Preparing for Final Exams
It’s that time of year. No, we’re not talking about the holiday season, even though it is that time of year as well. It’s the time of year when final exams are imminent and forthcoming. After a full semester of reading and briefing cases, as well as hours of lectures and copious note-taking, a subject’s final exam approaches like a white whale on the horizon. Once this test is finished, then, and only then, will the holidays start for law students. Until that time, here are some tips for preparing for final exams.
*Devise a plan of attack
You should have already devised a plan of attack and started studying early, but, in case you didn’t, it’s never too late to devise a study plan. A schedule will help you learn and memorize a complete summary of a course’s subject matter in a short amount of time.
*Take a break from work to study
If possible, take as much time off work as you can the week before finals. Even one or two days of uninterrupted studying can make a substantial difference. Studying for 8-10 hours when you normally would only have two or three hours is a significant windfall.
*Simulate an exam
Taking practice tests under “test-day battle” conditions is one of the best ways to prepare for an exam. Simulating the test questions, test environment, and allotted time of the test or a portion thereof can really make a difference. If the material is learned sufficiently and enough practice tests are taken, the final exam itself may seem like a practice test.
*The truth about study groups
Study groups have many positive attributes and can prove quite useful in helping law students achieve success on final exams. The CDTA encourages teamwork, collaboration, and cooperation among students to facilitate reaching goals, especially those related to academic achievements.
However, it’s important to beware of study “socials” that take the guise of a study group. Socializing for an hour before and after any serious academic review of the subject matter is an inefficient use of time. Four hours spent accomplishing only one hour of work is wasteful and a luxury that most law students cannot afford, especially when finals are imminent. Study groups may not be for everybody. You have to concentrate on the study methods that work best for you. Which leads us to the next point.
*Study the way that’s best for you
What works for one person doesn’t always work for the next person. Students must pursue the path of success that yields the most personal benefits. The environment for studying can make a difference whether a bedroom, library, coffee shop, locked room in the law school basement, etc. If you don’t prefer studying with a group, it never hurts to get together with one person to exchange thoughts on the exam and the material as a final review right before the test.
Our first classes began in September 2012, and we have served the residents of the Coachella Valley for close to eight years… It won’t be long before we are happily and successfully celebrating our tenth anniversary! At CDTA, we train, educate, and develop students to be exceptional attorneys and trial advocates. Call us today at (760) 342-0900 or find out more online here. Happy Thanksgiving from the California Desert Trial Academy!