2019 July California Bar

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nappingwolf

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2019 July California Bar

Postby nappingwolf » Sun Apr 07, 2019 4:01 am

Hi all, didn't see an official thread for the upcoming July bar so thought I'd start one.

I'm a repeat taker working full-time (and if that doesn't make you feel better about your situation, the last time I took the CA bar was in 2012...yep, I know). I have a long list of reasons why it'll be that much harder for me, but I decided to burn my excuses and just dive right in. YOLO, right? :roll: I'm just beginning my climb up the bar prep mountain, spent the last month very casually re-acclimating myself to the topics. But after reading some racehorse Evidence questions today I promptly wondered if I've made a mistake and should withdraw from taking the bar altogether. :oops:

Anyway, looking forward to the discussion here. And to passing!

nappingwolf

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby nappingwolf » Sun Apr 07, 2019 3:06 pm

Also wanted to add that I'm self-studying. Took barbri before my first try and the one-size-fits-all didn't work for me. I felt like a deer in headlights the entire time, going through the motions perfectly tho because I'm an ace at passive studying.

My roadblock has been the MBEs. Writing was a strength, my scaled written for F12 was 1489. I don't even want to say what my MBE score was because it hurts. I've always had this impractical fear of practice questions - even in law school - as if the stuff I learned/memorized would disappear. So in the past, I approached prep simply by rote memorizing EVERYTHING... I know why I didn't pass. I suck at preparation and have gotten by my entire life just winging it but I'm here to learn to change that.

For a general law refresher, I'm using:
barbri Conviser Mini J18/F19

For essays:
Mary Basick's Essay Exam Writing - great attack sheets, will probably use this to memorize later
Jeff Adachi's Bar Breaker (old) - great essay approach tips
Will be signing up for BarEssays

For MBE's:
S&T - started this last month and am at like 55%
PMBR's red and blue books (old)
Will be signing up for Adaptibar

For PT's:
PTs were a strength, got a 70 on one with no practice beforehand. But with the new 90-min format I'll have to do a few full PTs

I've given up on outlining. I love busywork, makes me feel like I'm being productive but I end up overwhelmed with like 38 outlines and then I feel compelled to ditch practice questions and start memorizing because of the sheer amount of material in front of me. I'm scared to death of not doing that because that's my comfort zone, but need to truly learn the law this time. Hoping that practice brings on some natural memorization, like some of you have said. And I suppose I'll focus on memorization 2 weeks before the bar when I plan to take some time off of work. Feel free to chime in if any of this could use tweaking.

lawlady4999

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby lawlady4999 » Sun Apr 07, 2019 4:37 pm

I’m also a Cal Bar repeat taker. Last time I took the exam was in in 2010. Now that the exam is just 2 days, I’m more optimistic about passing this time.

For the MBE’s, you may want to consider getting the Critical Pass Flashcards. The cards are color-coded by subject with concise, well-written rules & elements. For me, these flashcards work better for MBE study than using outlines. Also, found that Adaptibar and S&T are helping to increase my practice scores.

nappingwolf

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby nappingwolf » Tue Apr 09, 2019 12:56 pm

lawlady4999 wrote:I’m also a Cal Bar repeat taker. Last time I took the exam was in in 2010. Now that the exam is just 2 days, I’m more optimistic about passing this time.

For the MBE’s, you may want to consider getting the Critical Pass Flashcards. The cards are color-coded by subject with concise, well-written rules & elements. For me, these flashcards work better for MBE study than using outlines. Also, found that Adaptibar and S&T are helping to increase my practice scores.


Good to know I’m not the only gap retaker. I’m not much of a flashcards person (I like to see everything on one page aka outlines) but I’ll check out Critical Pass. Have you noticed any noteworthy changes in law since your last exam?

barjamie8

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby barjamie8 » Sat Apr 27, 2019 8:35 pm

nappingwolf wrote:Also wanted to add that I'm self-studying. Took barbri before my first try and the one-size-fits-all didn't work for me. I felt like a deer in headlights the entire time, going through the motions perfectly tho because I'm an ace at passive studying.

