I Failed the Maine Bar Exam? What Should I Do Now?
If you failed the Maine bar exam, you are not alone! Maine used to administer a state bar exam but switched to the Uniform Bar Exam in 2017. Since then, bar passage rates have fallen nationwide. Here, we give you a step-by-step guide on what to do if you failed the Maine bar exam.
Update: If you failed the Maine Bar Exam, check out this new, excellent, and free guide on what to do if you failed the Uniform Bar Exam.
I Failed the Maine Bar Exam? What Should I Do Now?
Step 1: Let yourself take it all in.
There is no feeling like failing the bar exam. It is a combination of dread, anxiety, disappointment, anger, frustration — among many other emotions. Unfortunately, there is no quick-fix to getting past these emotions. However, they will get better in time! Remember you are not alone, thousands of people fail bar exams nationwide every administration!
So, give yourself a couple of days to take it all in. We recommend you read this note to those who failed the bar exam. You may also want to read over this list of famous people who failed the bar exam so you know you are not alone! Lastly, you may want to read over some quotes we recommend for those who failed the bar exam.
This step takes some people a day. For others, it takes a week or a little longer. If you find yourself in a deep depression or sadness after too long, it is worth it to seek professional help.
Step 2: Study your Maine Bar Exam score report and request your essays if possible.
Examine your score report!
Maine’s passing Uniform Bar Exam score in 276.
This is significantly higher than many jurisdictions. In fact, many people pass in other states by scoring a 260. Maine’s standards are going to be high, so you need to plan accordingly.
Examine your score report. Did you fall short on the essay portion or MBE portion? Don’t just assume it was one! The farther your score was from 138 on the scaled MBE portion, the more help you may need — especially because the MBE is worth 50% of your score!
The breakdown of your Maine score is as follows:
- the Multistate Bar Exam (MBE) is worth 50%,
- the Multistate Essay Exam (MEE) is worth 30% and
- the Multistate Performance Test (MPT) is worth 20%.
Request your essays!
Lastly, if possible, request your essays from the state bar. Nobody likes to relive what they wrote on exam day. However, this information can be invaluable. Perhaps you did not organize your essays well, or you wrote too little, or recalled too little law. You can gather a lot of valuable information by reviewing this written portion!
Step 3: Figure out how you studied for the Maine bar exam.
Now that you have examined what you wrote on exam day, it is time to zoom out and look at your overall preparation. This step is not fun but it is necessary if you want to pass the Maine bar exam the next time you take it! You want to collect as much information about your last approach so you can figure out what to change moving forward.
Some questions you should ask if you failed the Maine bar exam are as follows:
- Did you study effectively and productively?
- How long did you study for? (Was it enough time?)
- Was your bar prep course (if you used one) helpful in preparing you for both the MBE and written portion of the exam?
- Did you practice using real MBE questions and real essay questions?
- How many timed exams did you take?
- Did you memorize the black letter law for the most highly tested issues?
Step 4: Devise a new approach for the upcoming Maine bar exam.
Preparing the same way the second time around will likely get you the same result. So, find a way to change your approach! And we truly do not recommend you take your commercial course again and you can read more about that here . . .) You need to do something different if you want a different (and passing) result on the next bar exam you take.
By now, after completing Steps 2 and 3, you should have an idea of where you fell short both in terms of the section(s) you fell short on (MBE, MEE, MPT) and in terms of your personal preparation (maybe your outlines did not prepare you well enough, perhaps your bar review course did not fit your study style, perhaps you did not get feedback on enough of your essays, etc.).
Now that you know where you fell short, how can you change your study strategy for next time? It will be a new exam, remember, so it will also be a clean slate!
Using a different approach is key to passing. If you are interested, here are some great resources we offer that are worth checking out. We have listed them in order of what you may need help with if you failed the Maine bar exam. Our resources are extremely high quality and tailored to what is tested!
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