Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Keep calm....and make things up!

 

If you are taking the February Bar Exam, you have about 2 weeks or so left to study. Don't panic. There is no possible way to know ALL of the law, so don't start cramming and trying to figure out how to memorize everything in two weeks. You need to approach the bar exam well rested, mentally and physically, which means 1-2 extra laws is not worth what you lose in an all nighter. 

This is also the time you really need to spend on practice. Practice writing out essays, in timed conditions. Practice sets of MBE questions. And, above all else, practice your MPTs! While you need to know the law to succeed on the bar exam, that is only step 1. The most important thing you can do is practice. 

So, there is some good news. That good news is that you probably know more law than you think you do. Trust yourself. 

On the  MBE…

Do not second guess yourself. Most of the time wrong answers come from changing your answers. You think you know, you second guess yourself thinking “it can’t be THAT easy”, and you change a right answer to a wrong answer. You’ve graduated law school, you’ve been studying for months, so trust me, you know some law! Don’t doubt that you do! (Note: it's OK, and encouraged, to change your answers if you notice that you were not reading something carefully. However, in terms of the law, trust yourself!)

On Essays….

There will be at least one essay question, or issue in a question, where you read the essay and have no idea what is going on. That is fine, but you still need to write. Trust yourself that you know  SOMETHING and write. Maybe you won’t recall the law with 100% accuracy, or maybe you won’t remember every element, but put SOMETHING down on the page! Do not skip over issues because you are worried you won’t get it right – at least show the readers that you recognized an important issue.

I promise that even if you don't get the exact rule down, you are likely not as far off as you think you are! Again, you've graduated, you've been studying.....you have a background in law. So, when I say "make it up", you are basing the "made up" law on a great deal of knowledge. Not to mention, most of your points are coming from how well you analyze. This is why practice is far more important than making sure you have every rule memorized to perfection. 

 

Finally, get some rest. Eat well. Take time plan your route, know where you will park, investigate if there are delays on public transportation, figure out what you’re doing for lunch. And relax. Go into the exam with confidence and calm, and do your best!

https://lawprofessors.typepad.com/academic_support/2020/02/keep-calmand-make-things-up-1.html

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