We have prepared the following frequently asked questions to answer some of your initial questions about the Houston Law Review , such as how one is selected for membership and what your second year will entail. We know that some of you may still have remaining questions, and we encourage you to contact us if we can be of further help.
1. What is the Houston Law Review?
The Houston Law Review is a scholarly legal journal that is edited, managed, and published by its student members—all second and third year students at the University of Houston Law Center. The articles contained in the Review are authored by both students and professionals and typically discuss a specific legal issue or relevant area of the law. We publish five issues per year, including dedicated issues for the annual Symposium hosted by the Law Center’s Institute for Intellectual Property and Information Law and the annual Frankel Lecture, hosted by the Law Review. Both the IPIL Symposium and the Frankel Lecture Series provide the Law Review with the opportunity to publish articles from some of the nation’s top legal scholars.
2. How does one gain membership on the Houston Law Review?
Students who have completed their respective program’s first-year course load can obtain membership on the Houston Law Review by grading on or writing on, as described below:
Grade-On: One way to obtain membership is by grading on. Those of you who successfully grade on will receive your invitation after first year grades have been submitted and approved by the administration. We anticipate that invitations will go out in mid-June. After you receive your invitation, an Orientation meeting and party will follow shortly thereafter.
Write-On Competition: Another way to become a member of the Houston Law Review is to submit a writing sample during the annual write-on Competition. For further details of the latest/last competition see the Write-On Competition details page.
Please note that your papers will be reviewed anonymously. Names will be associated with their respective papers only after we have selected the winning papers; furthermore, papers that are not selected will not be associated with the student’s name.
The Law Review does not limit the number of members that will be accepted through the write-on process. We encourage all qualified students to participate in the competition. The orientation meeting and party will be held for write-on students after the first week of school in the fall.
3. What can I expect to do as a member of the Houston Law Review?
Membership on the Houston Law Review requires the fulfillment of the following:
Journal Writing Requirement: As 2L’s, members of the Houston Law Review must complete a Casenote or Comment that is deemed publishable by the Notes & Comments Board of the Houston Law Review. After the successful submission of a publishable Casenote or Comment, the member has satisfied the Journal Writing Requirement. In addition, many of the student Casenotes and Comments are selected for publication in the Houston Law Review. A published paper is viewed by the legal community as both a great honor and significant addition to any résumé. Furthermore, some student papers have received cash awards donated by law firms and alumni.
Member on Duty Hours (“MODs”): The successful publication of the Houston Law Review requires an all-out team effort. As such, 2L members are required to spend a certain number of hours per semester in the Law Review office, during which time you will complete a variety of tasks necessary to the publication of the Houston Law Review.
Cite Checks: An additional benefit for Houston Law Review members is the dramatic improvement in their editing skills after just a few months on Law Review. This is largely accomplished through the cite check process, which entails a comprehensive edit of articles that will be published by the Houston Law Review. 2L members form the backbone of the editing process and are directly responsible for ensuring the substantive and technical quality of published articles. 2L members are required to complete a total of four cite checks during their second year of law school.
We hope this information helps you understand what it takes to become and remain a Houston Law Review member. If you have additional questions, please drop by the Houston Law Review office, or contact the individuals below.
Matthew Hoffman – Editor In Chief, Board 49 (2011-2012)
Katharine Larson – Managing Editor, Board 49 (2011-2012)
Jennifer Smith – Chief Notes & Comments Editor, Board 49 (2011-2012)
Law Review Main Number: 713-743-2247