The MPRE and what you can’t bring with you on test day


[ Makenzie Way, 3L at the University of Pennsylvania ]

Think you have free range on what you may bring with you into the MPRE? Sadly, no.

There are several items prohibited

  • Purses, wallets and watches. They must be stored away during testing.
  • Electronics. All electronics must be turned off and stored away, as well.
  • Water bottles and food. Test centers have water coolers but you’ll have to exit the test room to access them, so I recommend you hydrate beforehand. 
  • Jackets, scarves and hats. Make sure you dress in layers, just in case the room feels colder or warmer to you. As for jackets, specifically, those have to be removed and stored away.
  • Study materials. You are not permitted to bring study materials into the testing room. Make sure you leave them at home.
  • Scrap paper. The test center will provide you with this.

Don't bring these items with you to the MPRE

Most test centers have free lockers

Be sure to confirm with the test center beforehand. Upon arriving at the test center, you’ll need to complete the registration process (some test centers require you to print your registration materials in advance). You’ll begin by signing in and if lockers are available, one will be assigned to you at that time.

The palm scan and head shot

Once your belongings (and any prohibited items) are safely stored away, you will go through a palm scan – which will be retrieved later during the bar exam to confirm your identity – and a head shot photograph. A representative at the test center will walk you through the process and the rules.

Youll want your own headphones

Before entering the testing room, you’ll be assigned a computer, given a small whiteboard or scrap paper for notes and earplugs or noise-canceling headphones. Personally, the noise-canceling headphones were too big for me so I had to suffer through without them – I highly recommend that you bring your own wax earplugs or noise-canceling headphones to avoid such a situation.

A timer is provided

The exam itself is composed of 60 multiple-choice questions. You’re able to flick back-and-forth between questions and review your answers before submitting the exam. The computer also has a timer function so you don’t need to worry about locating/tracking a clock on the wall.

Once you’re done

After submitting your answers, you’ll then raise your hand for a representative to come to you. This person will confirm that your test answers have been uploaded successfully. Afterward, you’ll be free to collect your belongings and flee the test center.

Click here for everything else you need to know about the MPRE, including what’s tested, passing scores and more.

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