We have reviewed AdaptiBar before on this site and we feel it is an excellent tool for those studying for the bar exam who are looking for additional MBE help. Students constantly tell me they are happy with the product, especially the mobile apps that allow them to practice MBE questions on their phones or iPads. This is especially convenient for working students who are looking for easy ways to practice MBEs on their lunch hour or even during their commute.
AdaptiBar let me know recently about its newly released substantive law lectures on the MBE subjects by Jonathan Grossman. Jonathan is an MBE expert, bar exam tutor, and professor out of Florida. After chatting with Jonathan about his project of developing lectures for AdaptiBar, I was looking forward to checking them out myself. Thanks to AdaptiBar, I was provided access to the lectures so I could share my thoughts with you here.
Are these the same lectures that you would get in any bar review course?
To be honest, I think these lectures are better than what you generally get at most commercial bar review courses for two reasons.
1. The lectures are specifically tailored to support the MBE. In most commercial bar review courses that cover both the written and the MBE portion of the exam, the substantive law lectures have to cover material for both the MBE and the essays. This is a challenge for the bar review providers because although the law for both is technically the same, the way that the law is tested or the distinctions that are tested can vary between written exams and multiple-choice questions. What struck me when listening to Jonathan’s lectures was that they were tailored to the MBE. He talked about how specific areas of law were tested. He discussed the types of questions that commonly appear on the MBE. He wasn’t just educating the listener on the substantive law, but on how to understand how to take the substantive law (much of which you already know) and turn that into selecting the right MBE answer. No easy feat!
2. The lectures do a great job of simplifying the law. When you study for the bar exam, you are required to learn mountains of law and it is impossible to be an expert in every little detail. Jonathan does a nice job of simplifying the rules in his lecture so they are easy to digest and memorize. I was thinking how effective note taking would be with these lectures. Sure, there are still hours of material, but I doubt you would leave the lecture feeling that there is just too much law to learn. Instead, I think you would leave the lecture appreciating the amount of law you really need to learn, so you can focus your studying and get the most bang for your buck.
The lectures are broken up so they are easy to use and you can target your listening to specific areas of law that you are struggling with. You can even buy an individual lecture on a subject.
Time management is an important part of any bar study plan and listening to hours of lecture (more than six) may not be high on your list of things to do. However, AdaptiBar has broken up the larger subject areas into topic areas, so you can do more targeted listening and learning (and even purchasing, see below). Perhaps you feel that you are incredibly strong in constitutional law, but you keep missing questions on fundamental rights. Well, you can just watch the targeted individual rights lecture and save yourself time. By using the analytics provided by your AdaptiBar practice, which will highlight your weak areas, you can do targeted listening of the lectures and get the most for your money where your study time is concerned.
Jonathan Grossman does his best to interject humor and make the videos entertaining.
Let’s be honest, substantive lectures are boring. But Jonathan does a nice job of interjecting humor and using examples to make listening to lectures less painful than most substantive law lectures. No hours upon hours of someone reading from an outline. Instead, he does as much as he can to make his lectures interactive. He told me he tries to use the same lecture style that he uses with his students live — which, of course, is more interactive than a typical recorded video. I understand this as well, because if I stood up in front of a classroom and read off an outline to my students for two hours, I think they would walk out of the room!
Who would find these lectures helpful?
I think most students could find these lectures helpful. If you are an auditory or kinesthetic learner, you might find these videos more helpful than if you are a visual learner. But because the videos do a good job of making the law easy to digest, I think most students could take these lectures and any notes from them and find them beneficial to their study process. Unlike some videos (which I think can be a waste of time if you can get the same info from an outline) these videos will likely help with your understanding and also streamline your studying. Sounds pretty good, no?
Are they worth the money and where can you learn more?
And then comes the money question (which is always an important one). AdaptiBar offers different options for purchasing the lectures. You can purchase all of the lectures for $450 (which is kind of a bargain in the bar exam world). You can purchase a subject individually (constitutional law, for example) for $95 or you can purchase subtopics individually starting at $15 (parol evidence and interpretation in contracts, for example). If you are currently an AdaptiBar student, you can upgrade your package to include these lectures.
You can learn more about the AdaptiBar videos here and more about their creator Jonathan Grossman here. If you would like to purchase an AdaptiBar MBE prep package (which starts at about $395), we have a special offer for you — a $30 discount! Just sign up via our special link, and you’ll get $30 off. (This is an affiliate link.)
Here are a few student comments Jonathan has received about his videos:
“It’s difficult to find a happy medium between effective (memorable) and accurate, which John has managed to masterfully accomplish. John also does a fantastic job of simplifying concepts that for some reason never clicked (cough, products liability and individual rights). My only gripe is that there aren’t videos for evidence, property, or contracts yet! You’ve got something truly special, keep up the solid work.”
“Great explanation for strict liability vs. strict products liability and how they are different. Until now, could never properly separate these subjects and just dreaded ever seeing them on the exam. I feel the videos were key to breaking down some very difficult subjects and breaking down how to tackle the exam. The lectures always flew by without me looking at the clock wondering how much longer. Absolutely brilliantly done! I wish there were more videos for other subjects.”
Have you used AdaptiBar or listened to the new lectures as part of your bar exam prep? If so, please share your experiences in the comments.
Special Offer from AdaptiBar: If you’d like to try AdaptiBar, we’ve negotiated a $30 discount! Just sign up via our special link, and you’ll get $30 off. (This is an affiliate link.)
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Did you find this post helpful? Check out some other great articles:
- Tools for Bar Exam Success: AdaptiBar
- A Slightly Counterintuitive Way to Study for the MBE
- Top 5 Study Tips for Conquering the MBE
- MBE Trouble? Tips for Studying Again