Academic Success Tip - Beware of Bad Advice
Posted October 15th, 2009 by Kimberly K. Ballard
Bad advice: You can’t do any practice questions until right before the exam because you don’t know enough.
Why this advice is bad advice:
- Exams are all about applying the concepts and law that you have learned all semester to new fact scenarios or legal problems.
- You wouldn’t go on a black diamond ski slope without lots of practice. Why would you go into an exam without having worked on several practice questions throughout the semester?
- A multitude of practice questions are available that test your knowledge on sub-topics and topics and not just entire courses.
- Do some practice questions at the end of each sub-topic to test your application skills. Can you spot the issues and sub-issues? Can you apply the concepts correctly? Can you apply the rules and exceptions to the rules?
- Practice your approach to questions: how will you analyze the question; how will you marshal the facts; how will you organize your answer; how will you write the answer in the most concise way.
- Become more adept by starting with one-issue questions, then progressing to two- or three-issue questions, then progressing to more extensive questions. Once you can organize and answer shorter questions, you can practice your organization for longer questions.
- Use multiple sources of questions: ones handed out by the professor; questions in study aids; questions you and your study partners write and swap; questions from prior exams.
- Schedule practice question time each week for each course so that you do not forget to practice or put off practice too long.