WHY SHOULD I ENROLL IN BARBRI BAR REVIEW MY 2L YEAR (OR EVEN EARLIER)?

Why would I enroll in, and potentially commit to, a bar review course months (or years!) before I plan on actually studying for the bar exam? This is an individual decision, but there are plenty of very good reasons you might consider enrolling as a 2L (or even earlier).

While you’ll utilize the majority of your BARBRI Bar Review course later, there are components that you can access earlier than others…some even immediately.

2L / 3L Mastery is one of the components you can use immediately. We hear often from students who tell us they wish they would’ve known about 2L / 3L Mastery much earlier.

It covers subjects that most students find very challenging during their 2L or 3L year: Evidence, Taxation, Corporations, Wills, Trusts, Secured Transactions, Criminal Procedure, Constitutional Law & Family Law.

For each subject, you get online, on-demand lectures by renowned experts who focus on efficiently teaching you critical rules and elements. Lectures are divided into easily accessible topics so it’s easy to watch and review the sections that supplement what you’re learning in class. Efficient outlines are also included for each subject as well as multiple choice practice questions that track back to each lecture topic so you can apply and assess what you have learned.

In addition to 2L / 3L Mastery, when you purchase and commit to BARBRI Bar Review earlier, you get first access to Early Start Bar Review and the LawMaster Study Keys app, which are typically available in September prior to your bar exam. These are critical as early bar studies (even just a little) statistically increases your chances of passing your exam the first time.

You’ll also get first notifications on book availability (typically in March prior to the July exam and September prior to the February exam) and course location options so you can reserve your space if you’re selecting to watch lectures in a classroom setting.

You can save a lot of money and pay over time

Some people still think that the longer they wait, the better bar review deal they’ll get. Over the past several years, this has not proven to be true. In fact, the people who commit early lock in the best price and protect themselves against future price adjustments.

At BARBRI, we’re committed to providing those who commit to us the very best price. That’s why, if you commit to one price and that price decreases before your bar review course starts, we’ll give you the better price.

Also, the earlier you commit, the more time you have to spread out a custom installment payment plan or to finance your tuition.

With a BARBRI custom installment plan, just pay the minimum required down payment at enrollment then split up the remainder of your tuition into custom payments. No credit check is required and no interest is applied. You can select the months you pay and how much you pay each month. Your total tuition just needs to be paid in full per the payment deadlines prior to the beginning of your BARBRI Bar Review course.

If you have a social security number and want to consider course financing, many BARBRI Bar Review tuition types allow you to “Finance with Affirm” during or after enrollment.  The rate (0-30% APR) and term options (3, 6, 12, 18, 24 or 36 months) you’re offered is based on the tuition type you are choosing and on a credit check. You will begin making payments immediately to Affirm, but the entire balance of your tuition does not need to be paid prior to your course starting or ending. Learn More about Financing with Affirm.

With both the BARBRI Custom Installment Plan and the Finance with Affirm options, you get access to all of the resources mentioned above when they are available.

What if I plan on billing my employer in the future but I’m not sure yet. Should I still enroll?

Unless you know for sure that a firm is paying directly for your course, securing the lowest rate tuition and just paying the minimum balance due is the best way to ensure you pay the lowest possible tuition.

If your firm ends up giving you a stipend for bar review (vs paying BARBRI directly), then you’ll have more stipend money left after paying for bar review. If your firm ends up paying BARBRI directly, we’ll help you get that setup and transferred and you won’t have to pay any more. Best of all, you’ll get access to all of the resources mentioned above.

What if I’m going into public interest and I want a chance to apply for the BARBRI Public Interest scholarship in the future. Should I still enroll?

If you plan on going into Public Interest, you should definitely secure the lowest rate tuition as soon as possible. This will ensure at a minimum that your tuition doesn’t increase and guarantee that you receive priority consideration when a BARBRI Public Interest Scholarship program opens for your class.

If you are selected, the scholarship award will simply be applied to your existing tuition. In the event you are not selected for a scholarship, you will be able to cancel your enrollment and have no further obligation.

All of us at BARBRI look forward to helping you succeed in law school and, ultimately, Own The Bar.

