Bar Prep Daily Schedule

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budgetforthelawyer

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Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby budgetforthelawyer » Thu Jun 01, 2017 1:12 am

Taking the NY bar in July. Using Barbri and going to add adaptibar, critical pass, and smart bar prep.

I noticed that a schedule is very important. However, I don't think I'm using my time effectively.

Here is my schedule:

9:30-1:30 Barbri lectures (they feel like a waste of time, should I start focusing on memorizing and doing practice questions?)
1:30- around 2:30 lunch
2:30-9:00/9:30 doing all Barbri assignments (each one takes hours!!)

I take periodic cigarette and phone breaks and go to the gym twice a week.

What is/was your daily bar prep schedule? Please be detailed as to exactly what you did including materials used, breaks and days off.


Thanks

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ndbigdave

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby ndbigdave » Thu Jun 01, 2017 9:22 am

I cannot really provide my daily schedule as I work full time so I am not an apples to apples comparison, but from witnessing how my girlfriend (who did not work while studying) used Barbri on top of speaking to others who had Barbri (and other commercial programs) you are expressing similar concerns.

You will find that most people here rate the lectures in the "waste of time" category, or otherwise suggest you watch/listen on 1.5x or 2x speed to get through them faster. They potentially could have SOME value if you fall into one of two categories:

1 - You learn by listening, even if this is true I think the lectures are too long and generally not as structured as the could or should be (this is where speeding them up helps).

2 - You listen to lectures on topics you never had a class for in law school - the lecture can help set a foundation for the subject matter.

How you learn the black letter law (BLL) is really up to you and what works best, if that is lectures, outlines, flashcards - you must "Know thyself."

I think adding adaptibar is a great idea and your time savings from the lectures can be utilized in doing questions. Doing a mix of Adaptibar and Barbri I think is an ultimate sweet spot due to the nuances and the general difficulty of Barbri questions that can supplement the real questions offered by Adaptibar.

I have heard nothing but good things about critical pass flash cards and if you like, or are used to using, flash cards for studying they will help lock-down the BLL for the MBE subjects.

Going back to schedule, I think it is all about using your time efficiently and effectively - I think it would be VERY easy to cut your schedule down by HOURS if you put in truly productive and helpful studying into the hours you use.

No_name

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby No_name » Thu Jun 01, 2017 1:19 pm

Like the previous poster, I also worked full time while preparing for the bar exam. The amount of time and the approach taken to study is an individual matter. I took the February 2017 UBE and passed with a score well above that which is required by any UBE jurisdiction. The only materials that I used to prepare were materials available to me from my barbri course.

I listened to the online lectures everyday. I would recommend playing them at an increased play speed so you can finish them quicker. I found it very valuable to complete the fill in the blank outlines that go along with each lecture. The outlines were a good tool to flip back to later. I would not suggest falling behind on the lectures.

As the course went on, I did most of the assigned homework. I did not find much value in the barbri AMP, and completely gave up on doing AMP towards the end of the course. At the end of the day, this is a standardized test. This means you must know what they are going to ask and how they are going to ask it (in addition to the black letter law). The key to this is just doing problems and READING the COMPLETE answer. You need to know why the correct answer is correct and why all of the other ones are not.

Other than the assigned essay problems, I did not spend much time preparing for the essays (both MEE and MPT). I did about 5-7 essays in each of the subjects, but I only outlined my answers and noted the key facts that I would include in my response (noting facts, even little ones will get you points on this exam). I would then read the model answer and use the score key to grade my essays. Aside from online posts, I am a good writer, so I felt confident in my abilities and didn't see the need to draft complete answers. For the MPT, I probably only did 3-5 problems to prepare. Like the regular essay, I generally outlined my answers and compared them to the model answer and score key.

I would highly recommend the barbri approach tutorials. They are 30-45 minute videos in each of the subject areas. They give you the nuts and bolts of what you MUST know. For example, the evidence tutorial will tell you 80% of the evidence questions are on hearsay (and provide the breakout for the other areas that make up the remaining 20%). The approach tutorials tell you the most heavily tested areas, and that is where you should focus your time. I would also note, that I did not watch any of the workshops for the assigned 25 question problem sets, but I did go through all of the answers on my own. I felt it was a better use of my time go through the answers on my own, rather than listen to someone on a video go through them.

Don't stress about not completing all of the assignments - no one does! In the 2/3 weeks after the course ended and exam time, I struggled with the question of whether I should finish the remaining homework assignments or just start doing more problems on my own. I opted for the latter approach and I concentrated on questions by subject, with a heavy focus on the most heavily tested issues.

