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whitecollar23

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Postby whitecollar23 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 12:04 pm

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby rcharter1978 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 2:50 pm

Its great that you took the time to write all of this down.

I had no idea people were suggesting that others do a bunch of practice MBE questions without first understanding and knowing the subject. I was under the impression the idea was to do 1,000 MBE questions after taking time to understand the material. I agree that the former is foolhardy, and bad advice.

However, I disagree with you in that I believe it can be strategically smart to let a particular subject go. There are only so many hours in the day, and it may not be the most efficient use of your time to understand one subject that will take a lot of time to understand instead of focusing in on the...what 7-8 other areas you can make progress in. Logically, property questions are only going represent certain percentage of the MBE. If you got them all wrong and got everything else right, you could likely still pass. And thats assuming that WAG are ALWAYS wrong.

Its great to have a base knowledge of every subject, but breaking your neck to have a thorough understanding of a difficult subject that will only represent a portion of the questions asked doesn't seem very strategic.

You clearly did very well on the MBE -- but you'll be a barred attorney right along with the guy who had a barely passing MBE score.

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby whitecollar23 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 2:57 pm

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby rcharter1978 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 3:16 pm

whitecollar23 wrote:
rcharter1978 wrote:Its great that you took the time to write all of this down.

I had no idea people were suggesting that others do a bunch of practice MBE questions without first understanding and knowing the subject. I was under the impression the idea was to do 1,000 MBE questions after taking time to understand the material. I agree that the former is foolhardy, and bad advice.

However, I disagree with you in that I believe it can be strategically smart to let a particular subject go. There are only so many hours in the day, and it may not be the most efficient use of your time to understand one subject that will take a lot of time to understand instead of focusing in on the...what 7-8 other areas you can make progress in. Logically, property questions are only going represent certain percentage of the MBE. If you got them all wrong and got everything else right, you could likely still pass. And thats assuming that WAG are ALWAYS wrong.

Its great to have a base knowledge of every subject, but breaking your neck to have a thorough understanding of a difficult subject that will only represent a portion of the questions asked doesn't seem very strategic.

You clearly did very well on the MBE -- but you'll be a barred attorney right along with the guy who had a barely passing MBE score.


In regard to the thousands of questions, I'm saying that people should learn the law well, meaning learning the equivalent of the material in Kaplan's bar points or BarBri's conviser before doing tons of questions. Doing some in advance is fine, but doing dozens before fully learning the relevant material is a sub-optimal strategy.

The issue with completely giving up on a topic is that people who do that will often only get 20-30% of the questions right in that section, if even. Most students who take that approach are unlikely to put elite numbers in other sections. I say most because I'm sure there are exceptions. So when you intentionally bomb one section, you're digging an extreme hole that will be tough to escape. Again, like I said in my original post, there will definitely be exceptions. But exceptions don't make it a good rule.


Well, I think there is an important difference between people who limit their study of a subject, and conscientiously focus on the other subjects versus someone who is going to give up multiple subjects, which would pretty much mean they aren't studying. I think the former are likely able to put in pretty good numbers in other sections, while the latter probably won't. But then again, 30% correct in an area that you've abandoned doesn't seem insurmountable if you've put time and effort into the other sections and can score well there.

I consider the CMR base knowledge. My understanding was that most people were advocating at least knowing what was in the CMR before doing practice questions. I don't think you need to have memorized the law, or have it down cold, because I think the MBE questions can help to cement the things you read in the CMR. Doing an MBE question, getting it wrong, and having to look it up in the CMR/Big Book whatever can be a good method of retaining the information.

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby whitecollar23 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 3:29 pm

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby rcharter1978 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 3:44 pm

whitecollar23 wrote:
rcharter1978 wrote:
whitecollar23 wrote:
rcharter1978 wrote:Its great that you took the time to write all of this down.

I had no idea people were suggesting that others do a bunch of practice MBE questions without first understanding and knowing the subject. I was under the impression the idea was to do 1,000 MBE questions after taking time to understand the material. I agree that the former is foolhardy, and bad advice.

