MASTER 2013 Subscription Site
In 2008, I decided to update/improve my MASTER 2005 outline and take a closer look at the frequencies for patterns. Since then, I have spent over 700 hours updating and improving MASTER 2005. MASTER 2005 is basically a compilation of the black letter law sections of the "above average" sample answers of the released essays from July 1995 to February 2005 (I simply copied and pasted from the released sample answers) along with the frequency of each topic. It is not prioritized and the law wasn't checked. In making MASTER 2008-2012, I checked the law for each topic and made revisions if necessary; updated the introductory sentences, re-wrote all of the topic answers and added the new topics from the July 2005-July 2012 exams (there are generally 3-7 new topics per exam - there are 262 topics in MASTER 2005 and 333 topics in MASTER FEB 2013). Each of the 333 topics contain links to the 923 issues from the prior exams. Finally, in MASTER 2013, I spent a good deal of time prioritizing the topics based on statistical analysis. Everything I added to the subscription site are things that I would have done myself for the New York bar exam had I had the time back in 2005. Following is a list of the content on the subscription site.
MASTER FEB 2013
MASTER FEB 2013 was released 12/23/12. There are 333 topics in MASTER FEB 2013 based on 923 issues that have appeared in the New York Bar Exam essays from July 1995 to July 2012 (a total of 35 administrations).
The MASTER FEB 2013 is 169 pages long and consists of 93,102 words (not including the Table of Contents or headers for each topic). At a reading rate of 200 words per minute, it would take 7.8 hours to read the entire MASTER FEB 2013. The MASTER FEB 2013 HIGH PRIORITY TOPICS OUTLINE is 66 pages long and consists of 35,857 words. At a reading rate of 200 words per minute, it would take 3 hours to read the entire MASTER FEB 2013 HIGH PRIORITY TOPICS OUTLINE. The MASTER FEB 2013 MEDIUM PRIORITY TOPICS OUTLINE is 55 pages long and consists of 28,873 words. At a reading rate of 200 words per minute, it would take 2.4 hours to read the entire MASTER FEB 2013 MEDIUM PRIORITY TOPICS OUTLINE. The MASTER FEB 2013 LOW PRIORITY TOPICS OUTLINE is 51 pages long and consists of 28,372 words. At a reading rate of 200 words per minute, it would take 2.4 hours to read the entire MASTER FEB 2013 LOW PRIORITY TOPICS OUTLINE.
The 2011-2013 MASTER outlines are longer because each of the 333 topics contain links to the 923 issues from the prior exams (July 1995 to present). A substantial portion of MASTER 2005 has been re-written and all 333 topics have been updated. In doing each MASTER updates, I fix any problems, errors, bad law or misclassifications I find. Even MASTER Feb 2013 may have a few small mistakes, but each version is improved upon. As a fan of prioritization, I prioritized how I updated MASTER. I spent substantially more time on the high priority topics than on the low priority topics. I paid particular attention to the first sentence of each introduction to revise and improve them. I re-wrote the MASTER topics because I don't want the bar examiners to think you are using the old Master when you are taking the bar exam. Using the old MASTER 2005 can hurt you unless you revise and update it. To read more about this, click here.
The MASTER FEB 2013 topic header are color-coded based on their priority: BLUE=HIGH PRIORITY, GREEN=MEDIUM PRIORITY and ORANGE=LOW PRIORITY. MASTER FEB 2013 consists of 118 LOW priority topics, 106 MEDIUM priority topics, and 109 HIGH priority topics. The priority is based on a number of factors, not just frequency by category and by exam. There are statistically relevant patterns that enable me to reduce or increase topic priority. Each topic in MASTER appears with certain statistical information.
