Rob-tastic and I are officially in the â€œheroin scratchâ€ phase of bar prep. Our goals from here until the California Bar Exam are to learn and much as we can about what’s likely to be tested, and lock in our test-taking strategies to maximize the points we earn.
Reminder: Rob-tastic and IÂ teamed up with BarbriÂ to document and share our stories from studying for the July 2017 California Bar Exam.
Practice, Practice, Practice
We’re lucky that Barbri gave us hundreds of practice multiple choice and essay questions. I particularly appreciate the online multiple choice questions where we can read the explanation about which choice was correct and why the others were wrong right after we submit our answer. Even though I’m exempt from taking the multiple choice portion of the bar exam, this helps me learn the nuances of all the rules. Every time I get a question right, I punch my hands triumphantly in the air.
Barbri gives us a full 6-hour MBE (multiple choice) practice test. Rob’s planning on taking it, but I’m not. He has to take the second day of the test, and since I don’t (thank goodness), my time would better spend focusing on the essay portion of the bar.
Making Flash Cards
Flash cards work for me. Making them by hand and going through them is the best way for me to memorize things. They got me through high school, college, law school, and my first bar exam. When I was studying for my first bar exam, I paced around the house going through my cards. I easily walked a mile a day. I even jumped in the pool and walked around the shallow end going through my flash cards until I learned all the rules for secured transactions. One day I lost my mind and took my flash cards for a walk because my 1,800 square-foot house felt too claustrophobic. I walked for over an hour in 110-degree heat going through the flash cards. I’m sure people thought I was crazy the way I was muttering to myself.
At the beginning of this bar prep, I bought 1,000 index cards. (I made just under 1,000 flash cards for the Arizona Bar.) I suspect I’ll go through them and more this time around. When everyone was enjoying their Independence Day holiday, I wrote over 100 flash cards on all the concepts for real property.
It turns out Rob was also studying real property over the holiday. He came in the office today and said, â€œNo one should own Blackacre. That land is nothing but trouble.â€
Sending Postcards to our Barbri Instructors
It’s lonely studying for the bar exam. We spend long hours doing practice questions and watching hours of Barbri lectures. With all the stress and hard work that goes into studying for this exam, we appreciate anything in this process that makes smile. Rob-tastic said he laughed when our Corporations instructor, Douglas Moll, started his lecture by saying, â€œYou’re not going to be tested on California law with respect to corporations. You’re going to be tested on majority rule principles. . . . Purge anything you know that’s California specific. That actually won’t help you.â€ (Yes, we have to know non-California rules for the California Bar Exam. It doesn’t make sense to us either.)
We are grateful to the instructors who make dry topics bearable and complicated topics understandable. Over the weekend, I picked up some Arizona themed postcards to send to our favorite instructors to thank them for helping us through this. As the always-entertaining Chuck Shonholtz says, they’re setting us up to â€œbeat the bar nine ways ’til Sunday.”