gsonstein wrote:Can I get some opinions on the subject of OUTLINES. I think the bar review course outlines are way too long to be immediately useful and take too long to slog through if you're using them to prepare before you start questions. I also do not want to spend the time writing my own outlines, id rather spend my time doing questions and reviewing them.
Specifically, what are the best ready made outlines out there for preparing for and writing the essays? I've found some suggestions such as lean sheets, magic sheets, bar code outlines. I find the lean sheets to be a little too lean for the purpose of prepping. Maybe they are good as a last minute tool. Anyone have experience with magic sheets or bar code? Im looking for something that has good rule statements for all the major issues covered in the essays as well as maybe brief (but still adequate) coverage of the less frequently tested issues.
AS an aside, how do you guys prepare for MBE questions? The approach I took last time was reading through the critical pass flash cards and just doing questions. I thought the critical pass cards only had the bare minimum information and didn't really prepare me for the level of detail that was on the MBE.
Input is greatly appreciated.
1.) At least for essays - I would recommend using baressays.com (using with barissues.com makes tracking most common issues easier as well) to develop short but comprehensive "attack sheets." What I did was use a combination of (1) the baressays.com attack sheets; (2) model answers; and (3) high scoring student answers to essentially outline every possible question that had shown up in the past 20 years or so with rule statements. I outlined my own attack sheets exactly as I would outline an answer on the bar exam in IRAC form (minus the analysis and conclusion).
I did this, supplementing a bit based on my outlines where I wanted a bit more to work with. Then formatted it in the way that most made sense to logically approach a question on the exam, and boom you now have a pre-populated answer to that issue and all sub-issues anytime you encounter it in the future while practicing. Perfect for then memorizing, grading yourself, etc.
Even though the model/sample answers aren't perfect, I believe they are MORE than enough to craft high-scoring essays. If something seems off in an answer though, definitely do take it with a grain of salt. Personally, I think they were mostly pretty solid but the formatting was weird and some rule statements just weren't good enough for me so I modified them. Point is, everything is there for you and it's a solid base to work to build on other people's past efforts.
2.) For MBEs, personally I just went through practice questions to study. However, I did it ENTIRELY in practice mode and literally reviewed every answer explanation (right or wrong) immediately afterwards to make sure I understood the answer. If I didn't quite get the answer explanation or had a "WTF" moment, I would then reference that relevant area in the larger outline and review until I made sure I understood. I did only about 1,000 questions my first attempt (Scoring 146 Scaled) and then on my second attempt did about 700 questions and know I scored at least 150+ on the MBE this time-around to pass. Honestly, I would recommend doing way more MBEs considering they're worth more now (and just in general because it sucks to fail because you didn't do enough), but focus on QUALITY practice over quantity - But really just do both quality AND quantity
A lot of people say they feel the MBE wasn't quite the same as in practice on the actual exam....However, personally I didn't really feel much of a difference having done both Themis and Adaptibar questions. It seems close enough to me, and if anything the actual bar exam questions (aside from a few curveball super nuanced things) was slightly easier in my opinion. If you can get to CONSISTENT 70% plus on those practice tests, I think you should be in pretty good shape granted no meltdown, bad luck, etc. on actual test day. Every once in a while I still had those bad results that dipped below 65% in practice, but that was with much smaller questions sets of 25-50 as opposed to 175-200.