Five Essential Tips for Repeat UBE Takers
Finding out you failed the Uniform Bar Exam is certainly an emotional moment. It is important to remember that you are not alone in this! The UBE is a very tough exam, with thousands of people who fail each administration. However, keep in mind that this is not a reflection of your abilities nor a prediction of your chances to go on and be successful. It just means that you need to take a look at what went wrong last time and commit to giving it all you’ve got on your next attempt! To help you out, this post offers five essential tips for repeat UBE takers.
Five Essential Tips for Repeat UBE Takers
1. Take some time to mentally process what happened
As we mentioned, failing the UBE is a lot to process and there are a lot of feelings involved. You might experience any level of sadness, anger, desperation, or even apathy. All of these emotions are normal. To begin our tips for repeat UBE takers, you need to give yourself a chance to process this. It would not be healthy to just jump right into studying for the next UBE in this state of mind. You need to be approaching the UBE with as clear of a head a possible, which you cannot do if you are still on the emotional rollercoaster that failing the bar exam can put you on.
Take a step back. Let yourself feel – it’s okay. Work through your emotions instead of just bottling them up inside. Get yourself into a better place before you tackle how to pass the UBE on your next try. Use your support system and remember that you are not alone in what you are feeling. You are not weak. You are not stupid. You’ve made it this far for a reason. You can do this! Here’s some additional perspective for those who failed the bar exam.
2. Request your essays and MPTs
The second of our tips for repeat UBE takers is to request your essays and MPTs if your jurisdiction has a procedure for this. You might have to pay a small fee, but if you can afford this, it is worth it. In order to put yourself on the best path for the next UBE, you need to understand where you went wrong. Dissecting your score report can help, but knowing that you did poorly on the Constitutional Law essay only does so much. Why did you do poorly? Did you struggle to identify the issues? How often did you misstate the rule? Did you miss a fact or struggle to apply the law? Did you reach the incorrect conclusion?
Understanding why you lost the points that you did will help you identify your weaknesses and allow you to target your practice on improving in these areas. Any list of tips for repeat UBE takers needs to include advice that helps you figure out where you went wrong. Reviewing your essays and MPTs will definitely do that! Here are our tips on How to Interpret your Bar Exam Score Report.
3. Evaluate your approach to studying
The third of our tips for repeat UBE takers asks you to take a hard look at your approach to how you studied the last time. Now is not the time to make excuses for times you might have slacked off or to justify decisions you make. Your decisions might have been perfectly justified and it might well be the case that you couldn’t have done anything differently. But now you have to be brutally honest with yourself and evaluate what worked and what didn’t.
Did you participate in a commercial course? Were you satisfied with the materials you were given or the approach of the company? Or did you not give the course its fair shot? Identifying whether your course was a good fit for you is an excellent step. Identifying whether you put forth enough effort is also important, as it might not have been the course that was the problem. Are there particular study tools you found helpful? If you attended class in person, was that useful? Did lectures benefit you? How many practice MEEs and MPTs did you do? How many practice MBEs did you do?
Critically examining your approach to studying is one of the most valuable tips for repeat UBE takers. You don’t want to make the same mistakes a second time.
4. Commit to making a change
We just said that you don’t want to make the same mistakes again. Your goal is to make your next attempt at the UBE your last. Thus, the next of our tips for repeat UBE takers is to commit to making the necessary changes in how you studied. If you’ve identified that your course was not helping you learn, do not take it again. As the old adage goes, you shouldn’t do the same thing over and over again and expect different results. You need to make some changes. Find a course that meshes with your learning style and offers what you need. Make the time to work on those weaknesses that you’ve identified. Commit to making the adjustments you need to make.
5. Develop a plan and a study schedule customized to you
Last on our list of tips for repeat UBE takers is to develop a custom bar exam plan and study schedule. Check out our dedicated post on How Make an Effective UBE Study Schedule for Repeat Takers. You need to be secure in the knowledge that you are doing everything you can to pass, and one great way to do this is to have a plan. Having structure in your studying is critical to success. Figure out what course you are going to use, what supplements you might want to purchase, whether you want to seek help from a tutor, etc.
As the UBE gets close, establish a study schedule that allows you to focus on what you need to. Too often we see students get too attached to the schedule that their course might create for them. If you need to devote some extra time to Real Property, work that into your schedule. Struggle with the MEE? Block out some extra time to write full practice essays. If you struggled with timing, build some additional full practice exams into your schedule. Having a study schedule that is tailored to you will ensure that you are doing what you need to be doing, and not what someone else thinks you need to be doing. You know your strengths and weaknesses better than anyone. Your study schedule will put you on the path to success on the UBE!
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