Friday, June 18, 2010

Bar Exam Review


So, I'm studying for this little thing called the bar exam, which makes law school seem completely worthless, pointless, and a waste of tens of thousands of dollars. Here's a quick update on how the study plan is going.

First off, my schedule for the summer consists of a 6-day PMBR course, a 6-week BARBRI course, and a 3-day PMBR review course. The names of the courses don't really mean anything, so don't worry about that. Then, I have about 2 1/2 weeks off before the two day bar exam. The exam itself consists of 200 multiple choice questions on day 1, covering 6 big topics of law. The second day is state-specific, but in Massachusetts, it's 10 essay questions, covering not only those 6 big topics, but also a host of smaller topics, all specific to law in Massachusetts which may or may not be different than the law on the multiple choice section. THEN, you wait for 4 months to hopefully get a letter saying that you've passed.

The study schedule is ridiculous. I'm in my BARBRI course now, and I got to a morning lecture for about 2-4 hours, depending on the subject. Then I grab lunch, go to the law library and do a variety of things from outlining to reviewing to sample multiple choice questions to outlining essays. I head home early evening, have dinner with my husband, watch a little TV, and then outline/review for the rest of the evening. My idea of a perfect summer. Everyone, including the bar review course leaders, seems to have a different idea of what your study schedule should look like. I want to do what's right for me, but hey, I've never taken the bar, so how do I know what works for me? All I know is that I'm way behind in published study schedules thus far. Yay for me.

So far we've covered a few of the big topics, those being Evidence (feeling good!), Property (doing horrible), and Torts (feeling okay). We've also covered a few of the topics that will only be on the essay exam, those being Federal Civil Procedure, Massachusetts Civil Procedure, Professional Responsibility, and 93A. I'm ignoring all of those at the moment because I really need to focus on the big 6 topics first.

The rough part is that I have to turn down invitations to places. I can't go to the bachelorette party for a wedding I'm in. I can't go to a 1 year-old's birthday party. I can't go to multiple theater performances (probably the most painful to miss!) By the way, we're also moving at this time, and my belly is growing at an alarming rate. The next-to-roughest part is that NO ONE understands this exam unless they've taken it. People don't understand that I can't take a weekend off. I can't travel and study. I'm not going to pass simply because I did well in law school. EVERYONE HAS TO WORK AT IT. A LOT.

Luckily, the lecturers are entertaining, and the lectures themselves aren't too bad. When you know everything is important, it's easy to pay attention. All I can do is keep my head in the game and make sure I'm doing as much as possible. Thank GOD I have a good memory.

And now...back to the books!

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