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5 Easy Ways to Get Ready for Finals Now

Many law school students start getting stressed about final exams around mid-semester, but they're not sure how to start prepping.

Taking control now will leave you better prepared and less stressed, both now and -- more importantly -- when finals roll around. These five tips will help you move forward with a plan to put you in tip-top finals shape.

1) Make a Calendar.

Get a blank calendar and create goals for what you hope to accomplish each day in preparation for finals. You can include: due dates, professors office hours, daily subjects to outline, practice tests, Critical Pass flashcards to review, etc.. Be optimistic when you're adding these items to your calendar, but also give yourself some grace when those days arrive. Don't beat yourself up if you don't check off every item, but try to do at least one or two a day. And make sure to schedule some down time to relax.

2) Update Outlines.

Start working on your outlines. If you haven’t started them, it’s time to start. If you have, it’s time to update and revise. Try to cover everything up to the current point of material you've covered. Don't hold off until Spring Break to do it all. Updating your outlines each week or every other week will ensure that the information sinks in. Moreover, you’ll be less overwhelmed with all the information that’s piled up if you wait until later.

3) Meet with Professors.

As you're updating your outlines, you'll find areas that need some clarification or where your notes are a little less detailed (read: messy). Be proactive and meet with your professors now to clear up any confusion. Moreover, talk to your professors about their exams. This may seem weird, but it's totally normal. Ask them what they expect to see - do they want to know that you can cover a lot of topics or that you can really analyze one topic in-depth? Your professor will be more available now than the week or two before finals and you'll know that your final outline will be correct when it's time to study for finals.

4) Practice, Practice, Practice.

Essay questions in law school are a whole different animal. Get comfortable with writing them out and having a plan of attack by practicing essay questions for each subject. Find old essay exams from your law school or online. It’s especially helpful to practice an essay on a given topic after you’ve reviewed the topic. . Bottom line -  Practicing now will help you walk into your finals with expertise and confidence.

5) Keep Healthy.

Do your best to relax and celebrate the great job you’re doing preparing for final exams so early. It's also important to keep your mental and physical health up. The better your physical condition, the sharper you are mentally. Take time to do things you enjoy and carve out time to spend with friends. Exercise and eat healthy! This will lower your stress and prevent getting sick during exams. You want to be your best possible self during finals.

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