LL.M. students: The benefits of early U.S. bar exam preparation

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[ By Juliana Del Pesco, BARBRI Legal Manager, Americas ]

As an LL.M. student, one thing I wish I had done differently in my preparation for my U.S. bar exam is to have given myself more time. This is a common admission I have heard from other former LL.M. students as well. Time is such an important factor in taking on an exam of this scope, and it is something that can be greatly underestimated.

When I sat the Pennsylvania State Bar Exam in February 2019 as an LL.M. graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School, I was ready to internationalize my career by becoming dual-qualified in the U.S. The preparation was intense, and very different from my earlier experience of learning civil law in my home jurisdiction of Brazil.

As a full-time working LL.M. student, I had to come up with a schedule on my own before my course started to ensure I’d have time to study all the subjects. I also had to be extremely organized to work and prepare for the bar exam at the same time. I have no doubt that an extended U.S. bar prep course would have helped me to alleviate some pressure while preparing.

The good news is that BARBRI offers flexible options for foreign-trained attorneys. With BARBRI Extended U.S. Bar Prep, you can select from a 6 or a 10-month course duration. A typical student in the 6-month course will study 20-25 hours per week while those in the 10-month course will study around 10-15 hours per week. You know what’s right for your situation and goals.

Preparing early with BARBRI will make a difference. Here’s why:

More time to deep-dive into unfamiliar topics

As soon as you enroll in BARBRI Extended U.S. Bar Prep, you’ll get access to the on-demand Foundations in U.S. Law pre-course module. This allows you to extend the amount of time you have to learn the concepts and get familiarized with the structure of the bar exam. Foundations in U.S. Law begins with an overview of the U.S. legal system and focuses on exam techniques that international students often find difficult to master. You can connect earlier with subjects that you may not encounter during your LL.M. studies and start to work on the foundational skills you will need to master the core course.

If you are a non-U.S. law graduate still learning the English language, you may welcome the English subtitles that BARBRI offers in its course modules as well. It’s another way BARBRI designs the course to help you effectively prepare for and pass the bar exam.


Flexibility to study on your own terms

BARBRI understands you are busy taking classes, getting to know the city you are in, and perhaps even looking for a job while you learn. That’s why BARBRI Extended U.S. Bar Prep is designed to be flexible to allow you to study for the bar while staying on top of your other commitments. Yes, it is possible to coordinate earning your LL.M. degree with preparing for a U.S. bar exam.

You will have more time to focus on practicing essays, multiple-choice questions and performance tests, and to do reviews.

1:1 personal support and guidance

All students enrolled in a BARBRI Extended U.S. Bar Preparation course receive guidance through the Foreign Evaluation of Credentials and bar exam application process as needed. You are also assigned a personal mentor who is a U.S. qualified attorney with bar exam coaching and teaching experience. Your mentor is with you throughout your bar exam preparation to schedule one-on-one, bi-weekly check-ins or meetings to see how you are progressing with your studies. He/she will conduct livestream workshops, provide tips, and help you with any problem areas including customizing your course to better fit your schedule if necessary.

Learn more about how BARBRI Extended U.S. Bar Prep can help you pass your U.S. bar exam.

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