We know how challenging the bar exam study process is. We hope these tips will help you get through and find exam success!Just click a link below to jump to useful content:
- Basic Background & Thoughts on the Bar Exam
- When Should You Take the Exam?
- When Should You Start Studying?
- Selecting the Right Tools for You
- Studying for the Writing Portion
- MBE Tips
- Taking Care of Yourself
- Getting Mentally Ready
- Balancing Life and Bar Prep
- Working While Studying
- Getting Ready for Game Day!
- Ninja-Level Study Tips
- If You are Having a Freak-out, We are Here to Help!
- Some Help for the Bar Exam Significant Other
- It’s Bar Exam Day!
- You’ve Completed the Bar – What’s Next?
Basic Background & Thoughts on the Bar Exam
- Leveling the Playing Field: Testing Accommodations on the Bar Exam Dr. Jared Maloff is a clinical psychologist who specializes in helping students who need testing accommodations navigate the bar exam.
- Seven Reasons the Bar Exam is Hard See our thoughts on what makes the bar exam so challenging for bar takers!
- Four Things You Can Do to Make Sure You are Ready for Bar Season One of the things that many people don’t consider when studying for the bar exam is how to make sure their life is ready for the bar prep period.
- The 7 Areas of Bar Exam Preparation Surprisingly, it’s not just about studying law! In this article, our guest blogger, Dustin Saiidi of the Bar Exam Mental Edge program, explains each area of bar prep!
- When Should Law Students Get Interested in the Bar Exam? Dr. Mary Campbell Gallagher, founder and president of BarWrite®, explains the benefits of her program and why some law students struggle with the exam.
- Tips from Alfred Zappala, Bar Exam Expert Alfred shares his tips for bar exam students including, “The earlier you begin to think about the exam, the easier it will be to pass.”
- An Entrepreneur’s Approach to Studying for the Bar Exam Our friend Desiree Moore of Greenhorn Legal shares her thoughts on how to approach your bar study.
- The Five Things I Hated Most About Studying for the Bar Exam Alison tells you what she disliked most about studying for the exam.
- Bar Exam Study Tips: Lee’s Podcast with Dustin Saiidi Join Lee as she chats with Dustin Saiidi of I Passed My Bar Exam as they discuss some of the key ingredients to a successful bar exam prep.
- Warning, Burnout Ahead! Take a Pre-Bar Exam Study Break Give yourself a break by taking a respite before studying for the bar exam.
- Studying for the MPRE Taking the MPRE soon? Here are some tips to help you study right.
- Can You Study for the Bar Exam on a Beach in Mexico? Do you need to be on lock down during your bar exam study? Do you need to attend lectures in person? Do you need to study in the library? Or can you do something totally different?
When Should You Take the Exam?
- Does it Make Sense to Skip This Bar Exam? Life doesn’t always make flexibility in your schedule or wallet for a successful run at the bar exam. We discussed the whys and why-nots of skipping the bar until a later date.
- I Just Failed the Bar. Should I Take the Next Bar Offered or Take a Break? We receive numerous students asking whether they should take the next bar exam after a previous failure. Here are our thoughts.
When Should You Start Studying?
- The Best Way to Prepare for the Bar Exam Prep Period Dustin Saiidi from I Passed My Bar Exam tells you what you should be doing before bar exam season starts.
- Four Reasons to Study Early for the Bar Exam Dustin Saiidi from I Passed My Bar Exam tells you why you should start studying sooner rather than later.
- Should I Start Studying Early for the Bar Exam? Dustin Saiidi from I Passed My Bar Exam gives you his thoughts why you should not study too early for the bar exam.
- 5 Tips for Studying Now for the February Bar Exam It may only be early fall, but I know a lot of you are already preparing for the February bar exam. Here are five tips to help you study now.
- Bar Exam Studying: What to do If You Want to Study Now In the last week or so, I have been getting emails from folks specifically on studying for the bar exam early. Here are a few prep programs we recommend for bar study.
- Are You Next to Take the Bar Exam? 5 Tips for You! If you’re a 3L, it’s never too early to start thinking about preparing for the bar exam.
- Getting an Early Start on Bar Preparation Lee outlines the items that are key to bar exam success including, but not limited to, organizing your non-bar exam life and utilizing all the resources at your disposal.
