Bar Exam Format. The Georgia Bar Exam is a 2-day exam that is administered in Atlanta on the last Tuesday and Wednesday in February and July. Day 1 consists of four minute essay questions and two minute Multistate Performance Test (MPT) questions. The Georgia bar exam is a two-day exam. Some parts are written by the National Conference of Bar Examiners ; the essay questions are written and graded by members of the Georgia Board of Bar Examiners and their attorney assistants. Georgia does not accept MBE scores from a bar exam taken in another jurisdiction. Admission on Motion Georgia does allow for admission on motion for applicants who have been practicing law for at least 5 of the past 7 years. The Georgia outline book contains outlines for all non-Multistate Bar Exam (MBE) subjects testable on the essay portion of the Georgia Bar Exam. It also contains state-specific essay testing supplements for the MBE subjects. Plus the six MBE subjects. Grading of the Georgia Bar Exam: Your essays and your MPT are graded, and their scores combined. Your combined essay/MPT score is then scaled, on the same scaling as the MBE (0 to ). The scaled essay/MPT score is then combined with your scaled MBE score.
February 27 and 28, Summer July 24 and 25, Filing Deadlines and Fees You must apply about eight months before the exam. Late applications are accepted with added late fees, if they are received by published, late filing deadlines. Filing deadlines and fees are subject to change.
Contact the Georgia Bar Examiners to learn the rules in effect at the time of your application. The multistate examination, which is a multiple choice test consisting of questions, has gained acceptability in virtually all legal circles as a method of testing an applicant's ability to reason and to analyze legal problems.
However, the multistate examination is, by its nature, reflective only of an answer, and obviously does not demonstrate the mental processes by which the applicant reached the answer. The essay portion of the Examination is designed to test the ability of the applicant to reason and to express himself or herself in writing--like a lawyer. More specifically, the essay examination is designed to test the applicant's ability to recognize and understand the issues suggested by a legal problem, to analyze the problem and apply the principles of law to the issues raised, and to discuss each reasonable approach before reaching a plausible conclusion or answer to the legal problem.
The following is a discussion which may be of assistance to an applicant in preparing for the essay portion of the Georgia Bar Examination. The legal problems are put to the applicant in four questions of equal value, designed to cover one major area of law, e. The applicant will have 45 minutes to answer each of the four questions. The applicant should understand that the questions have been carefully prepared by the Examiners to avoid peripheral issues.
Questions are never designed to present subtle issues or to be deceptive. In each question there will be one or more major issues.
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By way of example, on a recent examination the contracts questions involved the major issues of the statute of frauds and of part performance. It is essential that all such issues be recognized in order that the applicant handle the question properly. If the applicant misses these issues, he or she is likely to go astray on the entire question, expounding principles of law which may be correct but which are not relevant to the problem. A good use of the facts i.
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Facts should only be repeated in the answer if they are essential to the discussion of legal principles. However, any assumptions made by the applicant in answering the question should be clearly stated. After recognizing the issues, the applicant must then apply the various legal principles which are relevant to the issues.
The manner in which the applicant applies these legal principles may be handled differently by different applicants, reaching different results. However, if the applicant has gone about the application of legal principles in a logical and well organized manner, then the applicant should pass the question irrespective of what conclusions are reached.
Applicants are well aware that many of the cases before the Supreme Court of the United States are decided on a basis; therefore, four distinguished jurists did not have the "right answer. In dealing both with the issues and with the principles of law, the applicant should be mindful of the priority which is assigned to each. For example, if the main principle of law related to a particular issue is thrown in at the end of a list of three or four other viable but less pertinent points, it suggests a lack of clear legal analysis.
One of the problems in the practice of law is the inability of a lawyer to recognize a number of viable points related to a problem and to distinguish those points which are important from those which are insignificant.
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The applicant should spend more time in organizing and outlining the answer than in writing the answer. This procedure will help in analyzing the question more carefully and will allow a response to the question which is clear and concise. The applicant has ample time to consider the problem and to write a complete answer since 45 minutes are allowed for each question.
Many low grades are due to misreading or misinterpreting the facts.
Applicants can avoid this problem by carefully reading the question and digesting the facts before beginning to write an answer. Essential to the presentation of a clear and concise answer is the proper use of the English language, including punctuation and paragraphing.
The inability to express oneself effectively in writing is a serious handicap for a lawyer. Such inability presents a serious difficulty to a lawyer in dealing with legal matters and with presentations in court. Both from a procedural and a substantive standpoint, the applicant should avoid references to personal experiences or philosophies. One should avoid discussions beginning with "I feel Likewise, both slang and other "street language" should be avoided.
The examination is a serious exercise for all concerned. Many times the question will end with a numbered set of issues to be addressed the "Call of the Question". To the extent possible the applicant should address these issues in the order they are presented; but, in any case, always number the responses so that they correspond to the numbered issues. Do not force the examiner to guess which part of the question is being answered.
Also, the applicant should avoid using abbreviations to the extent possible, especially those utilized in taking law school notes i. D for defendant, P for plaintiff, etc.
Do not assume that the examiner will understand abbreviations or other shorthand notations.
If an applicant is interested in particular suggestions to prepare for the essay portion of the examination, the following steps might be considered: Review the Rules Governing Admission to the Practice of Law which have been provided to each applicant by the Office of Bar Admissions and which set forth very precisely the areas of law upon which the examination will be founded.
The applicant should be concerned if he or she has no knowledge of any one of these areas, and should take whatever actions are necessary to be familiar with all areas which may be tested.
Examine past bar examinations to get a feel for the style of the questions. The applicant may attempt to write his or her own answers to these past questions. The Office of Bar Admissions has published answers to some recent bar exam questions. These answers, as well as copies of past exam questions, can be requested by calling the State Law Library It should be noted that nothing in the way of specific preparation for the examination will substitute for a clear understanding of the legal principles which should have been learned in the individual courses in law school.
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