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Lecture Notes in

How to Prepare for the Bar

Five Areas of Preparation for the Bar


A. Mental Preparation

Be systematic. Organize your review materials by subject. Waste 1 or 2


days just to organize everything before you start reviewing. Never fall into the
trap of studying in a non-organized manner. One suggestion is, gather 8 boxes
where you can place everything that you have accumulated out of 4 years of law
school. Place those which are more recent and more important on top so that
you get to read them first.
Do not bury yourself with useless materials. Try to get only those
reviewers which are complete. Always exercise your discretion before you buy
those reviewers.
Make an outline and compare this with the syllabus of the bar exams.
Spend time doing this do that you dont miss anything at all.
Make a timetable. Be sure to chop it. Its like a game plan where you
already know what to do first the first week, second week and so on. This has a
psychological effect so that you know that you are ready to face the exams. be
sure to stick with this timetable. You may lag behind but be sure to catch up or
you may revise it also.
Use the mirror technique during the last month of review. Study the last
exam first and the first exam last, e.g., Remedial Law and Legal Ethics will have
to be studied during the first week of August while Political and Labor Laws will
have to be studied during the last week of August.
Choose a good reviewer. You may not have enough time to read your
annotated texts all over again. Just check out those reviewers and make sure
that salient points are covered. Once you have chosen one, dont change
reviewers anymore. just be flexible in case there are mistakes in the reviewers.
Get a compilation of the recent SC cases. This is very much useful as
most questions are based on these cases.
Read the codal provisions first before you jump into the annotated texts or
the reviewers. Annotations, SC decisions are based on codal provisions. In the
bar, you will be asked to answer what the law says not what the annotations say.
When you read materials for the first time, read them as if it is the only
time that you are reading them. Understand the material at once and lock it in
your head.
Dont make the material more complicated that what it really is. You will
be tested on whether you know enough on what it takes to be a lawyer. The
questions are basic and only a small number are designed to determine who will
top the bar.
Memorize what you do not understand. In this way, if the very same
wordings appear in the exam, you get to answer in verbatim and you already get
points for this.
Attend the bar review lectures. The reviews are designed to help you out
and focus on more important issues. Notwithstanding, some would want to be
absent to keep them at pace with their own schedules. Its all up to you. You
must balance everything. But the general suggestion is for you to attend the
review.

Lecture Notes in
How to Prepare for the Bar

Tape review lectures. Always read and listen. Listen to the tapes during
your non-reading moments. What you read is reinforced by what you listen to.

B. Physical Preparation

Be physically fit during the review and the exam. The bar exam is
tiring and draining. Remember that if you miss one Sunday, you have to repeat
the entire exam again next year.
Exercise regularly. You can go malling or you may want to do more
physical exercises. It really depends on you. If you dont regularly exercise, then
just try to raise your hands or do stretching exercises.
Get enough rest and recreation. This must be sufficient but not too
much. Just give your body a time to recover. Fight also psychological tiredness
by watching movies or simply go to Tagaytay and feel the breeze of cool air.
Always remember that your peak should be in September. You can drink but be
sure not to do it too much.
Eat the right food.
Take vitamins and supplements.
Start training your body clock. You must train yourself to follow the
schedule of the bar exams. It is usually 8 to 12 then 2 to 5. What you do is to
concentrate and study during these hours daily. Read from 8 to 12 then take a 2hour break and then read again so that you get used to sitting and concentrating
during these hours of the day.

C. Emotional Preparation

Get rid of all emotional problems. Call a truce if you have any quarrel with
anyone else. Tell them that you would like to have a ceasefire from now until
September and just resume hostilities by October.

D. Psychological Preparation

Always think that you will top the bar. Maintain this visualization and think of
yourself published in the papers as the topnotcher in the 2002 bar exams. aim
high so that when you fall short, you only fall short a little bit. Always remember
that a dream can only come true if you dream.
Do not be afraid. You have everything it takes to pass the bar. At the end of the
review, you will have everything that you need to know.
Advance your time by I month. Think ahead so that if it is April 22 today, pretend
that it is already May 22.

E. Spiritual Preparation

Rely on a Greater Force. Always remember that you cannot do it alone. Believe
that someone is there to help you out. No matter how good you are, you are not
enough to pass and top the bar. You need His help.
Pray, pray, and pray.
Additional Tips and Preparatory Things to Do

Lecture Notes in
How to Prepare for the Bar

Brush up your English. The language of the bar is English so start reviewing your
grammar and vocabulary at the same time.
Improve your penmanship. The examiner has to read almost 2,000 booklets so that
he would rather want to read a booklet with a good penmanship. If you cant remedy
your penmanship, just write in wider letters.
Start using the pen that you will be using during the bar so that you will get
accustomed to it.
Preparing for the bar is probably the most difficult task youll ever undertake in your
life. You have to give it your best shot. It is all or nothing. It is now or never.
Although you may retake it next year, always think that there is no more tomorrow.
These are only a few suggestions. There are a lot of tips out there but in the end, it
is still you who will take the bar. Its always up to you to choose which suggestions
you will take.

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