- When Should You Start Studying for the Bar Exam? Our bar exam experts share their experience and recommendations for study time and mapping out your schedule.
- Studying Over the Holidays – Yay or Nay? The holidays are a time to enjoy life, friend and family. Check out what we think about using this “break” to study.
- Does It Take 10 Weeks to Study for the Bar Exam? Some words of advice from those who know. How long you need to benefit most from bar exam study is up to you, but here are our thoughts.
Selecting the Right Tools for You
- Tools for Bar Exam Success: AdaptiBar Substantive Lectures AdaptiBar let us know about its newly released substantive law lectures on the MBE subjects by Jonathan Grossman. Here’s our review on how these materials fare for bar exam study.
- Easy (and Cheap) Ways to Study for the MPRE Here’s some helpful info and tips for studying for the MPRE.
- Can This $12.60 Book Help You Pass the Bar Exam? We recently rediscovered a book that really helped people get mentally ready for the bar exam.
- Review of Lean Sheets Bar Exam Outlines Lean Sheets were developed—to help those of you studying for the bar exam pare down the information to what you need to know.
- Bar Exam Lessons Learned and Free California Outlines After studying for the February 2013 California Bar Exam, Adam Shajnfeld swore he would try to make life easier for others by posting the outlines he prepared.
- Sometimes “Experts” Give Bad Advice Believe it or not, some bar exam experts give bad advice. Here’s how to handle it.
- The Importance of Accountability as Part of Your Bar Preparation In Lee’s blog for Solo Practice University, she shares 5 tips about why and how you should be accountable during your study period.
- Things to Consider When Selecting a Bar Review Provider Some helpful tips for researching bar review providers.
- Our Experts Weigh In on How to Select the Best Bar Review Provider for You Here’s what our experts advise on how to select the best bar review provider for you.
- Tips for Selecting a Bar Review Provider for Repeat-Takers Need advice on bar review providers for those of you re-taking the bar exam? Here’s what our experts say.
- Our Thoughts on Different Bar Review Tools Here are our thoughts on different bar review tools to select for studying.
- Having Issues with the MBE? Tips for Studying Again Sean Silverman, an MBE expert, shares some tips on how to study to raise your MBE scores.
- How to Select a Bar Review Tutor As students around the country have been getting bad news about the bar exam, here’s the advice we’ve been sharing with students.
Studying for the Writing Portion
- The Performance Test: Why You Should Be Studying Now As you gear up for the bar exam, it is a good idea to prepare yourself for the performance test portion or, in some cases, the MPT. Here are some insights from Lee!
- Can Paper Clips Help You Pass the Performance Test? Could a paper clip actually help you pass the performance test? For some students, I think it can! You can use paper clips to bind the cases together and create some organization for yourself.
- We All Need Practice to Perform at Our Best If you have previously taken the bar exam, you understand that just reading the material is not enough. Practicing essays, utilizing different study methods and, possibly, consulting with a bar exam review provider are all important component to a successful bar.
- Has Using the Computer Made it More Difficult to Write Concisely? Dr. Mary Campbell Gallagher joins us again to share her expert opinion on how technology has changed the essay portion of the bar exam and what her program, BarWrite®, can do to improve bar exam results.
- Think of the Bar Exam as One Big Interview. The bar exam is like an interview. Your essays are being presented to the bar graders as your written interview for admission to the state bar.
- To Find Success on Bar Exam Essays, You Must Become an Expert at Reading the Facts When Lee works with students, she often finds the need to remind them that one of their main jobs while preparing for the bar exam is to become an expert fact reader. Here is how.
- Is Reading Sample Answers Stressing You Out? The answer is probably yes. So here are a few tips to get you through sample answers.
- The Power of the Re-Write. Once you have evaluated your work, what do you do then? We recommend that you re-write your answer.
- Why Do We Have to Write Out Practice Answers? Issue spotting is not enough. Writing out practice answers helps assure you get the best answer possible.
- The Key to the Performance Test: Find Your Approach There are a few keys to being successful on the performance test. Let us show you what they are.
- Yikes! I Need to Improve My MBE Scores Worried that your MBE scores are going to keep you from passing on your next attempt? We have some resources that will help you develop the best study plan for you.
- A Slightly Counterintuitive Way to Study for the MBE Here’s a tip for improving your MBE scores — force yourself to focus primarily on the material you don’t know.