However, I disagree with you in that I believe it can be strategically smart to let a particular subject go. There are only so many hours in the day, and it may not be the most efficient use of your time to understand one subject that will take a lot of time to understand instead of focusing in on the...what 7-8 other areas you can make progress in. Logically, property questions are only going represent certain percentage of the MBE. If you got them all wrong and got everything else right, you could likely still pass. And thats assuming that WAG are ALWAYS wrong.

Its great to have a base knowledge of every subject, but breaking your neck to have a thorough understanding of a difficult subject that will only represent a portion of the questions asked doesn't seem very strategic.

You clearly did very well on the MBE -- but you'll be a barred attorney right along with the guy who had a barely passing MBE score.


In regard to the thousands of questions, I'm saying that people should learn the law well, meaning learning the equivalent of the material in Kaplan's bar points or BarBri's conviser before doing tons of questions. Doing some in advance is fine, but doing dozens before fully learning the relevant material is a sub-optimal strategy.

The issue with completely giving up on a topic is that people who do that will often only get 20-30% of the questions right in that section, if even. Most students who take that approach are unlikely to put elite numbers in other sections. I say most because I'm sure there are exceptions. So when you intentionally bomb one section, you're digging an extreme hole that will be tough to escape. Again, like I said in my original post, there will definitely be exceptions. But exceptions don't make it a good rule.


Well, I think there is an important difference between people who limit their study of a subject, and conscientiously focus on the other subjects versus someone who is going to give up multiple subjects, which would pretty much mean they aren't studying. I think the former are likely able to put in pretty good numbers in other sections, while the latter probably won't. But then again, 30% correct in an area that you've abandoned doesn't seem insurmountable if you've put time and effort into the other sections and can score well there.

I consider the CMR base knowledge. My understanding was that most people were advocating at least knowing what was in the CMR before doing practice questions. I don't think you need to have memorized the law, or have it down cold, because I think the MBE questions can help to cement the things you read in the CMR. Doing an MBE question, getting it wrong, and having to look it up in the CMR/Big Book whatever can be a good method of retaining the information.


You'd be surprised. I can think of at least one close friend off the top of my head who learned a lot of stuff by doing questions. It worked for him, but he's also an exception to the rule.

And people who have failed multiple times (or even once) should be finding time to make sure they understand every subject. People who fail have a greater chance of failing than passing on their second attempt. Skimping out on topics that are difficult is a foolhardy strategy. If you failed once, odds are you're not knocking the rest of the subjects out of the park. Again, there are exceptions. But my point is clear. I'd guess that people fail multiple times because they begin to look for tricks to pass. There is no "trick" to pass. No shortcut. No roundabout way. Skimping out on a subject and hoping to go 75% across the rest of the subjects and then putting up a good score on the essays is not a good approach. You don't dig a hole when you're trying to climb a mountain. It's just not an optimal approach.


But I didn't think a lot of people here were advocating doing a bunch of MBE practice questions without first having the base level of knowledge or reviewing the material. I don't particularly know that people can learn a subject through practice questions, but I think its possible that there is one person who has a really good memory and already has the base knowledge that you should go into practice MBE questions with.

I think people who fail should be thinking of a good and focused strategy to pass the next exam. Spending a ton of time on one subject when you could use that time to study multiple topics just doesn't seem like the best strategy for success. If you failed once, it means you have multiple opportunities for improvement. Why focus on the one that takes the most time for the least reward?

Pick the low hanging fruit first. In other words -- choose those areas that are easiest to improve first and focus on those. There are going to be approximately as many questions asked about Criminal Law, as there are about Property. So if you didn't do well in either subject, focus on Criminal Law where you can quickly see gains and improvement.

Strategies aren't "tricks," they are strategies. Focusing all your time and effort on one subject -- when you could be focusing and studying multiple subjects just doesn't make much sense. It would make sense if the MBE was going to have 70% property questions -- but it doesn't. The subjects should theoretically be tested in approximately equal amounts.

