Stress-busting reminders

As classes wind down, I want to offer a few ideas to reduce your stress:

Thursday, November 29: Deadline to download AND register for Softest if you plan to use your laptop for your exam. If you miss the deadline, don’t panic. Written exams are graded exactly the same as typed exams (as long as the professor can read what you write).

If you’re a 1L, attend the Academic Enhancement Program on Exam Taking on Friday, November 30 at 2 p.m.. This is tailored to YOUR section and YOUR professors and features successful upperclassmen telling you what to expect. If you must miss the panels on what to expect from your section’s exams, borrow a friend’s notes! Tailoring your study strategies to the specific exams will be a great way to reduce stress.  See the J.D. Student Central calendar for your section’s meeting location.

Pet Therapy! Tuesday, December 11, from 10 a.m. – 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., come enjoy a different kind of stress relief courtesy of Toby, a 6-ish yr. old therapy dog, who will be waiting in Barristers to take away your stress with his calm presence.

Give your laptop a pre-exam tune-up. Now might be a good time to make sure everything is functioning properly before you ask your laptop to function for ~18 straight hours each day for two straight weeks. Here’s a link with some ideas for a tune up:

Review the Exam Taking Strategies offered by Dean Marx and Professor Volk. See the Exam Taking Guide 2012 here, and see Professor Volk’s Power Point on the First Year Writing Program Blackboard.

Plan your daily arrival to campus. As we all know, the Green Line has an uncanny ability to sense when you have an urgent need to arrive on time – and to derail that (literally or figuratively). Also remember that the MBTA doesn’t run as frequently during off-peak hours. So leave LOTS of extra time and perhaps have a Plan B for arriving on-time to your exams.

Plan your daily access to the law school. As you know, they are breaking ground on the new addition to the law school. This means some of your favorite routes from Mugar and the GSU to Ring Lounge may no longer be in service starting in mid-December or earlier. Give yourself an extra minute or two to access the law school through the steps on the west side of Marsh Chapel.

Take meaningful breaks. It will be tempting to work non-stop, but doing so will not necessarily help your performance. Getting sufficient sleep, eating healthy meals, and finding some outlet for relaxation (exercise, t.v., cooking/baking, holiday shopping), will actually boost your ability to synthesize and retain all that information!

If you are experiencing anxiety or depression that is interfering with your sleeping, eating, or ability to focus, you should take advantage of the free, confidential counseling services at the BU Behavioral Medicine Clinic, 881 Commonwealth Avenue, (617)353-3569. Students may call that number anytime; if it’s after the clinic’s hours, an answering service will page a counselor on call. Many law students take advantage of their services. For more information, see their website at:

Stay tuned for next week’s blog on the best places to study in and around BU’s campus!

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