First, it’s important to realize that not all professors will be grading the exams. Only a small percentage of law faculty are allowed to administer standardized tests, and these exams are not the same across every law school. Some professors may assign diagnostic exams that are used to gauge students’ comprehension and retention levels. Other exams are more directly aligned with the law school’s curriculum and are used to determine a student’s “ability to enroll.” Law school professors will almost always mark these tests with an A grade, but it’s up to you to make sure that your professor actually marks them with a high grade!
Before you go in for your examination, you should already have taken the LSAT. If you haven’t already taken it, your professor will probably tell you to do so before he or she gives you your final grade. Most law school exams measure intellectual ability, and the LSAT is no exception. Your professor will be looking for someone who is able to analyze large amounts of data and create synthesizing and application-based conclusions, rather than just reading law papers from cover-to-cover.
Second, don’t waste any time. Law school can be a very time-pressured environment, so there is no reason to procrastinate when it comes to preparing for exams. Instead of wasting time on needless research, spend that time studying specific topics that you need to know well in order to pass the exam. Spend the time necessary studying the materials rather than doing unneeded topics that are not relevant to the material covered on the test.
The last step that you should take before you show up for your examination is to set up a study schedule. Your professor will usually provide you with a sample schedule of what you should study, but if it’s not included in your coursework, you should create your own outline of what you should study so that you will be able to pace yourself correctly. It is possible to have a full-time job and still take all of the exams, but it is also extremely difficult to do so, as most law school professors require you to maintain a full-time job as well.
If your professor has provided you with a schedule, you should make sure that you keep to it. If it is very hectic and you just cannot stick to it, you may want to start shopping around for a new professor. You should avoid law professors that only send out e-mail notices or occasional text messages; in fact, many law professors actually prefer e-mailing and messaging as opposed to personal phone calls. If this is the case, always be respectful of your professor and listen to his or her suggestions, especially if your professor has a reputation for being difficult.
Law school professors often receive hundreds of evaluations regarding their students’ performance in law school exams. These evaluations are meant to inform the professor as to where their students stand and what needs to be done in order to improve. Most students are encouraged to take the exams seriously and try to do well. Unfortunately, some law school professors fail to take their work seriously, which is why many students suffer during their law school careers. Make sure that you completely follow the syllabus of the law class you’re taking and write your papers according to the instructions of your professor.
Most law schools require students to take the LSAT in order to register for their first-year courses. The LSAT can greatly improve your chances of success on the examination; however, you should not make the mistake of assuming that just because you’ve taken the LSAT, you automatically know how to answer law school exam questions. Take the time to thoroughly review all of the information on your syllabus and you’ll have little trouble answering any of the examination questions that are given.