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby whitecollar23 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 3:58 pm

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby rcharter1978 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 4:15 pm

whitecollar23 wrote:
rcharter1978 wrote:
whitecollar23 wrote:
rcharter1978 wrote:Well, I think there is an important difference between people who limit their study of a subject, and conscientiously focus on the other subjects versus someone who is going to give up multiple subjects, which would pretty much mean they aren't studying. I think the former are likely able to put in pretty good numbers in other sections, while the latter probably won't. But then again, 30% correct in an area that you've abandoned doesn't seem insurmountable if you've put time and effort into the other sections and can score well there.

I consider the CMR base knowledge. My understanding was that most people were advocating at least knowing what was in the CMR before doing practice questions. I don't think you need to have memorized the law, or have it down cold, because I think the MBE questions can help to cement the things you read in the CMR. Doing an MBE question, getting it wrong, and having to look it up in the CMR/Big Book whatever can be a good method of retaining the information.


You'd be surprised. I can think of at least one close friend off the top of my head who learned a lot of stuff by doing questions. It worked for him, but he's also an exception to the rule.

And people who have failed multiple times (or even once) should be finding time to make sure they understand every subject. People who fail have a greater chance of failing than passing on their second attempt. Skimping out on topics that are difficult is a foolhardy strategy. If you failed once, odds are you're not knocking the rest of the subjects out of the park. Again, there are exceptions. But my point is clear. I'd guess that people fail multiple times because they begin to look for tricks to pass. There is no "trick" to pass. No shortcut. No roundabout way. Skimping out on a subject and hoping to go 75% across the rest of the subjects and then putting up a good score on the essays is not a good approach. You don't dig a hole when you're trying to climb a mountain. It's just not an optimal approach.


But I didn't think a lot of people here were advocating doing a bunch of MBE practice questions without first having the base level of knowledge or reviewing the material. I don't particularly know that people can learn a subject through practice questions, but I think its possible that there is one person who has a really good memory and already has the base knowledge that you should go into practice MBE questions with.

I think people who fail should be thinking of a good and focused strategy to pass the next exam. Spending a ton of time on one subject when you could use that time to study multiple topics just doesn't seem like the best strategy for success. If you failed once, it means you have multiple opportunities for improvement. Why focus on the one that takes the most time for the least reward?

Pick the low hanging fruit first. In other words -- choose those areas that are easiest to improve first and focus on those. There are going to be approximately as many questions asked about Criminal Law, as there are about Property. So if you didn't do well in either subject, focus on Criminal Law where you can quickly see gains and improvement.

Strategies aren't "tricks," they are strategies. Focusing all your time and effort on one subject -- when you could be focusing and studying multiple subjects just doesn't make much sense. It would make sense if the MBE was going to have 70% property questions -- but it doesn't. The subjects should theoretically be tested in approximately equal amounts.


You can improve the most in the subject you did the worst in, which for the average test taker is Property. Further, with Property, you can cover the majority of the material by learning a few topics. With subjects like Criminal Law, you need to learn a ton of material. It might be easier, but you can improve the most by learning what you struggle with, since that's where you have the most room to improve.


Not particularly, because even if you improve a lot there is a limit to how much that improvement can impact your scores. You're better off to improve and perfect the areas that are easiest to improve upon. Which would be the easier subjects, or the subjects you have to spend the least amount of time with to see a payoff.

The keyword here, is easier. If its easier to make improvements in other areas, attack those first. You don't need a through knowledge of property to pass the bar exam. You don't even need a passing knowledge of property to pass the bar exam. You could guess on every single property question and still pass the bar exam.

Since you can pass with no knowledge of property, if you failed the bar, its because you failed in multiple areas of law. Therefore, you have room for improvement in all areas. Sure, if you can add a little to your property knowledge so you can get a few more questions right, thats cool, but it doesn't make sense to focus all this effort and energy on one subject when you could be spending the same time on the multiple subjects you did poorly in and are easier to improve. Property should not be given any more time and effort than any other subject, because property isn't tested any more heavily on the MBE and its not required that you know it to pass.

