How The Bar Exam Tests Your Fundamental Lawyering Skills


California bar exam results reveal that bar passage rates doubled following the Bar Examiners lowered the passing score from 1440 to 1390 and administered the exam online. The most significant number of applicants in 12 years passed this first online CA bar exam. The published results show that 60.7% of test-takers passed, which was the best passing rate since.

Despite this impressive increase, the CA Bar Exam remains one of the most difficult bar exams in the nation. For individuals who did not pass, it generally does not appear their results reflect too little legal knowledge. Most bar candidates who sit for the exam have a sufficient command of the law. Instead, the test results for folks who did not pass reflect insufficient test-taking skills on the MBE and written portions of the exam.

Since the emphasis of the Bar Exam is the capability to apply the pertinent legal rules to the problems raised by the critical points in a variety of bar exam testing formats, adequate bar preparation demands a two-step process to develop proficiency with legal analysis and reasoning, fact analysis, strategy and problem solving, organization, time management, communication, and a capacity to identify and resolve ethical dilemmas.

The Fleming’s Two-Step

The first faltering step to effectively preparing for the Bar Exam is to master the rules of law in each tested subject. Developing learning and memory retention devices, such as approaches and checklists for every subject, are necessary tools that promote the capability to recall legal concepts associated with each part of the law. Bar review outlines, law school class notes, flashcards, and other legal resources are plentiful to attempt the first step.

The next step to effectively preparing for the Bar Exam is to develop analytical and application skills for each Bar Exam testing format. This is more challenging than step one, the most crucial step. Candidates who spend nearly all their study time merely memorizing the legal rules at the cost of developing analytical skills by taking practise exams under timed conditions rarely score well.

The fundamental principle of analysis is that from the facts, the matter arises. Those candidates understand why concepts divide their study time between memorizing regulations and applying that law to the various bar exam formats.

Consider the following example. If the Bar Examiners want to try the Statute of Frauds in Contracts, they write a well-known fact pattern linked to a particular kind of contract required by law to be in writing to be enforceable. Most bar candidates are fully versed in this type of law. However, when they miss the fact the agreement was made on “the telephone,” which raises an application of the Statute of Frauds based on the oral nature of the fact, they miss the issue. This implies that whenever the bar examiners score the exam answer and find the matter and analysis don’t appear, the examinee might not pass the exam even though they can recite the memorized rule of law.

Bar Exam Preparation And Practice

A compelling bar study requires consistent preparation and practice. There is no replacement for either. To be successful on the bar exam, each candidate must devote the mandatory time and effort to learning regulations and applying them to essay, Performance, and MBE bar testing formats.

Each candidate must objectively consider their abilities to judge how much study time is necessary to develop the skills described above. It is not unusual for bar candidates to underestimate these requirements. Therefore, it’s wise to solicit feedback from law school professors or bar review professionals so that they may assess a club candidate’s skill level and assist in devising a proper study program.

Prepare Properly To Overcome The Fear of Failure

Many bar candidates’ worries of failure usually result from an ineffective study plan that will not include exam practice under timed conditions. The best method to overcome this fear is by setting up a regular study program and incorporating daily exam practice. Taking out a calendar and plotting a day-by-day study schedule will easily attempt provided the schedule is realistic and the candidate sticks to it.

Remember that adequate preparation breeds confidence. Learning regulations and practising exam-testing formats build “know-how” and the confidence that results. Bar exam practice is like physical exercise; once you do it, it works.

Fleming’s bar review emphasizes the two-step process for adequate bar exam preparation. For step one, Fleming’s bar review provides comprehensive substantive law lectures with approaches and checklists to advertise each bar candidate’s understanding and thorough command of the law. For step two, Fleming incorporates weekly exam practice, both in and outside class. Fleming’s bar candidates receive oral feedback from Fleming’s staff of professional attorney readers for every single written exam answer they submit. This winning combination is why Fleming’s bar candidates consistently exceed the average bar exam pass rates each year.

Brian Santiago

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