So, first—work. Again. There’s so much ebb and flow with deadlines and projects that it’s difficult to maintain a steady schedule here, which sucks. I apologize. I have one more big thing this week and then I’m “free” as in, back to regular programming. Thankfully.
Anyway, as I’m winding down—those of you in schools are starting to gear up for finals. Ugh. Sorry about that too. I remember how finals time basically meant life was at a standstill—it was such a hectic time because I know there’s other things happening (readings, family obligations, moot court try-outs, etc) that make the idea of finals like a kind of far off thing you can put off, but you shouldn’t. It’s so much work and preparation, which is why the earlier you start to prepare the better.
Some ways for you to prepare for finals right now:
One. Clear your schedule. Make sure you’re blocking off time for outlining and studying. That means you should talk to family or partners to let them know how little you will be available and make sure your other responsibilities are covered. Trust that if you go into your studying period without other things looming the stress will be way reduced.
Two. Review last semester. You should assess your study habits from last semester and determine what worked and what didn’t–especially if you’re a 1L. While I’m a big proponent of studying you how study, you also need to ensure your methods are working. It took me a long time to find a flow while in school, but once I did I finally started seeing the fruits of my labor via my grades. It’s likely trial and error for everyone. So take what worked and leave what didn’t.
Three. Prep for new techniques. If you’re an upperclassman and are about to take a 24 hours open book exam or something that you’ve never really done before (and no open book in college compares to an open book in law school, FYI) then you should take some time to review how you’re going to approach this new method. The best way is to talk to others who have already done the same format so you know what to expect—or what information to focus on. I remember one crim procedure course where the professor’s exam would result in every single case we read needing to be cited. So that meant I had to memorize the name of all the cases, rather than just knowing the basic concepts of the course because I needed to be able to cite all the cases. Those are the things you need to figure out before you go into your tests.
Four. Start prepping study materials now. If you do outlines, flash cards, whatever—start prepping them now so that when it’s time to study you’re actually learning the information, not just writing things out without actually focusing on the topic.
You still have a few weeks to go so take advantage of that time! Good luck!