Some people prefer to study in complete silence, while others thrive in a noisy location. As you prepare for the bar exam, your most optimal study environment may differ from someone else’s. By now, you should have had time to test out various study settings and eliminate what doesn’t work in your favor. But the bar exam is in a completely different league from the other tests you’ve taken, so it’s imperative you create the best study environment for yourself.
1. Store All Study Materials in One Place
Keeping all of your study essentials together allows you to focus more time on your bar review notes, assignments, and practice exams, rather than wasting your time trying to locate them. Your best bet would be to make your study nook their home, so all you have to do is sit down and get to work.
2. Turn Off Your Phone
Phones aren’t just for making calls anymore. Although that may be interpreted as a positive statement, in this case, it’s not. Unless you’re using a study app, turn off your phone or put it in another room on silent mode during your review sessions.
3. Don’t Check Social Media Right Before
“I’ll only be on Instagram for five minutes. Then I’ll study.” How many times has this actually happened? Probably never. When it comes to your Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or any other social platform, it’s so easy to get lost looking through your news feed. Do yourself a favor and don’t log into any of your accounts until you’re done studying for the day. The last thing you want to happen, especially as the bar approaches, is lose precious study time because you got distracted by something online.
4. Stay Away from the TV
It’s a safe bet to say that you would probably rather watch your favorite show on Netflix than study for the bar, so having the TV on as you review is not a good idea. Try to study in a room that doesn’t even have a TV, if possible. Yes, that means no sitting on the couch or lying in bed with your notes in your lap and the remote control in your hand.
5. Go to the Library
It’s important to have a place at home where you can study, but you may want to consider going to the library once in a while as well. As much as you don’t want any distractions, being in an environment where there are a few wouldn’t hurt you. Think about it: When you take the bar, you’re going to be in a room with a bunch of other people, which means there will be some subtle noises, like the sound of someone turning a page in the test booklet or writing furiously during the Multistate Essay Exam. You may hear a few coughs or sneezes along the way as well. A library is a quiet setting, but it also has other people, so you can learn to get your work done and get used to concentrating in a place with minor distractions that you’ll probably encounter during the actual exam.
The way you study may vary from other people’s methods, but you certainly don’t want to jeopardize your review sessions. Being in an environment that doesn’t result in stress or diversions enables you to concentrate on the task at hand: passing the bar.