The practice of law begins with your first day in law school. One of the most important tasks for incoming law students is to understand and master the transition from their prior experiences in higher education to the unique demands of a law school curriculum. Cleveland-Marshall's Academic Support Programs complement the law school curriculum by focusing on the process involved in developing the skills that are necessary to succeed in law school. These skills include the ability to understand, organize, and apply the law in a law exam and bar exam setting. Our Academic Support Programs also address time and stress management, effective study methods, and different value systems in the law and legal education.
We recognize that students have different learning styles and experiences that can affect their learning process and performance in law school. For these reasons, Academic Support uses diverse teaching methods including small group discussions, large group training, and one-on-one assistance.
Our fundamental goal is to take the mystery out of succeeding in law school and the practice of law. Additionally, Academic Support fosters an academic community to assist students in their adjustment to law school and the legal profession.
Academic Support Staff
Nick De Santis, Director of Academic Support
Office: LL 214 B
Phone: (216) 687-2318
Michelle Landever Bond, Academic Support Specialist
Office LL 214 A
Phone: (216) 687-5166
The office of Academic Support is located on the second floor of the Law Library in the Legal Writing and Academic Support Suite. Enter through the rear of the Learning Commons.
academic support programs
- The Academic Excellence Program (“AEP”) – An academic support program conducted by high achieving upper-level students (known as Fellows) during the Fall Semester. Fellows are assigned to each first-year section’s Contracts, Torts, and Legislation and Regulation classes. Fellows conduct weekly workshops on subjects such as reading and briefing cases, classroom preparation and note taking, outlining, exam preparation, and exam performance. Since Fellows attend classes side-by-side with their students, they provide valuable professor and course specific advice. Fellows also hold weekly office hours for students seeking additional help. Fall 2018 Schedule.
- Peer Tutoring Program – Upper level students serve as tutors for select upper-level courses and all first-year courses taught in the second semester. Tutors hold regular open office hours for all students and are also available for one-on-one tutoring by appointment. Spring 2018 Schedule
- Individualized Assistance – Mr. DeSantis and Ms. Bond are available to provide individualized assistance to students. Assistance includes individualized assessments, assignments geared toward strengthening the students overall skills, and individualized timely feedback, including assistance with essay writing. Individualized assistance is open to all currently enrolled students.
- Legal Career Opportunity Program (LCOP) – Mr. DeSantis teaches Legal Process, a component of LCOP. The goal of LCOP is to ease the transition from undergraduate school to law school. Participants are given a head start in the development of legal and analytical skills, as well as individualized feedback on multiple assignments. Admission to LCOP is determined prior to the commencement of Fall Semester.
- Academic Support Large Structured Study Groups– Academic Support Study Groups are facilitated each semester by Mr. DeSantis. The purpose of these groups is to aid students in understanding how to synthesize course material, create course outlines, and analyze hypotheticals on exams. Group sessions commence approximately in the seventh week of the semester. Sessions are held on Contracts (Fall and Spring) and Civil Procedure (Spring). Sessions are open to any students currently enrolled in the course.
- Study Skills Workshop Series – Study Skill Workshops are conducted several times throughout Fall and Spring semesters and are open to all students. Topics include note-taking, reading comprehension, metacognition and strategic planning, exam preparation strategies, and essay writing skills. Fall 2018 Workshop Schedule.
- C|M|LAW Jump Start – Jump Start is a four-week program offered to admitted students prior to fall semester that aims to help the transition to law school by providing an introduction to the law school experience, including instruction on basic study and exam-taking skills. Topics covered include: Structure of the American Legal System, Reading and Briefing Cases, Note-taking, Outlining, and Legal Analysis.