How To Get A Major MBE Score Boost
The MBE is arguably the most important part of the bar exam. While a good score may not guarantee you pass the entire exam, a bad score could guarantee you fail. Therefore, it is important to rack up as many points as possible on the MBE portion. For an MBE score boost, check out these 5 tips!
How To Get A Major MBE Score Boost
1. Memorize the law.
This tip is first because it is the fastest way to boost your score. Memorizing the rules for highly tested areas of law like negligence, contract formation, and hearsay can provide an immediate bump to your score. When we say “memorize the law,” we do not mean just know the general concepts of the law. Instead, you should know the nitty-gritty details. You need to know the elements for each rule. If you can memorize the law, then you can instantly recognize the rule being tested in each MBE question. This instantly makes the question easier and saves you time as you move through each section.
2. Review ALL of your answers on practice MBEs.
After answering a set of questions, set aside time to go back and review the answers and explanations. Everyone immediately reviews explanations for questions they got wrong. However, many students skip over reviewing the questions they got right. Failing to review all MBE questions (right and wrong) is a missed opportunity. Reading explanations helps solidify the rules in your mind and helps with memorization (in tip #1). In addition, you may have gotten an answer correct, but for the wrong reason. This could lead to incorrect answers in the future. Setting aside an hour to review each answer after you complete a set will help you memorize the rule and better understand how to approach the various questions on the bar.
3. Practice with real MBE questions.
There are only so many ways that the bar exam can ask questions on evidence and contracts. Questions patterns are often very similar from one year to the next. If you practice questions that have already been asked on previous exams, you will gain a much better understanding of how the bar will test different topics. Some students will review questions that have been created by bar prep companies. While these questions can be helpful in learning the law, they do not give students the opportunity to see how the bar examiners typically word questions or identify common tricks used by examiners to stump students. If you would like to practice with real MBE questions, check out our NEW Qbank here.
4. Shoot for quality over quantity.
If you are struggling with your MBE scores, the key is not to do 100 questions per day and hope that your score goes up. You need to be more thoughtful and strategic in your approach to learning the material. The most important thing to do is slow down and make sure you understand the rule being tested in each question. Rather than doing 100 in a day, decrease it to 25 questions in the morning and 25 in the afternoon. For each set, do not time yourself and really work through each question. (You can build up speed later. It will also come naturally once you better understand the legal principle being tested.) Then, review all your answers and read the explanations for each question. Allocating more time to work through questions allows you to learn more about the law as well as the patterns bar examiners use for the various topics on the MBE. For more advice on how to break down MBE questions during review, check out our method to approaching bar questions here.
5. Be aware of “obvious” errors you make and work to eliminate them
“Obvious” errors are mistakes that are unrelated to your actual knowledge of the law. These errors include:
- Filling in the wrong bubble
- Not reading the question closely, or
- Not reading all of the answers closely.
These errors are extremely common, but also easily correctable. If you make such errors, make notes to yourself to help prevent such mistakes in the future. If you know that you misread questions on your last practice MBE, be mindful of that during your next practice session to get into the habit of carefully reading the questions. Being mindful of these errors can help you build new, better habits when taking the test.
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