Bar Exams and Law School Differ

For example, when you go into your Civ Pro final, you knew you would be tested on civil procedure. Bar examiners will fire questions at you on dozens of subjects, in random order –and they won’t be labeled! You’ll have to figure out what subject you are in, hopefully before even reading the full question.

The are many differences. The one I am thinking about today is with the MPT. Format your answer the way the Task Memo (sometimes called the Sr. Partner Memo) tells you to.

When my students show me beautiful Memos, for example, formatted just the way their Legal Writing professor told them to write and ask why they got low grades in bar prep, I simply say, “You need to follow the instructions for this exam.”

In practice, you may work for and report to different partners who will have completely different styles. You may appear before different judges who have different rules in their courtrooms. Likewise, when you are writing for the bar exam, write for bar graders.

In bar prep and on the bar exam, forget for a moment what you learned in law school and in any legal work experiences. Follow the bar examiners’ directions. (I say for a moment because all that learning will come back and be utilized when you are in practice.)

For more bar success tips and strategies, read or listen to the audio book of Bar Exam Success: A Comprehensive Guide –available on Amazon, ABA Publishing, and West Academics (free for certain law students who have West Academics subscriptions).

#barexam, #barsuccess, #lawschool, #lawstudent, #ASP, #academicsuccess,

Author: Sara J. Berman

Sara J. Berman, a graduate of the UCLA School of Law, is a Professor of Law and Assistant Dean at the Touro Law Center. She formerly served as a Director at the Washington DC-based Center for Legal Education Excellence.

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