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Bar Exam Attack Outlines—A Tool For Last Minute Review

In this post we tell you what bar exam attack outlines are, whether you need them, and how to make them. We also have options to purchase if you are looking to purchase attack outlines or “one-sheets.”

Bar Exam Attack Outlines—A Tool For Last Minute Review

What is a bar exam attack outline?

A bar exam “attack” outline is basically an abbreviated version of a bigger outline. Usually it is an outline summarized in 1-5 pages (rather than the 50 or 100 pages you may receive from your bar review company).

How do I use bar exam attack outlines?

Most students use them as a last minute review.

What you do not want to do is make a bar exam attack outline before reviewing your “longer” outline. You do not want to focus on a 3-page Real Property outline, for example, for the duration of your bar prep. It is much better to make sure you understand the concepts and topics in a longer outline and then make a bar exam attack outline as a way to review the material in your longer outline closer to the end of bar prep.

Do I need to make bar exam attack outlines?

No! Some students love bar exam attack outlines. They use it to condense material in the final weeks of bar prep to make sure they understand it. It is a way for them to internalize the material and feel like they “own” it.

Others do not want anything “new” to look at and are more than happy to review the outlines they have. We have students fall into both categories and both are successful on the bar exam! So you do not need to make a bar exam attack outline. Or if you decide you want to, you do not need to make one for every subject!

How do I make bar exam attack outlines?

The BEST way to get the most use out a bar exam attack outline – especially for the MBE subjects – is to make your own.

If you make your own, you will feel like you “own” the material. It will make sense on an intuitive level to you and you will get the bigger picture.

The best way to do this for an MBE outline is:

  • Focus on the highly tested topics within each MBE subject and make sure that you focus on these in your outline. In other words, for Torts, you should be focusing on negligence. For Contracts, you should focus on formation and performance, breach, and discharge of contracts.
  • Keep your “attack outline” short – between one and five pages. There is no reason to go over this or it is not an attack outline!
  • Focus on the rules in your attack outline. Leave out examples and historical or policy reasons for laws. Also leave out case names and rule numbers.
  • Organize your outline in a logical way. Color code it if you are a visual learner. Feel free to include charts or flowcharts.
  • Some students find it very helpful to hand write their attack outlines! There is something about handwriting an outline that helps students to feel as though they are truly internalizing the law. We recommend you try this!

For the essay portion of the bar exam, focus on the highly-tested topics and structure your attack outline around them.

Many students find it helpful to go through, say, 10 essays for past topics and bullet point the highly tested issues and laws that they see. You could also condense your commercial course outlines to make your attack outlines. However, unfortunately, many commercial course outlines do not make it clear what the highly-tested issues are.

Looking to purchase bar exam attack outlines?

We have stellar MBE bar exam attack outlines here. We call them MBE One-Sheets and they summarize the MBE law in one 8.5 x 11 sheet, front and back.

You can see an example of the front of the Constitutional Law one-sheet to the left.

Taking the UBE or MEE?

If you are in a Multistate Essay Exam (MEE) or Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) state, you may also want to check out our MEE One-Sheets. We have done the hard work of condensing the highly-tested areas of law for each of the 14 MEE areas in one page, each!

Our one-sheets have received glowing reviews from customers!