5 Facts All Graduating Law Students Should Know About BARBRI

By Matt Mundo,
BARBRI Director of Legal Education

In my job as a Director of Legal Education for BARBRI, I get the pleasure of working with thousands of law students each year.

My job, every day, is to help students achieve the dreams for which they have worked so hard by succeeding in law school and on the bar exam.

Recently, I spoke with some students who had received some misinformation as part of their bar preparation research, so it prompted me to put into writing “5 THINGS ALL GRADUATING LAW STUDENTS SHOULD KNOW ABOUT BARBRI”.

As the nation’s #1 bar review course, there are so many things to talk about so often some of these features are overlooked; however, with the bar exam being the only thing between you and the career of your dreams, we want to ensure you have all of the information so you can choose the very best partner for your needs on this life changing exam.

FACT 1: BARBRI does not charge extra to grade extra essays.

During bar study, your goal is to write the best bar exam essays possible, as fast as possible. BARBRI knows from experience that a purely “unlimited” essay grading system does not provide the best results. Think about it. Writing and submitting dozens of essays a week for grading simply reinforces bad habits rather than correcting them.  Unlimited graded essays leads to spending a lot of time on many poor essays.

BARBRI has a better answer. It starts with Essay Architect, our exclusive powerful online platform that takes you through a series of steps to learn to critically read bar exam questions, enhance the speed of your essay writing and construct strong, winning answers. Then we assign a carefully selected series of specific essays for grading as well as many more essays for practice and self-grading.

And, if after all of that, you want additional essays graded, you can simply work with a BARBRI Director, like me, to get personal, 1:1 help, all free of charge!

FACT 2: You can do 100% of the BARBRI course online… but we won’t force you.

Actually, BARBRI Bar Review offers you the best possible learning experience by blending online, mobile and in-class study options. Each day you can choose whether to view the lectures on your computer, use the BARBRI Mobile App on-the-go or attend a bar review classroom location to watch a lecture in a structured environment with fellow students.

No matter which option you choose, you get the same great lectures. BARBRI lets you mix and match what works best for you – go to a classroom setting for your most challenging subjects, revisit specific topics and subtopics online afterward or speed through your best subjects online only at 1.5x speed.

It’s your time, your preference and your choice as to what works best for you to reinforce and recall the material you need to know to Own the Bar.

FACT 3: BARBRI is the only bar preparation course that will truly allow you to see where you sit on the bar exam curve

If you look at the MBE National Score Distribution from the National Conference of Bar Examiners, you will see the score distribution of the 2015 scaled scores. Results of the MBE fall in a pattern that look like a bell curve. This is why you often hear of people who fail the bar exam by just a few points. A large number of examinees are clustered right around the top of the curve – right around the score you need to pass the bar exam.

During the BARBRI course, you’ll have the chance to sit down and do a full simulated multistate bar exam. The simulated MBE has exam-like questions and we treat it just like the bar so you’ll know exactly how it feels to survive the multistate bar exam.

We also take your results and provide you your percentile ranking, by subject, so you know exactly where you are sitting on the curve in comparison to every other BARBRI student and where you need to focus your efforts between that time and the actual bar exam.

Since the vast majority of students sitting for the bar exam choose to partner with BARBRI, this will be your best predictor of bar exam success by far.

FACT 4: BARBRI makes it easy to take lecture notes by hand or on a laptop.

In order to provide the structure necessary to be organized as well as the flexibility that best fits your learning style, BARBRI provides lecture handouts in hardcopy AND as fillable PDF’s each day.

If you prefer to hand write your notes, then the pre-printed handout volume is there for you. If you prefer to use your laptop, download the fillable PDF’s so that you can type as much as you’d like for each blank, highlight text and use “sticky notes” for the occasional sidebar that you want to make a note of during class.

FACT 5:  BARBRI’s Personal Study Plan organizes your study time from Day 1 straight through to the day of your bar exam.

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The BARBRI lectures conclude two weeks prior to your exam but your Personal Study Plan does not. Once you’ve been taught all of the law that you need, your Personal Study Plan continues with homework, personal assignments, and practice exams to make sure that you are applying the law and memorizing the material during those critical final weeks and that you are focused on your personal areas of opportunity.

And, of course, my BARBRI Director of Legal Education peers and I will be there to support you right up to and during the exam. BARBRI’s study schedule and practice exams are the result of a dedicated academic team combined with the experience of training over 1.3M attorneys for the bar exam.