- A Practical Approach to Bar Exam Study – Advice from Jonathan Grossman Jonathan Grossman is here today to answer a few questions about himself, his approach to bar exam study, and his top tips for bar exam success.
- Top 5 Study Tips for Conquering the MBE Sean Silverman shares his secrets for tackling the MBE portion of the bar exam.
- There is just Too Much MBE Law to Learn Tips and Tricks for conquering all there is to learn for the MBE. Check out the 2013 MBE Information Booklet for a helpful info and outlines!
- Tips for the MBE From an Expert Who Knows Sean Silverman answers some questions about preparing for the bar exam, especially the MBE portion.
- How NOT to be an MBE Victim – Advice from Dr. Mary Campbell Gallagher Dr. Mary Campbell Gallagher, the founder and president of BarWrite® and BarWrite Press, tells you how to conquer the MBEs.
- MBE Trouble? Tips for Studying Again Sean Silverman, an MBE expert, shares some tips on how to study to raise your MBE scores.
Taking Care of Yourself
- Taking Care of Yourself is a Critical Part of Your Bar Exam Preparation Making sure you’re well taken care of is part of what will keep you healthy for the bar exam.
- Are You Getting Enough Sleep? Students often tell Lee that they are incredibly tired going into the final weeks of bar prep. When she asks how much sleep they are getting, the answer is almost always five to six hours. For most of us, that just isn’t enough!
- What if You Get Sick During Bar Prep? The most important thing you can do is recover. Although you may feel like watching potential study hours slip away is going to kill your changes of passing, it isn’t.
- Optimal Nutrition for Bar Exam Success Studying until you drop is not the best practice. Make sure you are taking care of your body during this trying time using tips from our guest blogger and Certified Holistic Nutrition Consultant, Caitlin Weeks.
- Can I Take a Break? Of course! Lee explains why it is critical to your bar exam prep to treat yourself to much needed and well-deserved breaks.
Getting Mentally Ready
- Are You Ready to Conquer the Bar Exam!?! The weeks (or months) of studying you have put in have come to an end. To help you get through exam week, we have some tips for you.
- Four Bar Exam Obsessions (You Could Do Without) Lee’s latest post at Solo Practice University includes four bar exam obsessions you could do without.
- Should You Start Thinking About Your Bar Exam Mental State Now? Elena DuCharme talks about how mindset is critical for bar exam success.
- Procrastinating for the Bar Exam with Frodo Baggins Jeff Curl shares his experience with procrastination while studying for the bar exam and offers tips to ensure procrastination is more like relaxation.
- Can Yoga or Walking Help You Pass the Bar Exam? Simple acts like yoga and walking can actually help you do better on the bar exam.
- The Bar Exam Culture of Fear How you can tackle the culture of fear surrounding the bar exam.
- Can Meditation Help You Prepare for the Bar Exam? Whether you are weeks, months or years away from taking the bar exam, meditation or mindfulness can be a very helpful tool in conquering anxiety and stress.
- Stop saying, “I can’t” We are the first to admit that the bar is mentally and emotionally challenging even beyond the amount of law you need to know. But there is a disturbing pattern we are seeing with law students that can be disastrous to your bar prep, saying “I can’t.”
- How to Cope With Bar Exam Stress We hosted a Twitter chat where much of the discussion was dedicated to dealing with issues of stress and anxiety during the bar exam. Our experts had a great discussion on how they coped with stress, where they learned their coping mechanisms and how to handle the anxiety of bar exam week.
- Getting Mentally Ready for the Bar Exam Lauren Fire from Mind Over Bar shares her thoughts on how to get mentally ready for the bar exam.
- 4 Steps to Conquering Self-Doubt During Bar Exam Study Guest blogger, Lauren Fire of Mind Over Bar, shares her step-by-step guide to overcoming the doubt that accompanies bar prep.
- Two Simple Non-Woo-Woo Ways to Calm Your Nerves and Boost Your Score on the Bar Exam Elena DuCharme, an attorney and performance coach, shares with you two strategies to reduce stress and increase your bar exam score.
- Why Your Mindset Matters When It Comes to the Bar Exam Elena DuCharme gives you some tips to develop a confident mindset in the midst of a very anxiety-inducing period.