The MASTER FEB 2013 subject headers report how often that subject has appeared on the past 35 exams and what percentage of the issues (i.e. what % of the exam) that subject comprised on the NY essays. The MASTER FEB 2013 topic headers report statistics for each topic. The statistic header appears as follows:
Exam: 6/35 (17.1%); Feb Exam: 2/6 (33.3%); Subject: 6/138 (4.3%); Feb Subject: 2/69 (2.9%)
Following is a legend for these topic header statistics. I use the terms "categories" "topics" and "issues” in the legend. Categories are the 16 categories or subjects on the New York bar exam essays (i.e. Contracts, Torts, etc). Topics are the 333 topics that have appeared throughout the 35 New York Bar Exams from July 1995 to July 2012 (i.e. WILLS: No Contest Clause). Issues are the sum of all the topics that have appeared throughout the 35 NY Bar Exams from July 1995 to July 2012 (there are 923 issues in the 35 NY Bar Exams from July 1995 to July 2012).
This statistic reports how often the topic has appeared in the last 35 exams from July 1995 to July 2012. For example, the topic WILLS: No Contest Clause has appeared in 6 of the last 35 exams, meaning it has appeared in 17.1% of the exams from July 1995 to July 2012.
This statistic reports how often the topic has appeared in February exams versus July exams (based on the last 35 exams from July 1995 to July 2012). For example, the topic WILLS: No Contest Clause has appeared in 2 February exams out of 6 total appearances, meaning it has appeared in February exams 33% of the time.
This statistic reports how often the topic has appeared as compared to other topics for that Category. For example, WILLS topics have represented 138 of the 923 issues in the last 35 exams from July 1995 to July 2012. Of the 138 WILLS issues, the topic WILLS: No Contest Clause has been 6 of those 138 issues, meaning it represents 4.3% of the WILLS issues that have appeared on the New York essays from July 1995 to July 2012.
This statistic reports how often the topic has appeared as compared to other topics for that Category based on February exams only. For example, WILLS topics have represented 69 of the 439 issues on February exams between July 1995 to July 2012. Of the 69 WILLS issues, the topic WILLS: No Contest Clause has been 2 of those 69 issues, meaning it represents 2.9% of the WILLS issues that have appeared on February essays from July 1995 to July 2012.
Following is a sample page from the updated MASTER 2013:
There is a one sentence explanations for each issue link. For example:
Exam: July 2008: What remedy does a partner have against other partners who act outside the scope of their authority?
These 912 issue statements are intended to give you a quick synopsis of the issue tested without you having to read through the released essays and make your own notes. The purpose of these issue statements is to make your essay studying more efficient - my being familiar with how each issue was presented, you will be better at issue spotting. Clicking on the link will take you to that answer in the respective essay.
MASTER FEB 2013 is in WORD, PDF and MP3 format. The text in MASTER is Times New Roman size 11 font with margins of 0.8". The WORD format is editable and printable. Each of the 333 topics is hyper linked to the NY Bar Exam Essay Issues document so that you can quickly see how the topic was answered in each exam were the topic appeared. The NY Bar Exam Essay Issues document contains the last 35 NY bar exams (July 1995- July 2012) broken down by issue (923 issues).
Here is a redacted page from the MASTER Topic Frequency Analysis chart.
Here is a redacted page from the MASTER Statistics By Category chart.
Here is a redacted page from the MASTER Repeat Topic Lookback chart.
These documents are updated each time the NY essays are released.
In my opinion, the MBE is the key to passing the New York Bar Exam - do well on the MBE and OK on everything else and you should pass. The purpose of MASTER is to make it easier to study for the NY Essays so you can focus on the MBE. However, everyone is different. Certain study methods do not work for all people. I do think that everyone that signs up for MASTER agrees with my philosophy – you study the topics most likely to appear and avoid the topics least likely to appear in order to increase your chances of passing the exam. Post-exam analysis of MASTER for the July 2012, Feb 2012, July 2011, Feb 2011, July 2010, Feb 2010, July 2009, Feb 2009, and July 2008 exams can be read here:
Here are some comments regarding MASTER from other examinees.
I made separate MASTER documents - one for HIGH priority topics only, one for MEDIUM priority topics only, and one for LOW priority topics only. I have also made MP3s of the MINI-MASTERs that you can listen to and memorize while you are commuting/etc. The HIGH priority topics MP3 is about 3.5 hours, the MEDIUM priority topics MP3 is about 3.0 hours, and the LOW priority topics MP3 is about 3.5 hours.