When it comes to your bar preparation and this critical decision, we want you to have all of the facts. Thousands of students have already chosen to prepare with BARBRI in 2017 – we can’t wait to welcome you to that group and help you Own the Bar.

About BARBRI Bar Review:

BARBRI pioneered bar exam preparation 50 years ago and our gold standard reputation continues to attract the overwhelming majority of law school students each year. BARBRI has helped more than 1.3 million students pass the bar – more than all other courses combined.

BARBRI focuses on you the entire way, using innovative new learning technologies that personalize your bar study. Add to all this our elite faculty of highly-respected law professors and top legal minds that know the law and especially how to teach it for you to Own The Bar.

Also, with the BARBRI Guarantee, if you take a BARBRI Bar Review course for the first time for a particular state and you do not sit for or do not pass that state’s bar exam, you may repeat the same course online once for the same state, the next time a course is offered, without paying additional tuition.

We have the longest history of pass rate success, going back 80-plus bar exams. No other bar prep program comes close.

Enroll now

9 Tips To Keep Your Over-Stressed, Over-Worked “Lizard Brain” At Bay

When law school graduation arrives, it’s time to relax … right? Not so fast. Not when the bar exam is on the not-so-distant horizon. One last hurdle to becoming a licensed lawyer, your ultimate personal and professional goal.

WE’RE ONLY HUMAN … WITH A “LIZARD BRAIN”

There’s so much pressure surrounding the bar exam. Passing means everything – mostly the opportunity to actually practice law and make a decent living doing it. Before that becomes your reality, you have to deal with the major stress of preparing for the bar exam. You are now on a deadline because the bar exam is happening on time, as scheduled, whether you are ready or not. You fear failure, which is totally normal. All this causes chronic sympathetic nervous system arousal – in other words, “lizard brain.” It’s a fight-flight-freeze survival mode that goes way back to our prehistoric days as Paleolithic humans.

YOU KNOW WHY, NOW THE SYMPTOMS

It’s likely that you may already have experienced chronic stress during law school. According to the Mayo Clinic, “lizard brain” symptoms include headaches, muscle aches, fatigue, increased illness, upset stomach, chest pain, sleep disturbances, anxiety, lack of motivation or focus, irritability, restlessness, depression, angry outbursts and social withdrawal.

IT WANTS TO DRIVE YOUR BUS

Considering the laundry list of symptoms, your body expends quite a bit, if not all, its energy to keep you going. It’s survival, literally. And that level of energy consumption doesn’t leave much for anything else, especially when you need to be able to memorize black letter law, take practice exams or simply remain upright during lectures. The lizard is driving your bus with the pedal to the metal. As you might imagine, a frazzled lizard driving a bus can be detrimental to everyone and everything nearby, including the bus itself (that’s you).

9 TIPS FOR TAKING BACK CONTROL

  1. Be Grateful. Every day, find time to reflect on 3-5 things you appreciate. Lawyers tend to be world-class pessimists. Remembering things that really matter can help you focus on the positive and, in turn, improve your overall physical health and much-needed energy levels.
  2. Make time for family and friends. Stay connected with the important people in your life. Your support system will help you feel less alone, or isolated, and keep your outlook positive.
  3. Smile. Research has shown that the simple act of smiling can slow your heart rate and reduce stress. Smiling more may even help alleviate depression.
  4. Meditate. Take a few minutes each day. Be still and focus on your breathing. Research has shown that meditation can help prevent mind-wandering, increase focus, reduce stress, improve sleep and strengthen the immune system. Om … Om … Om …
  5. Plan the day. Map out time for studying, eating, sleeping, fun activities and exercise, for example. You’ll feel prepared and ready, less anxiety, greater control and, ultimately, get the most important things completed. It will save you time, too.
  6. Eat, sleep, play. Smart food choices, enough sleep (seven hours minimum) and exercises that you enjoy (could be a nice walk outside or dancing at home, when nobody’s watching) are important to your health.
  7. Be your own cheerleader. We’re often quite critical of ourselves. Become aware of your self-talk, challenge it and replace it with a positive mantra. Research shows that people with a positive outlook can fight off colds, handle stress better and – bonus! – even live longer.
  8. Laugh. Laughter has shown to lower cortisol in your bloodstream, relax your muscles and improve your overall well-being.
  9. Eat 1.4 oz. of chocolate: Doing this every day for two weeks can actually lower your stress hormones. How much is 1.4 ounces of chocolate exactly? Google it and you’ll see there are many choices and brands you may like.

