Abimbola Adekoya is a graduate of Lagos State University whose Undergraduate result isn’t really good but she leveled it up in her Law school. In this interview, she revealed how she did it and other useful details.
What is your name?
My name is Abimbola Adekoya.
Which university did you graduate from?
I graduated from Lagos State University.
Which law school campus were you on?
I finished from Augustine Nnamani Campus, Agbani, Enugu state. The only law school campus with a name.
Generally, how was your entire law school experience ?
My entire law school experience was awesome. One of the best experiences I have had. Meeting great people from all walks of life, being of help to people, having access to the best lecturers, having a taste of another environment quite different from what I was used to made law school memorable for me.
How did you feel when you saw your results?
I was super excited. It’s really difficult to describe how I felt. I kept screaming thank you Jesus, Glory to God!!! It was during the night but I still couldn’t contain myself.
When did you start reading for Bar finals?
Well, I had started reading from the very first lecture (maybe not for bar finals) but I was reading to get a good grasp of the topics. But I started reading for bar finals from the end of the 2O weeks of lectures I.e during externship. I never missed a day. The only day I didn’t read before the exam was my birthday and it was deliberate.
Did you have other activities that took your time? How were you able to balance studying and those activities?
I was an Executive in CLASFON. I was the music director. I was also the group leader of a study group in my campus. I was able to balance these activities and my studies because I had a plan. I knew what to do at a given time. I didn’t miss any class, I attended my fellowship services, I attended my group meetings and I still had time to gist and hangout with friends. The secret is time management and discipline. Some people didn’t have any extra activities back on campus yet they still complained about not having enough time.
Were you in a relationship during this period? Did it distract you from your books? How were you able to manage it ? Are you still together with the person now?
No, I wasn’t in a relationship when I was in law school.
Did you have a timetable ? Please can you give a rough sketch of how your daily timetable was, highlighting the hours you read and a breakdown of how you studied? Did you jot? Basically, What was your reading pattern?
I had a reading plan. I made sure I read and formed my notes before every lecture. However, I must say here that you need to find what works for you. Forming notes could be tiring and time consuming if that’s what works for you stick with it if not find your rhythm.
Again during class I had a note too where I write everything the lecturer says including the examples or scenarios given. I recommend jotting in class for everyone even if you’ve formed your notes before class. I learned this from a senior colleague who also finished with a first class. Jotting in class makes you concentrate and its helps you to focus on important details of the lecture.
After each lecture I start preparing for the next class. I read for a minimum of 3hours before attending to other activities like fellowship service, group meetings and fun time. After all the activities i go back to finishing my reading and note forming before lights out.
Most rimes I don’t read more than one textbook but I read the e- notes of some scholars like Kenneth. It kept me in check and I focused on what was relevant.
Did you do all the preclass assignments before class? If yes, How were you able to do that and read what you were just taught in class?
Group meetings were designed for carrying out pre-class activities. I was the group leader so I had no choice but to participate in all pre-class activities. I would also advice you do same particularly for the drafts.
When we first started lectures i used to read what am being taught in the class immediately after the class but it didn’t work for me. I found myself not meeting up for the next class so i stopped doing that. I channelled my efforts towards the next class and I do my revision if I can during weekends.
Past question should help you test your knowledge of what you’ve read, don’t go about cramming the marking scheme.
When did you start using past questions to study?
I started doing that when I finished my first reading during externship but it was not serious. I started using past question to study seriously few weeks to the exams. Past question should help you test your knowledge of what you’ve read don’t go about cramming the marking scheme.
Did you actively participate in the group meetings? Was it all group meetings you went for?
As I said earlier I was the group leader so I had no choice but to be there for all group meetings. Group meetings were fun for me. My group members became my family. We were even nominated for an award for the best group on campus. In Enugu campus, each group consist of 20 students so, group meetings served it purpose because it was not overcrowded. Group discussions helped a great deal too.
If you’re not a fan of group discussion, it’s okay.
Were you a long hour reader or short hour reader? What advice will you give fellow short hour or long hour readers like yourself ?
I can’t particularly say where I belong. I could read for long hours if I want to but, based on my plan, I read anytime I find the time to read however, I always find time to relax in between reading. I sleep if I have to and I wake up refreshed to read for as long as I can.
Did you make notes ? Was it before class or after class? Can you give a brief explanation of how you took the notes, how many textbooks you used and so on?
Yes I made notes before every class. I took notes in class also. Most times I used one textbook for each course but I used already formed notes of scholars as a guide or supplement. It helped a great deal. The law school curriculum was handy too. It highlights the study outcome which was what I focused on in forming my notes.
There were paid for tutorials offered aside from lawschool classes. Did you subscribe to such tutorials?
No I didn’t
What advice would you wish you were given last year before entering law school.
I wish someone had told me Law school is not as dreadful or bad as people made it seem. Law school is just another institution just like the ones we’ve attended. Nothing special.
Set a goal for yourself, don’t settle for less
How did you learn your cases and sections ?
I learned the principle of law first before the cases or sections. It’s better to know the principle before learning the case. I focused on learning locus classicus cases first. Then any other cases or sections i can learn. My friends and I used to joke by throwing around cases and their principles. Some cases became part of me after a while.
Did you finish with a first class from your University, if so was it the same game plan or did you have to change?
No I didn’t finish with a first class.
Did you live on campus or off campus ? If on, how did it help? If off, how did it help
I lived on campus. It helped a lot. I didn’t have to walk a mile before getting to class. Everything was accessible. Makes learning easier.
Any more advice you’ll like to leave for the next set? Please give a few words of encouragement.
Let me start by saying nothing is impossible for you. There is no limit to what you can do with God on your side. I want you to shake off the fear that you’ve built in your hearts about law school. It is not true. I became better at my studies in law school.
Set a goal for yourself, don’t settle for less , aim for the star at worst you will hit the moon, stick to your plan and you will definitely succeed. Don’t also forget the place of God. God made this possible for me. Love and serve God diligently and watch him make you a wonder to the world.
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