How To Prepare For Your First Day Of Law School
Congratulations! You are about to start an inspiring journey towards becoming an attorney. The road is long, but the rewards are great! We understand that your first day of law school is looming in your mind. You already have reading to be done, there are so many heavy books, you have never heard of an outline, and you aren’t quite sure what you are walking into. Every law student gets first day jitters! So, here is how to best prepare for your first day of law school.
How To Prepare For Your First Day Of Law School
Buy Your Books
During our undergraduate, we all may have been a little guilty of waiting to see just how useful that one book will be for our course before purchasing them. Books are expensive, after all, and you are on a student’s budget. Well, that is now a thing of the past. Whatever your professor lists as textbooks for their course, buy them – every last one! Law school is competitive and missing a book for a class is a great way to fall behind your classmates. Don’t let it happen to you. Once your textbook list is released, start shopping. You will need plenty of time to complete your initial reading before classes begin!
Research Study Techniques
Law school requires a new way of thinking, so it is only right you adjust your study techniques as well. Unlike your other school experiences up until now, law school is simply a semester of reading and lecturing with no grades until the final exam. This means you need strong study skills from the start that keep you accountable all the way until test day. Take time to learn new study techniques specifically for law school. Become acquainted with when to start your law school outline and how to create a law school outline. Going in, know how to effectively study for law school final exams. This will help you prepare yourself throughout the semester rather than just a week or so before your exam. You want your study techniques to be sharp in every way possible for the first day of law school. That way, you won’t fall behind by even a moment.
You want to walk into the first day of law school ready to fire on all cylinders. That includes being organized. You should have a planner, whether it is paper or digital, and have all of your non-law school appointments scheduled in it. Once you receive your syllabi for classes, pen in your readings, and exam dates (if available). Next, have your note system ready to go. If you are writing your notes, have your notebooks or binders sectioned off for each class and the topics/subtopics for each course. If you are typing your notes, we recommend you find a notetaking app that works well for you. Then, organize your notes similarly to written notes by class and topic/subtopic. Being well organized will have you hitting the ground running without the risk of falling behind.
Get Your Readings Done
The biggest mistake many recall from the first day of law school is only having the first day’s reading done. You have plenty of time leading up to your first day. Therefore, you are more than capable of reading for one or two days ahead of time. Further, you can read for the whole week if the required reading has been provided. Note, however, that you don’t want to get too far ahead of the class. But, getting a week’s worth of reading done the weekend before is perfectly acceptable. Reading during the week can be very trying, especially when you first start law school. Everything is new, terrifying, and you are just trying to figure out how to survive cold calls. This all takes up a lot of energy, so use the time you have before your first day of law school to read up and cut down your stressors. This will also give you ample time to adjust to the new study techniques you plan to utilize as you read for class.
Learn About The Law School Experience
Nobody likes surprises when it comes to law school. Luckily, the internet is a vast, wonderful place with many resources to read up on. Law students and test prep companies will often blog about what the first year of law school is like, or more specifically, what first-year law school classes are like. Search for student perspectives to see what you can expect to experience, not only in school but also in your personal life. Students can speak to what it is like making friends in law school, scheduling your family around law school, or relaxing in law school! Becoming familiar with a law student’s experience ahead of time will give you fewer surprises on day one, which means less stress!
Sleep And Relax
Lastly, make sure you are well rested for your first day of law school. You have a big journey ahead of you, filled with a fair number of obstacles. The time leading up to law school is an uninterrupted opportunity to get mentally and physically prepared for law school. Ensure you are getting a good night’s sleep every night, drinking lots of water, staying active, eating well, and taking time to kick back and relax. Follow all of these tips, and you will be well prepared for your first day of law school!