypotheticals to apply the relevant standard, which is helpful beyond their explanations of the rules. The one major downfall is that the book is not organized very clearly, and it uses its own section numbers throughout the text. Although not a huge problem, it did cause me some confusion regarding their organization of the material.
Civil Procedure: Examples & Explanations (7th ed.)
Joseph W. Glannon
KF8840 .G58 2013
Examples and Explanations Series
This supplement is very helpful for getting an overview of material covered in the course and then providing an opportunity to apply the rules and standards. As the title indicates, it uses examples, allowing you to consider how you would approach a potential exam question. The real benefit from this text is the explanation, which provides insight into how you would best approach answering the hypotheticals. The text would probably not be helpful for even a skeletal outline, as the material is not structured in a way that would be conducive to outlining. All in all, a great source for practicing and getting a real feel for your level of mastery of the material. Also gave pictures and diagrams to provide a clearer view of complex procedure.
Civil Procedure (3rd ed.)
KF8840 .I85 2012
Concepts & Insights Series
Issacharoff's Civil Procedure provides a sufficient overview of the topics covered in civil procedure in individual chapters dedicated to those specific topics. While it is formatted much like a textbook, and therefore involves more reading, it is helpful in understanding the take-aways from lecture and is even more helpful in its connection to the relevant cases that expound upon the rule. All in all, the Concepts & Insights series is helpful in gaining a better, overall understanding of class lecture and is helpful for review. It may be helpful in outlining as well, as the topics are easily broken up into sections. However, outlining would not be managed from this book without some extra effort in reading the textbook like material.
Questions and Answers: Civil Procedure (3rd ed.)
William V. Dorsaneo and Elizabeth G. Thornburg
KF8841 .D67 2012
Questions & Answers Series
The Q&A isn't going to be helpful for outlining, but it is great for applying the rules and standards of civil procedure. The book is divided by topic and gives at least a couple of in depth hypotheticals and questions. This is great for testing your understanding of the material. Even more beneficial is that the book goes through several different options of answers, explaining why each one is correct, incorrect, and why some answers are merely stronger and better than others. Great source for testing your knowledge!
KF8841 .E524 2015
Emanuel's CrunchTime will be extremely helpful for preparing for exams. First, the book gives you a series of flow charts that illustrate different steps for analyzing jurisdiction, discovery, counterclaims, etc. These would be great for anyone who is lucky enough to have an open book exam. Additionally, the book is structured like an in depth outline, so it is clearly going to be helpful for processing the overall material and then condensing it into a more manageable outline. Where other supplements sometimes are overwhelming because of all the text, the structure of CrunchTime is more to the point.
In order to test your mastery of the material, there is a section of hypotheticals with short "essay like" explanations. There are longer, essay questions taken from old Harvard exams to practice with as well. All of this, coupled with exam tips specific to civil procedure, makes CrunchTime a great resource. It will help you create your online, help you master the overall material, and then give you opportunities to test your understanding. I will definitely use this for exams because it covers all the bases, whereas others have less variety of instructional methods.
A Short & Happy Guide to Civil Procedure
KF8841 .F74 2014
Short and Happy Law Series
The title is pretty telling. The happy part may be a stretch, but this supplement is definitely short and to the point. Freer goes through the major topics of civil procedure and lays out the rule, the courts' treatment of the rule, and any exceptions. If you're looking for context or historical development, this book isn't going to do it. However, if you want a broad overview of the material, Freer's supplement is pretty useful. Since it's so brief, and generally only includes the take away points from each topic, it should also be useful for outlining. You may not be happy about outlining, but at least it won't take you as long to weed through the material.
The Glannon Guide to Civil Procedure (2nd ed.)
Joseph W. Glannon
KF8841 .G59 2009
Glannon Guide Series
This is one of my favorite supplements. The Glannon Guide provides short reviews of the standards of civil procedure in an easily digestible way. Unlike some other supplements that bury you in text, The Glannon Guide is short and to the point. After covering a topic, you are given a multiple choice question and explanations as to why the answers that may have you lead you astray are wrong, and of course, why the correct answer is right. Overall, I find this supplement to be extremely helpful in explaining material that was otherwise somewhat confusing to me. It also has limericks in the back about different concepts, which could be helpful for remembering the rules and standards. While this supplement is probably too dense for outlining, it is great for clarifying material and testing your mastery of it before exams.
Starting Off Right in Civil Procedure
KF8841 .N8 1999
Starting Off Right Series
I know what you're thinking. You're far more concerned with finishing civil procedure than starting it. In all fairness, the title is somewhat misleading. This study aid deals exclusively with jurisdiction. If that is a problem area for you, this is a great resource. It will also be really useful in outlining jurisdiction specifically. Each subtopic of jurisdiction is outlined, listing the relevant tests you would run to decide whether jurisdiction is appropriate and cites the cases that are credited with development of the standards. At the end of each section, you are presented with a fact pattern, a model answer, and an explanation of the answer. There are also some helpful flowcharts in the book and exam tips specific to approaching questions typical of civil procedure exams. Maybe I'm biased because I'm learning jurisdiction right now, but I think this study aid is awesome.