Last-Minute Checklist for Taking the Bar

By William Vogeler, Esq. on February 20, 2019 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

The time for studying has past; the time for test-taking has arrived.

By this point, you should have crammed all the learning you can handle into your head. It's time to breathe deeply, and go pass that test.

Still, you will always feel like there's something more to do the night before the bar exam. Here's a last-minute checklist to help you do it:

1. Get Some Sleep

If you are like most bar applicants, you have been studying to take the test for months. You and your brain need a rest, especially the night before the exam.

The last thing you need is to walk into the exam already exhausted. There will be time for that after the exam.

2. Eat Some Protein

When you wake up the morning of, feed your brain with a high protein breakfast.

If you are a coffee drinker, it's no time to quit. But drink plenty of water -- it's a great defense against headaches.

3. Don't Study the Law

It's counter-intuitive but true that studying right before the test does not help. Kerriann Stout, a law school professor and bar exam adviser, says it's a cardinal rule.

She says its better to relax and get an early start to your test location.

4. Review the Exam Rules

Before you head out, double-check the exam rules. In California, for example, there are rules against headwear, mechanical pencils, digital watches, and sunglasses.

Bar proctors won't necessarily throw you out for accidentally wearing the wrong watch, but they will take it and any other contraband. Or they will throw you out.

5. Visualize Success

Visualize yourself taking and passing the test.

You've got all your approved items, e.g. photo I.D., keys, pencils, foam ear plugs, lunch money, or other items on your last-minute list.

You are ready. Set. Go!

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