So, making a strategic decision to give up a subject in order to spend your time on all the other subjects isn't bad advice.

The goal of the bar exam is to simply pass.

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby whitecollar23 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 4:36 pm

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby rcharter1978 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 7:42 pm

whitecollar23 wrote:
rcharter1978 wrote:
whitecollar23 wrote:
rcharter1978 wrote:
whitecollar23 wrote:
rcharter1978 wrote:Well, I think there is an important difference between people who limit their study of a subject, and conscientiously focus on the other subjects versus someone who is going to give up multiple subjects, which would pretty much mean they aren't studying. I think the former are likely able to put in pretty good numbers in other sections, while the latter probably won't. But then again, 30% correct in an area that you've abandoned doesn't seem insurmountable if you've put time and effort into the other sections and can score well there.

I consider the CMR base knowledge. My understanding was that most people were advocating at least knowing what was in the CMR before doing practice questions. I don't think you need to have memorized the law, or have it down cold, because I think the MBE questions can help to cement the things you read in the CMR. Doing an MBE question, getting it wrong, and having to look it up in the CMR/Big Book whatever can be a good method of retaining the information.


You'd be surprised. I can think of at least one close friend off the top of my head who learned a lot of stuff by doing questions. It worked for him, but he's also an exception to the rule.

And people who have failed multiple times (or even once) should be finding time to make sure they understand every subject. People who fail have a greater chance of failing than passing on their second attempt. Skimping out on topics that are difficult is a foolhardy strategy. If you failed once, odds are you're not knocking the rest of the subjects out of the park. Again, there are exceptions. But my point is clear. I'd guess that people fail multiple times because they begin to look for tricks to pass. There is no "trick" to pass. No shortcut. No roundabout way. Skimping out on a subject and hoping to go 75% across the rest of the subjects and then putting up a good score on the essays is not a good approach. You don't dig a hole when you're trying to climb a mountain. It's just not an optimal approach.


But I didn't think a lot of people here were advocating doing a bunch of MBE practice questions without first having the base level of knowledge or reviewing the material. I don't particularly know that people can learn a subject through practice questions, but I think its possible that there is one person who has a really good memory and already has the base knowledge that you should go into practice MBE questions with.

I think people who fail should be thinking of a good and focused strategy to pass the next exam. Spending a ton of time on one subject when you could use that time to study multiple topics just doesn't seem like the best strategy for success. If you failed once, it means you have multiple opportunities for improvement. Why focus on the one that takes the most time for the least reward?

Pick the low hanging fruit first. In other words -- choose those areas that are easiest to improve first and focus on those. There are going to be approximately as many questions asked about Criminal Law, as there are about Property. So if you didn't do well in either subject, focus on Criminal Law where you can quickly see gains and improvement.

Strategies aren't "tricks," they are strategies. Focusing all your time and effort on one subject -- when you could be focusing and studying multiple subjects just doesn't make much sense. It would make sense if the MBE was going to have 70% property questions -- but it doesn't. The subjects should theoretically be tested in approximately equal amounts.


You can improve the most in the subject you did the worst in, which for the average test taker is Property. Further, with Property, you can cover the majority of the material by learning a few topics. With subjects like Criminal Law, you need to learn a ton of material. It might be easier, but you can improve the most by learning what you struggle with, since that's where you have the most room to improve.


Not particularly, because even if you improve a lot there is a limit to how much that improvement can impact your scores. You're better off to improve and perfect the areas that are easiest to improve upon. Which would be the easier subjects, or the subjects you have to spend the least amount of time with to see a payoff.

The keyword here, is easier. If its easier to make improvements in other areas, attack those first. You don't need a through knowledge of property to pass the bar exam. You don't even need a passing knowledge of property to pass the bar exam. You could guess on every single property question and still pass the bar exam.

