I was introduced to Critical Pass: Unlock the MBE flashcards on Twitter. After reading the website, I decided I should check them out. (Full disclosure, I wrote to them and they sent me a free set of flashcards.)
What is Critical Pass?
Critical Pass has developed flashcards to help individuals study for the MBE. One side of the flash card has a given legal issue and the back of the card has an outline of the law as well as space for the student to include notes or mnemonics (see the website for a visual). The cards are also color coded for individual subjects.
The flashcards come in a nice box filled with a significant number of flashcards that, initially, can seem very overwhelming. The MBE, however, is overwhelming, so I cannot hold that against Critical Pass!
These aren’t your everyday flashcards!
So I can’t help but be honest—I don’t really like flashcards. Honestly, one of the things I hated about studying the law with flashcards was that you could not see how the larger legal issues fit together with just one rule statement per card.
The Critical Pass folks didn’t do that though. The flashcards utilize larger legal issues and then give the student, say, “a mini-outline” of the law related to the given issue on the back of the card. Furthermore, each subject has an index that groups cards by overarching legal issues. The other thing the cards do is cross-reference topics, because so many MBE concepts are interconnected. This too will help ensure that you are not just studying one rule—but making notes of how rules can often interact. (This is something that is often overlooked or forgotten when using flashcards.)
What I like most about the MBE flashcards is that the outlines on the back are organized and easy to read—basically the type of outline that I would recommend for your own study materials.
And since I prefer to memorize things in outline form, I believe I could have studied off of these flashcards. I also like the fact that you can write mnemonics and other notes directly on the cards. In this way, a student can make the cards his/her own and does not need to feel as though she is using someone else’s study materials.
In a way, I think these cards could save a student quite a bit of time. In my experience, one thing that can be a huge waste of one’s time when studying for the bar is making your own flashcards.
Because with Critical Pass you are able to add notes to the MBE cards and essentially “make them your own” (by including mnemonics, etc.), you could save a significant amount of time while utilizing an extremely effective study tool.
Critical Pass cards can be purchased online for $149.99. This pays for 380 cards, plus a year of mobile app access for Apple and Android devices.
— – —
Have you used the Critical Pass flashcards? If so, please share your thoughts in the comments below.
Want more reviews of helpful bar-related resources? Sign up for our free mailing list now!
Image from Critical Pass.