If you find yourself in the complex situation of having to take the bar exam while also working full time then this article is for you. Whether you have to work to pay the bills, if you have to work because you have a family to feed and support, or if you have to work because for some awful reason a job you secured will not allow you to take time off to study we have your back. The author of this article has worked full time each time that he has taken a bar exam, and has passed each time. One of the exams was UBE the other was not, still passed. So not having the ability to study for the bar exam full time like many of your colleagues or friends are doing is not the end of the world. Bar exam prep while working full time does not put you at as big as a disadvantage as you think.
1. Bar exam prep while studying for the bar exam tip #1: Studying for the bar exam is not going to be more stressful for you than you think it is.
First, even though you may not be able to spend as much time studying for the bar exam as your colleagues does not mean your stress level will be higher then theres. As far as stress goes, everyone is going to be stressed during the exam. The only way to reduce such a stress level is to understand that everyone is just as stressed as you are, to relax, and to study. All that matters is that the hours in which you put forth studying are meaningful, it is also very much possible your hours spent studying can have a more significant impact towards your ability to understand the bar exam than your counterparts as you do not have time to lolly-gag or take time off.
2. You’ve heard it once and you will hear it again…start studying early.
If you must do bar exam prep while working full time the best advice anyone can giver you is that you should start studying earlier than your counterparts who are not studying full time. If you’re planning on taking the exam in July, you should start studying in April. (March would be best but April at the latest). Even a few hours each night early on will pay dividends down the line and you will be ahead of the curve. You will be able to pat yourself on the back when you realize that you are either ahead of the bar schedule or exactly where you need to be based on your decision to start studying early.
3. Bar exam prep while working full time key fact number 3: Weekends are your days to make real progress.
Ideally, you should be studying 3-6 hours per night once you get off work if you have a typical 9-5 job. Thus, weekends are goals mines. They are the best days to catch up on anything you missed such as lectures, practice essays, or practice multiple choice questions, and you can put allot of quality time into these days.
4. Essay questions…Do as Many As Possible During Your Last Week of Study
Without a doubt, most bar study programs put a strong emphasis on the the Multistate Bar Exam (the 400 multiple choice questions that bar examiners peg you with) so often people tend to neglect actually doing full essays or even the MPT. In the beginning these programs will have you doing full essays and multiple choice questions. As the program goes on though, you will be pressed for time and it may just inform you to outline your answers to questions. Regardless, by that last week you should be hitting as many essay questions as you can. Go through at least 75-100, doing more in the subjects you are weaker on.
These repetitions you get in the last week will prove to be invaluable to you when you take the exam. You’ll understand how to read, map, outline, and answer your essays very quickly. Also do not be surprised if on the Bar Exam you come across a similar pattern to an essay you may have done during your preparation, even if you do not see such a pattern you will be familiar with the common kinds of problems that are commonly tested on the exam. Bar exam prep while working full time is not the end of the world.
Overall, bar exam prep while working full time is completely possible. Start early, study smart, remain calm, stick to your study schedule, and you can crush it. Follow this advice and other advice on this site regarding the exam and you’ll get the score you need!