Here is a sample MP3 from MASTER Feb 2010 High Priority Topics.
Here is a sample MP3 from MASTER Feb 2010 Medium Priority Topics.
In August 2008, the NY BOLE released a Content Outline For The New York State Bar Examination. You can learn more about it here. According to the NY BOLE, “[t]he outline is intended to indicate, in summary fashion, the bar examination’s potential scope of coverage. It is our hope that the outline will assist candidates in their preparation.” Basically, these are all the topics that may be tested on the NY Essays or NYMC. I decided to make summaries for the topics in the Content Outline to provide a condensed summary of all the possible topics on the NY bar exam. This Content Outline Summary serves as a basic overview of each topic NY BOLE finds "testable." The Content Outline Summary contains paragraph summaries for each of the topics in the current May 2010 Content Outline. The paragraphs are intended to be summaries rather than comprehensive explanations of each topic.
This Content Outline Summary is keyed to the updated May 2010 Content Outline from NY BOLE. I treat each line item in the NY BOLE Content Outline as an issue. The original August 2008 NY BOLE Content Outline contained 737 issues; the November 2009 NY BOLE Content Outline contained 761 issues; and the most recent May 2010 NY BOLE Content Outline contains 790 issues. Between the August 2008 and November 2009 Content Outlines, the bulk of the changes were with Professional Responsibility (New York had went from the old Code to the new RPC). Some of the other changes were merely the addition of statutes to the topic, although there are additions to Agency, Criminal Law and Procedure, Evidence, Matrimonial and Family Law, and UCC. Between the November 2009 and May 2010 Content Outlines, the bulk of the changes were with Criminal Law and Procedure. These changes were supplementary - numerical sub-parts were added to certain topic sections. Otherwise, there were only two other semantical changes in Trusts, Wills and Estates.
This Content Outline Summary is a WORD document that is 289 pages long consisting of approximately 170,000 words. The Table of Contents is Hyper-Linked - if you hold down the CTRL key and click on a topic, you will jump to that topic. The idea is similar to MASTER - the one paragraph "set-piece" will explain the topic to you and can be also used to answer the topic concisely on the exam. Since the “set-pieces” are not intended to be comprehensive, information will be omitted. However, the idea is to simply familiarize yourself with each topic and be able to write a nice concise paragraph about the topic if required. You can then refer to the MASTER outline and other statistics for topic priorities. Approximately 261 of the topics in the Content Outline are based on specific New York laws - I have hyperlinks to each law (in a separate document) built into the Content Outline Summary. This will enable you to also look at the relevant law for these 261 topics by simply clicking on the link. These documents are in WORD format so you an edit them or add to them, and so you can quickly perform keyword searches within the document (Ctrl+F) to find a particular word or subject.
I made a compilation of the New York bar exam essays from July 1995 to present. All these essays have been put into one single Word document with a hyperlinked Table of Contents based on Exam, Question and Topic. This enables quick reference to any question, keyword, or topic spanning the 35 exams (187 Questions, 372 Answers, 333 topics, 923 total issues). I have found this essay compilation to be a very useful tool and a good cross-reference for MASTER. I recommend that you read (or listen to the MP3s) the essays and answers for the last 10 exams. The purpose of reading these essays is not to study and memorize (MASTER is for that), but to understand how NY essay questions are posed, and how you should respond. Reading or listening to these essays will teach you how to compose an answer that the bar examiners are looking for. MASTER will give you the content. Because you don't need to study the essays, the MP3s may be the better choice if you commute/etc. This NY Essays Compilation from 1995-2012 with issues should be used with MASTER. For example, if you see an issue in MASTER and want to see how it is handled as a response in an essay. Starting with July 2010, the NY Bar Exam Essays Compilation document also contains the best scoring essay answers provided to me by examinees. I recommended that you review the best examinee answers. They provide insight as to what type of writing and how much knowledge and analysis are required for an above average score that is not at the level of the released sample candidate answers. Sometimes, different topics are raised in these answers, illustrating that an examinee's answer does not have to mirror the released above average answers to receive a high score. This document is updated each time the NY essays are released.