Keeping it Real: What 1Ls said they wish they knew day one

GUEST BLOG Stephanie Baldwin, 1L at the University of Arizona

Last week I wrote about the path to 1L, and I asked current law students to share their experiences about what they wish they had known or could have told themselves before starting their 1L. Here are the top responses.

I wish I knew that:

Law School can make you feel stupid and brilliant all within a single class hour.

Agree! This can be very true when a cold call goes wrong, or when you walk into class thinking you fully understood an issue and realize you were wrong. Trust me; everyone has been there. But there are also those moments often within the same class hour, where it all clicks and that feels amazing!

Even if I do my best, I still might end up with a B or B+

I think this is the element that can be shocking for most 1Ls. We are all smart and capable which is why we were admitted to law school. We were likely top of our class, but the thing is, so were most of our classmates and now we are on a curve.

The curve can wreck even the best-laid plans, plus remember that the final was a snapshot and does not reflect your total understanding of the subject matter. Above all, remember that grades do not define you. After we graduate it’s our knowledge base that matters not a grade in a single class.

I could have saved my soul by picking another career path…

When I shared this comment, my DMs lit up with a flood of questions. Most people asked if it was REALLY that bad and if I was ok. So many came in that I changed the Instagram story to clarify that it was a submitted comment to the question, but it is worth sharing.

Many people struggle in law school. It can be anything from trying to overcome imposter syndrome to having a hard time dealing with the workload or just the shock “of seeing behind the curtain” as to what lawyers do. The reality is that not everyone in law school likes going to law school. If you are going to school to advocate for a particular cause, it can be a challenge to see how some doctrinal classes will help you accomplish this.

For the people that feel this way, my advice is to make the most of your summer externship. This will give you a better look at what your future career will be like, and if you do not enjoy the work, then it might be time, to be honest about your current career path. A few 2Ls also told me that once you start picking your classes, it helps a ton because you are taking the classes that interest you.

My wish? I wish I had known that learning the law is not enough.

In undergrad and grad school, as long as you learn the topic, you will likely do well in your classes. At law school though, learning is not enough. Professors assume that you have learned the law, so on finals, they are testing to see if you have mastered it. There is a distinct difference there that I didn’t really understand until I was taking practice exams. For me this was crucial, and I have changed the way I am studying this semester because of it.

Are you a current law student and want to add to the list? Let me know over @The1LLife on Twitter or Instagram!

Law Students Dress Up

GUEST BLOG Makenzie Way, 2L at the University of Pennsylvania Law School

Barristers Ball, Law Prom, and a wide range of formal events such as Law Review Banquet, are fast approaching on many of our calendars. How do you differentiate between the dress code on these formal events? And more importantly, where do you find outfits that match the dress code without breaking the bank?!

In a previous article, Law School Attire Un-Coded I broke down dress codes ranging from casual to black tie. For the purposes of today’s article, I’ll skip straight to the more formal end of the dress code range.

Cocktail

The most casual of the formal events, and likely the most commonly encountered as well. Unbeknownst to many, dress codes are broken down into two categories, (1) cocktail, and (2) cocktail formal.

  • Cocktail:
    • Men: should opt for a full suit in a neutral color. Dress shoes are must and of course, the belt should match the shoe color. Cuff links and ties are optional.
    • WomenKnee length to mid-calf length dresses in neutral colors or calm patterns are always safe options, though suits are of course permissible. Heels, flats, or loafers are appropriate footwear, while a clutch and complimentary jewelry are optional but recommended.
  • Cocktail Formal
    • Men: full suits are again a must, though you should feel free to expand beyond neutral colored suits into patterns and textiles. Dress shoes and statement loafers are common, as are flashy ties, cufflinks, and other accessory pieces.
    • Women: knee-length dresses can be traded in for more fashion-forward midi to maxi dresses (think short bridesmaid dress, fashion-forward pantsuits or jumpers). Again clutches are appropriate, as are heels or statement loafers. Jewelry is generally worn, and makeup and hair can be more done up.

