How Do I Memorize all of this $%#*?

What’s Your Learning Style?

It may sound crude, but passing the bar exam is really about how well you can cram a bunch of information into your head and throw it up on paper in an organized fashion. Heck, the sheer volume of information you must store in your brain is enough to overwhelm even the fastest learners. So I get asked all the time: how can I memorize faster? How should I be memorizing?

The answer is: It depends on how your particular brain works. When I talk to a coaching client, the first thing I ask is: “How do you learn best? If you’ve never asked yourself this question, you’re not alone. In this blog series, I will tell you how to pick your learning style and how to use that information to improve the quality and quantity of your memorization. To find your learning style, take the quiz below.

1. In law school, I learned in class by:

a. Really listening and taking the most basic of notes, or sometimes no notes at all

b. Taking copious notes and then reading and organizing them later; it’s hard for me to learn without taking lots of notes

c. Taking notes and then doing something with those notes or a book, like discussing the information with someone else, reducing the notes down to smaller outlines, or making note cards

2. My law outlines are:

a. Outlines? My outlines are short and very basic, if I have outlines at all

b. Usually detailed, organized, with different fonts, colors, and maybe even charts

c. I start with a huge outline, and have to keep condensing it down, or sometimes I like creating outlines with other people

3. When I study for an exam, I study best by:

a. Listening to the information again out loud, or sitting in a study group or tutoring session where someone is explaining it to me

b. Reading and staring at my notes, charts, and note cards

c. Doing something with the information, like making note cards, quizzing myself, reorganizing or shortening my outline, or discussing it in a study group

If your answers were:

a. All A’s: You are an Auditory learner. You learn best by listening to information and/or talking about information.

b. All B’s: You are a Visual learner. You learn best by seeing information.

c. All C’s: You are a Kinesthetic learner. You learn best by doing something with the information.

d. Combinations of A,B, or C: You are a combo, and should implement more than one study method.

In my next blog post, I will tell you the top five memorization tips for each learning style.

Lauren Firestein is the founder of the Mind Over Bar Course, an innovative course that focuses only on the mental challenges of the bar exam. The course teaches in-the-moment practices you can use to deal with any mental challenge and rock the bar exam.