Here is a sample page from the Table of Contents.
Here is a sample page illustrating how the issues are classified in the exam answers.
My BARBRI Outlines from 2005 were updated in 2009 and updated again in 2012. The MBE outline categories are prioritized based on the NCBE Subject Matter Outlines. The New York outline categories are prioritized based on the current MASTER priorities. I also added the New York Bar Exam issues for each subject at the end of each NY outline. If you click on any of the issue links, it will show the topic in the released answers. The outlines are available in WORD or PDF format. I also included a PDF comparison document for each outline that illustrates the changes between the versions - this is helpful if you are interested in knowing the changes to the law between 2005 to present. Here is a sample of a few pages of the comparison report between the old and new Constitutional Law outlines. Here is another sample of a few pages of the comparison report between the old and new Professional Responsibility outlines. If you don't have a good set of outlines for the exam, I strongly suggest you use mine and annotate them as necessary.
I made MP3s of the New York essays from prior exams in a higher quality MP3 format (128kpbs-CD quality) using a more natural sounding voice while correcting grammatical and pronunciation errors. At the moment, 30 exams are available (July 2012 to Feb 1998). I expect to have MP3s of all 34 available exams (July 2012-July 1995) done at some point in the future. Here are before and after MP3 audio file samples to illustrate the improvements:
I made a prioritized rules outline of the 1992 MBE (531 rules) and the July 1998 MBE (200 rules). It is prioritized based on the 2008 MBE Subject Matter Outlines from NCBE. For example, the NCBE MBE Subject Matter Outline for Torts states that for Negligence (Category II) appears in 50% of the Torts MBE questions. Therefore, 17 of the 200 questions on the MBE will be from this category. This category is therefore the highest priority category in the prioritized rules outline (which contains 68 rules for the category). The format of this rules outline is similar to the MBE Rules Outline document on my main site. The idea behind these rules is efficiency – you are studying based on prioritization and it is much easier to read this list and get a gist of previously tested rules than it is to go through all the questions and make your own rules outline. I also categorized the rules for each MBE topic. For example, Category IV topics (Individual Rights) on the Constitutional Law outline comprise approximately 50% of the Constitutional Law questions on the MBE exam. Therefore, these rules are regarded as higher priority than the Con Law Category I, II and III rules. Here is a copy of the MBE 1992 Categorized Rules Table of Contents.
I also have made rules for the 2006 OPE-1 MBE questions, although they have not yet been incorporated into the prioritized rules outline. Every examinee should make a rules outline for all the MBE questions you get wrong. The MBE tests details, not broad concepts of law. Doing lots of MBE questions exposes you to the multitude of fine gray lines in the black letter law. You need to know these details to do well on the MBE. Don't forget to examine your answers. Really try to understand why an answer is wrong and take the time to research it (you won’t have the luxury of seriously researching topics as you get closer to the exam). Studying rules gives you a quick understanding of the nuances the MBE tested in the past.
There is a forum/bulletin board for the subscribers to the site. It is a serious discussion board for tactics, advice and resources. I ask everyone to submit any useful advice they have, so that everyone can benefit. There is a Questions category where you can post questions about studying or law (i.e. If you are not sure if the law is correct) and I will answer it.
I compiled word frequency analysis charts based on all the released MBEs and the NY Essays from July 1995-July 2011. Any useful statistical information I find, I will put up on the site. All my research is based on identifying the probability of a given subject of topic appearing on the exam. You will never learn everything, but if can learn the high probability topics, you will improve your chances of passing.
Here is a redacted page from the NY Essays Word Frequency chart.
Here is a redacted page from the MBE Statistics by Exam chart.
Here is a redacted page from the MBE Word Frequency chart.
Here is a redacted page from the MBE Word Frequency-Top 50 chart.
