California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

DwightSchruteFarms
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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby DwightSchruteFarms » Sun Dec 08, 2013 6:09 pm

alaskaman wrote:Does anyone recommend a private tutor? I tried googling, and it's really hard to get a good read on who's the right person. A lot of them have tons of spam reviews online and it's hard to get a read on if they are actually worth it. I'm willing to spend whatever amount since my job is on the line, but I don't want to follow someone's regiment and find out later that I wasted my time perfecting some essay technique that isn't that useful. .

I was below passing on all three sections, so I could use improvement on everything. I've heard adapitbar and PMBRE are good too, and I've already signed up for the Barbri retake, but I dont want to overwhelm myself with too many materials pulling me in different directions, which is something I think happened last time. If anyone has honest assessments (good and bad) of John Holtz, Steve Zikman, John Crossfield or any of these other guys, that'd be helpful


Would love info on those three guys as well.

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zeth006
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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby zeth006 » Sun Dec 08, 2013 8:18 pm

Anyone have a calendar or study schedule nailed down for between now and February? Would appreciate it if someone could post up their template.

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worldtraveler
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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby worldtraveler » Mon Dec 09, 2013 10:49 am

alaskaman wrote:Does anyone recommend a private tutor? I tried googling, and it's really hard to get a good read on who's the right person. A lot of them have tons of spam reviews online and it's hard to get a read on if they are actually worth it. I'm willing to spend whatever amount since my job is on the line, but I don't want to follow someone's regiment and find out later that I wasted my time perfecting some essay technique that isn't that useful. .

I was below passing on all three sections, so I could use improvement on everything. I've heard adapitbar and PMBRE are good too, and I've already signed up for the Barbri retake, but I dont want to overwhelm myself with too many materials pulling me in different directions, which is something I think happened last time. If anyone has honest assessments (good and bad) of John Holtz, Steve Zikman, John Crossfield or any of these other guys, that'd be helpful


Honestly I wouldn't trust anyone who posts a lot of spam reviews. Any decent tutor should also give you a sample hour for free or a discount too, so you should be able to try them out.

DwightSchruteFarms
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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby DwightSchruteFarms » Mon Dec 09, 2013 8:00 pm

Im using John Crossfield. His reviews are all great and even his ratemyprofessor for theungrad courses he teaches are pretty high. He is a former bar grader so it can only help to get some tutoring from him.

ALso, does anyone need a study partner in the LA area? I'm looking for someone who is down to grind out 8-10 or even 12 hours days. Ill be sutdying at UCLA Law Library. Shoot me a PM if interested

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zeth006
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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby zeth006 » Mon Dec 09, 2013 8:15 pm

I would love to join ya, but it's over an hour drive to UCLA and probably more than that for rush hour traffic. I've been camping it out at the Chapman law library.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby DwightSchruteFarms » Mon Dec 09, 2013 8:43 pm

zeth006 wrote:I would love to join ya, but it's over an hour drive to UCLA and probably more than that for rush hour traffic. I've been camping it out at the Chapman law library.


No worries at all. ANyone studying at UCLA? I'm commuting from Tarzana so the valley also works...just don't know of any law libraries in the area.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby EZ as AsDf » Mon Dec 09, 2013 10:56 pm

alaskaman wrote:Does anyone recommend a private tutor? I tried googling, and it's really hard to get a good read on who's the right person. A lot of them have tons of spam reviews online and it's hard to get a read on if they are actually worth it. I'm willing to spend whatever amount since my job is on the line, but I don't want to follow someone's regiment and find out later that I wasted my time perfecting some essay technique that isn't that useful. .

I was below passing on all three sections, so I could use improvement on everything. I've heard adapitbar and PMBRE are good too, and I've already signed up for the Barbri retake, but I dont want to overwhelm myself with too many materials pulling me in different directions, which is something I think happened last time. If anyone has honest assessments (good and bad) of John Holtz, Steve Zikman, John Crossfield or any of these other guys, that'd be helpful


I haven't looked into the tutors. I think I might get one for writing though. My PTs were shit. And so were my essays. As far as the law goes, I'm just going to read through the outlines, memorize a lot more and try to answer the practice questions. Hopefully a tutor will help me on the written portions.

Also, regarding the tutors it would be great to talk to someone who actually used their services. I followed some people online that enrolled small groups of students in their tutor groups. Good luck finding somebody.
Last edited by EZ as AsDf on Mon Dec 09, 2013 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby EZ as AsDf » Mon Dec 09, 2013 11:00 pm

I followed Bar Exam Guru http://barexamguru.com/ and this guy Jason Tolerico from One-Timers.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby abcdee » Tue Dec 10, 2013 10:15 pm

zeth006 wrote:Anyone have a calendar or study schedule nailed down for between now and February? Would appreciate it if someone could post up their template.