My roadblock has been the MBEs. Writing was a strength, my scaled written for F12 was 1489. I don't even want to say what my MBE score was because it hurts. I've always had this impractical fear of practice questions - even in law school - as if the stuff I learned/memorized would disappear. So in the past, I approached prep simply by rote memorizing EVERYTHING... I know why I didn't pass. I suck at preparation and have gotten by my entire life just winging it but I'm here to learn to change that.

For a general law refresher, I'm using:
barbri Conviser Mini J18/F19

For essays:
Mary Basick's Essay Exam Writing - great attack sheets, will probably use this to memorize later
Jeff Adachi's Bar Breaker (old) - great essay approach tips
Will be signing up for BarEssays

For MBE's:
S&T - started this last month and am at like 55%
PMBR's red and blue books (old)
Will be signing up for Adaptibar

For PT's:
PTs were a strength, got a 70 on one with no practice beforehand. But with the new 90-min format I'll have to do a few full PTs

I've given up on outlining. I love busywork, makes me feel like I'm being productive but I end up overwhelmed with like 38 outlines and then I feel compelled to ditch practice questions and start memorizing because of the sheer amount of material in front of me. I'm scared to death of not doing that because that's my comfort zone, but need to truly learn the law this time. Hoping that practice brings on some natural memorization, like some of you have said. And I suppose I'll focus on memorization 2 weeks before the bar when I plan to take some time off of work. Feel free to chime in if any of this could use tweaking.


You might be overkill. I think BarEssays for the essays and Adaptibar for MBE will give you all you need. You don't need the other books for MBE and essays.

ReasonablePersonSSC

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby ReasonablePersonSSC » Mon Apr 29, 2019 10:48 am

Mary Basick’s book is the bomb—I used it throughout law school and preparing for the July 2018 CBX, which I passed. I wrote out each practice essay to create “wide retrieval pathways” in my brain.

I relied on S&T for MBEs. The introduction to each subject pointing out tips and tricks and the explanations were critical to my success. I did not do a big box bar review program.

I analyzed the Point Sheets for each PT available for free download from the NCBE site to learn how to follow directions, spot the distinctions among the cases, and learn what the graders consider to be important.

Don’t study for the bar exam—PRACTICE for the bar exam.

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SilvermanBarPrep

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby SilvermanBarPrep » Mon Apr 29, 2019 12:20 pm

Your MBE prep material looks really good. Note that there are actually 2 S&T books, the first is called Strategies and Tactics for the MBE, and the other is called Strategies and Tactics for the Finz Multi-State Method. Both are excellent and between these two books and Adaptibar (try to get through every Adaptibar question if possible) students should have all the practice questions that they need for the exam.

~Sean Silverman (Silverman Bar Exam Tutoring)

justanotheruser

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby justanotheruser » Tue Apr 30, 2019 2:00 am

Sounds about right. I struggled to pass the CA bar until I finally passed on my sixth attempt... on the Feb 2018 exam of all things. I used Basick's book + BarEssays for essays, S&T + Adaptibar for MBEs, and the NCBE website's free MPTs (along with the few PTs available on Cal Bar under the new format).

For those curious, I wrote a lengthy TLS post detailing my own experience, why I kept failing, what I did to change that, etc. It was awful hitting rock bottom over and over again, wondering if I'd ever climb out of the hole. It seemed like things would always get worse before they got better. Now, almost a year after finding out I passed (finally), I'm at a job that I couldn't be happier with. It's amazing how quickly things can change (for the better) when you felt like you were slowly sinking in quick sand for the longest time. Don't give up.

If interested, here's my post: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=298888

hastingsgal

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby hastingsgal » Fri May 03, 2019 1:55 am

justanotheruser wrote:Sounds about right. I struggled to pass the CA bar until I finally passed on my sixth attempt... on the Feb 2018 exam of all things. I used Basick's book + BarEssays for essays, S&T + Adaptibar for MBEs, and the NCBE website's free MPTs (along with the few PTs available on Cal Bar under the new format).

For those curious, I wrote a lengthy TLS post detailing my own experience, why I kept failing, what I did to change that, etc. It was awful hitting rock bottom over and over again, wondering if I'd ever climb out of the hole. It seemed like things would always get worse before they got better. Now, almost a year after finding out I passed (finally), I'm at a job that I couldn't be happier with. It's amazing how quickly things can change (for the better) when you felt like you were slowly sinking in quick sand for the longest time. Don't give up.