These documents are updated each time the NY essays are released.
The MBE Word Frequency chart will tell you how often a specific word has appeared in a released MBE question (1,450 questions) or answer (5,800 answers). For example, the keyword "manslaughter" appeared in 41 answer choices and was the correct answer only 4 times (9.8% probability). It appeared in 0 answer choices on the MBE 2011 Information Book. It appeared in 2 answer choices on the MBE-OPE3 2011 exam and was the right answer choice 0 times. It appeared in 2 answer choices on the MBE-OPE2 2008 exam and was the right answer choice 0 times. It appeared in 4 answer choices on the MBE-OPE1 2006 exam and was the right answer choice one time. It appeared in 10 answer choices on the July 1998 exam and was the right answer choice one time. It appeared in 13 answer choices on the MBE 1992 book and was the right answer choice one time. It appeared in 5 answer choices on the July 1991 exam and was the right answer choice one time. Lastly, it appeared in 4 answer choices on the Feb 1991 exam and was the right answer choice one time. Accordingly, if one of the answer choices includes the keyword "manslaughter", it is probably not the right answer based on the prior statistical data. Since the keyword "manslaughter" should statistically be in about 25% of the right answers, the actual probability of 9.8% is therefore color coded RED to warn you to STOP and think about it since it is more likely the wrong answer than the correct answer. If you are the type of person who is curious about how often the correct answer choice on the released MBE questions is "guilty" versus "not-guilty" or "constitutional" versus "unconstitutional," you will find this chart informative. However, while the probabilities are supported by the equivalent of roughly seven prior MBE exams, but there is no way of knowing if the probabilities are consistent with the current actual MBE questions. Therefore, I advise subscribers that the MBE keyword frequency method should only be used as a last resort and only when you are guessing and you have no idea what the correct answer is.
I have a purely statistical approach to the NY bar exam. I have statistically analyzed every released essay on the New York bar exam from July 1995 to present. This consists of 182 released questions and 362 released above-average answers containing approximately 896 legal issues. I have also statistically analyzed every released MBE question (1,450 released MBE questions from 1991 to present). There is an MBE Word Matrix Calculator on the subscription site that will report how often a particular word or word phrase appears in the question part (stem portion), answer part (distractors and right answer), and right answer part of every MBE question released by NCBE. I also created a New York Essay Word Calculator that operates much like the MBE Word Matrix calculator. The calculator reports how often a word or phrase appears in the New York bar exam essay questions and answers. I scrutinize the released exams looking for any discernable patterns. For example, here is some of the analysis on the subscription site:
• I analyzed how often the IRAC Intros are used in the released above-average answers. The purpose of this analysis was to determine what IRAC Intros are used most often so that examinees can emulate this writing in their answers.
• I compared July exams to February exams to see if NY BOLE made the February exams more or less difficult than the July exams.
• I analyzed and created a chart of the essay score permutations attainable based on past score data from examinees.
• I analyzed the essay answers to determine how often case names and citations were used in the released above-average answers.
• I analyzed the essay answers to determine how often references to the common law were used in the released above-average answers.
• I analyzed the essay answers to determine how often the essay question stems were answered in the affirmative (as opposed to being answered in the negative) and broke this down by subject.
• I analyzed how many of the issues specifically dealt with the degree of a crime and what crimes/degrees appeared most often.
• I analyzed how many of the issues specifically dealt with Elective Share. For these issues, did the spouse elect to take the Elective Share, and was the Elective Share an easy divisible of 3.
• Recently, I started reviewing examinee essays to identify any meaningful differences between laptop users and writers.
• For the MBE, I statistically explain a strategy for which MBE questions to answer if you are running short on time.
• For the MBE, I created a chart of 350 keywords that appear with the most frequency in the answer choices of the released MBE questions along with any statistical significance regarding how often these words appear in the correct answer.
• For the exam itself, I statistically explain a strategy for how much time you should spend on each component of the exam.