I'm planning on using December to focus on my weakness, MBE, then casually following Barbri's schedule as to the subjects I should be doing throughout the week.
I'm also not to far from Chapman as I study in Irvine.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby abcdee » Tue Dec 10, 2013 10:17 pm

For those that have Barbri, where the heck is the video explaining the essays for the July Bar? They sent an email saying it would be up on December 6 but can't find it anywhere.
Is anyone using Multistate Edge? I hate how they only have 500 mbe questions as opposed to the 2900 they used to have. This seems like a waste of time.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby zeth006 » Wed Dec 11, 2013 12:44 am

Got the new Barbri books. What dafuq? They gave us two books/volumes of MBE practice questions for July 2013 bar, but for February, put some "workshops" and a diagnostic, but they left out all the mixed question sets normally found in vol.2!

Looks like I'll be doing questions from Emanuel's.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby DwightSchruteFarms » Wed Dec 11, 2013 2:14 pm

zeth006 wrote:Got the new Barbri books. What dafuq? They gave us two books/volumes of MBE practice questions for July 2013 bar, but for February, put some "workshops" and a diagnostic, but they left out all the mixed question sets normally found in vol.2!

Looks like I'll be doing questions from Emanuel's.


Honestly, if Barbri didnt work the first time, why are you doing it the second time? I don't understand how they pass me on almost off their essays and PTs and those sections are teh ones that hurt the most.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby a male human » Wed Dec 11, 2013 4:31 pm

DwightSchruteFarms wrote:
zeth006 wrote:Got the new Barbri books. What dafuq? They gave us two books/volumes of MBE practice questions for July 2013 bar, but for February, put some "workshops" and a diagnostic, but they left out all the mixed question sets normally found in vol.2!

Looks like I'll be doing questions from Emanuel's.


Honestly, if Barbri didnt work the first time, why are you doing it the second time? I don't understand how they pass me on almost off their essays and PTs and those sections are teh ones that hurt the most.

I, for one, will not go through the entire Kaplan program again. I will use the MBE foundation course and final review, Ask and Attorney service, and the essay grading service. I'm glad reenrolling was completely free for me, no deposit, no shipping. Rest is all self-study.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby DwightSchruteFarms » Wed Dec 11, 2013 5:07 pm

a male human, where are you studiying for the Feb Bar? LA or SF?

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zeth006
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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby zeth006 » Wed Dec 11, 2013 6:14 pm

DwightSchruteFarms wrote:
zeth006 wrote:Got the new Barbri books. What dafuq? They gave us two books/volumes of MBE practice questions for July 2013 bar, but for February, put some "workshops" and a diagnostic, but they left out all the mixed question sets normally found in vol.2!

Looks like I'll be doing questions from Emanuel's.


Honestly, if Barbri didnt work the first time, why are you doing it the second time? I don't understand how they pass me on almost off their essays and PTs and those sections are teh ones that hurt the most.



I use their essay questions and MBEs, but I'm definitely not sticking by whatever format or schedule they recommend.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby a male human » Wed Dec 11, 2013 8:48 pm

DwightSchruteFarms wrote:a male human, where are you studiying for the Feb Bar? LA or SF?

Closer to SF, in the South Bay area.

Not sure what exactly to memorize out of my 20-page torts outline.

fuuuck http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fycls3pY6XY
CA evidence, civ pro, business associations, crim pro... I'm dead.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby zeth006 » Thu Dec 12, 2013 8:48 pm

Dammit. Lost my usual study spot at the Chapman law library because the city of Orange started enforcing local parking rules.

Anyone wanna recommend a good, quiet library that's within driving distance (20min give or take) of the 90623 area?

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby ndirish2010 » Fri Dec 13, 2013 12:43 pm

First time taker checking in. Not very excited as I begin to study for another bar exam.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby james11 » Sun Dec 15, 2013 7:16 pm

For those of you taking the Feb 2014 exam, I am reposting some advice from the July 13 thread that I found to be really good:

This is the original thread post - viewtopic.php?f=3&t=213457&start=1375

You can do it, and possibly only with a little over a month of studying. Some background: I failed a class in the Spring semester and had to write a makeup research paper to get my diploma this year. Because I had to do this paper, I couldn't get started with my bar studying until the last week of June. During the 5 weeks before the bar exam, I studied about 6-8 quality hours per day (although I did step it up to 8-10 hours the week before the exam). I didn't watch video lectures (except for Evidence) and I hardly used any of the material provided by bar prep courses. By and large, I stopped doing MBE questions in the last week. Despite all this, I passed, and I left each day of the bar exam feeling like I had passed.

(A) For MBE questions, I used the BarMax iPad app to drill. But in terms of really learning some of the nuances for harder MBE questions, I got a lot of mileage out of the Emmanuel's "Strategies and Tactics" for the MBE. I think my scores averaged around 70% by the time the bar rolled around.

