Suprman37 wrote:I'll be there with you to in July.
Since you gave your story, I'll give mine. I'm currently admitted to practice in Indiana sitting for the essay portion only for Illinois in July. I was a non-traditional law student, graduating this past December in my late 30s with three kids under 6. As you can pretty much imagine, bar prep for the February bar was hectic. I had to work because I have bills and a family, and my kids wanted to spend time with me as usual. Bar prep took up a ton of time for an already crammed schedule. I usually get by in life on polish and charm, but I had a lot riding on the exam (job offer revocable on notice of bar exam failure) so I put in the work. I started bar prep late (around Jan 10 when the program started Dec 23) and felt like I was in an absolute grinder. The Kaplan videos bored me to tears (except the Family Law and Evidence guys). I didn't give 100% to the MPT portions because I had an MPT class in law school that I did very well in (also had one for MBE and Essay portion). I knew that my MBE score would be key, so I got about 400 of the retired questions and did those. They were so much better than the Kaplan questions, which I did about 1500 of anyway. Took the exam and was pretty nervous when those bloodbath results started trickling out. Fortunately, I passed. My MBE score was very strong. They don't give you your essay score in the state if you passed.
After much consideration, I've transferred my score to Illinois. I have the best chance of passing by doing the MBE again (if I scored the same this time as in February, I would only have to be outside of the bottom 1 percentile of essay scores to pass), but I honestly just don't feel like doing it again. I think I still have an extremely strong chance of just getting the 133 on the essay (if you transfer your MBE score, they only credit you with a 133 MBE). I really wish I could see my previous essay scores to better gauge, but my heart isn't in doing another MBE.
So, what am I doing to pass?
I'm not paying for another bar prep course. I didn't pay the book deposit for Kaplan and they wanted me to pay to ship the books back, so I have the books for the MEE, MPT, and most IL subjects without the Illinois distinctions. I have the Illinois Barbri books from 2016. I talked to the bar prep staff at my law school, and they said this should be enough to pass. I'm going to use these to make note cards to study off of, as that worked well for me last time. I'll be losing the lectures, but those didn't do much for me in February because of my learning style. I've got 2011-2017 Illinois essay questions and answers. I'm working on getting the same for the MEE. I think with all of that, I'll be ok. I'm not going to start studying until July 1. A lot of this stuff is fresh in my mind, and honestly, that's the time I can get away from the firm. I don't have time to learn everything, so I'm going to play the numbers (definitely know all there is to know about Illinois Civ Pro because it's 100% chance of being tested) and go from there.
I just took the CA bar exam and I'm going to sign up for July IL bar exam. I was not sure about the MBE score transfer policy. Looking at what you posted here, I'm assuming that no wonder how high you scored in the previous exam (of another jurisdiction), IL only takes 133 if you choose to transfer the MBE score?