Deadline for Georgia’s SEPARATE BAR EXAM APPLICATION is June 1

From the Georgia Office of Bar Admissions website:

In order to sit for the Georgia Bar Examination, you must submit a Bar Examination Application to the Board of Bar Examiners. All Bar Examination Applications must be submitted online and the appropriate filing fees must be received in the Office of Bar Admissions before 4:00 p.m. on the posted Bar Examination Application Filing Deadline. ALL POSTED TIMES ARE EASTERN TIME. U.S. Postal Service postmarking by the posted deadline IS NOT accepted as timely receipt. In order to apply for the Bar Examination you must first log in to the Office of Bar Admissions website at www.gabaradmissions.org. If you have not previously done so, you should click on the Register link at the top of the page and provide the requested information. You should log in to your User Home Page, click on Application Forms tab, then click on Apply under the Bar Exam Application heading. You should answer the six (6) Exam Eligibility questions and click Submit. Your eligibility request will be forwarded to the Office of Bar Admissions. Within 2 business days, a staff member will review your request and you will receive an email with instructions on how to complete the Bar Examination Application process and pay the appropriate filing fee. Keep in mind that you WILL NOT be considered registered for the Bar Exam until you complete all of the steps outlined in the instructions that will be emailed to you.

You can still file that application between June 2 and July 1 but you will pay a large late filing fee. Remember, this is separate from and in addition to your application to be certified through the Character and Fitness process. When you received that certification, you should have gotten instructions about the next step, to apply to take the actual examination, which is described above.

You Graduated. Now What?

Emory Law Commencement 2016 led by Professor Richard Freer, by Frank Chen.

Congratulations — you graduated and you earned a law degree! BUT … you don’t get to practice law until you pass the bar. Sooooo … it’s time to really focus on getting ready for success on the bar. Even before you start your bar review course (and start listening to Professor Freer again!), here are some suggested actions to take right now, from the excellent book “Pass the Bar”, by Riebe and Schwartz:

  1. Develop a written bar preparation schedule for yourself that includes:
    1. Time to review bar review outlines
    2. Time to attend bar review classes.
    3. Time to master or recall the substantive law.
    4. TIME TO DO PRACTICE QUESTIONS.
    5. Time for sleep, exercise and relaxation.
  2. Make sure you have sent all bar-related paperwork in by your state’s deadline: check here: National Conference of Bar Examiners. E.g., in Georgia you must file separately to take the exam, with separate paperwork, once you have been certified as eligible through the Character and Fitness process. Deadline to do so for the July bar is June 1!
  3. Contact all the people who are important to you, explain how crucial it is that you pass the bar exam and how much time it will take you to get ready, meaning you will be less available to them — i.e., at least fifty hours/week.
  4. Do at least one thing you enjoy that you won’t have time to do once your bar review course starts, until the end of the bar exam.
  5. Remind yourself frequently of your strengths and how they will help you pass the bar exam.
  6. Any other planning ahead you need to do for things like housing, meals, childcare, pet care, other obligations.

Stay in touch and let us know how it’s going! And congratulations again on your achievement in earning your law degree!

Photo: Frank Chen, 2016.

Managing Your Time on a Multiple Choice Exam (MBE!)

As you may have found during law school, it can be very challenging to plan and manage your time on a long multiple choice exam over a few hours — and yet that is exactly what you will need to do to maximize your success on the Multistate Bar Exam (MBE). As a reminder, the MBE is the day-long, standardized, multiple-choice exam that you take in two sessions, morning and afternoon, of three hours each. Here is the National Conference of Bar Examiners’ description of the MBE:

The MBE consists of 200 multiple-choice questions: 190 scored questions and 10 unscored pretest questions. The pretest questions are indistinguishable from those that are scored, so examinees should answer all questions. The exam is divided into morning and afternoon testing sessions of three hours each, with 100 questions in each session. There are no scheduled breaks during either the morning or afternoon session.

Yike. And your MBE score is very important; a high score can compensate for some weakness on the essays, making the difference between passing first time or not; and it may be transferable to another jurisdiction if you need to be admitted in another state (note: not all jurisdictions accept transferred MBE scores; you must check with specific jurisdictions).

Law School Academic Support blog to the rescue! Here is a very clear and helpful blog post about how to use a “time chart” to manage your time on a long multiple choice exam: Time Management on Multiple Choice Exams. As you do practice MBE questions this summer, I recommend learning how to create and use this kind of time chart to stay on track.