Since you can pass with no knowledge of property, if you failed the bar, its because you failed in multiple areas of law. Therefore, you have room for improvement in all areas. Sure, if you can add a little to your property knowledge so you can get a few more questions right, thats cool, but it doesn't make sense to focus all this effort and energy on one subject when you could be spending the same time on the multiple subjects you did poorly in and are easier to improve. Property should not be given any more time and effort than any other subject, because property isn't tested any more heavily on the MBE and its not required that you know it to pass.

So, making a strategic decision to give up a subject in order to spend your time on all the other subjects isn't bad advice.

The goal of the bar exam is to simply pass.


I really hope that people don't that advice and are able to understand that concept of diminishing returns. 30% --> 60% >>> 60 --> 70%. Of course you should spend time on both, but improving in the first spot is likely to have a greater return on investment.

And, you need to stop saying the goal is just to pass. The goal is to dominate the exam, so that if you underperform, you're still passing. Approaching the exam with a goal of just passing is a terrible mentality, and likely the reason that many people fail on their first try.

TO ANYONE READING THIS, IGNORE ANYONE WHO TELLS YOU THAT YOUR GOAL SHOULD BE TO JUST PASS. TO JUST BE MINIMALLY COMPETENT.

It's a bad idea and you should not abide by such advice.


No, the goal is to pass the bar exam.

The bar exam, is quite literally, a test of minimal competence. A passing score shows you are minimally competent to practice law in the state.

The person sitting next to you at the swearing in could have barely squeaked in. You will both be attorneys. No one ever in your life is going to say "hey, what was your MBE score?" It will not come up in an interview. It doesn't matter, you need to pass, and those who fail, need to use their time efficiently and effectively. Spending a significant amount of time on one subject, when you can see returns in multiple other subjects is simply spinning your wheels.

Improving where you can see the most results the fastest is a sound strategy. Wasting time on something that requires a ton of effort for little return is not smart. Since the subjects are tested equally, it makes sense to spend your time efficiently and focus on the multiple areas instead of wasting your time in one area that requires significantly more time than the rest.

You need to stop pretending like you're some authority on anything. You really aren't, you passed the bar exam -- that is all. You are no more an authority than anyone else in passing the bar exam.

However, I think people can read your long winded treatise on the subject and my replies and decide what makes sense for a multiple subject exam: focusing a ton of effort and time on one subject (property) when you can use that time to improve in multiple areas -- or using that time to improve in multiple areas that will result in more immediate and dramatic gains.

You keep acting like you know why people failed the bar exam, I can assure you, there are many people who put in as much effort and fail. They probably spent too much damn time trying to figure out property and failed to realize that its tested equal to other subjects.

60-70 in four-five subjects >>>>>>>> 30-60 in one subject

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby whitecollar23 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:17 pm

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Re: MBE Studying & Test Taking Advice

Postby rcharter1978 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:44 pm

whitecollar23 wrote:
rcharter1978 wrote:No, the goal is to pass the bar exam.

The bar exam, is quite literally, a test of minimal competence. A passing score shows you are minimally competent to practice law in the state.

The person sitting next to you at the swearing in could have barely squeaked in. You will both be attorneys. No one ever in your life is going to say "hey, what was your MBE score?" It will not come up in an interview. It doesn't matter, you need to pass, and those who fail, need to use their time efficiently and effectively. Spending a significant amount of time on one subject, when you can see returns in multiple other subjects is simply spinning your wheels.

Improving where you can see the most results the fastest is a sound strategy. Wasting time on something that requires a ton of effort for little return is not smart. Since the subjects are tested equally, it makes sense to spend your time efficiently and focus on the multiple areas instead of wasting your time in one area that requires significantly more time than the rest.

You need to stop pretending like you're some authority on anything. You really aren't, you passed the bar exam -- that is all. You are no more an authority than anyone else in passing the bar exam.