I should note, that I thought preparing for the bar exam was one of the most challenging things that I ever had to endure - it gave 1L a serious run for its money, and I still not sure which was worse. You will get through it though but be forewarned, the most stressful time will be while you are waiting for your results. During that time, I developed a large amount of self doubt, and convinced myself that I failed. My jurisdiction only posted a pass list, and we had to wait a little bit to get our score breakout. I only cared that I passed, but was very surprised with how well I scored when I got the breakout. Good luck and PM me if you have any specific questions.

Jon_Snow

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby Jon_Snow » Thu Jun 01, 2017 2:05 pm

Was looking for a post like this. Anybody else got helpful advice going into UBE but studying full time?

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Yugihoe

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby Yugihoe » Thu Jun 01, 2017 2:11 pm

Jon_Snow wrote:Was looking for a post like this. Anybody else got helpful advice going into UBE but studying full time?


Bump. Also would be great to hear from people who didn't use barbri.

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jchiles

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby jchiles » Thu Jun 01, 2017 3:33 pm

I used Themis last summer, here was my typical weekday schedule:

8-10 am: play video games and watch tv

10-12:30 pm: study

12:30-2 pm: lunch or whatever

2-4 pm: study

4-5 pm: gym or go to pool (sometimes listening to lectures)

5-6 pm: study

I kept this schedule through June, taking days off here and there and not working on weekends. By July I was probably doing about 3 hours a day on weekends, and about two weeks before I was studying an addition 1-2 hours a day on top of the schedule above.

Bar prep isn't fun but you need to enjoy the summer if you don't have to work and know you have a job lined up.

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Yugihoe

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby Yugihoe » Thu Jun 01, 2017 4:06 pm

jchiles wrote:I used Themis last summer, here was my typical weekday schedule:

8-10 am: play video games and watch tv

10-12:30 pm: study

12:30-2 pm: lunch or whatever

2-4 pm: study

4-5 pm: gym or go to pool (sometimes listening to lectures)

5-6 pm: study

I kept this schedule through June, taking days off here and there and not working on weekends. By July I was probably doing about 3 hours a day on weekends, and about two weeks before I was studying an addition 1-2 hours a day on top of the schedule above.

Bar prep isn't fun but you need to enjoy the summer if you don't have to work and know you have a job lined up.


Damn, this is such a dope schedule. This gives me hope to not stress out as badly. Did you take the UBE? How much did you pass by?

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jchiles

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby jchiles » Thu Jun 01, 2017 4:18 pm

CPAn00b wrote:
jchiles wrote:I used Themis last summer, here was my typical weekday schedule:

8-10 am: play video games and watch tv

10-12:30 pm: study

12:30-2 pm: lunch or whatever

2-4 pm: study

4-5 pm: gym or go to pool (sometimes listening to lectures)

5-6 pm: study

I kept this schedule through June, taking days off here and there and not working on weekends. By July I was probably doing about 3 hours a day on weekends, and about two weeks before I was studying an addition 1-2 hours a day on top of the schedule above.

Bar prep isn't fun but you need to enjoy the summer if you don't have to work and know you have a job lined up.


Damn, this is such a dope schedule. This gives me hope to not stress out as badly. Did you take the UBE? How much did you pass by?


I took PA, passed by a lot. You just need to make the time you do study count -- actually pay attention to what you're doing wrong and keep drilling MBEs. I was glad I spent some time outlining every single Themis essay (which only really takes 15 minute for each one) because i didn't see anything on test day that was a complete surprise, even if I had no idea how to answer.

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CardozoLaw09

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby CardozoLaw09 » Thu Jun 01, 2017 4:53 pm

tag

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ndbigdave

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby ndbigdave » Thu Jun 01, 2017 5:24 pm

jchiles wrote:
CPAn00b wrote:
jchiles wrote:I used Themis last summer, here was my typical weekday schedule:

8-10 am: play video games and watch tv

10-12:30 pm: study

12:30-2 pm: lunch or whatever

2-4 pm: study

4-5 pm: gym or go to pool (sometimes listening to lectures)

5-6 pm: study

I kept this schedule through June, taking days off here and there and not working on weekends. By July I was probably doing about 3 hours a day on weekends, and about two weeks before I was studying an addition 1-2 hours a day on top of the schedule above.

Bar prep isn't fun but you need to enjoy the summer if you don't have to work and know you have a job lined up.


Damn, this is such a dope schedule. This gives me hope to not stress out as badly. Did you take the UBE? How much did you pass by?