I created a New York Essay Word Calculator that operates much like the MBE Word Matrix calculator. The calculator reports how often a word or phrase appears in the New York bar exam essay questions and answers. You can use this calculator to test what words or phrases appear in the New York bar exam essay questions and released above average answers from July 1995-July 2011. For example, if you enter the word "lesser included", it will report that the word appears in one question (out of 177 questions) and one answer (out of 352 answers). If you scroll down the list, you will see where it appears, and how many times the word appears. For example, in the case of "lesser included," you will see next to February 2000, it appears one time in the question portion and two times in the answer portion of Answer One. To illustrate how the calculator works, this version of the NY Essay Word Calculator only analyzes the February 2010 exam which consists of five essay questions along with ten released above average answers. The New York Essay Word Calculator on the subscription site analyzes the last 33 exams.
To allow examinees to conduct their own analysis, I created an MBE Word Matrix Calculator. This MBE word matrix will report how often a word or word phrase appears in the question part (stem portion), answer part (distractors and right answer), and right answer part of every MBE question released by NCBE. Currently, there are 1,450 released MBE questions - the analysis results are derived from the Sample MBE February 1991 (200 questions); Sample MBE II July 1991 (200 questions); MBE Questions 1992 (581 questions of which 531 are unique); Sample MBE III July 1998 (200 questions); MBE OPE 1 2006 (100 questions); MBE OPE 2 2008 (100 questions); MBE OPE 3 2011 (100 questions); and the MBE 2011 Information Booklet (18 questions plus a question released by NCBE in the November 2007 issue of The Bar Examiner).
The matrices will report word counts for the word or word phrase, the probability the word or word phrase is in the right answer choice; the percentage of appearance of the word or word phrase in all the released questions; and the number of questions the word or word phrase is estimated to appear in on an actual MBE exam. The matrices can be used to test how often a word appears in the question part of the MBE questions (i.e. 'federal statute', 'contract', etc.). You can use the matrices to see how often a legal concept is tested on the MBE by examining how often it appears in the answer choices (i.e. 'manslaughter', 'slander', etc.). The matrices are also useful if you are curious as to how often extreme terms such as "none," "never", "always," "every," or "only if" appear in MBE answer choices along with how often they appear as the correct answer. Finally, you can also use the matrices to see how often a word is the correct answer versus how often the antonym of the word is the correct answer (i.e. 'guilty' versus 'not guilty').
To illustrate how the calculator works, this version of the MBE Word Matrix Calculator only analyzes the 2009 MBE Information Booklet which consists of 18 questions along with a question released by NCBE in the November 2007 issue of The Bar Examiner. Some functionality, such as the MBE question estimate, will not be accurate due to the small sample of questions. The MBE Word Matrix calculator on the subscription site analyzes all 1,450 questions.
I improved my Excel Bar Study SpreadSheet (PDF version is here) for examinees to enter and track their MBE testing progress. You not only enter your scores, but also your times. The spreadsheet reports a summary of your scores and also calculates your scaled score based on the practice test or based on the MBE subject. The spreadsheet will also track your daily or week-to-week progress and report averages such as number of questions per day. In addition, your percentages for each MBE subject (or the entire MBE for Mixed) is compared to the National Mean for that exam from 1995-2004 (NCBE stopped releasing raw scores by MBE subject in 2005). The MBE Scaling is based on the 2006 NY MBE scale (2006 is the last year where NY BOLE reported raw and scaled scores). The scale is different depending on whether it is the July or the February exam. The Scaled Score estimate will give you an idea of how you will score on the actual exam. Keep in mind that this MBE scale could differ by as many as 12 points, especially for very low or very high scores, since the scale is based on the skill-level of that particular pool of examinees. The spreadsheet will analyze scores and additional inormation you enter and break it down by MBE subject. Tracking this information will give you insight into where your problem areas are. For example, you will know how often you were positive your choice was the right answer but turned out to be the wrong answer. By assessing your testing process, you can improve it.
