Can Outlining Help You Pass the Bar Exam?

Part of mastering the material on the bar exam is organizing your notes.

Like law school, outlining notes is important for understanding major concepts and how they fit together.

So can outlining help you in studying for the bar exam? Yes, but like any bar exam issue, it's not that simple.

Don't overdo it.

The most important thing to note about outlining is that you shouldn’t be creating encyclopedic outlines. You just don't have the time.

Instead, make your outlines manageable - stick to the key concepts, which are where you'll earn the points you need to pass.

Your outline should evolve into attack sheets.

As exam day approaches, whittle lengthy outlines down to one or two pages per subject. The ultimate goal is to use these whittled-down outlines as attack sheets: one or two-page summaries of each subject.

You'll rely on these attack sheets when you dig into memorization in the last few weeks.

Is this helping you?

As is the case for anything related to studying for the bar exam, if you don’t find outlining helpful, don’t do it! At least not for every subject.

Consider making outlines for the MBE subjects only. After all, the MBE subjects can account for 50% (or more) of the material you see across the entire bar exam, depending on the state. Which is why you should always place the most emphasis on MBE subjects.


MBE and MEE Essay Flashcards that help you learn and memorize key bar exam concepts, effectively and affordably.

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