If interested, here's my post: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=298888


I just took the bar for the second time, studied on my own, and used most of the same resources (Adaptibar/BarEssays/etc). I also used and memorized from an older conviser mini review that I bought off ebay.

chickenb00b

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby chickenb00b » Tue May 07, 2019 5:05 pm

Hi! I'm an CA essay grader for a major bar prep company. We're trained by those who were past bar exam graders. Additionally, I also have experience with many of the supplements, including Critical Flash, Adaptibar, SmartBarPrep, Barbri conviser, (the one page supplement that I can't seem to remember the name off the top of my head), Emanuel MBEs (Tactics and Strats(?)), etc. etc.

Since I'm waiting for the bar study season to start in late May, I thought I'd offer some opinion/suggestion/advice here. If you have any questions (and there are no dumb ones), or need guidance, then ask and I'll offer my opinion.

I do ask that you quote this so I can see the notification and respond. Good luck studying folks!!!

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FeeSimpleAbsolute

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby FeeSimpleAbsolute » Tue May 07, 2019 5:19 pm

Hi folks, I am a mid-level associate who is moving to CA and taking the California bar in July. I passed the NY bar back in July 2016. I'm wondering if folks here generally think that whatever I did to prepare for NY should be sufficient to prepare for California (subject to some slight tweaks to account for the different exam structures and substantive topics that are tested)?

chickenb00b

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby chickenb00b » Tue May 07, 2019 6:40 pm

FeeSimpleAbsolute wrote:Hi folks, I am a mid-level associate who is moving to CA and taking the California bar in July. I passed the NY bar back in July 2016. I'm wondering if folks here generally think that whatever I did to prepare for NY should be sufficient to prepare for California (subject to some slight tweaks to account for the different exam structures and substantive topics that are tested)?


I think you're even more well equipped that those who took it the first time. There are unconscious skills acquired while practicing as a lawyer (assuming litigation)--those are the abilities to spot issues and apply proper analysis. In fact, I think you'll find it easier this time around, albeit in a different (and arguably) more difficult state. Do watch out for the possibility of putting in less effort than the first time around though.

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rcharter1978

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby rcharter1978 » Tue May 07, 2019 10:43 pm

FeeSimpleAbsolute wrote:Hi folks, I am a mid-level associate who is moving to CA and taking the California bar in July. I passed the NY bar back in July 2016. I'm wondering if folks here generally think that whatever I did to prepare for NY should be sufficient to prepare for California (subject to some slight tweaks to account for the different exam structures and substantive topics that are tested)?


I don't know that I fully agree with the poster above. I think the bar exam is so different from the real practice of law and it's easy to fall into a trap (particularly with the PT) where you may overestimate your ability based on the fact that you have experience practicing. To me, they are different beasts entirely but maybe some people find a great deal of similarity.

I don't know what you did your first time around, but I imagine your first decision is if you want to do the attorneys exam or the regular CBX. I don't think you're forced either way, but I can see the logic in taking the full exam since the MBE is somewhat more objective and as I remember it you have to score higher on the written portion if you only take the attorneys exam. Then again some people hate multiple choice tests.

hastingsgal

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby hastingsgal » Tue May 07, 2019 11:50 pm

rcharter1978 wrote:
FeeSimpleAbsolute wrote:Hi folks, I am a mid-level associate who is moving to CA and taking the California bar in July. I passed the NY bar back in July 2016. I'm wondering if folks here generally think that whatever I did to prepare for NY should be sufficient to prepare for California (subject to some slight tweaks to account for the different exam structures and substantive topics that are tested)?


I don't know that I fully agree with the poster above. I think the bar exam is so different from the real practice of law and it's easy to fall into a trap (particularly with the PT) where you may overestimate your ability based on the fact that you have experience practicing. To me, they are different beasts entirely but maybe some people find a great deal of similarity.

I don't know what you did your first time around, but I imagine your first decision is if you want to do the attorneys exam or the regular CBX. I don't think you're forced either way, but I can see the logic in taking the full exam since the MBE is somewhat more objective and as I remember it you have to score higher on the written portion if you only take the attorneys exam. Then again some people hate multiple choice tests.


