Creating Your Personal Exam Day Plan

Take care of the little things now

You’re in the final weeks of bar exam study, so we’ll make this quick. We’ve found it very helpful for test takers to head into exam day with an exam day plan, one that maps out how you’re going to spend your time when you're not taking the test.

Why focus on the parts of the bar exam when you're not actually taking the exam? Because getting all those little, easy things squared away now will make the exam-taking easier, smoother, and less stressful.

Here's what you need to do: spend about 20 minutes at some point this week thinking about how you want to spend your non-exam time, as well as listing/gathering things you’ll need on exam day. Some of these details might seem trivial now. But as the exam inches closer, the less time you spend thinking about them the better you’ll feel.

1. Map out your days.

Plot out a very general pre-exam and exam-day schedule. Decide how you're going to spend the day before and day of: how and where you'll get meals, as well as how/where you're going to spend your pre- and post-test downtime.

Keep in mind: if you don’t end up following your schedule exactly, that’s fine. The point of doing this is so you don't have to make any extra decisions on exam days, not to make you feel stressed about keeping a schedule.

2. Exam materials.

Make a list of all the materials you’ll need the day of the bar exam. In other words, write down the ten things you must walk out the door with on test day. Figure out what they are, make a written list, and have that list on hand the night before each exam day.

3. Your de-stress plan.

The night before a test day should be filled with as little stress as possible. You might feel tempted to get one or two last looks at your outlines, but at that point it won't be as helpful as feeling calm and collected.

Decide in advance what things you’re going to do for yourself to stay relaxed the night before the bar exam.

Remember: By the time of Day One you already know everything you need to pass. It's just a matter of keeping calm and focused in your last weeks. You can do it. Just have the confidence and get those little things out of the way so you can feel your best.

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