This is the ultimate guide to the best law school supplements for all of your 1L, 2L, and 3L classes. Not only will this guide walk you through the best law school supplements for 2021, you’ll also learn the most effective way to use these supplements to ace your law school exams.
What Are Law School Supplements
You may be asking yourself, “What are law school supplements?” Here’s the short answer: law school supplements are study guides that explain the relevant law and help you apply it to sample questions you are likely to see on your exams.
In brief, law school supplements will help you learn and apply the law more quickly and efficiently, which will give you a tremendous advantage over your classmates.
How To Choose The Best Law School Supplements
With all of the supplements on the market today, how do you choose the best ones? Here’s how.
The best law school supplements (1) summarize the relevant black letter law; (2) contain hypotheticals that demonstrate the law in action; and (3) provide thought-provoking questions to help you better understand and apply the law.
All of the supplements below do just that, and formed the cornerstone of my law school success. In fact, as you may have read on my consulting page, they helped me finish 1L at the top of my class, earn several Book Awards, and graduate with Latin Honors.
Related: 0L Prep Guide: How To Prepare For 1L
Best 1L Supplements
These are the exact same 1L supplements I used to ace my 1L exams. Make sure to buy these supplements before classes begin and use them to guide your studies throughout the semester.
Why should Examples & Explanations (Civil Procedure) be your go-to civil procedure study aid?
First, it makes even the most difficult civ pro concepts easy to understand. This is crucial for acing your civil procedure exam.
Second, it features on-point hypotheticals to help solidify key legal concepts and sharpen your legal reasoning skills. This is essential for mastering issue-spotter exams questions.
Finally, it’s so well written and effective you can virtually forego reading your casebook.
Written by Professor Erwin Chemerinsky, Constitutional Law (Principles and Policies) is the only book you’ll need to read to ace your con law exam. In fact, I aced my exam without reading a single word from the assigned casebook.
Although this supplement is more like a treatise than a supplement, it’s super easy to understand. That’s because Professor Chemerinsky cuts to the chase, giving you exactly what you need to succeed.
Why? Because if you ask any 2L who aced their contracts exam what supplement they used, you’ll get the same response – “Chirelstein.”
Written by Professor Marvin Chirelstein, Concepts and Case Analysis in the Law of Contracts is the preeminent resource you’ll need to do your best in contracts.
Chirelstein is a quick read (I read it over a weekend) but provides exactly what you need to ace your exam. Simply put, you’ll “get” contracts after reading this supplement.
Written by criminal law guru Professor Joshua Dressler, Understanding Criminal Law is the essential resource you’ll need to ace your crim law exam. Here’s why.
First, it breaks down difficult criminal law concepts into easy to digest, bite-size pieces. This is necessary for mastering issue-spotter and multiple choice criminal law exam questions.
Second, Understanding Criminal Law provides a nice summary of the similarities and differences between the MPC and common law approaches to law and policy, which your crim law professor will expect you to know like the back of your hand.
Finally, it’s so clear and effective that you likely won’t even need to read your casebook.
CrunchTime (Property) is the perfect supplement for navigating your property class. Here’s what you’ll love about the CrunchTime (Property) supplement.
First, you’ll quickly absorb key property concepts thanks to the innovative capsule summary.
Second, the “exam tips” are worth their weight in gold. Want to know the answers your professor is looking for on the final exam? This is where to find them.
Finally, the sample essay and short answer questions are great for finals prep. And because it’s virtually impossible to ace your property exam without practicing hypos, be sure to answer all of the practice questions featured in the CrunchTime (Property) supplement.
The Forms and Functions of Tort Law dives deep into the tricky torts concepts most law professors gloss over, even though these concepts always show up on the final exam.
This torts supplement is especially helpful for learning the policy arguments that drive modern tort law.
As an added bonus, if your professor uses the Franklin Torts Casebook for your 1L torts class, this supplement is practically the “teacher’s edition” of the casebook.
Best 2L Supplements
These are the best law school supplements for the most popular 2L and 3L classes.
Examples & Explanations (Evidence) is consistently rated a “best buy” for quickly and easily learning evidence.
Examples & Explanations (Evidence) walks you through a proven approach to solving all of the relevance, hearsay, and privilege questions you’ll see on the final exam.
What truly makes this supplement amazing are the easy-to-follow tables and charts that summarize the key points from each chapter, as well as the sample questions at the end of each chapter that help improve your legal reasoning skills.
In other words, Examples & Explanations (Evidence) should be your go-to supplement for evidence.
Criminal Procedure I & II
The Understanding Criminal Procedure series of supplements are the best criminal procedure supplements on the market today. Written by Professor Joshua Dressler, the Understanding Criminal Procedure supplements are an essential resource for learning criminal procedure and acing your final exam.
Understanding Criminal Procedure (Investigation) gives you a thorough, systematic approach to solving even the most difficult Fourth Amendment, right to counsel, interrogation, and Miranda exam questions.
Law students love Understanding Criminal Procedure (Investigation) because of its user-friendly yet comprehensive approach to teaching criminal procedure.
Key concepts are summarized in a way that makes it a breeze to not only learn crim pro, but to create an actionable outline you can use to prepare for your final exam.
Understanding Criminal Procedure (Adjudication) is designed for Crim Pro II and guides you through the criminal process after the police investigation ends and the adjudicative process begins.
Again, Professor Dressler explains in simple English the black letter law and policy rationale behind charging, pretrial release and discovery, criminal trials, post-conviction proceedings, sentencing, and appeals.
Overall, Understanding Criminal Procedure (Adjudication) has everything you need to know to ace your exam.
Acing Business Associations is the essential supplement for learning corporations and acing your final exam.
This supplement provides an easy-to-understand approach to solving all of the agency, partnership, and corporations exam questions your law professor can dream up.
What makes Acing Business Associations the best corporations supplement is the way it organizes everything you need to know in a no-nonsense checklist format.
This makes it so easy to learn corporations and prepare for your final examination.
How To Use Law School Supplements
Everyone knows supplements are critical to law school success. But, how do you use them? Here’s how the top law students use their supplements.
First, read the relevant section of your law school supplement before class. Second, outline the applicable law and policy. Third, practice the hypos. Finally, make note of your professor’s nuances.
Then, as the semester progresses, refer back to your supplements to fill in any gaps in your knowledge and to prepare for finals.
Finally, take several timed practice exams. This will help you develop the skills and confidence you need to do your best on test day. If your professor provides copies of his or her old exams, these should be your first choice. If not, use recent law school exams from other professors. You can find some sample exams here to get started.
Related: Best 1L Outlines (Ace Your 1L Exams)
Final Thoughts On The Best Law School Supplements
Law school isn’t easy but there’s no reason to make it any harder then it has to be. The guaranteed best way to save time and give yourself the opportunity to ace your final exams is to use law school supplements. I used them, and every top law student I know used them as well.
So if you want to do your absolute best in law school, then be sure to pick up some of these best law school supplements today.
All the best,