Presentation on theme: "THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME"— Presentation transcript:
1THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME Bar Exam consists ofMPRE (ethics) offered 3x/year/Friday – Nov., March or Aug.Two day exam – Feb. and JulyDay one:State essays -- Ill- 2 ILL Civ pro and one ILL equityMissouri – 4 essays – Ad Law, Remedies, Mo civ Pro, Trusts, Family, Estates & MEE topics – Mo questions
2THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME MPT -- Multistate performance exam – lawyering tasksWriting jury instructions, wills, memos, client letters, opening statements, etc.-- MEE -- National essays –Day Two:200 multiple choice questions
3THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME You must –Apply for the bar in your jurisdictionUpdate 1LRegister for the bar exam for the time you want to take itRegister for the MPREACT – on linePay the applicable fees by the deadlinesSee the rules of your jurisdictionDon’t rely on BarBri for the dates and fees
4THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME MEE- essays -- answer six of sevenTopics:Civil pro (tested 14)* Wills and estates (14)Family (14) Corporations (11)Sales (9) Commercial paper (14)Secured transaction (12) Conflicts (9)**Agency and partnership (12)Trust (12) and future interests (5)Each state decides which six questions to use.*Between** often joined with another questionQuestions are not labeled as to topic area
5THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME HOW HAS SIU DONE RECENTLY?Between 1976 and 1994, SIU exceeded the state’s pass rate for first time takers in all but 4 yearsMost rates were 90%s yearsOr 80%s yearsIllinois’ pass rate was in the 80-90% range
6THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME Some recent comparisonsIn July, 1997SIU % IL – 87%In July, 1998SIU ILIn July, 1999SIU ILIn July, 2000SIU ILIn July, 2001SIU ILIn July 2002SIU ILIn July 2003SIU IL -- 86In July 2004SIU IL -- 86
7THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME In February, 1997SIU % IL – 84%In February, 1998SIU ILIn February, 1999SIU ILIn February, 2000SIU ILIn February, 2001SIU ILIn February, 2002SIU ILIn February, 2003SIU IL – 77IN February, 2004SIU IL --
8THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME Faculty have helped students who failed review their exams on five occasions. Some conclusions reached by the faculty were:1. The exam is hard.2. Our students (those who failed) did not know the material in sufficient depth.3. Organization of answers was important – IRAC4. OtherApplying law to facts is criticalOn MPT, follow directionsThose in the fourth quarter are at risk.Students must take preparation for the bar seriously.
9THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME The most common mistakes we find –Students do not state the issue. It may be obvious but state it.Students do not state the law or if they do, they do it imprecisely.Students fail to do factual analysis. This is the most common problem we see on the bar exams of students who failed.Students do not state a conclusion or their conclusion is inconsistent with their analysis.Answers are poorly organized.
10THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME The most common problem we hear –I did not do enough practice questionsI panicked/froze/could not sleep/had a panic attackI worked/got sick/had to deal with familyI did not take a review course
11THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME What has worked?Menus – more bar classes(But taking every bar course will not help if you cannot reason like a lawyer (use IRAC) and write in an organized fashion)Students taking bar exam more seriouslyBar exam workshopsStudents improving the organization and analysis portion of their essay examsStudents invested the time and moneyThis is not the time to save money.
12THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME What can I do to ensure my success the first time?Know the law very wellDevote 8-10 hours a day to bar prepLearn to use IRAC effectivelyDo factual analysis.Write in an organized fashion, using IRACLive healthy lifestyle.Get some exercise and eat decently while studying.Model life style of exam 8-5
13THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME By Now –Select a bar review course.Consider MPBR – 6 day – along with BarBriKnow where you will live this winter.Have a plan to finance the summer.DO NOT WORK. Do Not Work. Do not work.Free up Jan. and Feb. from personal, social, financial, and family responsibilities.
14THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME By now -Have a hotel reserved for the bar exam.DO NOT WAIT FOR YOUR TICKET.SEE MAP IN 114.Have a transportation plan worked out.You will want to avoid driving in Chicago.
15THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME What happens if I failTake it the next timeWe will still love you. Your family will still love you.The sun will rise.But there are consequencesLose a jobDon’t get a jobKeep a job but at lower salaryIncur costs of re-examination and need for study and no wages, again for the period of study
16THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME Where will it be givenChicago – 5 sites – Water TowerCheck your stateWhenLast Tuesday & Wednesday of Feb.Illinois MissouriTues. 8:15 – 12:15 7:30-12:151:30 – 5:15 1:30 – 4:45Wed. 8:30 – 12:15 7:30 – 11:151:30 – 5: :15-3:30 *
17THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME Bring –#1 or 2 lead pencils & blue or black non-erasable ink pens, erasers, sharpenerPhoto ID and blue seat voucher/letterSweater, jacketWatchEar plugsMedicine – pre-approved, properly packaged & labeled meds
18THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME Do NOT bring –Food, water, gum, candyMissouri – water is in roomScrap paper, notes, booksPurse, bag, briefcase, back packput in common areaWatches with alarms, pagers, computers, cell phones, PDAs, head phones, etc.Hats (Missouri)
19THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME You may leave to use restroomSign in and outYou may leave to eat or drink when signed out to restroomhow to get to food/drink??You may not smoke except outside before or after or at lunchYou may not access purses, etc., except at lunch or afterwards
20THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME If you need medicine –get pre-approval nowIf need accommodation –
21THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME No scrap paperWrite on exam bookletWrite only on 4 pages lined paperNo typingMissouri – Computer Experiment
22THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME Help? I am worried. I get at or just below the median and I cannot figure out what more I can do??????Let’s figure out how to maximize the points on the essays and MPT – let’s use what you know and make it count for the most pointsHelp on essay writing and on MPT.
23THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME Now I am really worried. I am in the bottom quarter. (well, 25% of us have to be!)You are at risk.Follow this advice and improve your chances significantly.Be sure to take a bar review course. Do not work.Study the long outlines, not the short outlines.Listen to the tapes; take notes; be an active learner.Do practice exams. Do practice exams. Do practice exams.Take advantage of the workshops offered.Take PMBR.6 DAY SEMINAR FOCUSED ON MULTIPLE CHOICE ONLY.
24THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME Wow! I am relieved. I always do well on exams. Don’t be too relieved!Anyone can have a crisis during the summer that affects ability to prepare.Anyone can have a bad day.People in the upper half do fail.Heed this advice. Do not get cocky.This exam will be the worst two days of your life excluding personal family crisis, war, or the CPA exam.
25THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME All this organization takes a lot of time. I got through law school without getting organized.NOW HEAR THIS:The bar examiners have about 2.5 minutes to read each answer.An answer that is easy to read and looks like others’ answers will get a quick passing score.The easier it is for the examiner to find your thinking, the more points you will receive.R.J. says organization is important on the bar.
26THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME So, get on with it.What are the secrets to maximizing points on the essay exams?Using IRAC, using IRAC, using IRAC!!!!!Writing in an organized fashionDoing factual analysis.Of course, knowing the law well helps.Being healthy.WorkshopsCome , do, learn.
27THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME But this will take a long time! You bet and you only have 30 minutes per question.See the need for practice.If you are a slow reader, you must do a lot of practice this summer.If you are slow thinker, you must do a lot of practice this summer.If you are a not-so-good thinker or writer, you must do a lot of practice this summer.
28THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME Essay exams are worth up to five points.You will miss one or two questions. You can pass if you have some 4s and 5s to offset the 1s and 2s on one or two questions. But you will fail if you have 3s on questions you know and then miss one or two questions.An organized answer will go far toward getting those 4-5 points on areas where you do know the law.Many students who failed scored 3 points on questions they knew when they could have gotten 4-5 if they had done factual analysis and had organized to produce a clear and concise answer.
29THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME If you are taking the bar exam here, we will offer some additional workshops.We will also offer a one day, 6-hour essay exam which will be a mock of the first day of the bar exam.Can you hand write for six hours?Can you pace yourself and stay focused for six hours?If you are not here, what can we do to help?
30THE KEY TO PASSING THE BAR EXAM THE FIRST TIME In conclusion,The bar exam is hard. You must prepare and prepare well.The School helps ensure that you learn most of the topics examined by required classes and menus.The skills classes will be helpful on the MPT.We offer workshops on writing exams.We offer advice.Now it is up to you.