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When Should I Hire a Bar Exam Tutor?

Some students retain a tutor very early on in bar prep, whereas others wait until the last minute. Many students wonder if it is ever “too early” or “too late” to retain a bar exam tutor.  Here, we tell you when you should hire a bar exam tutor. Our recommendation varies based on a variety of factors, but the main question you have to ask is: what I am looking for in a bar exam tutor?

Option 1: Hire a tutor early!

We recommend you hire a tutor early — before your bar exam course even starts — if you are likely to struggle during bar prep. Students who hire a tutor early are those who:

  • completed law school over 5+ years (so the 1L material is not fresh in their minds)
  • have disabilities/need accommodations
  • did not perform well in law school (particularly 1L year)
  • work full time or have other time-consuming obligations during bar prep
  • have failed a bar exam once or more than once

Typically, these students will meet a tutor a month or more before bar prep begins. (We have some students start even earlier — like six months before bar prep begins.)

A tutor will cover substantive law with the student so that the material is fresh in the student’s mind by the time the student’s bar review course begins.

The only potential downsides of starting early is:

  • that you will either burn out if you work too long of hours (so it is important to not overburden yourself!) or
  • that you will forget what you learned (so it is important to incorporate review periods within your bar exam study schedule, which a tutor can help you with)

Many students find that starting bar prep early with a tutor not only makes them more likely to pass the bar exam but also gives them confidence when they begin bar prep.

Option 2: Hire a tutor when bar prep starts or during a bar prep course!  

It is very common for students to hire a tutor when bar prep starts or at some point while they are covering material in their bar prep course.  These students are not necessarily “high risk” bar exam takers but find it helpful to meet with a tutor to:

  • cover tricky areas of law
  • review essay and multiple-choice strategy
  • go over questions the student may have from their course
  • tailor a study plan to the student
  • give the student confidence and ease anxiety

Some students hire a bar exam tutor right when they start bar prep. Others wait until they are a few weeks into their program and realize they need a bar exam tutor. Most students who hire a tutor when bar prep starts or during their bar review course are first-time bar exam takers.

Option 3: Hire a tutor toward the end of bar prep! 

Many students call us during the last couple of weeks before the bar exam, looking to hire a tutor. Oftentimes these students are looking for a tutor to do the following:

  • go over areas of law that still have not clicked (e.g. hearsay exceptions, negligence, etc.)
  • quiz the student on the material
  • go over multiple-choice questions or essay questions with the student
  • give them last-minute tips and tricks to boost their bar exam score

It is never too “late” to hire a tutor. Even meeting with a tutor for one session can make the difference between passing and failing the bar exam. So hiring a tutor toward the end of bar prep is something that is worth considering doing if you think you just need that extra boost to pass the bar exam!

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