How Do I Approach The Bar Exam After A Break?
If you are taking the bar exam well after law school, congratulations! Sitting for the bar is an accomplishment in and of itself. You probably already know that your bar prep journey will be intense and time-consuming. In this blog post, we discuss some tips for approaching the bar exam after a break.
How Do I Approach The Bar Exam After A Break?
Stay physically and mentally prepared to study for the exam.
Incorporating regular physical exercise into your routine to increase your energy levels, enhance your ability to focus, and reduce your stress can be invaluable when studying for the bar exam. If you’re visiting a subject you haven’t visited in quite some time, keeping a clear mind can make all the difference when working your way through the material. Try to maintain a healthy diet for better brain function and to avoid brain fog. Keep a positive disposition during bar prep by practicing daily positive affirmations. For instance, say positive statements to yourself such as, “I am making great progress in my study plan,” “I will pass the bar,” and “I will be a licensed attorney in a few months.”
Are you going to study full-time or part-time?
We generally recommend that examinees spend about 400 hours preparing for the bar exam. If you are studying full time, that breaks down into 10 weeks of studying for 40 hours per week. If you’re going to study part-time, you’ll be studying for less time per day for a greater number of weeks. When possible, maximize your time by enrolling in a bar prep program that allows you to start the study process earlier, especially if you can’t study full time.
Get a rock-solid study schedule!
Whether you study full-time or part-time, create a study schedule that is realistic, promotes efficiency, and includes regular breaks. Because you will be studying over a large period of time, incorporate “review days” into your schedule so that you’re able to memorize the law. Your study schedule should also include a few “review weeks.” Click here to learn how to create a daily study schedule. Check out our blog post, How to Make a Stellar Part-Time Study Schedule, for tips on putting together a study schedule that includes your other life commitments.
Are you repeating the exam?
If you are repeating the exam, be confident. You may already have a general idea of what works and what does not work. Dissect your bar results report and determine your areas of strengths and weakness. Develop an individualized study plan that allocates more time to your weak areas and get started early. Sometimes, this might not be as simple as stated.
You may be upset about failing the bar exam or having to retake the bar exam to obtain licensure in another state. We understand. If you’re not sure where to start or you find yourself spinning your wheels during bar prep, working with a bar exam tutor can help you get on track. Furthermore, if you’ve already taken a traditional bar prep course and you’re now planning to study alone, a tutor may be especially useful because they can provide performance feedback on essays and MBE questions. (Tip: Practice using real MBE questions to prepare you for the actual structure and format of the questions you’ll see on test day). For some initial & substantive bar prep detail, check out JD Advising’s MEE Guide, MPT Guide, and MBE Guide!
Consider taking a full bar prep course!
A full bar prep course will aim to combine three years of law school into a two-month course. A full course should present bar materials in such a structured way that allows you to maximize your study time. It may also include essay grading that helps candidates measure their understanding of the law as well as provides relevant and helpful feedback to help candidates increase their scores. If you are approaching the exam after a break, you should strongly consider a full bar prep course.
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