(B) With respect to the non-PT essays, I highly recommend you do the following:

(1) Buy a set of Leansheets for the California Bar (you can Google up "leansheets California Bar") and commit to memorizing and being able to regurgitate the materials from those sheets. The Leansheets are not exhaustive, but they are good enough, and most of all humanly manageable. The only downside to the Leansheets is that they are very tersely worded; you might need an old BarBri Conviser to give you more verbose explanations of the rules.

(2) Get a subscriptions with baressays dot com. The pairing of model essays with old questions is a GODSEND. What I did was I went through all the model essays for the past 7-8 years for a given topic, and I just wrote down all the different headings and subheadings. This gave me an idea of what the distribution was for legal issues tested on the exam. As you'll see, 90% of the issues that come up for any essay in any topic is something that has been asked before in the past 5-6 years. Once I knew what the predictable "universe" of recurring issues was, I just made sure that I could spit out a rules statement that more or less hit all the major elements of the model answer's rule statement. The essays are all about the setup; once you have your rules statement, you just need to methodically work through each element and discuss whether it is present or not based on the facts.

(3) PRACTICE YOUR BUTT OFF. With a baressays account, you have no excuse for being unprepared when it comes to the 1-hour essays. Once you've done step (2) above, do every single essay you can for a given topic, starting from older essays and working your way up to more recent ones (you want to practice with the most recent questions the week before the exam). When you first do essays, stick with one subject per day, and do one essay at a time for at least 2-3 essays a day. Sticking to one topic and doing multiple essays in that topic will make it easier for you to learn and internalize the rules. Starting from at least two weeks before the exam, you should be doing the essays in a cluster of three to simulate the actual test taking experience.

Remember: it is the practicing which will actually get you to memorize your rule statements. Always compare your answer against the model essay. Don't rely on a grader, as all that will do is give you an excuse to wait around for the grader to get back to you. Immediately after you do a practice essay take a 10 minute break tops, and compare your answer against the model. By reviewing right after taking a practice exam you maximize your retention of the material. I kid you not, I felt like I was going to fail until about a week before the bar exam when I flew out to California early and locked myself in a hotel room for a week, and just drilled essays all day (well not really *all* day; just 8-10 hours). Until that week, all of my rules statements were very vague and iffy; constantly writing them down in a timed setting, in response to a hypo, was what really crystallized those rules for me. Also, if you run out of essays to practice, just start from the beginning again. Even if you recognize a hypo, you get the benefit of refreshing your memory by just going through the practice of typing your rules statements into a blank document.

(C) With respect to the PTs: once again, practice is king. And really what it is you're practicing with the PTs is reading and drafting. I think half the battle with PTs is just being able to finish in a coherent way, and that requires development of reading and drafting skills.

"Reading skills" refers to the ability to: quickly decide whether material is relevant or not; markup the library and file in a way which allows you to return to key facts/language/issues efficiently; and get through the material at a good pace with adequate comprehension.

"Drafting skills" refers to the ability to: identify and select a format which allows you to present your arguments in a way which is both logical (e.g., arranging issues from most important/convincing to least important/convincing), efficient (e.g., with a minimum of repetition, by using phrases like "supra" and "see analysis above"), and easy to read (e.g., using ample underlining and empty spaces to make reading your essay easier on the graders); and phrase your thoughts in clear and succinct language.

Ultimately, my stance on the PTs is this: for most mortals, it's just not possible to identify all the possible issues and present complete analysis for each of those issues. What you need to create is a product that passes the smell test: it looks lawyerly (formatting and organization); it sounds lawyerly (logical and methodical writing and analysis); and it shows a sufficient amount of intelligence and effort (provides at least some kind of response to each legal question raised by the client/call of the question, and in doing so provides a meaty analysis for 70-80% of the possible issues, and nearly all of the really big ones).

Given my position above, when it came to PTs all I did to cross-check my answers was to make sure I hit most of the issues that the model answers (or high scoring applicant answers) identified. I didn't stress out about my answer's format looking very different from the model or high scoring answers. As long as my answers were objectively well-organized, easy to read, and complete (i.e., introductory and conclusory sections, and no headings or subheadings left unfilled), I knew I was in good shape.

TL; DR: For the MBE: drill using BarMax; learn nuances from Emmanuel's "Strategies and Tactics for the MBE". For the essays: Learn the law from Leansheets, using BarBri Conviser as a supplement if you need more detail/explanation; get a baressays subscription and practice essays until your fingers drop off. For PTs: keep practicing until you can consistently draft memos which are well-organized, easy to read, hit most of the issues, and look complete (no unfilled sections; complete intro and conclusion).