You are not prepared for California by passing New York, even with "slight tweaks." California is a different beast altogether. The essays are completely different and graded much harder. You should approach this as if it is your first time taking it.

jptx

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby jptx » Wed May 08, 2019 9:58 pm

hastingsgal wrote:
rcharter1978 wrote:
FeeSimpleAbsolute wrote:Hi folks, I am a mid-level associate who is moving to CA and taking the California bar in July. I passed the NY bar back in July 2016. I'm wondering if folks here generally think that whatever I did to prepare for NY should be sufficient to prepare for California (subject to some slight tweaks to account for the different exam structures and substantive topics that are tested)?


I don't know that I fully agree with the poster above. I think the bar exam is so different from the real practice of law and it's easy to fall into a trap (particularly with the PT) where you may overestimate your ability based on the fact that you have experience practicing. To me, they are different beasts entirely but maybe some people find a great deal of similarity.

I don't know what you did your first time around, but I imagine your first decision is if you want to do the attorneys exam or the regular CBX. I don't think you're forced either way, but I can see the logic in taking the full exam since the MBE is somewhat more objective and as I remember it you have to score higher on the written portion if you only take the attorneys exam. Then again some people hate multiple choice tests.


You are not prepared for California by passing New York, even with "slight tweaks." California is a different beast altogether. The essays are completely different and graded much harder. You should approach this as if it is your first time taking it.


I agree, the California Bar is different. I am from Texas and considered the Texas Bar relatively easy (at the time we had about an 80% pass rate). California essays are more difficult (look at the February 2019 Exam and the will/trust/conservator/marital property question for example). When I took the Texas exam, issues were easier to spot and write about.
In California, the attorney exam (essay only) failure rate ranges from 50 to 70%. That is a lot of failures for people who already passed a bar. Like rcharter1978 says, the attorney exam is a bit skewed because of a scaling quirk that scales scores to what in recent years is a failing score. Attorneys who take the two day exam statistically fare better. Obviously, the MBE will be the same as New York, but California has a significantly higher cut score. The California essay portion requires a lot of memorization and rule recitation, but most topics are general law as opposed to California specific (except wills, trusts, marital property, evidence and procedure). You can be assured there will be at least one professional responsibility issue which have some California nuances (i.e referral fees are OK in Cal but prohibited elsewhere). To get a good feel for the essay topics and the likelihood of the topic being on the exam I found the chart here helpful. https://smartbarprep.com/california-frequency-analysis/ I know nothing about the quality of bar prep course on that page, but in making a study plan this is a good outline of topics likely to be covered.

hastingsgal

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby hastingsgal » Sun May 12, 2019 3:08 am

FutureLawyer2 wrote:Passed the bar with a nice score! I cannot thank critical pass flashcards enough for their help. A must have !! The MBE section is an objective test and the only way to do well is by knowing the law really well. The flashcards do exactly that. The barbri program was a big waste of time in my opinion. Too much extras that make things seem more complicated than they need to be.

Let me explain why you need to purchase these flashcards. You must commit the elements of every testable item to memory. When you start studying you will notice that after a lengthy portion spent on torts, you will forget what you studied on evidence and vis-versa. The key or the solution is to have something which is quick to get to which you can pull at any moment and re-remember what the exact elements were. For example, larceny which is always tested is the following: a trespassory taking and carrying away of the property of another with the intent to permanently deprive another of that property. I know that definition, and always will, thanks to a flashcards that are ready-made and ready for bar examiners to use and pass the bar. The bar exam is a "bar" which is a minimum standards. For a small fee and a great solution, why not?

I shared a coupon code (10% off) for anyone who needs as well: plus free shipping.

http://criticalpass.refr.cc/barpass


You are in the wrong thread or maybe this is spam. Obviously you did not take California because you wouldn't have known the score.

FutureLawyer2

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby FutureLawyer2 » Sun May 12, 2019 11:34 am

If you want to succeed on the MBE you will use proven study methodologies. Good luck! Of course some jurisdictions dont release exact scores for MBE, but I took NY ube and did well!

hastingsgal

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby hastingsgal » Sun May 12, 2019 1:40 pm

FutureLawyer2 wrote:If you want to succeed on the MBE you will use proven study methodologies. Good luck! Of course some jurisdictions dont release exact scores for MBE, but I took NY ube and did well!


