Celebrating 10 years! 2007-2017

Any body taking a Themis bar review class now?

Were the MBE review videos worth watching (the ones they sho nycatt07/08/18
I’m in the exact same boat as you- taking Themis after hav alphadog1507/09/18
What are you spending most of your time on? When I did CA nycatt07/09/18
I'm also taking Florida. What do you think of the Themis cou alphadog1507/09/18
Definitely better technology now, but the curriculum seems t nycatt07/09/18
Maybe it has become better over time. I tried Themis at one hairypalms07/09/18
I can’t really compare with Barbri as the other two times alphadog1507/12/18
I am doing ok. King of took Friday for a loss, but it is ge nycatt07/15/18
Never took Themis but my secret sauce for passing the bar (N isthisit07/12/18
Agree partially. Barbri waste for MBE but good for essay dandydan07/12/18
I passed the UBE in New York on the first try years after LS wolfman07/12/18
nycatt (Jul 8, 2018 - 4:16 pm)

Were the MBE review videos worth watching (the ones they show after you take the practice test)?

I am 2 weeks behind where I should be because I am a practicing lawyer and started late because of work. I am thinking about skipping these videos (and maybe the 2 day practice test) if it isn't worth it, since all the "strategy videos" so far are garbage - just some lady repeating the answers that you can read on your own when you take the practice questions online. I already took and passed the test in New York (10 years ago) and CA (five years ago), so practice tests seems to be a good place to cut, unless the strategy is really helpful.

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alphadog15 (Jul 9, 2018 - 8:03 am)

I’m in the exact same boat as you- taking Themis after having already passed two bar exams (NY and NJ separately). I’m also a little behind as I had to do the practice exams over the weekend, no way I could set aside 6 hours per day during a work week. I haven’t gotten to those videos yet, but will let you know.

Having said that, I think you probably don’t need to watch them. I find that these videos, like the MBE analysis videos are geared more for the recent grads taking the exam for the first time, not fro you and I who already have done it multiple times. Also, the whole simulated exam, while helpful, isn’t essential for you or I as we already have experience with exam taking.

I’ve been cutting out reviewing the entire outlines and for most practice essays I don’t write the whole thing out, at most I just outline and review the model answers. Again, if you’ve passed multiple bar exams then it’s highly unlikely you need practice with writing full essays.

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nycatt (Jul 9, 2018 - 8:48 am)

What are you spending most of your time on?

When I did CA, after I finished the material, I spent a few days going through 20 years of tests and identified everything that wast tested more than twice on an essays. I found that 90% of the material was tested over and over again, and I crammed that and practiced writing it out a bit, and when test day came, 90% of the material WAS the same stuff and the test was pretty easy. This time around, I don't have time to do the whole thing (I am only 57% done) and I just finished the last few subjects this weekend. I am not sure what to work on - essays, more questions, reading outlines. I am doing Florida and there is a lot of local material. Let me know if you have any good ideas.

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alphadog15 (Jul 9, 2018 - 4:30 pm)

I'm also taking Florida. What do you think of the Themis course so far? I am actually quite pleased with it. Huge difference in terms of technology compared to when I first took the bar exam 14 years ago.

It's really hard to predict what will be on the test but having studied a monster amount of subjects for NY I feel much more comfortable studying Florida's more manageable list of subjects. I'm really focusing on FL Con law, FL Crim Procedure and FL Civ Pro, as those are mandated to be tested. For essays I have a feeling they're going to hit us with Secured Transactions but that's just my hunch.

I've managed to keep up with the graded essays, just so I can have some practice writing a full essay knowing that it will be read, analysed and graded by someone.

I don't think anyone will realistically complete 100%, there's just too much. The first video said to aim for at least 80%, and if possible 90%. So if you try to keep up with what is being assigned to you on a daily basis for the next two weeks you should hit 80%. But you should feel pretty damn confident having passed NY and NJ. Forget test taking techniques and strategies, just focus on re-learning all those annoying and irrelevant common law rules that you've never ever used in the real world.

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nycatt (Jul 9, 2018 - 5:01 pm)

Definitely better technology now, but the curriculum seems to over prescribe Practice questions and minimize outline studying. In my opinion, outline studying should be a third of studying. So I am a little confused as to what I should be doing now. I want to get more % completion just because I am a completest. I spent a few hours doing outlines yesterday and wanted some completion %s!

