California Bar Examination

A guide to give students resources to prepare for the California State Bar Examination. Included in this guide are materials on admission, essays, performance tests, MBE (multi-state exam), and MPRE (multi-state professional responsibilities exam), etc.

General Information

Each three-hour sessions consists of three essay questions.  These questions assess an applicant's ability to analyze the facts in the question, to distinguish between material/immaterial facts, and to discern points of law and facts upon which the question turns.  Applicants need to demonstrate proficiency in understanding the pertinent principles and theories of law, their qualifications and limitations, and their relationships to each other.

Answers should demonstrate an ability to properly apply the law to the given set of facts and to reason in a logical manner.  Applicants need to show an ability to apply legal principles rather than simply recite or remember them.  You need to discuss the reasons that support your conclusion and discuss all points thoroughly.

Unless a question express relies upon California law, it is assumed that applicants should answer the question using principles of general application.

There are 600 possible raw points for this portion of the exam, 100 points for each question.

Subjects tested for this portion of the exam include: Torts, Contracts, Real Property, Constitutional Law, Criminal Law/Procedure, Evidence, Remedies, Civil Procedure, Wills/Trusts, Community Property, Business Associations, and Professional Responsibility.

General Materials on Essay Exams

The materials listed below provide general resources on essay exams.  Unless otherwise indicated materials listed here are located in either the Open Law Reserve Room or Closed Law Reserve Room.

Heafey Law Library Research Team