- Strategic Tips for Unwinding Stress Kim Nicol shares with you some tips on how to manage stress during bar exam crunch time.
- Getting Mentally Ready – Let Go, Relax and Get Out of Your Own Way Kay Heatherly talks about her work, how it could help you with your bar prep and what you would expect from a session.
- Help! I Can’t Afford a Therapist – 4 Things to Try Here are a few lower cost options that may help you cope with anxiety and fear and get mentally ready for the exam.
- If You Don’t Know Why, You Won’t Pass Why do you want to be a lawyer? This question is key to bar exam success.
- Call Your Therapist One thing that many students don’t consider is that anxiety or fear of failure could have been standing in the way of their bar exam success in the past or may be standing in their way for the future.
- One and Done – The Best Bar Exam Motto I would tell this to myself when things got hard, when I got frustrated, or when I just wasn’t sure I wanted to keep working.
- What Is the Worst That Could Happen? Bar exam scores are outside our control—and that is very hard to handle!
- Studying for the Bar Exam? Loosen Up! Ryan Rivera struggled with anxiety for years and negative thinking was the consequence. Now he provides information about living with anxiety.
Balancing Life and Bar Prep
- Studying While Balancing Family Responsibilities The bar is a time where you want to be selfish and make studying a priority; however, life doesn’t always allow for that. So what do you do?
- Establish a Bar Exam Routine Matt Racine, the author of Bar Exam Mind, shares his advice for developing a bar exam routine, a key to finding bar exam success.
Working While Studying
- Working While Studying? “Play” Bar Prep Like You’re Playing Risk Sarah Eli Mattern shares why working full time during bar exam is possible, but not recommended.
- Working AND Studying? Tips for Surviving Bar Exam Prep During a recent Twitter chat with our team of experts, we came up with some great tips for those who will be working and studying.
- Five Tips for Studying for the Bar Exam While Working When considering studying while working, there are a number of things you should take into consideration, especially if you are re-taking the bar exam after disappointing results.
- 10 Tips for Working and Studying for the Bar Exam Check out Lee’s post at Solo Practice University for ten great tips to conquer this challenge.
Getting Ready for Game Day!
- Where are You Going to Upload Your Answers? Are you taking the bar exam on your computer? Then you need to think about when and where you are going to upload your bar exam answers.
- 5 Things to Do During Your Last Week of Bar Prep From eating good food, to taking a break, to start packing — we have a list of things you should do the week before the bar exam.
Is Your Computer Ready? If you are not handwriting the bar, your laptop needs to be prepped ASAP.
- The Bar Exam Predictions Are Out — Do They Matter? Predictions can be very misleading and can give studiers a false sense of security that someone knows what will be on the test.
- Did You Book a Hotel? Things to Put On Your To Do List Here’s a list of five things to do before the bar exam.
- Need a Place to Stay for the Bar Exam? Try Airbnb Don’t have the money for a hotel for the bar exam? Try Airbnb instead.
- 13 Things to Do Before the Bar Exam Lee has listed out 13 things you need to get done before the bar exam. Do you have everything ready?
- Do You Have a Plan of What to Eat During Bar Week? It is Important to Remember that Food is Fuel. Food is incredibly important when it comes to the bar exam because it is the single thing that will fuel your body while going through those challenging hours of exam time. Food and pure adrenaline!
- Not Sure What to Take with You to the Hotel? We have put together a helpful packing list to get you started.
- Handwriting the Bar Exam? If you are handwriting the bar exam, make sure you are ready. Check out these tips from bar exam experts (including what pen to use!).
Ninja-Level Study Tips
- Predicting the Bar Questions Versus Refined Studying Jeff Curl talks about the best way to focus your studying for the California bar exam.
- Tricks for Memorizing Law for the Bar Exam Believe it or not, you can actually learn a lot more law than you think.
- Make Your Own Study Materials For most, making your own study materials is key to bar exam success. Why? Well, you know more about how you study best than any commercial bar review course or commercial outline!
- Organize Your Materials Using a Bar Binder When Lee was studying for the bar exam, she found the amount of paper she had collected for each subject a little overwhelming. Here is how she put together a bar binder to take control of the paper chaos surrounding bar exam study.
- Some Find Making Handwritten Study Materials Helpful Although this may seem like an old-school approach to building out your study materials, there is a lot of value in turning off the computer and writing study materials by hand.
