Study, rest, eat ... repeat

With finals fast approaching, it’s time for you to come up with a plan for how you are going to attack each one of your finals. Taking it one day at a time might seem like a good idea, but a little planning can go a long way.

One of my favorite websites, Lawyerist.com offers some great advice.

Closed-Book Exams
How scary are closed-book exams? Nothing can be more nerve-racking! But there are a few tips that will help you make it through.

  1. Assess course expectations;
  2. organize, memorize and master the course material;
  3. practice, practice, practice;
  4. rest your brain; and
  5. take the exam with confidence.

Visit Lawyerist.com's Closed Book Exam post for a detailed explanation of each tip.

Open-Book Exams
Oh, the silent "woo-hoo" associated with the announcement that the final will be open-book! Of course, the word "woo-hoo" is the sound of false confidence. To avoid this trap, it is suggested that you study as if it were a closed-book exam.

  1. Prepare as you would for a closed-book exam, but
  2. adopt an open-book strategy and
  3. integrate it into your exam prep and then
  4. apply it during the exam.

Details are at Lawyerist.com’s post, Closed Book Law School Exam Preparation Tips.

Take-Home Exam
For each "woo-hoo" associated with open-book finals, there's the moan of a take-home. Take-home finals are tough. The key is going to be time management. Here are some tips that might help you out.

  1. Be strategic about exam prep;
  2. create take-home exam tools;
  3. plan the start;
  4. budget your time;
  5. plan the finish;
  6. eat, sleep and exercise;
  7. edit, edit, edit; and
  8. stick to your plan.

Yes, these seem pretty vague. But Lawyerist.com goes into great depth when it comes to succeeding on take-home finals.

My personal advice? Take time out for yourself, get your rest and eat well. Stress is going to be your biggest enemy.

Good luck!

W. Blake Wilson, Head of Instructional & Research Services, Wheat Law Library

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