Study Smart for the Michigan Bar Exam: Subjects Most Worth Your Time
If you are looking to study smart for the Michigan bar exam, it is helpful to study the subjects that will be worth the most points on the exam! Not all subjects are tested equally. So you should not treat them all equally when you study. Here, we rank the subjects that are most worth your time.
NOTE: Michigan is now administering the Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) as of the February 2023 exam. This post will no longer be updated. Please go here for a UBE frequency chart.
Study Smart for the Michigan Bar Exam: Subjects Most Worth Your Time
There are seven Multistate Bar Exam (MBE) subjects that will show up on the multiple-choice portion of the bar exam, which is worth 50% of your score in Michigan. These subjects are Contracts & Sales, Criminal Law & Procedure, Constitutional Law, Civil Procedure, Evidence Torts, Real Property. There will be 25 questions on each of these subjects, so they are each worth 1/7th of your MBE score. You should know all of these subjects well if you want to study smart for the Michigan Bar Exam. This is explained more below
Michigan Essay Subjects
There are 24 potential essay subjects that could show up on the essay portion of the Michigan bar exam but there are only 15 essay questions. These are Contracts, Sales, Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, Constitutional Law, State & Federal Practice (Civil Procedure), Evidence Torts, Real Property, Agency, Partnership, Corporations, Commercial Paper/Negotiable Instruments, Creditors’ Rights, Conflicts of Law, Domestic Relations (Family Law), Equity, No-Fault, Personal Property, Professional Responsibility, Secured Transactions, Trusts, Wills. These subjects are also shown in the chart above. However, the 24 essay subjects are not tested equally. Some are tested more than others, as you can see.
So, if you want to study smart for the Michigan Bar Exam, which subjects are the most worth your time? We have ranked them below.
1. Criminal Law and Procedure (45-55 points)
Criminal Law and Procedure is the most important subject because you will see 25 MBE questions on it as well as a 10-point Criminal Law essay question and a 10-point Criminal Procedure question. This makes for a minimum of 45 points! However, some exams (including the February 2018 exam) also include something that is arguably classified as Criminal Procedure in the Constitutional Law question. For example, in February 2018, the confrontation clause was tested in the Constitutional law question. (This is typically classified as Criminal Procedure by the Michigan Board of Law Examiners, though it is classified as Evidence by other state bars.) In the past, sobriety checkpoints and other 4th Amendment issues have been tested as Constitutional Law. So, really Criminal Law and Procedure could make up 55 points total.
2. Contracts or Sales (35-45 points)
Contracts and Sales is the next most important set of subjects because you are guaranteed 25 MBE questions and you will also see a 10-point Contracts essay question (and perhaps a 10-point Sales question). So Contracts and Sales will be worth 35-45 points on the bar exam! Note: Sales has been less popular as Secured Transactions, Creditors’ Rights, and other subjects are tested more, but we think it will make a comeback!
3. Evidence, Real Property, State & Federal Practice (Civil Procedure) (35 points)
Evidence, Real Property, and Civil Procedure will all be worth 25 points on the MBE. And they virtually always show up on the essay portion of the exam (as you can see from the chart above), making them a virtually guaranteed 35 points!
4. Constitutional Law and Torts (25-35 points)
Constitutional Law and Torts will both be worth 25 points on the MBE as there are 25 multiple-choice questions that cover each of these subjects. Constitutional Law usually shows up on the essay portion of the bar exam (up until July 2017 it was pretty much guaranteed) though, as mentioned above, some questions classified as Constitutional Law would be more appropriately classified as Criminal Procedure.
Torts shows up on the essay portion more often than not. Though sometimes No-Fault will be tested in its place.
5. Domestic Relations (Family Law) and Personal Property (10 Points)
There are no MBE subjects that cover Domestic Relations (i.e., Family Law) or Personal Property but they virtually always show up on the essay portion of the Michigan Bar Exam. Thus, you can expect these subjects to be worth about 10 points.
6. Corporations, Wills, Trusts, and Workers Compensation (likely worth 10 points)
These essay subjects tend to show up on more essay exams than not so they are next in line for being the most worth your time! You can see that they do not always show up (especially in recent years). Thus, it is possible you will not see some of them at all on the bar exam. However, if you are trying to study smart for the Michigan Bar Exam, you should still know these subjects well.
7. Agency, Partnership, Conflicts, Creditors’ Rights, Equity, Commercial Paper/Negotiable Instruments, No-Fault, Professional Responsibility, and Secured Transactions (perhaps worth 10 points)
Each of these subjects is less likely to appear than the other subjects above. These are not tested on the MBE but they occasionally show up on the essay exam, especially in recent years. These subjects are still important to learn so if you want to study smart for the Michigan bar exam, do not ignore them! However, given that statistically speaking, some of these subjects won’t appear on the exam at all, they are not worth your time as much as other subjects.
We hope you enjoyed this post! If you have any questions, feel free to contact us or post in the comments below!
Looking to Pass the Bar Exam?
- 🌟Bar Exam Free Resource Center: Access our most popular free guides, webinars, and resources to set you on the path to success.
- Free Bar Exam Guides: Expert advice on the MBE, the MEE, passing strategies, and overcoming failure.
- Free Webinars: Get insight from top bar exam experts to ace your preparation.
Check out our February 2024 bar exam sale to save on our one-sheets, bar exam outlines, and mastery classes!
- 🏆One-Sheets: Our most popular product! Master the Bar Exam with these five-star rated essentials.
- Bar Exam Outlines: Our comprehensive and condensed bar exam outlines present key information in an organized, easy-to-digest layout.
- Exclusive Mastery Classes: Dive deep into highly tested areas of the MBE, MEE, MPT, and CA bar exams in these live, one-time events.
- Specialized Private Tutoring: With years of experience under our belt, our experts provide personalized guidance to ensure you excel.
- Bar Exam Courses: On Demand and Premium options tailored to your needs.
- Bar Exam Crash Course + Mini Outlines: A great review of the topics you need to know!