EARLY BAR PREP
Why do this now?
And what, exactly, are we doing?
Why bar essays are different
PurposeThereisa right answer (but you can get points even with the wrong conclusion).More specific, concrete and concise than the typical law school exam.On UBE, multiple subjects in one essay.
Pass the Bar! by Michael Hunter-Schwartz
What do bar graders want to see you do?
Analyzethe facts of thequestion.Spot the issue – find the legal problem.Material v. immaterial facts.Applyrelevant legal principles to thefacts provided.Organize your answer and make it easy to read.http://libguides.law.ucla.edu/content.php?pid=99088&sid=772503
Answering a bar essay question
Read the call of the questionRead the question – circling important itemsRe-read the callOutline your answerWrite your answerRe-read the call. Did you answer it?
Content of a bar essay
Use the same legal analysis methods you learned in law schoolDeterminative facts should take center stageThe graders know the facts. They don’t need a recitation.Grammar, complete sentences and paragraphs matterBe precise andconciseUse headingsIf given multiple prompts, label your answers and answer in the order asked.Acknowledge counterarguments where appropriate.Follow the same process foreach answer. Develop a template.
Content of a bar essay
CRACConclusion – Be explicit. Begin with, “Yes, …” or No, …”Rule – State the applicable rule. Give the appropriate statute if you know it. “As a general rule…” or “Under the Texas ______ code, …”Analysis – Apply rules to relevant fact. “Here, …” or “In this case, …” or “Because.”.Conclusion – Repeat your explicit conclusion. “In sum, …” or “Therefore…”.CIRACYou’ll often be encouraged to include an issue statement. Some students find that it helps them focus their answer. Make sure you use facts from the question.Bad: The issue is whether a life estate was created.Good: The issue is whether the phrase “until she dies” created a life estate for Donna.
What to NOT put in your answer
Avoid lengthy discussions of lawNo brain dumpsTell the graders what they want to hearThey spend an average of two minutes (TX) to three-five minutes (CA) reading your answer.Do not assume any facts (unless the call directs you to do so).Citations
To focus on today:
Structure: labelled subparts; clear, easy to read organizationCRAC(CIRAC) format.Theessay and any subparts end with an express conclusion.
You have 35 minutes to write your answer.Please identify each sentence with a parenthetical notation at the end as what purpose the sentence is serving (C, I, R, A).You may have some combo sentences