Tag Archives: MPT

Bar Exam Tips

26 Feb

I haven’t gotten my score back, so I can’t offer any advice as to how to pass the bar. But I can tell you what let me survive the bar. 🙂

  1. READ THE INSTRUCTIONS FIRST! Line up everything you’ll need for the exam days, as well as orientation. Verify what proof of identity is required and whether anything else is needed for registration. You cannot arrive without the stuff needed to sign in.
  2. Look at what you can and cannot bring into the exam. It does you no good to orient yourself to a highlighting system in practice if highlighters are against the rules.  
  3. Practice Test with the tools given in the bar.  If you have pencils, then use pencils.  
  4. Give yourself an extra 15-30 minutes to arrive the first day of orientation. There will be plenty of people around to chat with, and it allows you the potential time for recovering if you get lost.  Make sure you know the route you’ll take to get there on time each day.
  5. Check out where food is located. In Iowa, the only nearby food is the Starbucks food cart, but it can run out of food after a while (or at least any options).  Everything else is a fair distance away.  
  6. Find out where to access drinks. Especially drinks at lower prices than the Starbucks. They wanted $3.50 for the same bottle that was $1.00 in the machine.
  7. Don’t eat stuffy foods. You’re going to be sitting for the next 6 hours in one spot with limited movement. Don’t eat anything that will stuff you up and make you sick.
  8. Don’t drink too much. You’re going to get 1-2 trips to the bathroom max. . . don’t drink too much water. 
  9. Don’t drink alcohol. Wait until after the exam–you cannot afford a hangover or to feel groggy the next day.
  10. SLEEPI know that everyone is already aware of this, but you need a decent night’s sleep.  The stress starts letting up the closer you get to finishing the bar, and by the end you’ll start feeling tired. It’s even worse when the rooms are warm and the multiple choice questions hit the boring stage.  Try to be as well rested as possible.
  11. Stop Stressing. It’s done; you have no more time to study or re-call anything else. Whatever happens is going to happen regardless of what you’re going to do.  Not worth extra stress that will only make you more tired.
  12. If possible, bring someone with you. They don’t want you to bring in anything, so having someone on hand to make sure you arrive safely, have money for food, watch over your bags, etc. can be a big help. The moral support isn’t too bad either.
  13. Time Everything. The biggest complaint I heard was that people ran out of time–many failed to answer some of the questions at all.  The test is set up to be easy to divide into portions. Essays get 30 minutes each; Multiple choice gets 3-4 minutes each; MPT essays get 90 minutes each. Promise yourself that you won’t spend any more time. If you have a chance at the end, go back, but otherwise try to put something down for everything. 

Bar Exam: MEE Review

26 Feb

MEE (9:00-12:00 & 1:30-4:45) on Day 3

Meh, mixed reviews here people.  

It started out the same way as before, they read us the rules and handed out the tests.  You had to have the white card especially today, since the NCBE # and your Applicant # had to go on the bubble answer sheets. We filled that out, and the process started.

You’re given 100 questions for both 3 hour tests, resulting in 200 questions over all. They are all multiple choice, and covered Property, Evidence, Criminal Law, Constitutional Law, Contracts, and Torts.  They were fairly well divided, although I though a lot of the questions were repeats of subjects (you know, repeat the same question in a different format?).  I think I did better on this portion.

The worst part was the tediousness–by question 80, I was bored out of my mind with those types of questions.  Reading the answers and questions over and over, you fall into a rut. Some people worked until the very end, but everyone in my row and the rows in front of me were done well ahead of time.  I finished 20 minutes ahead of time for the first portion and 30 minutes ahead of time for the second portion. Of course, I never gave it a second run-through.  I hate second guessing myself, I generally second guess wrong.  😛  I gave it my best shot the first time and then sat and tried to cool down.  

Best Method of Answering

Follow Barbri’s recommended method. Read the answers first, mark the ones you know are wrong. Next read the call of the question, can you check off anything else? Finally read through the facts.   The hardest part is falling into a rut and moving too quickly when you realize time is disappearing. It can be easy to start moving faster and missing things when you have this many questions. I try to stop and take a 1 minute break every hour. Sit back, breathe, and re-focus your mind, then tackle the next 34 questions.  

Ease Measure: Medium

Bar Exam: MBE Review

25 Feb

MBE (1:30-4:45) on Day 2

Okay. . . this was MUCH worse than I had hoped.  We had one hour for lunch and then we went through the same intro process again.  FYI, to go to the restroom, you have to raise your hand, hide your test in Examsoft, put your files at the front, and go one at a time. Once again they give you all of the questions at once for the exam. All together you have 3 hours to do 6 essay questions.  They can cover any number of topics; the list is fairly broad. I was a little upset on this one–it seemed like almost everything showed up.  It seemed like most of the questions were on obscure subjects from the law.  Not my favorite exam; I definitely was prepared less for this than for the MPT.

I’ll go on the record with saying that I was unaware of the answer to the first 4 essays at all. I had to get to Question 5 before I recognized anything.  But it wasn’t that bad. If you read through the questions and think about what problem they are suggesting arises, you’ll hit quite a few points even if you lack the law. Think back to the original principles!

Best Method of Answering

Read all the questions (not the facts), and guess where the essay is going to fall. Then approach your best ones with 30 minutes each. Then hit up the harder ones with 20 minutes each. This leaves you time at the end to pick and choose which ones to flesh out. Honestly, you write a lot less than  you think from the practice exams. The questions are 1-1 & 1/2 pages, so reading can take a while.  Don’t bother with code sections; just run with what you have. If you don’t know the answer, go with common sense.  WATCH YOUR TIME

Ease Measure: Very Difficult

Bar Exam: MPT Review

25 Feb

MPT (9:00-12:10) on Day 2

Definitely not as bad as I was afraid of.  We arrived for the morning section and filled out the little signature cards. The room opened at 8:30 for those with laptops, so I went ahead and set up.  They gave out the instructions and began; don’t forget that by the time they finish instructions, you will be starting a little late.

The MPT rules explain the many different ways that the exam can be structured; however there is a general format. Traditionally, there will be two parts–the file and the library. The file has the facts; the Library has the law.  This is just a test on your writing skills; can you write an intelligent, well-thought response to the question. The questions come in many forms, and often a rarer form is thrown in to trip you up.  But it seems from the state’s list of “percentage likelihood that something shows up” information that some form of brief or memorandum are the most common.  The law can contain cases or code sections; often one of each. Each document has something worth noticing.  The facts will have a short summary with the question, followed by supporting documents.

One came with instructions on the layout of the test, but the other did not. In general, I’d say remember to always add the To, From, Date, RE section.  DON’T FORGET THAT YOU DO NOT USE YOUR KNOWLEDGE OF THE LAW.  Any statutes will be provided; it is set in a fake jurisdiction.

Best Method of Answering

My recommendation is to start with the law.  Type it up verbatim on your computer along with citations.  Then read the call of the questions. Lay out the law out in the pattern of the issues raised in the questions.  Then fill it in with facts as you read about them. Save 5 minutes for smoothing out the sentences.

Easy Measure: Very Easy

Map of States Requiring Standardized Law Tests

10 Dec

The NCBEX offers the map of the US states and territories that use the NCBE exams. These include the MPRE, MBE, MPT, and MEE.  You can see which of these tests are used in which locations. Kind of helpful when choosing which state to bar into.


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