There is a study time allocation calculator on the subscription site. You simply enter the number of hours and days you will study, and it will tell you how many minutes per day (or hours per week) you should spend on each area. The calculator will break down study time for reading outlines, reading bar review materials, doing MBE questions, analyzing wrong responses to MBE questions, studying MASTER, studying NYMC questions and looking over old MPTs, and more. For example, how much time you should spend reading a New York subject outline such as Secured Transactions is determined by a formula that is based on the probability of the subject appearing as a topic on a NY bar exam since July 1995. The default percentages (MBE 60%, Essays 37%, MPT 1.5% and NYMC 1.5%) can be overridden if you want to tailor your own percentages. For example, NCBE studied the performance of candidates taking the New York Bar Exam in July 2005 and found that groups that did relatively well on one component (e.g., the Essay) also tended to do well on the other two components (e.g., the MBE and the NYMC), and groups that didn’t do so well on one component didn’t do so well on the other components. However, one noteworthy exception to this generalization was a consistent tendency for women to do somewhat better than men on the essay component (about 2 points on the MBE scale) and for men to do somewhat better than women on the MBE (about 5 points on the MBE scale) -- it was observed consistently across racial/ethnic groups, and for first-time takers and repeat takers. What this means is that study time allocation should differ slightly between men and women. Women should spend 60%+ of their time studying for the MBE while men should spend 55%-60%. The study time allocation calculator also includes an MBE subject matter breakdown. You can use this breakdown as a check to make sure you do not over-study a particular MBE topic when studying your MBE outlines or bar review materials.
For re-takers, if you submit your scores to me, I will provide a graphical analysis of your score for your review. Each segment of your score will be analyzed and compared to the average scores of people that failed the exam and submitted their scores to me. Therefore, you must keep in mind that if your scores were compared to the actual average of all test-takers, the difference would be even greater. However, the purpose is to illustrate poor areas for you when compared to others that failed. The analysis includes an MBE % based on the most recent MBE Scale. It shows you what percentage of test-takers nationwide did better than you on the MBE and what percentage did worse than you. The MBE percentages are based on the MBE statistics released by NCBE. The report is five pages long and contains a good bit of information and advice along with your predicted performance on the next exam based on statistics and score data. The analysis is useful in pinpointing your problem areas and assessing your future exam performance.
You can perform your own scoring simulations on the NY Bar Score Calculator.
For subscribers that write practice answers to the released NY Essays/MPTs from February 2010-Feb 2012, I provide an essay analysis comparing practice essay answers to scored essays. A sample analysis can be viewed here. Based on the above essay/MPT analysis, this three page analysis serves as an "objective check" of an examinee's essays. This analysis does not grade your essay - it simply analyzes it and compares it to other scored essays/MPTs. The purpose of the Essay/MPT Analysis is to enable examinees to recognize the differences to make the appropriate adjustments. I find the objective Essay/MPT Analysis useful because it pinpoints how your essays differed from the released above average answers - the answers the bar graders liked. For example, one portion of the essay analysis reports the top 20 words the above average answers used that you did not use. This can give you insight into whether you missed fundamental topics or lacked a vocabulary of important words related to the analysis of the essay.
To illustrate, I find that some examinees fail to use the word "because" in their answers. In an IRAC analysis, “because” is the single most important word to use when analyzing the facts in the question. The failure to use words such as "because", "since" and "as" will negatively affect your analysis and can hurt your score. Another portion of the essay analysis reports the top 20 words you used that the above average answers did not use. This can give you insight into whether you misunderstand a topic or have an inappropriate vocabulary for that topic, especially if you received a low score on the essay. The analysis also reports a number of correlations. These statistics can provide a wide range of insight - are your sentences per paragraph consistent with the released above average answers or is the Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level too high or too low as compared to the released above average answers. For example, if you received a low score and your Essay to Question % was low, you should re-answer the question in practice to see why you did not fit more facts from the question into your analysis.