So why are you posting in the California thread? Again seems like spam.

FutureLawyer2

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby FutureLawyer2 » Mon May 13, 2019 11:20 am

hastingsgal wrote:
FutureLawyer2 wrote:If you want to succeed on the MBE you will use proven study methodologies. Good luck! Of course some jurisdictions dont release exact scores for MBE, but I took NY ube and did well!


So why are you posting in the California thread? Again seems like spam.


I am planning on taking California bar exam.. My best friend just used critical pass for California and passed.

Good luck!

Porkypots

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby Porkypots » Mon May 13, 2019 11:19 pm

Let’s do this! When is everyone planning on starting?

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a male human

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby a male human » Tue May 14, 2019 1:17 am

As usual, I'll drop in some helpful info collected over the years.

Wondering where to start?

I've been hanging around these TLS bar threads since 2013 and have seen the most effective tools that helped people pass the California bar. I've updated the below for your enjoyment.



Recommended resources

These resources seem helpful to CA bar takers. Feel free to suggest your own!

[+] Spoiler
Investing in resources is an indicator of success, but you also shouldn't just buy everything willy nilly. The more choices you have, the more confused you're likely to be (and waste time on things that ultimately don't help).

So what are you supposed to buy? Well, I did the testing for you, as well as gather intel on what seems to be working for other California bar takers. On my second attempt at the CA bar, I've tried some that helped me pass, and I've tried some that didn't add any value. I won't include the latter.

Below is a list of resources I picked out that should give you the most bang for your buck. No need to overcomplicate things or go broke. Do your due diligence, pick a few resources that will work for you, and scrape all the meat off the bone.

You may not have the patience or mental energy to think about this if you're shell-shocked, gripped by anxiety, or overwhelmed with this beast of a task. You might be going through a rollercoaster of feels.

That's OK. Take solace in knowing that all the information and materials are out there. All you need to do is USE them.


Quick notes on the most effective supplements for...

- MBE on a budget? Emanuel's Strategies & Tactics for the MBE 6th ed. (7th ed. coming out in November) (see description and an inside look below -- will set you back ~$60-90)
- MBE if you have $365 to shell out? AdaptiBar (see description below and a review)

Which one should you get? You can improve your MBE with either or both of these excellent tools. S&T has a broad selection of questions as well as excellent explanations, which is where you learn after doing the questions. Get AdaptiBar if you have the budget. AdaptiBar has all the official questions (including Civ Pro questions) but not the best explanations. If you want to pass on AdaptiBar, you could alternatively get the NCBE MBE study aids (only the Simulated MBEs have answer explanations, though).

- Essays? BarEssays.com (see info and samples below, as well as a review)

- PTs? I don't know of a sure-kill supplement, but I have put together a guide (ver. 1.6a). Unlike the MBE or essays, PTs are better learned through exposure to a variety of them over trying to deeply understand the answer


Search by [star-ID] to jump to the description of a featured resource, tagged by sections of interest:

[*1] Strategies & Tactics for the MBE Vols. I & II (Emanuel) + Civ Pro resources [MBE]
[*2] AdaptiBar ($30 off) [MBE]
[*3] Law in a Flash [MBE] [Essays]
[*4] BarEssays.com ($25 off) [Essays]
[*5] Past CA essays and performance tests (and a guide to own the PTs) [Essays] [PTs]
[*6] BarIssues.com ($20 off) [Essays]
[*7] Options for condensed outlines and approach sheets [MBE] [Essays]


[*1] Strategies & Tactics for the MBE Volume 1 (Emanuel 6th edition): This is the MBE bible.

It's great (and may be the only MBE supplement you need) because it comes with 600 or so representative MBE questions that are all genuine and were previously administered (with the exception of author-written Civ Pro questions). I encourage you to study with the real deal.

Each subject is prefaced with a discussion of the tricky areas and how to deal with them. Some subjects have an overview of the major topics. There will be tips that revolve around multiple choice in general. The 200-question practice test at the back can be done to gauge your progress sometime in the final month leading to the bar.

How to use: Read the primer for each subject, answer every question on a separate sheet, and analyze their explanation in their entirety, including (A) through (D) for each question, including questions you get correctly. So essentially, go through the book cover to cover (which is what I did). It's worth it.

