MBEs are tough – you would have to look pretty hard to find someone to disagree with you on that one. However, you CAN make those MBEs easier. Here’s how – make flash cards of every missed MBE. Okay, I know what you might be thinking – Why should you make flash cards when you already go through and read the explanations for the questions you miss and then make notes, isn’t that enough?
Actually that method is not very effective. Here’s why, you never have the ability to store in one place all of the points of law and fact patterns that are causing you trouble. As a result, you never provide yourself the opportunity to continually review those specific trouble areas so that you can fix them.
Also, by only reading through the explanations you are studying in a very passive manner. Passive studying, while useful and better than not studying at all, will not likely work when it comes to making corrections. Think about it this way: if you are having trouble doing something, the way to do it correctly is to practice doing it until you get it right. If you simply read through explanations those explanations will likely leave you pretty quickly – you probably will not remember it the next time you see that same problem or issue.
By making flash cards you will create your own study tool that will be specifically designed (by you) to address your own problems. In addition, you are actively involved in your studying. By creating a flash card that fully explains the reason why you missed the MBE question, you will now have a tool that you can utilize to permanently fix that problem. This will only work if you actually take the time to think hard about the question – ask yourself why you missed it. Was it because you didn’t understand what a taking by force (in a robbery question) could factually include?
Whatever the reason is, write it down, make the correction on a flash card and then go back and “flash” the cards you have made. Re-read your flash cards regularly and you will be on your way to getting higher scores on those MBEs.
Remember that MBEs (the ones written by the National Conference of Bar Examiners) can often turn on little details. By practicing these questions and studying the explanations in an active way you will improve your score. It takes a great deal of work and real dedication to make a significant impact in your MBE scores. But, it is do-able. You simply have to work at it regularly and actively – passive reading of explanations will never cure a low MBE score.
For a free guide to making flash cards for the MBEs, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org and ask for the free “How to Make MBE Flashcards” Handout. We will be happy to email it you.
Happy flash card making – do it – it really works!
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