EvidenceProf Blog

Editor: Colin Miller
Univ. of South Carolina School of Law

Thursday, January 13, 2011

AALS Poster Project: Joyce Savio Herleth's Three Steps to Perfect Registration Advising

Joyce Savio Herleth presented the poster Three Steps to Perfect Registration Advising (Download Herleth Poster):

Helreth Poster (1)    

Professor Herleth is a professor at the Saint Louis University School of Law, where she teaches Fundametals of Law and Legal Methods and has been the Director of the Office of Academic Advising  (formerly the Office of Academic Support) since 2000. Professor Herleth provides students with the assistance and support they need to achieve success during their rigorous law studies. Through her courses and weekly workshops, she helps students acclimate to the legal learning environment.  Professor Herleth meets with students individually or in small groups to discuss academic issues. On the SLU LAW Web site, she offers students guidance on everything from taking the bar exam, to class preparation, to focused briefs, to journaling research. She also has many powerpoints and podcasts available for students.

According to Professor Herleth,

I created this poster because too often upper division law students select law courses in a rather haphazard fashion.  Often the convenience of the schedule becomes substantially more important  than the necessity of the courses.  Likewise, persons giving registration advice to the law student population tend to be general or overly vague.  However, as law students are not generic; neither should our advice.  

The poster, Three Steps to Perfect Registration Advising, focuses on three areas which should be considered when discussing registration and law electives.  The first category an advisor should consider is the student’s strength, study skills and overall ability.  An academically strong student might need relatively little guidance in choosing courses, because that student understands legal analysis and has shown a past record of achievement.  On the other hand, a student who is struggling academically may need more assistance in creating a schedule that has rigor but allows the student to continue to learn how to legally analyze the law.  The advisor will need to consider when that student performs best as well as which style of instruction seems best suited.  Secondly, consideration of the professors’ presentation style plays a part in this process.  Again, the weaker academic student may better process the course if it is presented in a style that student prefers.  Given a choice between methods of instruction can result in an improved ability to learn.   Finally, law school courses should not be selected in a vacuum.  While a student’s future interests are important, ultimately a student must pass a bar examination to become a licensed professional.  Advisors need to be cognizant of that fact when making suggestions.  Again the stronger student might be able to skip a number of “bar” courses, while a weaker student (or one that wishes to have a general practice) might consider taking more. 

Registration is an opportunity for ASP and other advisors to help students select courses that will benefit them both while in law school and after they graduate.  This poster is a reminder of the necessary steps for a good registration result. 



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