2017 July California Bar

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esq
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby esq » Tue Sep 12, 2017 10:18 pm

BulletTooth wrote:
I don't think the California Supreme Court is some "state court" where the justices are looking to "make a 1 o'clock tee time," although I could be wrong. Please enlighten me. I also don't think they are waiting to be "spoon fed" some answer by the state bar. You're talking about justices who likely relish having the final say as to what California law is. The idea that they're inclined to being spoon fed their decisions flies in the face of what it means to be on any state supreme court. Maybe your conclusion is right, but I don't follow the argument at all.


They're all pulled from the same bunch, I don't see how it is wrong. Once you've been in practice for a while, you begin to see patterns within the court system. One of those patterns is that the vast majority of judges are willing to take the easiest route available. The easier you make it for them, the more you spoon feed, the more likely they side with what you want. They're especially prone to align with an opinion that comes from a prestigious organization like the Bar in my opinion--prestige and power drives the industry, starts in law school, and it doesn't just fall apart afterwords. Just the way it goes my friend, it's human nature.

Protacia
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby Protacia » Tue Sep 12, 2017 10:26 pm

I would like to think that the California Supreme Court should pick the 1390 cut score. The Bar Examiner Chief stated that applicants who obtain 1390 will ultimately pass the exam after a few tries. This mindset is illogical but is normal for a bureaucrat. (If you know that the applicant is going to pass anyway, why make them suffer, incur more debts, lose job opportunities, etc.)

According to the study, the cut scores 1440, 1414 and 1390 are all within 95% of the required minimum competence for a lawyer.

Maintaining the current cut score is merely protectionism from lawyers who do not want competition. There are a lot of bad lawyers out there, I don't mind seeing them weeded out.

Currently, there is a huge demand for good legal representation but most lawyers are not willing to represent those who need law and justice but who cannot afford their fees. This is why you see a lot of people representing themselves when they should be represented by good lawyers.

The study indicates that at 1390, there will be an increase of 46% pass for blacks, 27% for Latinos, 26% for Asians and 17% for whites. Why the deviation in pass rates among racial groups boil down to preparation for a standardized exam. Some people have less time to study for the bar, or did not develop as strong a foundation in law school, i.e. having to work, family, etc.

It will be progress for California to be in line with the rest of the country.

InterAlia1961
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby InterAlia1961 » Wed Sep 13, 2017 9:54 am

Protacia wrote:I would like to think that the California Supreme Court should pick the 1390 cut score. The Bar Examiner Chief stated that applicants who obtain 1390 will ultimately pass the exam after a few tries. This mindset is illogical but is normal for a bureaucrat. (If you know that the applicant is going to pass anyway, why make them suffer, incur more debts, lose job opportunities, etc.)

According to the study, the cut scores 1440, 1414 and 1390 are all within 95% of the required minimum competence for a lawyer.

Maintaining the current cut score is merely protectionism from lawyers who do not want competition. There are a lot of bad lawyers out there, I don't mind seeing them weeded out.

Currently, there is a huge demand for good legal representation but most lawyers are not willing to represent those who need law and justice but who cannot afford their fees. This is why you see a lot of people representing themselves when they should be represented by good lawyers.

The study indicates that at 1390, there will be an increase of 46% pass for blacks, 27% for Latinos, 26% for Asians and 17% for whites. Why the deviation in pass rates among racial groups boil down to preparation for a standardized exam. Some people have less time to study for the bar, or did not develop as strong a foundation in law school, i.e. having to work, family, etc.

It will be progress for California to be in line with the rest of the country.


I hope you're right, but I doubt it. I read an article yesterday that said the average score on the MBE increased 1.4% over last July's scores. This means the pass rate will be higher. If there is any indication at all that the scores are tending to rise with the new two-day format, I doubt there will be a lowering of the cut score. Like the poster before you said, judges like to take the easiest way out. Not just judges, either. I work in publishing. If you want to be published, make the editor's job easy. Spoon feed them the article. That's just the way the world works. My money is on the CA Supreme Court holding the cut score at 1440. I truly, truly hope I'm wrong.

LockBox
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby LockBox » Thu Sep 14, 2017 5:25 pm

http://www.abajournal.com/news/article/ ... r_exam_cut

My take: for those of you retaking the bar exam, or even for those of you waiting on results (whether its the first time or not), you shouldn't concern yourself with what's going on with the cut score. When I was retaking, I had people talking to me about how "unfair" the process is or how its xyz. I told them to stop. None of that will help you towards passing the exam - which should be your only goal until you pass. When you see the green letters on your state bar profile, go nuts. Until then, buckle down and figure out what you need to do to get yourself there.

