The calendar no longer supports the idea that exams are a distant event. There are only five full weeks remaining before the end of classes. The remainder of this week's tips will focus on exam preparation.
- Ask your professors questions. Your professors will be writing and grading your exams. Your professors are the experts. Ask questions about any areas on which you are confused. Ask early and often rather than wait until the end of classes.
- Spend time on memory work. Drill on rules and elements so that you know them by heart. Even if you are able to take a rule or statute book into an exam, you need to know the rules to avoid having to look everything up.
- Apply the material constantly. The more practice questions that you do, the better prepared you will be to organize your answers and to spot nuances in the law. Practice questions also help you self-monitor what you need to study more and what you know already.
The calendar no longer supports the idea that exams are a distant event. There are only five full weeks remaining before the end of classes. In light of the seriousness of the time in the semester, the remainder of this week's tips will focus on exam preparation.
- Stop fragmenting your efforts and refocus. If you have been coasting through class until now, stop. If you have been focusing on extracurricular activities to the exclusion of academics, stop. If you have been partying instead of studying, stop. You need to prioritize your efforts for studies now.
- Take responsibility for wherever you are in your studies. If you are in good shape, congratulate yourself and plan the next step before you are tempted to rest on your laurels. If your studying is in shambles, do not blame your present situation on your professors, study partners, family, or whomever comes to mind. Own it and move forward.
Be prepared for course registration and choose the courses that are right for you. Do you want to enroll in an externship or an independent study? Do you need to request to enroll in more than 16 hours as a full-time student or 12 hours as a part-time student? Have you completed a degree checklist recently? Do you want to take non-law graduate level courses?
The Student Life Office will be offering course registration advising office hours for upper division students on October 25, 26, and 27. Stop by or make an appointment in advance to discuss any questions you may have regarding your Spring 2011 schedule, graduation requirements, externships, pre-registration permission forms, etc. Kathleen Bean, Associate Dean for Student Life, and Kimberly Ballard, Academic Success Director, will be available to provide one-on-one advising, and to answer questions about course selection. To sign-up for a time in advance, add your name to the appointment sheet outside the Brandeis Room (112).
Monday, October 25, noon to 2:00
Tuesday, October 26, 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Wednesday, October 27, 3:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
You are in your ninth week of classes now. Today's tip addresses the question that I've been asked by a lot of students lately: What is the best way to catch up if I am behind in my reading for one or more courses?
- Make your priority staying on top of the current readings for class. You will then be able to follow the class discussions.
- Fit in back reading as you can in small chunks (one case at a time).
- On the weekend, read first for your Monday and Tuesday classes for the upcoming week. Then use extra time for catch-up reading.
As you approach the Thanksgiving Break, you do not want to be behind in your reading or your outlining. Stay focused now and get caught up so you will be in the best position possible when doing your core studying for finals.
The Law School's mid-term break is on Monday. This long weekend is the perfect opportunity to get caught up with outlining in each of your courses. Try these tips:
- For each course, calculate how many weeks behind you are in the outline.
- Start with the course that is most caught up and finish that outline first. Then work on the next outline that has the fewest weeks to catch up and so forth.
- If you are equally behind in several outlines, start with the course that you think you can do most quickly.
- If you have not started any outlines, decide which outline will be the easiest to do and complete it first. Next easiest and so forth.
- Block off time in your schedule to work on each outline over several days, rather than expect to find 8 or 10 hours straight for outlining.
- Set goals for when each outline will be current. Try to have all outlines completed within 10 days – the earlier the better.
- You will need to sacrifice weekend “fun” time to get on top of your outlining so that you only have to add new material each week.