I Failed The Mississippi Bar Exam. What Should I Do?
Mississippi bar exam results have been released for the February 2017 bar exam! As a very helpful commentator has pointed out, passage rates were unbelievably low this February. In fact, only 31 out of 87 examinees passed the bar exam for a 35.6% passage rate! This is dismal! We are not sure the reason for this large decrease in passing scores. It is strange for results to decrease so dramatically when 70% of the exam is nationalized (e.g. invented by the National Conference of Bar Examiners’ and used by several other states — both the MEE and MPT portion are used by about 40 other states and the MBE portion is used nationwide). It is also strange given that Mississippi’s passing score requirement, as we explain below, is a 132, which is not super-high in comparison with other states (which require passing scores that range a spectrum from 130 to 142).
Note: If you hear any rationale for the decrease in scores or if you have any educated guesses, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can update this post and better guide students. Or if you would like to voluntarily send your score reports and/or written portion in for us to help you decode, we are happy to do that. It would be helpful for us to see samples of this as well.
Needless to say, if you failed the Mississippi bar exam, you are not alone. In fact, you are in the majority. While it would be helpful to know the reason for this decrease in passing results, at this point, since no information is available, the best thing you can do is work with what you have — your score report, and the written portion of your exam. This information is invaluable as it will tell you what you, specifically, need to improve on.
In this post, we talk about what to do if you failed the Mississippi bar exam and we provide you with some advice on the process of having to study and sit for the Mississippi bar exam again. However, before diving into these steps, take some time to let yourself have a break. Read this note to those who failed the bar exam. You may even want to read over this list of famous people who failed the bar exam so you know you are not alone!
I Failed The Mississippi Bar Exam. What Should I Do?
1. Carefully review your score report.
The minimum passing scaled score on the Mississippi Bar Exam is 132 out of a possible 200 points, or 264 scaled to 400 points. Your overall score breaks down as follows: the MBE is worth 40%, the Mississippi specific essays are worth 30%, the MEE essays are worth 15% and the MPT is worth 15%. Mississippi is not “formally” a Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) jurisdiction. However, three parts of the exam that they offer (the MBE, MEE, and MPT)–or 70% of the exam–is identical to that of a UBE jurisdiction.
As stated above, Mississippi also requires applicants to also take a jurisdiction specific portion of the exam, in the form of 6 Mississippi essay questions.
When looking at your score report, analyze what area you fell short on – the MBE, the MEE, the MPTs, or some combination of them. The farther away from 132 you were on the MBE, the more help you need with it. And the farther you were away from 132 on the written portion, the more you will need to improve.
Studying your score report will help you decide where you need to change your study strategy. If you need help with this step, feel free to contact us here.
2. If possible, order your answers to the essays and MPT.
It is unclear on their website if Mississippi allows examinees to order their essay and MPT answers. Most states will allow you to either order your answers or set up an appointment to read over them.
To determine your approach to upcoming exam, it is necessary to figure out missed out on points on the last exam. Therefore, if possible, we recommend ordering your answers to the essays and MPT. (If you are permitted to do this, instructions on how to request your written answers will likely be with your score breakdown that is mailed the day results are released.)
While no one wants to relive his or her mistakes, this is an invaluable step if you failed the Mississippi bar exam. You may find, after rereading it, that you could not recall enough law. Or perhaps you had timing issues or structural issues you were unaware of. While nobody wants to relive the exam that they failed, this information can be invaluable in making sure you don’t repeat the same mistakes twice!
3. Reflect on how you studied for the Mississippi bar exam.
Figuring out why you failed the Mississippi bar exam is not something you want to do right after receiving your score report. So, as we stated above, take some time to come to grips with your score. Then, when you are ready, sit down and critically evaluate how you prepared for the exam. You want to ask your self a number of questions, including:
- Did you study effectively and productively?
- Did you study enough hours?
- 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?
- Did you practice enough MPTs?
- How many timed exams did you take?
- Did you memorize the black letter law for the most highly tested issues?
Please check out our post here for a comprehensive list of questions to ask yourself. No one knows the answers to these questions better than you do. It is an important step in figuring out your approach to the next exam.
4. Consider what bar prep options are available to you for the upcoming exam.
You have studied your score in Part 2 and you have studied how you prepared in Part 3. Hopefully by now you know what you need to change moving forward! So our final recommendation is to look into resources that will help you pass the Mississippi Bar Exam. If you are looking for a change from your commercial course, you are in luck! (In fact, we truly do not recommend you take your commercial course twice . . .) You need to do something different if you want a different (and passing) result!
So, here are some resources worth checking out. We have listed them in order of what you may need help with if you failed the Mississippi bar exam. Our resources are extremely high quality and tailored to what is tested!
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