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a male human
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby a male human » Thu Sep 14, 2017 5:34 pm

LockBox wrote:http://www.abajournal.com/news/article/california_bar_brief_pokes_holes_in_some_arguments_for_a_lower_bar_exam_cut

My take: for those of you retaking the bar exam, or even for those of you waiting on results (whether its the first time or not), you shouldn't concern yourself with what's going on with the cut score. When I was retaking, I had people talking to me about how "unfair" the process is or how its xyz. I told them to stop. None of that will help you towards passing the exam - which should be your only goal until you pass. When you see the green letters on your state bar profile, go nuts. Until then, buckle down and figure out what you need to do to get yourself there.


I can't even talk about this (and haven't been talking about this) without someone on either side getting all sensitive about it. The only way to rest in peace is to stay in the middle, just like our presidential election :roll:

jman77
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby jman77 » Thu Sep 14, 2017 6:04 pm

Previous posts well-taken. Obviously, the most active posters here will be the people who took the recent CA bar exam. However, there is still a valid argument to be had as to what the appropriate cut score should be and whether CA's chosen cut score is reasonable in light of the supposed purpose of the bar exam and the cut scores in all other jurisdictions, among other considerations.

No one should bank on the lowering of the cut score as the only hope for passing the bar, but that doesn't mean that arguments that the cut score should be lowered to be more in line with the other jurisdictions should not be engaged in, especially in this thread.

The only posts that I find irksome really are those that argue that the reason people are unable to pass the CA bar is because they are lazy, or don't work hard enough at it, etc. That proposition is based on a false premise and is condescending and insulting to people who have done their ultimate best notwithstanding the actual results.

I pointed out in a previous post that some people may give it their best shot and pour everything they have into the preparation for the test, but it just so happens that a 136 or 137 is the best they can do. No amount of studying or working or any other methods will enable them to score higher than a 136 or 137. What do we make of them? Does the proposition that they are competent enough to practice law in most jurisdictions but incompetent in CA make sense?

Any cut score will be arbitrary to a certain extent, but there is something to be said about 95% of the jurisdictions clustering around a narrow range of cut scores and seemingly not having any more or less issues with the competence of the attorneys they admit compared to the jurisdictions that have chosen to adopt outlier cut scores.

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CAnow
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby CAnow » Thu Sep 14, 2017 8:55 pm

Did some calculations on the bar exam calculator https://one-timers.com/one-timers-bar-exam-calculator/

Assuming you average 65 on the essays and PT, you would need a raw MBE score of 118 in order to break 1440.

Again assuming a 65 average on essays and PT, you would need a raw MBE score of 112 in order to break 1390.

That's only a difference of 6 questions!

Looking at it another way, a 1440 is a 72%. A score of 1390 rounds to 70%.

So no matter whether they keep the cut score at 1440 or lower it to 1390, it really won't make that much of a difference. I think the way CA's grading system uses these numbers in the thousands makes the difference between 1390 and 1440 seem more excessive than it really is. Sure, the change in cut score may cause big-picture changes in the statewide passage rates. But from an individual perspective, this potential change is relatively immaterial.

jman77
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby jman77 » Thu Sep 14, 2017 9:08 pm

CAnow wrote:Did some calculations on the bar exam calculator https://one-timers.com/one-timers-bar-exam-calculator/

Assuming you average 65 on the essays and PT, you would need a raw MBE score of 118 in order to break 1440.

Again assuming a 65 average on essays and PT, you would need a raw MBE score of 112 in order to break 1390.

That's only a difference of 6 questions!

Looking at it another way, a 1440 is a 72%. A score of 1390 rounds to 70%.

So no matter whether they keep the cut score at 1440 or lower it to 1390, it really won't make that much of a difference. I think the way CA's grading system uses these numbers in the thousands makes the difference between 1390 and 1440 seem more excessive than it really is. Sure, the change in cut score may cause big-picture changes in the statewide passage rates. But from an individual perspective, this potential change is relatively immaterial.


I think looking at it from a statewide, rather than individual, perspective is the correct way of analyzing the impact, though. I think the study commissioned by the bar showed that even a change in the cut score from 1440 to 1414 would have resulted in an 8% increase in the pass rate in 2016. That's 8 out of 100 who would have passed and gone on to become attorneys (assuming they passed the C&F process as well). That's not an insignificant number at all, considering how many thousands actually take the CA bar.

