Note: This post has been updated for January 2018! If one of your New Year’s resolutions is to pass the bar exam, you are not alone! Many students are making it their goal to pass the bar exam and be done with it! If you are taking the February bar exam, you are probably well aware that the bar exam is fast approaching. There are a mere seven weeks until the bar exam! So now is the time to study as efficiently as possible. Please read the below tips to see how to do this!
If you are taking the July bar exam, you are in a little less of a rush. I would recommend you read our 25 best bar exam tips here. This is a great start. You should also sign up for our JD Advising early bar prep email campaign. We will send you a bar exam tip each week. These are our absolute best bar exam tips that we have used to help thousands of students pass the bar exam! You can read more about our JD Advising early bar prep email campaign here.
How to Pass the Bar Exam:
1. Evaluate your study schedule. Eliminate!
You may find that you are doing some things out of habit that are actually not helping you! Some of the common things that we hear students say are a “waste of time” are:
- Making flashcards for everything. If you make flashcards but never look at them, stop! (Maybe try a new strategy—write and rewrite the law you don’t know, etc. Read more about how to effectively use bar exam flashcards here.)
- Barbri AMPS. 90% of students seem to hate these. 10% seem to love them. Plenty of students pass the bar exam without doing AMPs. If they don’t work for you, stop doing them!
- Listening to lecture. This is not to say that all lectures are bad. But they are certainly time-consuming. If you already feel super-comfortable with a subject, try speeding up the lecture or omitting it altogether. Many students tend not to be auditory learners so bar exam lectures are not as helpful to them.
The first step to maximizing your chances of passing the bar exam is to get rid of things that do not directly further that goal.
2. Make sure you are doing what you need to do to pass the bar exam!
This means that you have good outlines, you understand the law, have it memorized, and can apply it to fact patterns! If you find that you are simply doing questions nonstop and never improving your score, then come up with a new game plan.
A common mistake we see students make is they never memorize their outlines. Make sure you are spending time memorizing your outlines (this may be the key to increasing your MBE score and essay score!).
Also, revamp your approach to practicing. Try slowing down–you may see your score improve dramatically! Here’s our step-by-step approach on how to improve your MBE score. Many students find our approach much more effective than, say, answering 100 questions a day. We also have an MBE diagnostic if you are truly wondering on how to improve your MBE score (and now is the best time to take it!).
3. If you don’t know something, get help.
There are a lot of ways to get help:
- Watch the lecture again if you found it helpful
- Ask professors or mentors or friends for help if you trust their expertise in a given area
- Get private tutoring in a subject or skill (such as MBE assistance)
Many students do not want to spend even more money on bar prep. You may feel as though you have already spent way more than you intended. But what is worse than spending extra money now, for most students, is to have to take the bar exam again. Not only does that increase the costs of having to pay for the bar exam again, and pay for a course in some cases, but it also delays your license another six months or so. Which is six months of putting your life on hold. Read this eye-opening post about how failing the bar exam is not in one’s budget.
4. Attend a seminar
We have a few wonderful seminars—which are filling up! One is completely tailored to the multistate bar exam, which all states except Louisiana have. One is completely tailored to the multistate essay exam, which all uniform bar exam states, have. The other is completely tailored to the Michigan bar exam.
In the seminar (which takes approximately 2.5 to 3 hours), we go over:
- the highly-tested areas of law on the essay portion of the exam,
- our predictions for which subjects are coming up on the exam,
- you will receive a handout of approximately 40 pages that goes over the highly-tested portions on all subjects tested on the essay portion of the exam,
- we give tips for the last two weeks of bar exam preparation,
- we discuss recent cases that could appear on the bar exam,
If you are interested, sign up sooner rather than later as spots fill up fast!
5. Buy our book!
If you are taking the UBE, it is an absolutely fantastic deal to purchase our book of MEE one-sheets. These provide an outstanding, efficient approach to the MEE.
If you are in Michigan, purchase our book on How to Pass the Michigan Bar Exam. Many students have credited this book as the reason they passed the bar exam.