How to crush the Essays

horrorbusiness
Posts: 669
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2011 6:49 pm

Re: How to crush the Essays

Postby horrorbusiness » Sun Jun 21, 2015 2:16 pm

sandaltan wrote:Howdy folks. FWIW I thought I'd share what, at least to me, seems to be the most effective and efficient approach to prepare for the CBX essays. I don't know if this has already been discussed, so sorry if it's a repeat. This approach can be used with any test-prep course. I happened to use Themis. All you need are essay questions and model answers. It might seem backwards and counter-intuitive, but yeah whatever.

STEP 1: (if not already in print) print out essay question and model answer.
STEP 2: open up mock exam in examsoft using laptop you plan to use on exam days. Or just open up MS Word.
STEP 3: read question slowly and carefully. Do not panic. Do not issue spot. Be a blank slate. Just relax and take it all in. then read one more time.
STEP 4: read and copy entire model answer into examsoft. Do not issue spot. Do not guess or do your best. Just read the answer and copy it. You may want to read the model answer aloud to yourself as you type.
STEP 5: delete answer / open new examsoft window/mock exam.
STEP 6: read same question once more; issue spot/skeleton outline on piece of paper.
STEP 7: type your response without the model answer; if you get stuck, pull out model answer/review issue on-the-fly, type up answer and continue.
STEP 8: repeat step 7 until you can recall all issues and rules and you firmly understand how to apply the facts.


How many essay/model answer combos would you say you did this on per subject? like 10?

ETA: and did you do this with subjects you had had absolutely no prior exposure to?

mr.hands
Posts: 892
Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2012 4:23 pm

Re: How to crush the Essays

Postby mr.hands » Tue Jun 30, 2015 6:36 pm

Any feedback on how this has worked? I like the idea but I was wondering if this has been a beneficial use of time

victortsoi
Posts: 448
Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2010 7:51 pm

Re: How to crush the Essays

Postby victortsoi » Wed Jul 01, 2015 12:46 am

So what advice to someone who had put off essays?

old_soul
Posts: 172
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2012 10:09 pm

Re: How to crush the Essays

Postby old_soul » Wed Jul 01, 2015 5:38 pm

victortsoi wrote:So what advice to someone who had put off essays?



Same boat.

moreheesh
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri Aug 16, 2013 5:50 pm

Re: How to crush the Essays

Postby moreheesh » Wed Jul 01, 2015 8:16 pm

old_soul wrote:
victortsoi wrote:So what advice to someone who had put off essays?



Same boat.


bump. i feel useless answering essay questions lol.

kykiske
Posts: 249
Joined: Sun Mar 10, 2013 7:12 pm

Re: How to crush the Essays

Postby kykiske » Fri Jul 03, 2015 3:17 pm

mr.hands wrote:Any feedback on how this has worked? I like the idea but I was wondering if this has been a beneficial use of time


I've been applying this method, and I really like it.

I applied this method while in law school, and it worked well there. Didn't get me an A in every class, but hey, we don't need to get an A on every MEE question.

Here's my edited strategy:

1) Read the question once. Carefully.
2) Read the model answer once. Carefully. Paying crucial attention to the elements of the applicable legal rule.
3) Go to my word document, and start typing out my analysis. In this step, I try to avoid referring back to the model answer, but will do so if I'm completely stuck.

What I'm noticing is that the more I practice, the more comfortable I become with the elements of the legal rule. I'm also better identifying the issues that lead to points.

So far, I've only done about 2-3 essays for 8 topics using this strategy. Over the next 3 weeks--once the lectures completely end--I'll be methodically using my edited strategy for every topic. My goal is to write out 8-10 essays per subject before exam day. Which I think is doable.

8 AM-Noon: MBE Practice.
Noon- 1PM: Lunch; watch South Park.
1 PM-6 PM: MEE Practice.

horrorbusiness
Posts: 669
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2011 6:49 pm

Re: How to crush the Essays

Postby horrorbusiness » Sun Nov 22, 2015 1:02 pm

So I used the strategy described in this thread to pass the CBX on my first try, but I wanted to share my thoughts on it for future test takers.

I think this strategy is really appealing in that you don't have to do prior review; you just learn by doing. This is especially efficient if you're trying to learn subjects you never took in law school.

But I also think this strategy can actually be very dangerous, especially if you're using it to approach a subject you have NO prior exposure to. For example, I never took evidence, crim pro, wills, trusts, comm prop, or remedies in law school, and I only prepared to write essays on these subjects by doing the model answer/outline method described in this thread. Here's the problem if you're doing it this way: you can outline every available essay on a given topic, and completely absorb all the information from the model answer, but the real bar exam might still test on material that hasn't been tested before. In fact, according to the SmartBarPrep outlines, only about 75-85% of material on the essays is recycled from previous exams, so new/untested material is guaranteed. For example: I used this method on every available corporations essay (from baressays.com), but it wasn't until the VERY last essay I did that I was even exposed to the federal securities laws. If I hadn't done that one essay, and the federal securities laws had been on the bar exam, I would have been completely screwed. Further, I ended up completing every corporations essay, and then on the real exam, the concept of watered stock was tested (apparently), and I didn't even realize it was an issue, let alone write about it.

So, my point is that this strategy probably requires more work than might be apparent. If you're like me and you had no prior exposure to a given subject, you should probably outline every single essay on baressays for that topic. Or, you can try to read the conviser/subject outline and memorize it to fill in any gaps for material that wasn't covered in an essay.. but I personally think it's really hard to learn that way, and also you don't get nearly as much actual practice that way. I still think this is a great and efficient method, but just be careful and recognize that it won't necessarily teach you everything you're going to see on the actual bar exam.
Last edited by horrorbusiness on Mon Nov 23, 2015 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

comet_halley
Posts: 56
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 12:46 am

Re: How to crush the Essays

Postby comet_halley » Sun Nov 22, 2015 2:47 pm

Are you an engineer? :D
I think you are an ideal patent attorney
quote="sandaltan"]Howdy folks. FWIW I thought I'd share what, at least to me, seems to be the most effective and efficient approach to prepare for the CBX essays. I don't know if this has already been discussed, so sorry if it's a repeat. This approach can be used with any test-prep course. I happened to use Themis. All you need are essay questions and model answers. It might seem backwards and counter-intuitive, but yeah whatever.

STEP 1: (if not already in print) print out essay question and model answer.
STEP 2: open up mock exam in examsoft using laptop you plan to use on exam days. Or just open up MS Word.
STEP 3: read question slowly and carefully. Do not panic. Do not issue spot. Be a blank slate. Just relax and take it all in. then read one more time.
STEP 4: read and copy entire model answer into examsoft. Do not issue spot. Do not guess or do your best. Just read the answer and copy it. You may want to read the model answer aloud to yourself as you type.
STEP 5: delete answer / open new examsoft window/mock exam.
STEP 6: read same question once more; issue spot/skeleton outline on piece of paper.
STEP 7: type your response without the model answer; if you get stuck, pull out model answer/review issue on-the-fly, type up answer and continue.
STEP 8: repeat step 7 until you can recall all issues and rules and you firmly understand how to apply the facts.[/quote]




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