Black Tie

  • Men: Typically black tie attire requires a black tuxedo, tuxedo shoes, bow tie, and cuff links.
  • Women: Long gowns with heels, clutches, and complimentary jewelry are generally the preferred outfit choice for black tie events. Dresses should be hemmed tailored.

White Tie

  • Men: For the most formal of formal events, men should wear a tailcoat, white tuxedo shirt, waistcoat, and a white bowtie with tuxedo shoes and pants.
  • Women: Similar to black tie, women should wear a floor length formal gown with heels and a clutch, often paired with elbow length gloves.

Shopping Tips

Tuxedo and tails rentals are common for men and can be found at most local Men’s Warehouse, or similar, stores in your local shopping district. For online tuxedo rentals, The Black Tux, and Menguin come highly recommended!

Formal gowns are slightly harder to find than your average tuxedo. Of course, you can head to your local bridal or prom store, but be sure to give yourself 2-3 months for ordering and fitting time. If you’re more pressed for time (or cash) try websites such as Hello Molly. If you don’t want to take up precious closet space, turn to Rent the Runway for a quick rental option.

Knowing the law vs. Practicing the Law

Guest blog by Courtney Boykin, 3L at the University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law

When I first started law school…

I, as was any other typical 1L, was confused as can be. I wasn’t abreast to the culture of law school. Despite my school’s attempt at introducing me to the culture through orientation, I couldn’t quite get into a steady rhythm. I spent most of my time plowing through cases and trying to figure out what I needed to know. Even after passing all of my exams, I felt like I knew absolutely nothing. I’d memorized enough to get me through the tests, but beyond that, I felt that I couldn’t actually articulate what I’d “learned.”

Interestingly, leaving the classroom REALLY helped me master certain topics. Once I started interning at different legal placements, things started to make sense…at least a little bit. (I always joke that it took me getting out of “Contracts” to actually learn the basics of “Contracts.”)

I said all of that to say, it’s really difficult to gauge whether or not you can be a successful lawyer without actually “doing” lawyerly things. In my experience, I’ve found that Final exams, while VERY (VERY!) important, only test your ability to regurgitate and apply the law, not necessarily the practicalities of the law. It’s only when we see and experience the practicalities of the law at work do we really understand it.

If there’s one piece of advice that I’d give a 1L, 2L, or someone interested in law, it’d be this: Capitalize on experiential learning opportunities.

If your school has an externship program, utilize it. If your school offers simulation courses, take them. If your school provides resources for internships, use them.

Take your core classes, but don’t underestimate the power of those experiential courses. They really help bring the law to life.

What The UBE Means To Your Legal Job Search, Career Marketability

At the time of this blog post, the Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) has been officially adopted by 33 states and one jurisdiction. The UBE was first adopted in 2011 by just three states (Alabama, Missouri and North Dakota), and now there are plans to implement this “universal” testing format going out as far as 2021 (Texas).

INSTANT PORTABILITY OF BAR SCORES

The UBE was designed initially to help reduce the need for newly minted attorneys to take another bar exam in order to become licensed in another state or jurisdiction. The UBE permits you to transfer a score obtained in one UBE state/jurisdiction to another, subject to certain limitations (the NCBE Bar Admission Guide has those details).

INSTANT RECIPROCITY, MAXIMIZING JOB OPPORTUNITIES

Today, with more than half of the U.S. administering the UBE, students are benefiting from instant reciprocity, an immediate benefit right after passing the bar exam. With a high enough score, you can cast a much wider net to expand your job search, faster, into all states that have adopted the UBE. That makes you more marketable to employers in different parts of the country, who are looking to hire to meet greater demand, in areas less inundated with legal practitioners.

Many student have taken advantage of this mobility. Since 2011, roughly 12,000 UBE test takers have transferred their scores to a jurisdiction where they did not take the bar, according to Judith A. Gundersen, President of the National Conference of Bar Examiners (NCBE)*.

“Lawyers are more mobile than they once were. No longer do lawyers settle in one state and practice in that state until retirement,” said Jeffrey Ward, President of the Tennessee Board of Law Examiners**.