So what does it look like inside? Pics incoming:
Subject overview
Questions
Explanations

Link: 6th edition (2016) -- includes excellent author-generated Civ Pro questions

Get it in very good condition at least so that you don’t see the previous owners’ markings. Will run you about $50-90 (price fluctuates a lot).

I do not recommend the 5th edition (2012).


[*1] Strategies & Tactics for the MBE Vol. 2 (Emanuel): This is the expansion pack to Volume 1, containing different questions. It's in a format where the answer appears right beneath the question. If you're doing a question for practice, you'll have to carefully cover the answer as you do each question.

The valuable feature in Vol. 2 is how the questions are categorized into labeled topics. For example, Q45 on page 166 is filed under Chapter 5 Formal Proceedings -- I. Grand Jury Proceedings -- A. Self-incrimination and immunity.

For better or worse, some headings contain answer spoilers for the concepts, e.g., Q46 on page 167 is filed under B. No right to have attorney present in grand jury room, which gives away the answer.

Nonetheless, if you liked Volume 1, this is great for additional authentic MBE questions, especially if you know or want to improve on specific issues.

How to use: Get it as an optional add-on to Volume 1. Don’t get it without Volume 1. Use as a supplement for specific issues.

What it looks like inside:
Question (1)
Question (2)
Table of contents (index)

Link: 2012 (latest) edition


AdaptiBar (below) is another great addition or alternative to the above Emanuel's books. It comes with the entire universe of questions released by the NCBE, at a higher cost.

Scroll down to [*7] for more information. Go here for my totally unbiased review. Feel free to PM me for a $30 coupon.

If you're re-enrolling, there's a substantial discount, no need for a coupon.


[*1] What about Civ Pro? There aren't a lot of questions to practice with.

You can get official Civ Pro questions from AdaptiBar, or the MBE study aids store.

For free Civ Pro MBE questions...

- BarPrepHero has a practice exam with 30 Civ Pro questions here, not written by the NCBE.
- The NCBE offers 10 sample questions here.



[*2] AdaptiBar ($395/365): You know what this is for.

If you're on the fence, check my unbiased and totally original review (which some bar prep person took certain "inspirations" from)... AdaptiBar Review: Is It Worth It?

This program is web-based and accessible via PC (desktop or laptop) and mobile devices. It automatically adapts and adjusts to your individual strengths and weaknesses.

In total, there are at least 1,955 MBE questions (all 1,530 original NCBE-released questions + 200 simulated Civil Procedure questions + 15 new Real Property questions + 210 official questions from the now-unavailable 2017 MBE Study Aid including at least 30 past Civ Pro questions). Subject performance and timing analysis feedback are provided. In addition, the program allows users to create printable PDF reports of questions that were answered incorrectly.

Moreover, the online app adapts to your strengths and weaknesses and can create customized full-length tests, too. Additional information regarding the program can be found in this flyer and at http://www.adaptibar.com/pricing.aspx.

Link: AdaptiBar

It is indeed rather expensive, but it’s probably the single best comprehensive option to study for the MBE, assuming you have the budget. Feel free to reach out for an offer code for $30 off.

If you're re-enrolling, there's a substantial discount, no need for a coupon.



[*3] Law in a Flash cards: I bought 6 boxes of these to patch up my weak subjects. They were especially handy when I had to be out, like when I was waiting in line at Starbucks to buy some scones to bribe a friend to give me used Barbri books, and I could whip out a few cards from my wallet to learn some tricky Evidence concepts. Or when I was trying to learn about federal jurisdiction while waiting inside a noisy store.

I'm generally against flashcards, but I have to admit that working through the various hypothetical scenarios helped explain the concepts.

Link: List of LIAF products



[*4] BarEssays.com: One of the most popular resources you'll see mentioned around the forums.

What does it look like inside?

Check out my my ultimate BarEssays review: Why Practicing Is Not Enough.

Here's a sample: Check out this essay that scored an 85! Imagine if you studied this and produced the same results on the bar...

If you're wondering what makes a passing essay vs. what doesn't on the California Bar Exam, this is a large repository of actual graded essays and PTs submitted by those who didn't pass.