- You Should Spend Time Studying Sample Answers How do you figure out how the bar examiners want you to answer the questions? By working backward from the sample answers (and listening carefully during your bar prep courses).
- Develop a Rock Star Study Schedule See Lee’s tips for developing a rock star study schedule for the final weeks of bar prep!
- Are You Evaluating Your Work? You Should Be Lee outlines the areas of your bar study that should be reviewed. Whether you are working on essays, practice tests or MBE questions, there are important questions to ask to ensure accuracy and completeness.
- What are the Magic Outlines to Help Pass the Bar Exam? Guess what? Your own outlines are better than anything you will buy.
- Please Do Not Spend All Your Time Studying the Law Practice is the most important part of bar prep. It helps you study the law and work on applying the law to the facts. But why is this so important?
- Why the Bar Exam Is Like Playing Tennis The bar exam and playing tennis? They have more in common than you may think.
If You are Having a Freak-out, We are Here to Help!
- Help! My Bar Exam Practice Scores Are Going Down! Are you freaking out because your bar exam practice scores are actually going down the more you study? If so, you are not alone.
- Don’t Get Fixated on Practice Scores Bad scores can send you down an anxiety spiral, which is counterproductive and only feeds the fear surrounding this test. So, what do you do?
- How to Deal With Bar Exam Study Panic I often see first timers or repeat takers come down with a case of bar exam study panic.
- It’s July! Are You Freaking Out? The beginning of July is typically the time that the average student has some sort of “freak-out” or “meltdown” or becomes overwhelmed by anxiety. Here are some tips to get through!
- What do You do if You Aren’t Sure that Bar Prep is Working for You? Let’s be honest, the approaches to bar prep presented by your bar review course may work for a lot of people, but not everyone. What can you do if you are worried that bar prep isn’t working for you? Ask for help!
- My Best Bar Exam Tip: Just Decide You’ll Pass Alison’s simple, yet powerful advice on the bar exam.
- Life Doesn’t Stop for the Bar Exam If you are presented with a challenge during your bar prep, what should you do?
- I Am Studying All the Time But I Don’t Feel I Actually Know Any Law What do you do if you have been studying diligently but still don’t know the law?
Some Help for the Bar Exam Significant Other
- Are You Living With a Bar Exam Studier? Here’s How to Cope! Here are a few things one significant other realized when her husband was studying ofr the bar exam.
- Tips for the Bar Exam Significant Other We know that studying for the bar exam can be hard on our loved ones. Here are some tips for significant others on how to stay sane during bar prep.
- More Tips for the Bar Exam Significant Other: Don’t Take it Personally We hosted a Twitter chat where our experts discussed tips for the bar exam significant other. Check out what they had to say!
- How Can You Support Your Bar Studier? More helpful tips for those suffering through bar study with you!
- Are You and Your Significant Other Studying for the Bar Exam Together? We have some tips on how you both work together without losing your minds.
It’s Bar Exam Day!
- Your Pep Talk for Tuesday It’s bar exam day! Lee has some helpful tips to get you through Day 1.
- Your Bar Exam Pep Talk Lee shares some words of praise and congratulations for those who have taken on the challenge of the bar exam study process via her blog on Solo Practice University.
- Pep Talk for Day 2: Keep Calm and Carry On Finding yourself at the end of a successful (we hope) first day of the bar exam? Here are some words of encouragement and advise to move into Day 2 regardless of how you started out.
You’ve Completed the Bar – What’s Next?
- What Are You Doing Post-Bar Exam? Low Cost Ideas to Get Your Life Back Want to treat yourself to some fun after the bar exam, but you’re a little strapped for cash? Here are some easy and low cost ideas to get your life back.
- The Waiting Game: Bar Exam Results If you thought studying was stressful, waiting for your results can be an anxiety-filled experience as well. Lee has put together some tips about how to spend your time while waiting and what to do when you get your results.
- 3 Things to Do After the Bar Exam The 3 Cs of post-bar exam life: celebrate, cleanse and carry on. Regardless of your results, life must go on. Lee shares how these three things can help you turn the page.
- How to Wait for Bar Results on Friday They say waiting is the hardest part. Here are a few tips while you wait for those bar exam results.
- Job Hunting While Waiting for Bar Results A few tips to help you network and job search while waiting for bar exam results.
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