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Sapere aude - dare to be wise
Wednesday, September 24, 2003
Posted 9:34 PM by Joshua Claybourn
Why I Hate LARC

When I came to IU-Indy's law school I had some pretty high expectations for the faculty and the courses. Not surprisingly, my experiences thus far have met or even exceeded those high expectations. Indeed, IU-Indy is an amazing school that, despite the high praise it regularly receives, is still vastly underrated. Having said all that, there's one thing thus far that's irked me (well, besides every girl being married and/or in a serious relationship).

LARC, for the majority of our readers who aren't familiar with IU-Indy's curriculum, is the acronym that's been assigned to our legal writing course. So far it's been a miserable experience, and not because I dislike writing or because of any poor grade. In fact our first graded assignment isn't due until Friday. But the professor has made the requirements clear all along - your paper must fit into a rigid, pre-determined equation. Any deviation whatsoever will be grounds for deductions, no matter how sensible or necessary the deviation may be.

Logistically this is about the only way to fairly grade work from a number of different people. But it stifles creative writing and has diminished real world value. I distinctly remember a partner telling a new hire at the firm I worked for saying, "The first thing you need to do is forget everything you ever learned in your legal writing course." Huh? This particular attorney attended a different law school but the instructions would've been given to any graduate.

I don't mean to suggest that LARC has no value. On the contrary it teaches vast amounts of necessary things - research, legal jargon, structure on certain filings and briefs, etc. It is, without a doubt, a very necessary course. But the rigidness with which we're being forced to write memos is another matter entirely. Okay, now off to finish my paper!

Update: Marc hates LARC too.

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