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Alt123
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby Alt123 » Thu Sep 14, 2017 10:30 pm

I think what CAnow is saying is that moving it from 1440 > 1390 is not that big a change in terms of making it significantly easier to pass, not necessarily that it won't be a big change for passage rates for some people /groups (especially in minorities, as we've seen).

jman77
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby jman77 » Thu Sep 14, 2017 11:09 pm

Alt123 wrote:I think what CAnow is saying is that moving it from 1440 > 1390 is not that big a change in terms of making it significantly easier to pass, not necessarily that it won't be a big change for passage rates for some people /groups (especially in minorities, as we've seen).


Fair enough.

eyalaharonov
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby eyalaharonov » Fri Sep 15, 2017 2:41 pm

Lots of speculation about the cut scores...what I've noticed as a tutor is that students are now being completely inundated with more and more substantive law or some new task or game that a commercial prep company is "innovating." The consequence of all that is that students lose touch with the Exam itself, and they end up looking like total amateurs on the days of the Exam. The graders likely all took the same courses and know what you are and aren't learning. The reality is that you have to put yourself in a position of power by learning how to write in a manner that is highly regarded by graders.

I suggest one set of comprehensive outlines (any reader is welcome to contact me for mine), an old-school PMBR book, and dozens and dozens of essays and PTs. You must write under timed conditions, from the VERY BEGINNING OF YOUR PREPARATION. It doesn't matter if you have not yet "mastered" the law - - you are helping yourself with skills necessary to navigate the entire Exam. Work with someone who will guide you and grade you regularly so you steepen the learning curve.

Pass rates have plummeted despite the insane amount of prep material available. The reality is that I continue to see students, repeaters especially, who don't have the slightest clue as to how to offer that black letter law in a meaningful way to graders. Don't just stare at outlines/flashcards, click through MBEs...

jman77
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby jman77 » Mon Sep 18, 2017 3:01 pm

Based on preliminary anecdotal information, it appears that we are going to get a fairly generous MBE curve. CA does not provide the MBE score unless the examinee failed, right? I'd be curious to know how my MBE this time around compares to my MBE when I took NY.

I don't understand why the MBE score is not portable across all jurisdictions (within a certain time frame) like the MPRE since it's the exact same test across the board. Having said that, if I had a choice between taking the 1-day attorney exam and the 2-day full exam, I would have taken the full exam anyway. The MBE is almost like insurance against getting an arbitrarily stingy grader for my essays.

La Cosa Nostra
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby La Cosa Nostra » Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:37 pm

The California Supreme Court on Friday filed an order invited amicus letters on the issue of whether the required score for passing the California bar exam should be lowered.

State Bar trustees on Sept. 6 voted not to take a stance. Rather, presented three alternatives: retaining the present score of 1440 points, lowering it to 1414, or reducing it to 1390.

The high court order says:

“On September 13, 2017, the court received the Final Report on the 2017 California Bar Exam Standard Setting Study of the State Bar of California. Any person or entity wishing to comment on the State Bar’s Final Report may submit an amicus curiae letter (referencing docket number S244281 In re California Bar Exam) to the Office of the Clerk, Supreme Court of California, 350 McAllister Street, San Francisco, CA 94102. The commenter must also send a copy of the amicus curiae letter to Vanessa Holton, General Counsel, The State Bar of California, 180 Howard Street, San Francisco, CA 94105. The letters to the court and the copies to the State Bar must be postmarked on or before October 2, 2017, or be hand-delivered to the designated addresses by October 2, 2017.”

LockBox
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby LockBox » Mon Sep 18, 2017 6:04 pm

eyalaharonov wrote:Lots of speculation about the cut scores...what I've noticed as a tutor is that students are now being completely inundated with more and more substantive law or some new task or game that a commercial prep company is "innovating." The consequence of all that is that students lose touch with the Exam itself, and they end up looking like total amateurs on the days of the Exam. The graders likely all took the same courses and know what you are and aren't learning. The reality is that you have to put yourself in a position of power by learning how to write in a manner that is highly regarded by graders.

I suggest one set of comprehensive outlines (any reader is welcome to contact me for mine), an old-school PMBR book, and dozens and dozens of essays and PTs. You must write under timed conditions, from the VERY BEGINNING OF YOUR PREPARATION. It doesn't matter if you have not yet "mastered" the law - - you are helping yourself with skills necessary to navigate the entire Exam. Work with someone who will guide you and grade you regularly so you steepen the learning curve.

Pass rates have plummeted despite the insane amount of prep material available. The reality is that I continue to see students, repeaters especially, who don't have the slightest clue as to how to offer that black letter law in a meaningful way to graders. Don't just stare at outlines/flashcards, click through MBEs...


