A lot of students wonder if the Uniform Bar Exam is easier than a state bar exam. We get this question a lot when bar exam results are released as students consider taking the Uniform Bar Exam instead of their state bar exam.
In this post, we answer the question “Is the Uniform Bar Exam easier than a State Bar Exam?”
The general answer is: Yes the Uniform Bar Exam is easier than a state bar exam.
Below we tell you exactly why the Uniform Bar Exam is easier than a state bar exam. However, if you are wondering what, exactly, the Uniform Bar Exam is, check out this post first!
The Uniform Bar Exam tests fewer subjects than most state bar exams.
The Uniform Bar Exam tests 14 subjects total. The MBE (which is administered in virtually every state) tests Civil Procedure, Contracts & Sales, Criminal Law & Procedure, Constitutional Law, Evidence, Torts, and Real Property.
The multistate essay exam (MEE), which is administered in Uniform Bar Exam states in lieu of a “state-specific” essay portion, tests: Agency & Partnership, Corporations & LLCs, Conflicts of Law, Family Law, Secured Transactions, Decedents’ Estates, and Trusts in addition to the MBE subjects above. There are six essays to answer in thirty minutes apiece.
The UBE does not test tricky subjects like Commercial Paper. Nor does it test weird state Civil Procedure, Professional Responsibility, Workers’ Compensation–or a variety of other subjects that you may see on a state bar exam.
The Uniform Bar Exam does not require you to know state-specific laws.
One of the hardest things about taking a state bar exam is memorizing two sets of laws for each subject. Students complain about memorizing say, the “Virginia” version of Civil Procedure and then the version of Civil Procedure they have to know for the MBE. It can get complicated, especially for states that like to test state distinctions in the essay portion.
The Uniform Bar Exam is well-written and more predictable than many state bar exams.
The Uniform Bar Exam has a “testing” process whereby mock students will take and evaluate an exam before it is given. The National Conference of Bar Examiners goes through a process to ensure a fair test. That is unlike many state bar exams, where a Board of Law Examiners (which sometimes consists of members that are far removed from law school) will write essay exam questions. There is no “test” to see if it is fair, and sometimes the questions can be off the wall in comparison with what examinees expect.
The Uniform Bar Exam has an MPT portion, which is worth 20% of your score.
This may not be welcoming news to all, but the MPT portion is a closed-universe test (meaning, you do not have to know any “outside” law) and it is quite easy to improve your MPT score through practice. It is also 20% of your score! This is the same as 70 MBE questions.
It is easy for students who take the MPT portion seriously to improve their score significantly through practice. This makes the Uniform Bar Exam easier than many state bar exams, which only contain one MPT (usually worth around 10% of your score) or don’t test the MPT portion at all.
The Uniform Bar Exam is a two-day test.
The Uniform Bar Exam consists of two days, with six hours of testing on each day. It is relatively standard to have a two-day exam. However, some states contain exams that are over two days (e.g., 2.5 days or even 3 days). The Uniform Bar Exam is more manageable and less exhausting than these state bar exams!
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