In addition, examinees that send me their essays can choose to participate in the Essay/MPT comparison. Following is a small sample of the July 2010 comparison:
In the Essay/MPT comparison, each submitted essay/MPT is compared to every other submitted essay/MPT. For example, in the above July 2010 sample, there are 10 comparisons based on 3 examinee essays and the two released above average answers. On the subscription site, for the July 2010 exam, for each essay/MPT, there are 1,596 comparisons based on 55 examinee essays and the two released above average answers. For the February 2011 exam, for each essay/MPT, there are 465 comparisons based on 29 examinee essays and the two released above average answers. For the July 2011 exam, for each essay/MPT, there are 861 comparisons based on 40 examinee essays and the two released above average answers. I feel this analysis is invaluable for examinees to quickly and efficiently discover "what works" versus "what doesn't work" on the New York essays/MPT.
Examinees must do well on the MBE to give themselves a good chance at passing the New York bar exam. However, studying black-letter law is not enough to do well on MBE questions. The difficulty with the MBE questions is that there are essentially thousands of nuances. For example, the Restatement of the Law 2d, Contracts by The American Law Institute contains over 1,800 illustrations. The Restatement of Torts, 2nd Ed contains over 1,900 illustrations. The MBE is particularly difficult for examinees who are unfamiliar with multiple choice exams where test takers must choose the best answer among highly plausible distractors.
Accordingly, I am currently making online MBE flashcard exams to test examinees on hypothetical scenarios of such nuances. The questions will be primarily based on licensed illustrations from the Restatements published by the American Law Institute. The purpose of these "flashcard" quizzes is to help examinees learn the MBE nuances in a much more abbreviated fashion. By looking at the illustrations, examinees can quickly see how the law is applied. There are currently four flashcard exams on the subscription site, each consisting of 100 questions. The flashcard quizzes are primarily intended for re-takers who have done the gamut of MBE practice questions but still have difficulty with the MBE. I hope to have a total of 1,000 flashcard questions for the upcoming February 2013 exam.
Whenever an examinee asks me about tutoring, I tell them my best advice to them is to first subscribe to the subscription site. There is a great deal of content and information on the subscription site that will help you. The subscription site is essentially a comprehensive outline of my advice on how to prepare and study for the New York bar exam. I routinely update the subscription site with advice and content that I feel will help subscribers taking the exam and I always include or explain the data or research that the advice or content is based on. There are category specific pages with advice on the NY BAR EXAM, ESSAYS, MBE, MPT, NYMC and MPRE. In addition, there is an in-depth analysis on optimal timing for the different components of the NY bar exam. There is roughly five times more advice content on the subscription site than the free site (20,000 words vs 120,000 words). I give advice to examinees who subscribe to the subscription site. I answer emails and forum posts and I occasionally talk on the phone with subscribers, time permitting. If you still have questions after you review the subscription site, just let me know and I will discuss them with you. That is one of the reasons why I limit subscriptions - so I can timely communicate with examinees who subscribe.
Normally, I start taking subscriptions when MASTER is released (approximately two months before the exam). I do this to avoid confusion since a fair amount of the content on the subscription site changes with each exam. However, I now permit examinees to subscribe "early" because there is a substantial amount of material on the subscription site, and subscribing early gives examinees more time to digest the material and incorporate it into their studying. Subscriptions are on a first come-first serve basis. The subscription for the July 2013 exam is $350 and I will stop taking subscriptions when I reach 300 subscribers. To see a list of what is on the subscription site, or to subscribe, click here:
Early subscribers must keep in mind that the site will be updated again and the content will need to be re-read after MASTER is released. Accordingly, because I revise priorities after each exam, you should not rely on the priorities in MASTER unless they are for that specific exam. Feel free to study the content of the February 2013 MASTER outline for now, but do not rely on the priorities for the upcoming July 2013 exam - you will be studying inefficiently.
If you want to be put on an email list to be notified of the release of MASTER 2013 for the JULY 2013 exam, please submit your email address below. This is a notification list - it is not a waiting list. I am not taking reservations for subscriptions to MASTER JULY 2013 - it will be available on a first come, first serve basis only.
If you have any questions, email me at email@example.com.
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