I have a few other minor problems with Themis, but I won't go into it it here. I think it is generally as fine as barbri (they also had multi-choice technology 5 years ago when I took CA and it is very similar). And now that I don't live in NYC or San Fran, I can't easily get to a class without a 30 or 40 minute commute (here in Orlando, I4 is hell), so the working from home thing is pretty great, and barbri from home is the same as themis.

I have only done five graded essays so far - I need to do the rest. I am not trying to predict what is on the test, but I am taking notes on what is being being tested over and over. You can score an 80% on the secured transaction essay (or any other) if you know 15% of the material because it is tested over and over again (for secured trans, attachment, perfection, basic priorities, basic remedies) so I will try to emphasize that for each subject. Sadly, I don't know that 15% yet cold, so I am behind the eight ball. I also need to cram the florida multiple choice stuff you are concentrating on too.

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hairypalms (Jul 9, 2018 - 8:28 pm)

Maybe it has become better over time. I tried Themis at one point and was able to return for a full refund after a couple days. I like BarBri despite the price gouging. I just felt more comfortable with the BarBri materials. Call it trust, whatever. I passed. That's all that's important.

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alphadog15 (Jul 12, 2018 - 8:03 am)

I can’t really compare with Barbri as the other two times I took it I was unemployed and broke, so had to use a friend’s hand me down barbri books and hope that the law was still current. I had to figure out the scheduling and pacing by myself, which was a monster feat, so in that way Themis really helps by giving me set tasks per day. I took Micromesh for my first bar exam simply because it was the cheapest one out there, and although I passed I found most of their review material completely useless,

Nycatt how are you progressing? Hope all is going ok with you. I am a huge World Cup fanatic and have been glued to the TV for the last few weeks, which has set me back in my studies somewhat. I am hoping to do some catch up this weekend now that my team has crashed out of the WC.

I’m sure you know these already, but Just remember a few things (what I remind myself):

1. FL tests on fewer subjects, and is objectively easier than NY and CA
2. Unlike NY, FL averages the scores, so you can do great on one part and terrible on another and still pass
3. If you passed one portion but failed another, you only have to retake the portion you failed

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nycatt (Jul 15, 2018 - 11:18 am)

I am doing ok. King of took Friday for a loss, but it is getting down to the end of the stretch. I am spending a lot of time outlining on my own (where I review and condense outlines until they are about 5 pages each) and at about 66% for Themis. I am going to do 1% a day of MBE and essays (no practice tests) and spend half the day reviewing my 5 page outlines.

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isthisit (Jul 12, 2018 - 9:02 am)

Never took Themis but my secret sauce for passing the bar (NY/NJ) was:

1. 100-200 MBE multiple choice questions + explanations a day
2. Complete and review 2-4 essays a day.
3. Review the NY LeanSheet and 2 MBE topic outlines a day.

I get you don't have the time for all this. It's just an FYI. I thought the BarBri videos were a complete waste of time and I didn't feel like I learned anything after watching it for most of the day. Practice questions and tests were key IMHO.

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dandydan (Jul 12, 2018 - 2:54 pm)

Agree partially.

Barbri waste for MBE but good for essay writing.

I used Kaplan books to study for MBE, did approximately 50 questions a day.

For the essays or multiple choice, good to have a technique that works and stick to the technique. That is an overlooked but very important part of bar prep.

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wolfman (Jul 12, 2018 - 8:37 pm)

I passed the UBE in New York on the first try years after LS (meaning I got a score over 266; UBE isn't really a pass/fail exam) by doing nothing except the Kaplan MBE questions in an old "red" book I bought on Craigslist for $150. I should say that I have some underlying knowledge of civil lit and basic crim procedure from working as a paralegal, so perhaps that helped, but I imagine that would help a practicing lawyer even more; I also used the law I learned via MBE questions to answer essays.

I'm a bit of a weirdo (hate the type of thinking involved in IRAC, do very well on multiple choice questions, have a good memory but find standard "legal reasoning" deadly boring, and probably should have avoided law school althogether) so what worked for me may not work for you; but if you are a bit similar you might consider just ditching the essays and going balls-to-the-wall on practicing MBE questions.

EDIT: since you are taking the bar with local law stuff (not UBE), you may want to modify my approach, even if it appeals to you maybe practice state multiple choice questions if they are available.

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