Why to take the MPT Seriously
Unfortunately, many students ignore the MPT (that is, the Multistate Performance Test) portion of the bar exam. Or, they put it off to the very end and end up not studying much for it.
Inevitably, when they are taking the multistate performance test portion of the bar exam, they run out of time, or they end up writing an MPT answer that is not what the bar exam graders are looking for. Sometimes, this throws students off of their game for the remaining portions of the bar exam. And, unfortunately sometimes, these students fail the bar exam – primarily because of low MPT scores! It takes a bar exam under their belt to realize how important the MPT is! So why take the MPT seriously?
5 Reasons to Take the MPT Seriously
1. It is worth 20% of your score in UBE jurisdictions—the same as 70 scored MBE questions!
Don’t believe us? There are 175 scored MBE questions. These 175 questions are worth 50% of your score. (Which means 70 of those questions are worth 20% of your score!). You probably have an idea of how hard it is to increase your MBE score. It takes a lot of energy to even see a small score increase.
Put some of that energy into increasing your MPT score. With a little practice, you can make great strides very quickly. This will make a difference when you are talking about 20 percent of your score!
(Note, if you are not in a UBE jurisdiction, check to see how much the MPT portion is worth. It is likely worth a minimum of 10% of your score—the same as 35 MBE questions!)
2. It is the only portion of the bar exam that will not expect you to know any law.
The MPT is truly a “skills” test. While it is true that you may need to know very general principles of law, the MPT is going to give you basically everything you need to know! That is, it will give you the law (in the library) and it will give you the facts (in the file). Then it will give you a task memo to tell you what you have to do. You do not have to come into the exam with thousands of points of law memorized. You will not have to extensively review any material prior to taking the MPT.
It really comes down to: How well can you follow directions? And how well can you do it in the allotted time? If you can follow directions well—and complete the task within the time guidelines—you will be on your way to a higher bar exam score.
3. Practicing MPTs ahead of time gives you a huge advantage.
Since many students do not take the MPT seriously, you will be at a huge advantage if you practice MPTs early and often. You will look like a star student in comparison with your peers who are struggling to figure out what to do during the actual exam. Again, a little bit of regular practice can make a big difference.
4. It boosts your confidence!
It can also give you a confidence boost. If your jurisdiction administers the MPTs in the morning (as UBE jurisdictions have been doing!), you can walk into the MEE’s that much more confidently in the afternoon. And you can walk into the MBE portion the next day already feeling good about how you are doing. It can set you up to have and maintain a positive attitude and mindset when you take the bar exam.
5. It increases your chances of passing the bar exam.
This is the most obvious reason to take the MPT seriously. As mentioned above, it is worth the same as 70 multiple choice questions or 4 MEE questions. If you take the MPT seriously, develop strategies for different types of tasks, and practice ahead of time, you will walk into the bar exam that much more confident.
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