But this doesn't mean the essays are all sub-par! While there are essays scored 40 and 50 that show what is not passing material, there are essays that earned 75, 80, or even 85.

The advantage of this repository is the variety of real answers you can study.

The State Bar's selected answers are top of the top answers. It's unrealistic that your essay answers will look like them, although you could study these ideal answers to learn how to apply any rules you're confused about. One answer taught me Rule 12(b)(6) because some nerd had written a treatise on it.

There are over 3,000 essays that you can search by subject, range of score, year/month, and even typed/handwritten/both for anyone worried about handwriting. Some have grader commentary.

These essay examples are useful after you outline or write out an essay to check whether you discussed relevant issues and rules and used the facts properly. I'd look at least one below and one above 65, with grader commentary if available.

High scorers tend to discuss all the issues and much of the nuances—but do not necessarily have excellent rule statements or analyses. While you want to look like the 70-75+ people, you’ll notice that they don’t always look like the impossible Barbri answers. These are real answers you can compare to see where you stand.

Link: BarEssays

Feel free to PM me for a coupon code that will save you $25 on a subscription.

You can also check out my free essay answer bank for limited and exclusive sets of graded student essays. Please donate your past answers if you want to help future generations who want to stand on the shoulders of giants.



[*5] Past essays and performance tests: These might be the only free things you get from the CA State Bar. They release exam questions from each administration of the past 5 years.

Link: State Bar of California Past Exams

Note that there aren't too many 90-minute CA PTs posted as of yet. I'd practice with MPTs, which are also 90 minutes long. Get my PT guide (v. 1.6a) to find out where to find more MPTs than you'll ever need. Or find links and downloads to CA PTs and hella MPTs here.

If you need to quickly find California essays organized by subject, check these out:

If you're looking for convenient access to individual questions organized by subject and issue, check out BarIssues.com below ($20 off).

For a budget version, here is an essay locator -- a list of essays organized by subject and issues contained therein (you can help fill in the issues).

I've also put together a guide to own the PTs (v. 1.6a), with a step-by-step approach to answering a PT, strategies (including how to not run out of time), templates, and more.



[*6] BarIssues.com: Need to hone in on that mysterious issue you've never been able to tame ever since you laid eyes on it? Need to know which issues have been tested most frequently?

BarIssues is a directory of all the issues that have been tested on the California Bar Exam in the last 10 or so years. You can sort by frequency or the issue itself. A convenient link to the question and model answers is available whenever you explore a subject and its issues.

Price tag got you down? PM me for a code to get $20 off.



[*7] Options for condensed outlines and essay approach

- Lean Sheets are a well-known short outline available for all 50 states. A basic but budget-friendly option.
- Magicsheets are comprehensive condensed outlines organized in logical groups and indentations.
- Approsheets are essay approach sheets (one pager checklists and flowcharts) that take you from a blank page to a finished essay or outline. These sheets help you make sure you’re attacking all relevant issues and answering each essay completely. You get ZERO points for an issue that you never raise, even if you know the rule for it. An IRAC can't sprout from a seed that's never planted.



Extremely detailed guide from a first-time passer of the 2018 CA July bar exam (40.7% pass rate) (forwarded to me by the author)

https://irenehong.co/2019/05/12/the-ult ... -bar-exam/



Previous TLS threads you can dig through for extra help
[+] Spoiler
2019 February: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=298763
2018 July: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=286381
2018 February: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=283574
2017 July: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=274836
2017 February: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=271217
2016 July: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=260090
2016 February: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=260833
2015 July: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=244425
2015 February: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=240022
2014 July: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=225140
2014 February: viewtopic.php?f=41&t=220409
2013 July: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=213457

Pema

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby Pema » Wed May 15, 2019 8:38 pm

chickenb00b wrote:Hi! I'm an CA essay grader for a major bar prep company. We're trained by those who were past bar exam graders. Additionally, I also have experience with many of the supplements, including Critical Flash, Adaptibar, SmartBarPrep, Barbri conviser, (the one page supplement that I can't seem to remember the name off the top of my head), Emanuel MBEs (Tactics and Strats(?)), etc. etc.

Since I'm waiting for the bar study season to start in late May, I thought I'd offer some opinion/suggestion/advice here. If you have any questions (and there are no dumb ones), or need guidance, then ask and I'll offer my opinion.

