Bar Exam Sample Essay Answers: How do you really know if you are writing a passing answer

by Dustin on

In this bar exam video, I go over the best way to compare your bar essays to ensure you are actually writing passing answers.

Hey everyone! Dustin here from and author of the #1 Amazon bestseller The 7 Steps To Bar Exam Success. And I want to share with you a big turning point that I had in my bar exam prep. I said BarBri, as many of you know during my bar exam. At one point during BarBri’s prep they showed us an actual exam answer that had got a 65, a grade of 65 on it and passed the bar exam. They didn’t provide it to us but they showed it to us in one of the lectures and whatnot.

I remember looking at this essay and it totally flipped my perspective of how essays should be written on the bar exam. Up to that point I thought it had to be this perfect, these well-worded rules, this beautiful structure, kind of like you see on the bar exam model answers or even the BarBri model answers, but when I saw this 65 answer, something that really struck out to me was there was only one rule statement used in the entire answer, only one rule statement in the whole thing. It had a great analysis but no use of rules, really, and still ended up passing the bar exam.

And this shifted my perspective in two ways. One is I don’t have to write this perfect essay to pass the bar exam. It’s not all this hoopla that I thought it was. It’s actually much simpler than I thought it was; still complicated but much simpler than what I thought it was.

And then also is that rules, although important, are not the most important thing for the bar exam. I realized issue spotting and ability to write, those are really, really important; not so much getting all the rules and knowing all the rules and writing all the rules up.

So I share that with you today is that when you’re preparing for your bar exam is A – rules are important but focus more on the issue spotting and actually knowing how to write the essay, as opposed to just memorizing all those rules, and then B is if you can get your hands on a few sample answers that are actual graded answers, that’s going to be big time in your bar exam prep.

For those of you comparing the model answers to the BarBri book, you’re raising the bar super high and you can create a lot of stress and it can be unrealistic to try to reach for those, to try and write something like that for all of your essays. Get your hands on actual graded essays and I think that’s going to turn the switch for you too so you kind of see what is really required to pass versus not.

A source I recommend for getting actual graded essays, especially if you’re in California, is They provide thousands of actual graded answers from 2000 all the way up to present day for each of the exam questions. It’s really, really a great resource that they have there and I highly recommend you check it out.

You can head on over to and that is an affiliate link and that will take you right to that page and you can go ahead and sign up there. Also if you email me, or head on over to, I’ll send you a coupon code so you can save $15 when signing up for the bar essay subscription. Go ahead and do that today.

Head on over to, get your $15 off coupon code and go out there and start comparing your essays to actual essays to give you a better range and better realistic view on where you’re out and how you can go out there and pass your bar exam. Until next time. I’ll see you in the next video. And always remember that your name appears on the pass list.        

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