Monday, July 2, 2018
For most students, the bar review simulated MBE was last week. Many students walk out of that test discouraged. They don't receive as many correct as they wanted and wonder if the passing percentage is attainable. It is a rough test and a hard feeling, but you do still have time to raise your scores above the pass line.
Here are a few pieces of information from my experience. You should get more correct on the test in July than you did on the practice test. Every year, I see students make significant improvements (20 questions or more) by the end of bar prep. Also, the goal isn't to have the highest score in the country. You just need it high enough to pass. The national average on simulated tests right now is normally about 55-56% correct, but if you are in the 45-53% range, you can still make up the points. An 80% first time taker pass rate means you only need a higher score than 20% of people, not 50%. Even if you aren’t above 20%, you can still get there.
The key is to use the feedback to improve. I highly encourage everyone to sit down with the Academic Support or Bar Support person at your law school. Bring the score analysis from your bar review company. Create an improvement plan for July. You can absolutely improve 20 questions by getting 3 more questions correct in each subject. Everyone can learn enough law for 3 questions per subject.
Efficient studying in July gets the 3 extra questions per subject. Most of June focused on the MBE, so much of July will be spent on essays. Most students worry about how to find time to improve. I agree that no one has time to add in an extra 2-3 hours memorizing outlines for each MBE subject, but you don’t need to. My biggest suggestion is to spend 10-15 minutes at the end of the night on the most important sub-topics. Use the score report to identify 1-2 small topics you struggled on that are highly tested in each MBE subject (ie – hearsay, duty of care, etc.). Spend 10-15 minutes right before bed looking at flashcards, an outline, or even practice questions on only that sub-topic. Switch subjects every day between now and the bar. The focused study on only areas needing improvement will help gain the couple questions per subject. Focused studying is the key in July.
I want everyone to watch this video. It is only about 3 minutes. Most students feel like what happened 1 minute 17 seconds into the video. It is normal to feel that way. What matters is what you do next. Get back up and sprint to the finish to conquer the bar!