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Paperback Learning Criminal Law as Advocacy Argument; Complete with Exam Problems and Answers Delaney Series Book 3 1st edition by Professor John Delaney (2004) Paperback Book

ISBN: 0960851461

ISBN13: 9780960851461

Learning Criminal Law as Advocacy Argument; Complete with Exam Problems and Answers Delaney Series Book 3 1st edition by Professor John Delaney (2004) Paperback

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Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Very Helpful Book

This book did not just teach me criminal law by presenting legal arguments, which I find to be a more engaging way of learning. It also taught me how to answer law school exams. The author arranges questions so one starts with easier questions and progress to harder ones - the ones you may see on a real law school exams or the bar exam - with model answers given and explained. I can feel that the author wants the readers to understand his material and do well in law school. It is a very helpful book and I highly recommend it.

absolutely great. combine with PLS.

This book is essential to your first year criminal law course. As another reviewer, Childers, notes: you need to learn not only the substantive criminal law, but how to write like a lawyer. The E & Es are close but they won't get you there. You need to practice advocacy argument from both sides for every issue. You need to know how to quickly drop in a comment about policy for extra points. You need to practice interweaving facts with their respective elements, and when to devote a lot of space to a problem and when not to. This book goes well with studying/examsmanship methods noted in Planet Law School, Delany's examsmanship book, LEEWs or Flemmings. It presents each substantive area and goes from simpler fact patterns to the more complex. Every problem shows example student answers, sometimes one strong and one week, and critiques them to let you know what they are doing wrong and what they are doing right. Use this every week for your hypo practice. You don't just "read" this book, but you make a copy of the fact pattern for you and your study buddies, practice it like an exam, and then compare to Delaney's model answers. There are still some other books I'd recommend, AFTER buying this book, to supplement your selection for 1st year criminal law. Understanding Criminal Law by Joshua Dressler covers a lot more substantive ground. With this you won't need a commercial outline. Also Criminal Law: Model Penal Code by Markus Dubber goes into the substantive workings and policy behind MPC more thoroughly than any other source out there. But turn to Delaney's Criminal Law first as an introduction to a topic. And then turn to it after going of the substantive law your class is covering (referring to the other books I mentioned), playing with the hypos and getting ready for the exam.

excellent book

I really like the advocacy argument learning style. It's much more interactive and learning through advocacy arguments will definitely prep me for a good advocacy answer come exam time.

Unique among law school study aids!

Every law student will recognize the series Examples & Explanations, Nutshells, Understanding and perhaps Blond's. I've worked with all of them. Delaney's "Learning Criminal Law" is superior to all of them! To anyone who ever took LEEWS, Fleming's, or read Delaney's "How to Do Your Best On Law School Exams" and wished for more practice this is your answer! I liked many of the Example & Explanations series because they had hypos at the end of the chapters. I loved "Learning Criminal Law" because Delaney teaches with hypos on just about every page. Like the previous reviewer, I must have said to myself a thousand times, "I wish there were Delaney primers in my other subjects."

Powerful Student Aid

Delaney's "Learning Criminal Law As Advocacy Argument" is more than a primer for first year crim law (although it is that, as well). It is also a tutorial on what Delaney calls "lawyerly thinking" and effective legal writing. Different than the "Examples and Explanations"-type primers, "Advocacy Argument" instructs regarding a systematic way to think and write about law. And, since the writing method is designed to help the reader excel at exam-taking, it is also an exam-prep resource. The book is divided into a number of chapters with a similar format. Each begins with a succinct and efficient presentation of the law in that area. Then follows a series of hypothetical situations, of which you are asked to write an analysis. Delaney then provides a "model answer", side-by-side with comments explaining *why* the model answer is preferred. Occasionally he further presents a sub-optimal answer with comments explaining common mistakes. The complexity and difficulty of the exercises grows steadily from very easy and simple to even more complex and difficult than you are likely to see on real exams. Throughout the text Delaney builds a method for approaching any legal hypothetical, from how to find the legal issues that need discussing to a systematic way to respond to those issues. The exercises seem to have been crafted to *both* teach the crim law subject matter *and* the analysis/writing skills. Brilliant. By forcing myself to (painfully at times) complete the writing exercises, it reinforced my memory and understanding of the crim law material in a way that none of my other prep had (audio tapes, E & E primer, outline). After a while, I found that it was much easier to recall the elements of various crimes, having had to put into writing discussions of those elements in an advocate format in the exercises. I wish there were primers for the other first-year classes in this same style, but now that I understand the method I will use it while studying for my other classes. Mild criticisms might include two points; first, that the expository text can be a little too brief at times, making a secondary reference helpful, and second, that in a (very) few cases the model answers were less than completely helpful. However, since Delaney's point is that the *practice* of writing was the goal (not mirroring the model answer), and since the model answers consistently modeled the suggested format, this can be easily overlooked. If you are considering this book, you might also consider Delaney's excellent "Learning Legal Reasoning" (about briefing) and "How to do Your Best on Law School Exams".
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