I'm going to echo this great advice. My own method during prep was 2 x 50 - no less than 2 essays per day and no less than 50 MBE's per day, under timed conditions. MBE practice was just to keep up my score as it wasn't an issues, but essays were where I was lacking. I found 2 essays per day (10 per week total) all fully written under timed conditions with at least 30 having feedback from a grader set me up to pass. I basically only used adaptibar, the state bar website and baressays to look at other submitted answers. Rinse and repeat.

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RoccoPan
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby RoccoPan » Mon Sep 18, 2017 8:11 pm

jman77 wrote:Based on preliminary anecdotal information, it appears that we are going to get a fairly generous MBE curve. CA does not provide the MBE score unless the examinee failed, right? I'd be curious to know how my MBE this time around compares to my MBE when I took NY.

I don't understand why the MBE score is not portable across all jurisdictions (within a certain time frame) like the MPRE since it's the exact same test across the board. Having said that, if I had a choice between taking the 1-day attorney exam and the 2-day full exam, I would have taken the full exam anyway. The MBE is almost like insurance against getting an arbitrarily stingy grader for my essays.


I made the choice to do the 2-day instead of the 1-day for the exact reason you describe -- I'm not sure I would have made the same choice if it were still a 3-day exam. If I pass, it was genius. If I fail, it was a disastrous mistake. I felt prepared walking into the MBE and felt like I failed walking out of it. I felt the same way after the first bar exam I took, but I never got my MBE score back so have no idea how I actually did on that one (I passed, so I really didn't care then).

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fear_no_evil
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby fear_no_evil » Wed Sep 27, 2017 11:46 pm

Some guy has de-briefed all the July 2017 essays on Youtube, if anyone is interested.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ED2gjmdz8Vw

Jay.T17
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby Jay.T17 » Thu Sep 28, 2017 12:29 am

Ahhh botched the torts and PR essay. Did good on the others, only missed a couple minor issues. I did practice well on practice MBEs (around 75%). Hopefully that carries over and I'm able to pass.

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Alt123
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby Alt123 » Thu Sep 28, 2017 12:54 am


mcmand
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby mcmand » Thu Sep 28, 2017 1:58 am

Alt123 wrote:https://twitter.com/CalBarTrustee/status/913179707281088512


I don't know what to make of that. My cynical side thinks it's just cover for them to keep the score the same and claim state action immunity.

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CAnow
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby CAnow » Thu Sep 28, 2017 1:34 pm

fear_no_evil wrote:Some guy has de-briefed all the July 2017 essays on Youtube, if anyone is interested.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ED2gjmdz8Vw


I'm going to watch this on November 18th.

lsatextreme
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby lsatextreme » Thu Sep 28, 2017 1:40 pm

CAnow wrote:
fear_no_evil wrote:Some guy has de-briefed all the July 2017 essays on Youtube, if anyone is interested.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ED2gjmdz8Vw


I'm going to watch this on November 18th.


Yea fuck that shit hard until I actually need it. Makes me almost sick to my stomach to know it even exists right now. Ugh.

I-object
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby I-object » Thu Sep 28, 2017 5:07 pm

Bar Secrets has released their debriefs for July 2017 Cal Bar Essays. They require you to select a link for access. The bargain may be in exchange for your email address (Not Sure)...FYI

Good Luck..

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Alt123
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby Alt123 » Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:10 pm

I can't imagine why anyone would watch that video until after results, and only then if you failed. It just seems like nothing but a catalyst for further anxiety...

jman77
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby jman77 » Thu Sep 28, 2017 8:09 pm

Alt123 wrote:I can't imagine why anyone would watch that video until after results, and only then if you failed. It just seems like nothing but a catalyst for further anxiety...


Call me crazy, but I watched all 5. As I expected, I got some, missed some. Based on his debrief (and assuming his answers were the credited answers), Essays 5 and 1 appear to have been my best while Essay 3 (messed up on the TRO part as I essentially said it was the same as an injunction except for the duration) was my weakest. Essays 2 and 4 were middle of the road for me.

InterAlia1961
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Re: 2017 July California Bar

Postby InterAlia1961 » Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:01 am

jman77 wrote:
Alt123 wrote:I can't imagine why anyone would watch that video until after results, and only then if you failed. It just seems like nothing but a catalyst for further anxiety...


Call me crazy, but I watched all 5. As I expected, I got some, missed some. Based on his debrief (and assuming his answers were the credited answers), Essays 5 and 1 appear to have been my best while Essay 3 (messed up on the TRO part as I essentially said it was the same as an injunction except for the duration) was my weakest. Essays 2 and 4 were middle of the road for me.


Same here. I blew essay two. No real surprise. And I'm sure I was weak on five. I think I did okay on essays one, three, and four, and maybe the PT.




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