However, I think people can read your long winded treatise on the subject and my replies and decide what makes sense for a multiple subject exam: focusing a ton of effort and time on one subject (property) when you can use that time to improve in multiple areas -- or using that time to improve in multiple areas that will result in more immediate and dramatic gains.

You keep acting like you know why people failed the bar exam, I can assure you, there are many people who put in as much effort and fail. They probably spent too much damn time trying to figure out property and failed to realize that its tested equal to other subjects.

60-70 in four-five subjects >>>>>>>> 30-60 in one subject


There's really no point in me responding to you, but I will respond to a few things quickly just to clarify for those who are reading.

1) Take a poll of 1,000 examinees who passed on their first try and ask them if their goal was just to pass or to the best they possibly can. 80%+ will say the latter. That should be a life lesson. Write it down.

2) Never said someone should only focus on Property. Simply that it's the place where they can gain the most in the least time. Going 60-70 is tougher than 30-60 or 30-55 if you want to be more pessimistic. It's as if you think your experience with failing and then passing by giving up on Property magically makes it a good strategy. It doesn't.

3) People who do extremely well on MBE on their first try are surely a better authority on tackling the bar than people who barely passed or took multiple attempts to pass. That applies to any of the many people on this forum who passed in the top percentile on their first attempt (or even on a latter attempt if they scored in a top percentile). No one is going to hire an LSAT tutor who scored a 160 on the exam. And people surely shouldn't be taking advice on how to barely pass the bar exam.

4) If anyone reading this has struggled with Property and thinks it's impossible to understand, feel free to message me. If you live in NYC, we could figure out a time to meet and maybe have a few tutoring sessions. I spent a tremendous amount of time learning Property cold. Probably more than any other subject. But Property is learnable and once you know it well, you gain a huge boost. Imagine getting 75% of Property questions correct on average? That is more than possible with the right tools and preparation. Don't let others convince you that Property is impossible because they struggled with it. It is beatable, and you can beat it.


1) yes, please, waste your time polling people and don't study. Or listen to the guy who just makes statistics

2) You have said that people should take as much time and effort as it takes to have a through understanding of Property and not doing so is an awful decision. That means taking a significant amount of the limited time you have to study and putting it into one subject when you can use that time to recognize gains in multiple subject areas. Going from 30-60 in a subject you don't understand and one that will require a significant time commitment is not a smarter strategy than using your time to improve multiple areas and see gains. You first said that Property would require a significant time commitment to understand, now you're saying its the place you'll see the quickest gains. LOL, you have no experience with how I studied or what my strategy was for success. But you seem to make a lot of very strange assumptions.

3) People don't need to do EXTREMELY WELL on the MBE. As someone else put it, the person who wins the bar is the person who puts in the least effort and passes. People who "crushed it" wasted their time expending effort that they didn't need to. People need advice on passing the bar exam, that is all. And you don't need to crush the MBE to do that. And you don't need a thorough understanding of Property.....as many people on this site can attest to (by your own admission)

4) To anyone reading this, please do yourself a favor and do not meet up with this guy. You will likely spend hours listening to him postulate on how amazing he is. Please spend your time strategizing and studying. Please do not waste your time with a guy who thinks he is an expert after passing the bar. You will regret it, and I promise you your time can be better spent doing almost anything else.

If you're faced with having to re-take develop a strategy that allows you to study smart Look for the areas where you can make the most points in the least amount of time. You have a limited amount of time before the next exam. Focus on those areas that are easy to improve...pick the low hanging fruit first. If the low hanging fruit isn't enough, then deal with more difficult fruit at the top.

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Re: Detailed Study Advice for MBE Retakers

Postby whitecollar23 » Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:58 pm

Again, if anyone needs help with real strategies, including ways to improve in Real Property in the least amount of time, contact me. I did it. You can do it, too.

The bar exam is not an exam you try to "game." You try to get the highest score you can, and you take it seriously. There's a reason that success in law school equates to success on the bar. Trying to just pass is a bad strategy. It's that simple. Good luck, and let me know if you have any questions.

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Re: DELETED

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Wow, what happened here?



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