I do ask that you quote this so I can see the notification and respond. Good luck studying folks!!!


I asked a Q earlier, but I don't see it posted.
I'm reading essay answers from CA Bar site, Barbri and baressays.com. For Con Law Q with a call that says WHAT ARGUMENTS CAN P MAKE UNDER EP AND DP? The CA Bar and Barbri answers don't discuss Standing/Justiciability, 11th, 10th. Baressays answers-90% do for the same Q.

For Contracts Call: Can P recover from D? + the facts state P and D entered into a written K for...(all terms present) - CA Bar and Barbri responses-no formation or SOF discussion. Baressays answers 90% discuss formation + SOF for the same Q.

I believe a big part of the CA bar Q's are the limiting factors. They are testing discernment and materiality by limiting the call (sometimes very subtly).
That said, they suck you in to discussing non material items because the (juicy) facts beg for it, while the call doesn't. Is this your experience? I ask 1) because I think they mark you down for lack of discernment and the inability to recognize material v immaterial facts (per call) and 2) I run out of time and can't afford to address standing and formation (and other preliminary considerations) if not at issue. Thanks.

hastingsgal

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Posts: 28
Joined: Thu May 02, 2019 2:08 am

Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby hastingsgal » Wed May 15, 2019 11:51 pm

Pema wrote:
chickenb00b wrote:Hi! I'm an CA essay grader for a major bar prep company. We're trained by those who were past bar exam graders. Additionally, I also have experience with many of the supplements, including Critical Flash, Adaptibar, SmartBarPrep, Barbri conviser, (the one page supplement that I can't seem to remember the name off the top of my head), Emanuel MBEs (Tactics and Strats(?)), etc. etc.

Since I'm waiting for the bar study season to start in late May, I thought I'd offer some opinion/suggestion/advice here. If you have any questions (and there are no dumb ones), or need guidance, then ask and I'll offer my opinion.

I do ask that you quote this so I can see the notification and respond. Good luck studying folks!!!


I asked a Q earlier, but I don't see it posted.
I'm reading essay answers from CA Bar site, Barbri and baressays.com. For Con Law Q with a call that says WHAT ARGUMENTS CAN P MAKE UNDER EP AND DP? The CA Bar and Barbri answers don't discuss Standing/Justiciability, 11th, 10th. Baressays answers-90% do for the same Q.

For Contracts Call: Can P recover from D? + the facts state P and D entered into a written K for...(all terms present) - CA Bar and Barbri responses-no formation or SOF discussion. Baressays answers 90% discuss formation + SOF for the same Q.

I believe a big part of the CA bar Q's are the limiting factors. They are testing discernment and materiality by limiting the call (sometimes very subtly).
That said, they suck you in to discussing non material items because the (juicy) facts beg for it, while the call doesn't. Is this your experience? I ask 1) because I think they mark you down for lack of discernment and the inability to recognize material v immaterial facts (per call) and 2) I run out of time and can't afford to address standing and formation (and other preliminary considerations) if not at issue. Thanks.


I think standing and formation are standard for these types of questions almost all the time. Even if they aren't necessary for some of the questions, you certainly will not lose points for mentioning them. The barbri answers aren't real or graded, so hard to say whether they write the way the bar examiners want. The CA Bar answers are the best in the state, and sometimes the state wants you to see different approaches to the same question (I think).

BarEssays is usually the most reliable for thinking about something like this. When you see people write standing and formation and they got scores of 65+ you know that it may have helped and certainly did not hurt.

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265489164158

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Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby 265489164158 » Thu May 16, 2019 9:48 am

If I have already purchase Adaptibar, is there a benefit to purchasing S&T, as well? (In conjunction with Barbri, CP flashcards, and BarEssays. 1st time bar taker). Thx

hastingsgal

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Posts: 28
Joined: Thu May 02, 2019 2:08 am

Re: 2019 July California Bar

Postby hastingsgal » Thu May 16, 2019 9:50 am

265489164158 wrote:If I have already purchase Adaptibar, is there a benefit to purchasing S&T, as well? (In conjunction with Barbri, CP flashcards, and BarEssays. 1st time bar taker). Thx


No, S&T are the same questions.



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