One of the problems I have with the released answers from the Bar is that they provide only a tiny hint as to what a passing score looks like.
I took Fleming's program when I studied for the Baby Bar and I credit his materials for my passing score. He provided us with about 150 questions from past Baby Bar exams along with passing student answers. Of course, the only reason he had the answers is because the author failed to pass. But as we all know, even if we fail to get the required minimum score, It's usually because did poorly on one or two of the questions. And unless we totally bombed it, we probably got passing scores on the other answers.
Fleming collected answers with passing scores from his students and provided them to future classes as study material. I went through all 150 of those in the weeks before that exam and I know it was a big reason why I passed.
And now it looks like someone else has decided to do the same thing with the General Bar.
I got an e-mail the other day from the guy who runs BarEssays.com. He offered me a free sign-up (otherwise, $75) if I would take a look and help get the word out. I replied that I would check it out and get back to him.
It looks like his concept is pretty simple. He buys, or otherwise obtains, answers from bar takers who failed the exam. He sorts them based on year, month (Feb or July), subject, score range, and whether it was handwritten or typed.
One unique feature is that he provides not just answers with passing scores, but also answers with scores as low as 40, so you can see what the Bar considers an inadequate answer (I wonder if the Property exam by the depressed girl with the ring and the ex-boyfriend is up there?) And he redacts any information that would provide a clue as to who wrote the answer. An outline and checklist for each subject is also available to download.
The cost is $75 for access through the next exam. Whether or not that's a reasonable price depends on your individual situation. At this point, I can't say whether or not I would have paid for access. If I make that determination in the coming months I'll try to post an update. Links to sample material are posted on the home page so you can get an idea of what you get for your money before you decide to commit.
I would probably have mentioned the site even if I hadn't been given free access. But in the interest of full disclosure, I was asked to mention it in on the blog in exchange for access at no charge. But I only agreed to mention it if I thought it was something I would recommend to a friend.
So, here it is, friends. Another of the many weapons with which we can arm ourselves in the quest to slay the dragon that is the California Bar Exam.
If you lose this post, I've posted a link on the right --->