The Best Ways To Practice MBE Questions
This blog post may seem, well, odd. Isn’t it straightforward? Don’t you just practice MBE questions by doing hundreds of them at a time or a set amount every day? Isn’t practicing MBE questions simply doing MBE questions? Well, not quite. Many students take the approach of more is better with total disregard for the process of practicing MBE questions. This post provides a blueprint for optimizing your MBE preparation so that on test day, your meticulous and persistent practice will kick in and pay back in bar exam pass dividends.
The Best Ways To Practice MBE Questions
Practice Real MBE Questions.
Again, this may seem very intuitive, but the truth is, many students don’t realize that they are spending their time practicing simulated MBE questions. While many bar exam preparation companies offer practice MBE questions, those questions were created by the company as opposed to the National Conference of Board Examiners (NCBE). The best way to prepare for the bar exam is by making sure you are practicing MBE questions that have appeared on prior bar exams because those questions are most like what you will get on your bar exam. Click here for access to NCBE licensed multiple-choice questions, and check out this post for more information about the value of practicing real MBE questions.
Practice in an Exam Like Environment.
While practicing MBE questions is certainly critical to success on the bar exam, how you practice MBE questions is also just as important! Many exam takers overlook the advantage of completing a practice exam or a series of MBE questions in exam-like conditions. For those who think practicing MBE questions in exam-like conditions simply means timing yourself, this is incomplete. Timing yourself is but one component of your “exam-like conditions.” However, you will likely not be taking the MBE in your bedroom. More likely there will be many other people sitting within six feet of you, synthetic lighting, and the ticking of either a clock or the sound of a flickering fuse on a digital clock.
To adequately prepare for the MBE, consider taking a 100 question MBE exam in a classroom at your law school or a study room at your local library. Wear what you plan to wear the day of the bar exam (including a mask if required by your jurisdiction). And do not cheat. Use the time as if it were in fact exam day and resist the urge to “just check this one answer” to see if you got it right. If 100 seems like too many, start with smaller sets and work your way up. By the first week of July, however, you should plan to do one set of 100 questions to help you start to build the stamina you will need on test day.
Review, Analyze, Reflect.
Once you’re done practicing MBE questions, be sure to review the answers. In doing so, don’t simply check to see if you got an answer right or wrong! If you answered a question correctly, check to make sure you answered correctly for the right reasons. If you answered a question wrong, read the explanation. Does the explanation make sense? If it doesn’t, is there someone with whom you could talk to see what you’re missing? After you’ve gone through all your answers, look for patterns. Is there a topic/subtopic where you seem to be struggling? Is there an area of the law where you appear to be excelling? Finally, take notes of what you’ve learned.
One way to really ingest this process is to then write about your experience in the third person. For example, take Billy. Billy has been practicing MBE questions in true exam-like questions. He has reviewed all his answers, determined where he is having difficulties, and then writes something like the following: Billy is struggling with the differences between strict and intermediate scrutiny. He has also had a difficult time applying the rule against perpetuities. Then, make an action plan to overcome these difficulties. Reach out to a trusted classmate, phone a faculty member, or contact someone at your bar prep program. Once you’ve worked through the issue take pen to paper again and explain what you learned.
Don’t forget, we’re here to help! JD Advising offers extensive assistance to help you navigate the MBE. For more information, check out our free MBE guide or find more materials using the links below.
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