THE MBE, MEE AND MPT COMPONENTS

The UBE is a two-day exam drafted by the NCBE, consisting of the Multistate Bar Exam (50%), Multistate Essay Exam (30%) and Multistate Performance Test (20%). These testing components are not new and have long been part of the bar exam format in many states. However, the UBE rests upon an agreement, whereby a state agrees to give full faith and credit to a score achieved on the bar exam in another jurisdiction because that jurisdiction uniformly administers, grades and scores the exam.

PASSING SCORES SET INDEPENDENTLY BY STATE

Each UBE state sets its own minimum passing score, which ranges from 260 to 280. Your passing score is portable to another UBE state as long as you sit for the entire exam at one time in the same location. You may transfer the score to a state with a lower required passing score, even if you “fail” the bar exam in the state in which you sat.

For example, a student who takes the UBE in Colorado, scores 272 and fails to achieve the required passing score of 276 may transfer the score to Utah, a neighboring UBE jurisdiction with a passing score of 270. The UBE score is not valid beyond a set period of time and each state sets its own deadline, varying between three and five years.

UBE PASSING SCORES

260: Alabama | Minnesota | Missouri | New Mexico | North Dakota
266: Connecticut | District of Columbia | Illinois | Iowa | Kansas | Maryland | Montana | New Jersey | New York | South Carolina
270: Massachusetts | Nebraska | New Hampshire | North Carolina | Tennessee | Utah | Vermont | Washington | West Virginia | Wyoming
272: Idaho
273: Arizona
274: Oregon
276: Colorado | Maine | Rhode Island
280: Alaska
TBD: Ohio (coming July 2020) | Texas (coming February 2021)

You can get bar exam information for every U.S. state in the BARBRI Bar Exam Digest.

BARBRI KNOWS THE UBE, SINCE ITS INCEPTION

BARBRI has been preparing students for each of the components that now comprise the UBE since their inception: 1972 for the MBE, 1988 for the MEE and 1997 for the MPT. The BARBRI Bar Review course in each state is uniquely tailored to the needs of the bar exam, accommodating the subtle grading differences among UBE states.

 

*Source: American Bar Association, Before The Bar Blog
** Source: The National Jurist

Don’t Have A Summer Job? It’s Time To Get Resourceful And Here’s How

By Chris Nikitas, Esq., BARBRI Director of Legal Education

Alright, you don’t have a summer job. It’s stressful. Whether you’re a 1L or 2L student, this is a rather scary position to be in, honestly. First thing’s first … “don’t panic.” Especially in your first year of law school. Not having a legal job during the summer isn’t an end-of-the-world scenario. I hosted bar exam trivia during my 1L summer. A prominent scholar I know taught tennis lessons. The fact is, you can make up for not having a summer job in a number of ways and here are a few ideas.

DON’T THROW IN THE TOWEL

When final exams wrap up and you still don’t have a job, do not give up. Get out there. Go to legal aid societies, public interest firms and non-profit organizations to start handing out resumes. Don’t be shy. Pass them out, whenever and to whomever you can, like they’re flyers for a local band. Even if you get an opportunity, you may be getting a late start, but you’ll still get to add a valuable line to your resume. That’s all that matters. Even if nothing comes of it, you’ll have your name circulated and show potential employers that you’re determined and driven.

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF NETWORKING EVENTS

One of the biggest benefits of a summer job is the networking opportunities; however, you can still network outside of a summer job. There will be networking events all summer for young lawyers and law students. Do some investigating, find a few to attend and start slinging around business cards like they’re candy. You’ll be surprised how quickly these networking moments (and just handing over a business card) can turn into possible employment leads in the future.

MAKE UP FOR IT DURING THE SCHOOL YEAR

Your school has opportunities to provide you with experience during the year: Field placements, internships and externships. Talk with your career services office to find out what they can offer you as far as placement help. You’ll get some course credit at the same time, too. Consider taking a litigation or drafting class for some realistic experience that you can add to your cover letter and resume.

SPEAK WITH YOUR PROFESSORS

One of your professors may still need research assistants or may introduce you to someone who would like some summer help. Your professors might even have more sage advice on how to find that elusive summer job.

