Sit just for MEE/MPT or Retake entire exam?

claireTLS
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Sit just for MEE/MPT or Retake entire exam?

Postby claireTLS » Mon Mar 06, 2017 1:10 am

Hi All,

I took the UBE in DC July 2016. I failed, but scored high enough on the MBE that I only need to retake the written portion. I'm retaking the bar in July 2017 but am starting to worry that I won't be able to pass the written portion. I need to get at LEAST a 133 on the essays, which just sounds impossible to me. Especially since I work full time (although I have planned to start studying by tomorrow).

Last year I scored horribly on the essays (106) and while I can blame that partially on the fact that I was forced to take 3 weeks off of studying after I became very ill, I'm well aware that this is an uphill battle for me no matter what.

So: 1) should I retake both portions and hope to score high enough on the MBE that I don't need a 133 on the written half? OR 2) Only retake the written portions and hope that I will be able to gain 30 points by the end of July by studying as much as I can?

Any input is super appreciated. Thanks!
Last edited by claireTLS on Wed May 24, 2017 9:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

happyhour1122
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Re: Sit just for MEE/MPT or Retake entire exam?

Postby happyhour1122 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:12 am

claireTLS wrote:Hi All,

I took the UBE in DC July 2016. I failed, but scored high enough on the MBE that I only need to retake the written portion. I'm retaking the bar in July 2017 but am starting to worry that I won't be able to pass the written portion. I need to get at LEAST a 133 on the essays, which just sounds impossible to me. Especially since I work full time (although I have planned to start studying by tomorrow).

Last year I scored horribly on the essays (106) and while I can blame that partially on the fact that I was forced to take 3 weeks off of studying after I was diagnosed with (luckily!) temporary paralysis, I'm well aware that this is an uphill battle for me no matter what.

So: 1) should I retake both portions and hope to score high enough on the MBE that I don't need a 133 on the written half? OR 2) Only retake the written portions and hope that I will be able to gain 30 points by the end of July by studying as much as I can?

Any input is super appreciated. Thanks!



I am not sure what your MBE score was, but the fact that you need at least 133 (even assuming you need 270 UBE score, your MBE score would be approx 137. This is not a bad score, but its not far from the average score. Personally, I'd retake the mbe because it will also help you study your MEE.
I scored 133 and knowing how horrible my essay was, I decided to retake the whole thing. I can't tell you with confidence that MBE score is easy to improve (since I don't have my feb results yet), but it does help you remember the rules and the analysis through reading the answer choices and explanations.

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SilvermanBarPrep
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Re: Sit just for MEE/MPT or Retake entire exam?

Postby SilvermanBarPrep » Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:26 pm

I get this question a lot because along with the UBE I also tutor the Florida Bar Exam which allows a student to re-take only the part of the exam that they don't pass as opposed to the entire exam. I generally advise against taking the parts of the exam that you don't need to take. The reason for this is that although you might be able to pull up your score a bit by taking those other parts, it seems to me that being able to focus entirely on the area of the exam with which you are struggling is of greater benefit. It's a far more targeted approach when you only have to sit for a very specific part of the bar exam.

--Sean (Silverman Bar Prep)
http://www.mbetutorial.blogspot.com

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zot1
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Re: Sit just for MEE/MPT or Retake entire exam?

Postby zot1 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:37 pm

I would agree with the above. At least for me, studying for the MBE (trying to recall what I knew to pick an answer from a multiple choice exam) was different than for the MEE and MPT (recalling the entire rule and analyzing it through written essays).

I felt, quite honestly, that a lot of bar prep, aside from feeding you black letter law, was about the mechanics of going through MC questions and writing your brains out when it was time for it. I think each part helps you practice something different and that was important for me.

As someone who felt rather confidently with the MEE/MPT portion, I got a tip from my advisor which helped me a lot. For the last week before the exam, my advisor told me to put all the remaining essay subjects I had into a hat and each day to draw three (one at a time) and just do that essay. I really liked doing this because it prepared me for the randomness of the exam and to fully identify which subject I was actually on. When the exam happened, I never spent time being surprised about the question. I was just ready to roll.

For the MPTs, I want to say I did about 5-6. I know some people say you shouldn't practice them because they're so easy, but I practiced them anyway because I wanted to get my time management right. This helped keep my stress levels low. I didn't run out of time for any section.

I hope this helps!

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ndbigdave
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Re: Sit just for MEE/MPT or Retake entire exam?

Postby ndbigdave » Mon Mar 06, 2017 6:22 pm

This is a great question and the advice thus far I think makes all the sense in the world. However, to really give my advice I would need to know just a bit more.

Specifically, what was your MBE score? How did your final MBE score relate to your practice experience/expectations? Was it what you were expecting generally or did you shock yourself by going much higher (or were disappointed thinking you would go higher)?

If the score was very good/excellent and you think repeatable (because you grasp MBE type questions and know those subjects or was right in-line with your practice) then I would advise completing this portion again because it will lower the necessary score on the essays.

My thought is: Yes, conventional wisdom says you can just focus on studying for the essays and refining your writing skills - not having to worry about taking the MBE or spending a second with practice questions means more time to write and learn essay law. However my concern would be that the jump you need is not trivial - going from a 106 to a 133 is jumping up A LOT. Doable? Absolutely, as there is clearly a lot of low-hanging fruit for you to pick up to raise scores relatively quickly - but wouldn't you subconsciously feel better knowing rather than picking up 27 points you only need to pick up 10 or 15 (or less)? I know it would for me.

That all being said, starting early, having done it one time before as a "dress rehearsal" (as I like to call it) and being able to properly study this time around should be a big boost to begin with.

I was originally in a similar position to you, I passed Michigan and was gearing up for Illinois, my MBE was 141 (decent, but far from "good" or "excellent") however it was high enough to transfer and allow me to take the essays only. By doing "essay only" I would be required to score the 133 rather than receive the benefit of my 141 (which would have required a 125 on essays to pass) many people suggested that if my 141 was repeatable that it makes sense to ease your life on the essays.

I ended up waiting too long so I had to take the whole test - however my focus was on repeating/improving my MBE score as it would make the essays (borderline) trivial (I had done equally as well in MI on essays and I can write, but studying the handful of MBE that I KNOW will be on the test rather than the grab bag that is the MEE).

So again, know yourself, think about the MBE, your score and how repeatable it is or likely it is to drop/increase. If you're super confident you can score similarly/improve (like I was) then it makes sense to rock the MBE and make your life easier on the writing portion by lowering the hurdle you have to jump over.




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