Five Tips To Excel On the Online MEE and MPT
Like many of us, you may be used to using pen and paper in your studies. The switch to online education and testing, therefore, has profound implications for students who traditionally fare better when armed with pen and pencil. Here are 5 tips to prepare you to take the online MEE and MPT, without forfeiting your score. Be sure to check out related posts, such as our Q&A with a recent July 2020 online bar exam taker and how to prepare for an online bar exam!
Five Tips To Excel On the Online MEE and MPT
1. Take a No-Notes Approach for 50% Of Your Practice MPT and MEEs.
Being able to quickly read and comprehend a question or prompt is integral to succeeding on the bar exam, whether you are taking it on paper or online. This is because time is of the essence on a bar exam. Taking too many notes can be a time-consuming crutch. Additionally, writing things down may not be worthwhile if you have to spend additional precious time transferring everything to your answer.
Therefore, it is important to practice taking as many MPT and MEEs on your computer, early on in your studies. This will help acclimate you to the exam so you know exactly what to expect. You’ll be less inclined to take extensive notes and instead spend your limited time writing your answer! When practicing, we suggested you attempt at least half of your practice MPTs and MEEs without taking many notes.
2. Read Quickly Through the Prompt Once
Reading through the prompt one time fairly quickly gives you the general gist of the subject matter and what is being asked of you. You may still not fully understand what is being asked of you (at least early on), but eventually, you will.
If ideas start to flow to you after that first read-through of the questions, jot them down in your Word Document for answering the question in the format of an outline. Perhaps you have been presented with a Torts question and you remember all the elements of Negligence. Write those down! You can come back to them later to fill it in with facts from the MPT and MEE itself. Try to keep your document as neat as possible, so you will have to fuss less later with reorganizing and editing.
3. Read the Prompt Again & Put It in Your Own Words
Read the question again, this time with a detective’s eye. At this stage, you are looking to the question for clues that lead you to provide the correct answer. Ask yourself: Have you seen questions similar to this? Are there parts of the questions that could be removed and it still make sense? Could you rephrase the question in your own words?
If you can rephrase the question in your own simpler terms, write that down. This will keep you focused on the task at hand while you read through the MPT and MEEs themselves. It serves as a reminder, that you understand since it’s in your own words, that you can glance at it and make sure you are still reading for the correct information. Many times, it is actually the wording of the question that throws us off, so it is essential to establish what exactly is being asked of you in order to succeed on online MPTs and MEEs.
4. Read Through the MPT and MEE
You may not be able to highlight and underline things on online MPT and MEEs. If you see something potentially relevant to the question, write it down in your mini-outline you’ve created from Step 3 (if you have one) or somewhere in the Word document.
5. Make it a Bit More Tactile
Move your hands around to help you focus, especially if you’re a kinesthetic learner. (Check out this Bar Exam Learning Style Quiz here.) Tapping your thumb against your index finger may help you stay present and focused, and give you something to do, other than writing. This may be helpful for students who simply need to do something with their hands.
Another suggestion is to highlight certain parts of the question with your cursor. This would be especially helpful for both kinesthetic learners and visual learners. This way you can immediately identify what is being asked. Highlighting with your cursor isn’t the same as a built-in high light feature. However, it can be useful for those who struggle with visually tracking the questions.
In general, you’ll want to try to refrain from using traditional writing tools (pen and paper) as much as possible. Practice on a computer as much as you can for an online exam. It will help you learn how to work on the computer better and therefore improve your ability to perform on online MPTs and MEEs.
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