How Navi Passed the New York Bar Exam with a Score of 295 on Her First Try

Here’s someone who dedicated herself to passing the New York Bar Exam on her first attempt. She was able to achieve—in her words—freedom.

"A true capture of how freedom looks post bar"
Her caption for the trip celebrating passing the bar: “A true capture of how freedom looks post bar”

One and done.

On top of that, she only completed 30% of Themis and got a score of 295, well above the cutoff to practice in any UBE jurisdiction.

You’ll notice that many of the lessons she shares here can be linked back to what I share with you in my coaching emails and other study materials.

Key lessons and her full story below.

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Remote/Online Bar Exam Logistics and Strategies

You’re probably wondering how this whole remote bar exam thing is going to work.

  • Do I get scratch paper?
  • Can I use a desktop?
  • How many monitors can I use for ExamSoft/SofTest/Examplify (or whatever exam software)?
  • Do I need to be online?
  • Can I print?
  • Are they going to proctor me through a camera?
  • Can I take bathroom breaks?
  • What about cheating?
  • What about the MBE? How many questions? Is it all on a screen?
  • What if I’m handwriting?

Uh, yeah, I’m sure you have a lot of questions.

Right now, all the states are having a brawl and doing whatever they feel is necessary to conduct their bar exams.

Many states are shifting from in-person paper testing to an almost entirely digital exam, at least for the 2020 Fall bar exam. This is a significant change, and something worth discussing in terms of preparation and test-taking strategies.

This post will address two things:

  1. Testing mechanics for taking a remote bar exam. See below for information on all states, but the initial focus here is on California
  2. Strategies for preparing for and taking a test entirely on screen, assuming your state is administering the exam online and doesn’t allow paper for at least some portion

Btw I’m not going to call this an “online bar exam” because it’s done almost entirely OFFline. Only the check-ins sessions require an Internet connection.

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Easiest Bar Exam: Which State Bar Should You Take If You Just Want to Pass with the Best Chance?

All right, so you just want to pass the easiest bar exam in the easiest state and get it over with.

No honor, no warrior spirit, or any of that shit—just gimme the bar card! This is especially true if you plan to practice in a state that accepts UBE scores (or MBE scores in some non-UBE states). You may be able to transfer your UBE score from an “easier” state.

You also want to avoid the hardest bar exams, naturally. Why waste a good six months torturing yourself again just because you missed a few points?

No judgment from me. You’re here to move on with your life and forget I ever existed. That’s cool.

So what are we going to look at to figure out the easiest bar exams to pass?

  • Recent pass rates by state
  • Minimum passing UBE scores
  • Number of applicants by state
  • Score portability and transferability
  • The verdict – a shortlist of three states to consider, and states to avoid
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How Joe passed the Uniform Bar Exam (Kansas UBE) by racking up more issues on essays

Joe started preparing for the Uniform Bar Exam (in Kansas) with just seven weeks to go.

The learning process proved to be tougher than he’d imagined. The clock was ticking toward the inevitable, and like many others, he didn’t start out with the confidence to tackle the beast.

“I just wasn’t ready for it. I did not take very many bar prep classes in law school. So I knew it was gonna be tough. Once I looked at the material, I thought, ‘Man, I am screwed.’ There’s no way I’m gonna pull this together in seven weeks.”

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5 Things I Did Differently the Second Time to Pass the Bar as a Repeater

The thing about reality is that your brain doesn’t notice it until it’s wrapped tightly around your brain like a sheet of aluminum foil, crinkling and making a polygonal mess.

0 minutes remaining. I slapped in my applicant ID, my entry ticket to three seconds of pristine agony. Then two, three more times. I made sure I was reading correctly. For once, I wasn’t delusional.

I could feel the heavy air of TRUTH closing in around me. Light fading quickly. But I wanted to believe. No, the silvery foil pushed its way around the noodles of my brain, turning into TV static. It was wrapped around the potato, and my brain realized it then.

In some other universe, I passed. But in this one, I failed. I failed. I failed.

2013 was the worst year of my life. My brain convinced me to break up with my friend of ten years and girlfriend of three. My dad screamed at our family on Christmas morning and night. I failed the July bar and haven’t since posted a status on Facebook out of supreme shame. 16 months and counting since becoming Facebook celibate. Facelibate.

I lied down on my bed. Then I got up.

The experiment was a failure. It was time to change the variables. This was how I would prove I was not insane. Then 2014 became the best year of my life.

Having experienced both outcomes of the California Bar Exam, I’ve distilled the following insights that were instrumental to passing the bar. These are things I did the second time but not the first time. Do you like clickbait? You won’t believe #4!

Any fool can learn from experience. I prefer to learn from other people’s experiences.

Make this the last time you have to walk the line between heaven and hell with these 5 things I did differently the second time to pass the bar exam.

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