And in general: practice all of the above until you are able to consistently finish with an extra 10-15 minutes for each hour of work. So be able to finish individual essays with 10-15 minutes to spare, and be able to finish your PTs with about half an hour to spare. That will give you enough time to tidy up your PTs, double-check for any quick issues you might have missed, or go back to a previous essay in order to flesh out another issue. Also, you never know what condition you'll be in during the exam. Being able to finish early gives you a safety buffer. I had bronchitis the week before and during the exam, and I lost a good 5-10 minutes of every hour having to get up, go outside, cough and drink water.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby hyc9598 » Thu Dec 19, 2013 1:25 pm

Hi.

I used LECC. I took it 3 times and the good thing is we took mock exams during class every week including pt and essay. Each time I got scores between 1400 and 1440 (of course not 1440 but very close). In that case, do you recommend taking the same bar prep (focusing on probably or usually same or similar mock exams) again? It gives you study shock or stimulus (not to lose self control/confidence or not to fall in distraction, making you stay focused). I never studied alone recently. That is my fear. I am a little afraid of studying alone. My weakness is pt. My mbe score is high. My essay score is mediocre (slightly or a little below average). The good thing of taking so many mock exams is it removes fear. The bad thing was it made me very tired for more than two days because of traffic and exam fatigue. I got two essay scores that were of 70 or more, but I attribute that to copying or imitating good answers of baressays.com. My mbe scores were between 139 and 146 (raw). My pt scores were usually 55s (sometimes 60 when the first grader or the second grader gives it).

One may say because of LECC, I got good scores. Another may say I failed anyway. Which view is the right view for me? Do you recommend taking it?

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby hyc9598 » Thu Dec 19, 2013 1:52 pm

Hi.

Do you recommend taking same bar prep multiple times? I used LECC. I took it 3 times and the good thing is we took mock exams during class every week including pt and essay. Each time I got scores between 1400 and 1440 (of course not 1440 but very close). In that case, do you recommend taking the same bar prep (focusing on probably or usually same or similar mock exams) again? It gives you study shock or stimulus (not to lose self control/confidence or not to fall in distraction, making you stay focused). I never studied alone recently. That is my fear. I am a little afraid of studying alone. My weakness is pt. My mbe score is high. My essay score is mediocre (slightly or a little below average). The good thing of taking so many mock exams is it removes fear. The bad thing was it made me very tired for more than two days because of traffic and exam fatigue. I got two essay scores that were of 70 or more, but I attribute that to copying or imitating good answers of baressays.com. My mbe scores were between 139 and 146 (raw). My pt scores were usually 55s (sometimes 60 when the first grader or the second grader gives it).

One may say because of LECC, I got good scores. Another may say I failed anyway. Which view is the right view for me? Do you recommend taking it? I think I can get discount and I do not use lectures (video) probably. Mock exam in class (weekends) is the key point. I also am thinking of only taking Sunday exam which it pt exam.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby a male human » Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:11 pm

I don't know what I'd recommend since I'm only a first-time repeater, but I am not solely relying on my first bar prep this time around.

Does baressays.com have PTs? If you found baressays useful, why not study for PTs the same way you did for essays?

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby a male human » Thu Jan 09, 2014 3:18 am

How's everyone doing so far?

Still feeling shaky about crim pro, torts and property MBEs. What should I do?

A. Drill questions
B. Read outlines
C. Condense outlines
D. Wing it in Feb

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby 2807 » Thu Jan 09, 2014 2:07 pm

MBEs test your knowledge of black letter law (BLL). They are not intended to trick you, and the answers generally prove that. Sometimes a poorly worded question will feel trickier than it really was meant to be. Let those go...

If you know the BLL, you will improve greatly. So, do what you need to do to learn the BLL.
And I suspect that is to memorize via flash cards or outlines or both.

If you try to learn the BLL via "drilling" MBEs, you are double-dipping and diluting the process.
Fear that.

Go to your material and study. Then do 50 q's of random Crim/Tort/Property. Then, go over them, see what you missed, and return to your material and write out the rules...!
Repeat this horrible, long, mind-numbing process.
It will help.

Here is a tip: When you read the q, stop for a moment and ask yourself: 'What is this really testing me on?"
believe it or not, it is a very clarifying thought process that will help you eliminate bad answers, and narrow it down to 2 that you can test in your mind... and that test will be answered by --> your knowledge of BLL ! !

Also: redundant answers are both wrong, "privileges and immunities" is always wrong (ok 99%), and --answers that add facts are suspect and you must factor in their added position correctly.

HTH.

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Re: California Bar Exam (February 2014) thread

Postby zeth006 » Thu Jan 09, 2014 2:32 pm

Kind of in a similar boat. Been getting a barely passing rate of 2/3 right for con law MBEs, many of them correct just from process of eliminating and educated guesses. Having a tough time synthesizing and memorizing Evidence. It's just not sticking.




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