GUEST BLOG by Sara Valentine, Graduate of Capital University Law School
Lol, like we haven’t already been serious about this, right? Welcome to July. Let’s do this. Go Team BARBRI!
I’m going to go more in-depth on the MBE after we’ve done the analysis, but now you know what it feels like to sit for 6 hours and do 200 questions. The bar exam is no joke. We know that, but now it somehow feels a little more real now that we’re in July and have done the MBE. So, what now?
What Worked for You in Law School?
I’ve heard this so much recently. Now that we’re in July (the homestretch, dare I say?) we need to prep as we did in law school. This isn’t to say that you should divert from your BARBRI Personal Study Plan (see supra), but you need to start incorporating study methods that have worked for you in the past if you haven’t done so already. Are you a visual learner? Start making those graphs, flow charts, or whatever else it is that you may need! Maybe you’re an auditory learner? Start reading your outline to yourself, out loud. You know yourself best. You know what worked for you and what didn’t work for you while you were in law school. Don’t start something new. Use BARBRI’s tried and true plans and supplement with how you need to learn and we’ll get there.
For example, I’m a visual learner. The walls in my house are literally covered with different flow charts for each subject. I take a little tour of my house each day and look at each subject. Yes, it’s a bit much. Am I allowed to be a bit much when there’s less than a month left before the bar exam? Yes. Do I remind myself of the meme below a little bit? Also, yes. It’s fine. Moving on…
The Conviser Mini Review
We love it, we hate it, we can’t live without it: the Conviser Mini Review. I’ll be the first to admit that reviewing the Conviser Mini Review is one of my least favorite things to do. It’s dense and it contains a lot of information. I find myself asking wondering if I am going to be able to remember all of this material…no. Not the point and not what you should be focused on. NO ONE is going to remember everything! The bar exam is a minimum competency exam. You need to know, understand, and be able to comprehend what the Conviser Mini Review is offering you. The Conviser Mini Review is the HOLY GRAIL of your bar prep from here on out.
This is what you need to be looking at and going over constantly (the number of tabs that I have in mine is hilarious). This is what’s going to get you through until the end. It’s what you should be referencing (obviously if you need to go further in-depth then consult the full outline, but we should be mainly using the Conviser Mini Review in July).
DO NOT Freak Out and Stop Following BARBRI!!!
I’ve heard horror stories (and I’m sure that you have to) from people who didn’t pass the bar exam. There are varying reasons why one doesn’t pass, but without fail the most consistent reason that I’ve heard is that it was because that person stopped following their BARBRI plan. NO. Don’t do that! If you’re feeling like you need to supplement with something else or maybe focus more time on a different subject then do that AFTER you’ve finished what your Personal Study Plan has set out for you for the day!
BARBRI is a proven way to help you pass. You’ve been using your Personal Study Plan since May. Why are you going to stop now? Do not do that! Don’t let your anxiety or fear of failing the bar exam take you into a direction where you’re lost and don’t know what to do. Relax. Follow your plan. We’ve got this.
Beware of Burnout
My last thing: you have to beware of burnout. I’m sure that we’re all experienced varying levels of burnout during law school, I know that I have. With the bar exam looming, it can be tempting to start pulling some pretty crazy hours to try and get down everything that you need to know. Don’t start pulling all-nighters. Don’t lose your sleep! If you need to take a half-day to relax then do it! If you’re not studying when you’re at your best then you won’t process the information as well and you won’t remember it as well on test day. You know yourself best—if you need a break then take it. Follow your plan. Know yourself. If you do, then you’ll be able to #PassTheBar.