Above all else, remember, this is not by any means the end of your law school career. Part of my 1L summer, I worked for career services during On Campus Interviews, serving as a runner between the interview rooms. I ate lunch with the attorneys and spoke with them more each day than anyone they interviewed. As a result, I left that week with a stack of business cards that turned into valuable new contacts. I was able to utilize them in the coming years. Just keep at it!

Spring Finals Coming In Hot: Useful Lessons Learned From Last Time

The spring semester of your first year is flying by incredibly fast. You’re at a point now when another set of final exams are on the radar, approaching rapidly. What you need to do is take the time to pick your own brain: latch onto those study habits and tips that worked best for you from the first go-round of finals back in the fall semester.

With that in mind, here are a few of the things you may have learned already on you own and other recommendations as you prep for May.

Look To Those Who Have Outlined Before You

For most law students, the process of outlining is not all that fun. Usually because most wear out their keyboards and highlighters, ending up with way too many pages. It’s hard to scale back, especially when everything seems important enough not to leave out. This typically happens when you start from scratch, so don’t. Instead, try to get your hands on a course outline from an upperclassman. (Remember, the answer is always no if you don’t ask. What have you got to lose?) It will provide guidance on what to put in your own outline. Also, it can help clear up substantive confusion and fill any gaps in the material. Remember, too, if you have access to BARBRI 1L Mastery outlines, those are a great resource of prepared outlines vetted by experienced subject matter experts.

Use Old Final Exams: The Past Is the Key To The Future

Check to see if your law school has copies of old final exams on file. If they do, use them. Sure, professors may toss a change-up any given semester on what they’ll cover or how they present questions. Yet, spending time with the old exams can help you get familiar, or even spot patterns, with their techniques. It will also test your knowledge of subjects while you are studying. Bring your practice answers to a professor or T.A. for feedback and guidance. Should your school not have old exams available, look to supplements. Many have problems in them. BARBRI 1L Mastery’s online practice questions are a convenient alternative to lugging around a book and provide answers immediately.

Start Early, Start Early, Start Early

That’s not a typo. You’ll come across this advice often. You’ll make a mental note several times throughout the year. Best intentions and all. Start studying “yesterday.” You really don’t want to cram for a final exam. The risk is too great. First year law school grades are too important. Sounds like a no-brainer; however, starting early with your finals prep is definitely easier said than done. Here’s what you can do about it: Create a study schedule or some other type of plan that works for you. Be honest with how you organize your time. Be disciplined in following through. And be sure to build in activities that aren’t spelled s-t-u-d-y … go work out, watch some t.v., hang with friends.

Keep your sanity … stay on top of studying … and you’ll Own 1L Finals!

Data From The ABA Proves It: When More Students Take BARBRI, More Students Pass The Bar Exam

In a recent study, BARBRI’s data scientists evaluated pass rates reported by EVERY ABA accredited law school, in every jurisdiction for the past 3 years*. We then looked at results for students at those schools who studied for their first exam with BARBRI Bar Review vs those who studied with some other course or method.

The results were clear: When more students at a school study with BARBRI Bar Review, the overall school pass rate is higher – regardless of the amount of work each student completed.

The diagram below shows that for every 10% of students who enrolled in BARBRI Bar Review over the last three years, the overall school pass rate increased by 2%:

The converse was true as well: For every 10% increase in the number of first-time takers who did NOT choose to study with BARBRI Bar Review, overall school pass rate decreased by 2%:

THAT’S INTERESTING, BUT WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO ME?

In the 50+ years we’ve helped students prepare for every U.S. state bar exam, thousands of students have asked, “does it really matter which course I choose?”  Now data collected by the American Bar Association answers this question with a resounding, “Yes, BARBRI works better.

REMEMBER, BAR REVIEW COMPANY PASS RATES DON’T INDICATE HOW YOU WILL DO ON THE BAR EXAM

The reality is that about 9 out of 10 BARBRI students who do the average amount of work in our course pass the bar. That’s impressive … but we don’t care, and neither should you.

Don’t forget, our earlier studies have shown that, for a similar amount of work, students who study with BARBRI score more points. With BARBRI, you’ll study smarter, better utilize your precious, limited study time, and have a greater cushion and more confidence on exam day.

It’s not about bar review company pass rates…it’s about YOU passing YOUR exam. Learn More about how BARBRI will help you do that – the first time.

*Source: ABA 509 reports filed by every ABA accredited law school each year.