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What Are the Best Tips for Bar Exam Preparation?

Intense studying is only one part of good bar exam preparation.
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  • Written By: Felicia Dye
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 14 July 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
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Individuals should begin their bar exam preparation with a realistic assessment of the amount of work that will be required. It is a good idea to use study tools such as practice tests and review courses. Also, when developing a plan, it is important to make sure it includes the day that the exam will be taken.

Individuals should have a clear assessment of their limitations. It can be harmful for a person to overestimate or underestimate what she is capable of. Overestimation can result in dangerous decisions such as not beginning to study far enough in advance or not sufficiently studying some or all of the necessary material. Underestimation can cause dread and fear that may be debilitating and result in studying habits that cause burnout.

People planning to take the bar exam should realize that there is a need to build more than just knowledge to pass it successfully. Before taking the exam, individuals need to build their confidence. While almost everyone who faces this challenge is likely to be nervous, those who have put forth the proper effort should not be overburdened with worry or stress. Confidence will promote a greater sense of calm, which is likely to improve the results.

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It is highly recommended that practice tests be used for bar exam preparation. If it is possible to get copies of bar exams that were previously used, it is a good idea to obtain several of these, perhaps from two or three previous consecutive years. Completely working through each of these has been noted by many people as an effective study tool.

Review courses have also been reported as essential tools for bar exam preparation. These are generally available for specific jurisdictions and should provide an overview of what lies ahead in the bar exam. These courses are also often available in several formats so that individuals can choose to learn in the manner that suits them best. When using review courses, individuals should be careful to avoid overly relying on them. While they are known to be very helpful, they do not generally equip a person with all of the knowledge that she needs, so a significant amount of additional studying will generally be necessary.

A final important bar exam preparation tip is to make plans for the day that the test will be taken. Individuals should get plenty of rest the night before and allot time for a proper meal ahead of the exam, but not one that will cause sluggishness. Adequate time should be allowed to arrive at the site of the exam, and any inclination to schedule appointments that will cause the need to rush or that may involve distracting results should be avoided before test time.

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