I took PA, passed by a lot. You just need to make the time you do study count -- actually pay attention to what you're doing wrong and keep drilling MBEs. I was glad I spent some time outlining every single Themis essay (which only really takes 15 minute for each one) because i didn't see anything on test day that was a complete surprise, even if I had no idea how to answer.


I totally agree with the mindset and schedule. Again, each individual test taker needs to asses their raw abilities, foundation of knowledge and abilities (for MC/Essay). Beyond that it is working SMART not just HARD, further it is taking QUALITY into consideration rather than QUANTITY.

I laughed when people would - in a humble brag - talk about the 10+ hour days they did at the library. Beyond simply sounding god awful, I could not fathom how it would be possible to be "locked in" for 10+ hours. The human brain can really only pay attention for so long and retain a certain amount of information.

My sweet spot when advising others (both those working and those with more open schedules) is to be working smart, targeted and in the manner that works best for them. For those with total flexibility that involves getting sleep, getting some exercise, fresh air and breaking the process up. I truly, honestly believe that if someone could commit to roughly four (hours) a day or so (some days perhaps more, some less) that some serious work could be done.

For instance, Adaptibar is (roughly) 1,750 questions. When I did my sets, I did them in groups of 50 and it took roughly an hour and a half to two hours. That involved taking each question seriously, answering as if it was the bar, and reviewing EVERY question (right or wrong). With that type of pace/schedule I could complete the ENTIRE Adaptibar program in 35 days. This "practical component" as I call it mixes in test taking strategy (getting questions done in the requisite amount of time, while getting comfortable with the MBE) while also learning from reviewing every question. A similar hour and a half to two hours could be spent reading/reviewing/outlining old MEE (or state specific) essays to (yet again) learn the practical skills necessary to do the essays, being familiar with the style and presentation while also learning from reading model answers. For those who take roughly 8 to 10 weeks to study that means you can accomplish all of Adaptibar in roughly 35 days leaving roughly 30 (or more) to review essays and MPTs.

The "second part" of studying goes into specifically learning the BLL law and concepts, depending on what works for you (lecture, outlines, flashcards - or better yet a mix of it all) one could spend around 2 hours a day with serious, focused learning and glean far more than just blankly staring at an outline while dreading the fact they have 8+ hours of lectures and busy work to do.

When the goal is to simply get a passing score, the above strategy can make the experience not totally suck while also being very efficient and effective.

RaceJudicata

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby RaceJudicata » Thu Jun 01, 2017 5:50 pm

Does anyone have a good study strategy for the essays? Or a way to work them into daily prep? I feel ok about the MBE (not there yet, but feel like I am on pace to be fine there).

I'm really terrified about the essays, and don't feel super confident about my approach to them. Right now I'm just writing out a sample answer (or outline) while glancing at my notes where necessary. Obviously, need to begin doing them from memory at some point, but right now that isn't feasible.

sidris89

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Re: Bar Prep Daily Schedule

Postby sidris89 » Tue Oct 16, 2018 10:51 am

Hi Ndbigdave,

I'm working full-time while studying for the bar. Do you happen to have your study schedule for when you were studying for an idea on how to pace things?

- Sara

ndbigdave wrote:I cannot really provide my daily schedule as I work full time so I am not an apples to apples comparison, but from witnessing how my girlfriend (who did not work while studying) used Barbri on top of speaking to others who had Barbri (and other commercial programs) you are expressing similar concerns.

You will find that most people here rate the lectures in the "waste of time" category, or otherwise suggest you watch/listen on 1.5x or 2x speed to get through them faster. They potentially could have SOME value if you fall into one of two categories:

1 - You learn by listening, even if this is true I think the lectures are too long and generally not as structured as the could or should be (this is where speeding them up helps).

2 - You listen to lectures on topics you never had a class for in law school - the lecture can help set a foundation for the subject matter.

How you learn the black letter law (BLL) is really up to you and what works best, if that is lectures, outlines, flashcards - you must "Know thyself."

I think adding adaptibar is a great idea and your time savings from the lectures can be utilized in doing questions. Doing a mix of Adaptibar and Barbri I think is an ultimate sweet spot due to the nuances and the general difficulty of Barbri questions that can supplement the real questions offered by Adaptibar.

I have heard nothing but good things about critical pass flash cards and if you like, or are used to using, flash cards for studying they will help lock-down the BLL for the MBE subjects.

Going back to schedule, I think it is all about using your time efficiently and effectively - I think it would be VERY easy to cut your schedule down by HOURS if you put in truly productive and helpful studying into the hours you use.



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