Preparing for the bar exam takes practice, practice, and practice, but having the right resources to study is just as important. The focus of this article is on the materials that have worked for me and were recommended to me by ABA Law School alumni and peers who passed the exam on the first try. After following her advice, I finally passed.
First of all, you absolutely must have the current version of Barbri’s Mini Convisor Review. That’s all you need to memorize for the bar exam. The law provided in this guide is complete, thorough, and has all the elements you need to analyze in your essay answers. Use this review guide to create your rule statements, and you’ll be well on your way to passing the bar exam. You can buy it used or new.
The MBE part requires more practice. You can use any of the MBE question books on the market and there are even online testing programs available if that suits you. I propose the Emmanuel strategies and tactics for the MBE. Answer as many practice questions as possible. You have to learn from your mistakes and really see the patterns in the questions in order to answer all 200 questions within the time limit. Then, the night before the MBE test, just review your notes created from the answers you missed during practice.
To pass the bar exam, you need to practice. I recommend writing practice essays under time constraints. It’s also extremely helpful when someone else reviews your answers and provides objective feedback. I have taken several bar exam review courses and all but one inflated my practice essay scores, leading me to believe that I was doing better on practice than on the bar exam. Finally, when I found Bar Graders on the internet and did more than 40 practice essays, my exam grade improved significantly. These are former bar exam graders, and I don’t want anyone else grading my practice papers. Undoubtedly, they should be your only bar review course.
Finally, a few words about the performance test. Try a strategy that will help you be efficient in performance testing. There are many proficiency testing strategies that require you to create a grid sketch of the problems that comply with the law, and you work from that grid to type or write your answer. Forget those graphs, charts and rainbow highlighter approaches because they don’t work and waste your precious time. Of course, many of the bar review courses include proficiency testing materials, so you may not need to purchase additional materials. However, if you are wondering what else is out there and what has worked for other bar exam takers, then it is worth looking for additional materials. I wish you all the best for your exam preparation and your professional career.