The bar exam can be extremely stressful to study for, what with the amount of information you’ll be tested on during it. This is an extremely important exam for law students, so you need to make sure that you not only study well for the exam but study effectively. How you study will determine how well you do on the bar exam—here are some tips on how to study for it effectively. 

Create a study schedule.

If you’re taking a course to help with your studies, the instructor likely gave you a study schedule for your bar exam. While it’s nice to have, you shouldn’t be afraid to adjust this study schedule to accommodate your own needs—that schedule is a general outline for study time, not the end all, be all of bar exam study sessions. Adjust the schedule according to your study techniques, free time, classes, and whatever else you need to make adequate time for these sessions. 

Your schedule should remain flexible as you go through preparations, and you should be willing to remove a technique if it isn’t working to help you study. Make your schedule fit you, not the other way around.

Use quality study materials.

You’ll get nowhere if you don’t use proper, quality study materials for your bar prep. The materials you use will determine how effective your bar exam studying is going; lengthy outlines won’t do you any good if all you do is get overwhelmed, just like study guides will be useless if it contains material that won’t be on the exam. Ensure that your study materials give you the information in a way that makes sense to you—if the material doesn’t make sense, you won’t be able to do well on the bar exam.  

The material you use should be released multistate bar exam (MBE) questions and essay questions. Commercial courses will often write their own problems, but there’s no guarantee their questions will accurately reflect what’s seen on the actual exam. Using MBE questions will let you prepare for the sorts of questions you’ll see on test day.

Focus on highly tested topics.

Not all topics presented by the bar exam are equal. Some topics will show up more frequently than others, and you’ll want to make sure that your study materials reflect these “favorited” exam topics rather than spending too much time on every single topic. Figure out and understand testing frequency to make sure you’re making the most out of your study sessions.