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Thanks in advance for reading this and offering any assurances/advice.  

Wrote the barrister already and have been studying for the solicitor exam.  I have a pretty good knowledge base for this exam; ive taken most courses related to it, albeit in second year.  However,  i have to say my anxiety/nerve levels heading into this exam are markedly higher than for the barrister exam.  The materials are incredibly dense, technical, and frankly, very poorly organized.   The business law materials are basically a shit show.  Moreover, i am concerned about timing on this exam.  I had some peace of mind with the barrister exam because i knew there would be gimme questions allowing me to save time i.e. how many days to respond to a SOC etc. 

But with the solicitor materials my issues are: (1) real estate and business law are so dense, and the DTOC is super long with each chapter having so many subheadings in it that i am finding it difficult to locate my materials quickly enough; and (2) that I will have serious issues with timing due to a lack of gimme questions.  

I wonder how other people feel about this exam, i have friends in law school but i find discussing these things with people adds to stress levels so i prefer to avoid this.  But i mean if i have a decent knowledge base for this exam, ive taken real estate, commercial law, corporate law, income tax, estates, and have exceeded in these courses. yet i still find the potential for this exam to be a shitshow.  What about the people who dont have as much experience with these materials. I mean it must be like reading chinese. 

All this to say, i would love to hear to perspectives on this matter as i have laid out above.  Are my worries misplaced? did anyone else feel the same way heading into the exam and felt fine coming out, or alternatively, felt shitty coming out but ended up passing.  I know this post isnt really asking anything to specific but i am sure many here understand the stress, nerves and angst associated with the exam so essentially i am just looking for some assurance, peace of mind or comfort, whatever you want to call it. Note, that i have done several practice questions and read all the materials, i plan to read to the PR again, but any advice is welcome.  

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Posted (edited)

I didn't take Real Estate, Corporation Tax (scrapped because of strike). I don't know a thing about these before and after the Bar exam. (I also forgot a few other subjects)

I didn't try to memorize the materials. I read through it once and familiarized where to find them. I do a few practice exams using the index and charts. I wrote down all the formulas and plug the numbers in. I did the easier questions first and skipped the ones that were too complicated. was able to find about 80% of the answers then I guessed the rest. 

Bar exam is USELESS and doesn't reflect one's knowledge in law. The exam itself is flawed. The one thing good about the Bar exam is the high passing rate.

I passed both and still don't know a thing about Real Estate Law and Corporate Income Tax.

Good luck and don't try to memorize the materials. Train yourself and practice to improve your speed to locate the answer. Aim for 80% sure correct answers. 

You get marks for CORRECT answers only. You have a limited time to answer a number of questions. If you target to get 80% sure correct answer only, you just give yourself more than the average time for 100% of the question. 

I had about 15 mins to 20 mins left after I passed the 80% threshold ( searched answers) I then go through the remaining quickly and made an educated guess for most of them and randomly ticked a few before times up.

That was my own experience only. Others may have better ideas

 

Edited by Luckycharm

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i totally understand that the bar exam is not reflective ones knowledge. but my experience in doing practice questions thus far is that its not simply a matter of locating the answer in the materials.  Questions IMO have the potential to require critical thinking and application of the materials for exampl: A purchased a parcel of land on a concession in township and subsequently in 1981 purchased parcel B. the two lands abutted, and the previous owner of the land did not obtain consent to sell parcel B while owning parcel C.  Which one of the following is a prohibited transaction. this requires you to look up the law relating to consent and the history of the planning act.  i just dont understand how to answer this in a minute 45.  Just worried that every question will be very difficult. 

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3 minutes ago, dothebird said:

i totally understand that the bar exam is not reflective ones knowledge. but my experience in doing practice questions thus far is that its not simply a matter of locating the answer in the materials.  Questions IMO have the potential to require critical thinking and application of the materials for exampl: A purchased a parcel of land on a concession in township and subsequently in 1981 purchased parcel B. the two lands abutted, and the previous owner of the land did not obtain consent to sell parcel B while owning parcel C.  Which one of the following is a prohibited transaction. this requires you to look up the law relating to consent and the history of the planning act.  i just dont understand how to answer this in a minute 45.  Just worried that every question will be very difficult. 

You can skip and come back later. I don't see why you want to attempt a question that will burn your time.

I found that a good number of questions are straight out of bar materials. 

I basically skip anything that require some sort of deeper knowledge on the materials. I was able to get the Corporate Income tax calculation by plugging the number on the formula .

None of the questions are mandatory. You can skip them and get marks from an esier questions.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, dothebird said:

i totally understand that the bar exam is not reflective ones knowledge. but my experience in doing practice questions thus far is that its not simply a matter of locating the answer in the materials.  Questions IMO have the potential to require critical thinking and application of the materials for exampl: A purchased a parcel of land on a concession in township and subsequently in 1981 purchased parcel B. the two lands abutted, and the previous owner of the land did not obtain consent to sell parcel B while owning parcel C.  Which one of the following is a prohibited transaction. this requires you to look up the law relating to consent and the history of the planning act.  i just dont understand how to answer this in a minute 45.  Just worried that every question will be very difficult. 

In my opinion, you only need to know the materials well enough to be able to recognize what subject matter the question is asking you about and to know where to look for the answer. Sure, it helps if you know the answer off the top of your head (and there definitely will be some questions that you should not have to look up), but for the more difficult/obscure questions the key is knowing what subject matter the question is asking about and knowing the layout of the materials well enough to be able to find the answer quickly by using your index and/or the TOC efficiently (I find tabs very useful, but YMMV).

Frankly, you might be overthinking that question and making it out to be more difficult than it is. You might consider reading through the Planning Act section of the materials again. If you've read Chapter 50 and have a basic understanding of subdivision control/s. 50 of the Planning Act, the answer to that question is actually relatively straightforward (unless the answer choices are designed to fuck with you) and doesn't require much critical thinking.

In general, if you're struggling with questions like that, you should probably take that as in indication that you're either overthinking the question and/or that you don't know that particular material/section well enough, and you should review that material again to ensure that you at least understand the material (even if you don't memorize it).

Aside from that, it sounds like you need to focus on and develop a time management strategy that works for you. I really have to force myself to move on and take an educated guess if something is taking me too long to answer. I also have to remind myself not to overthink questions (I found that there were some questions where the question was worded ambiguously and/or the answer choices appeared to be designed to make you second guess your knowledge. Don't second guess yourself; you have to have confidence in your answer).

And above all, try not to let the stress get to you (go for a walk/get some exercise or spend time with friends and family or doing things you enjoy). We're all in this together.

Good luck.

Edited by Rearden

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, dothebird said:

What about the people who dont have as much experience with these materials. I mean it must be like reading chinese. 

When I wrote the barrister, I thought it would be a breeze because I had a strong knowledge of all those subjects. I, too, was worried about writing the solicitor having taken no relevant courses. 

I was fine.

In fact, I was surprised to find the solicitor exam far easier because my overconfidence on the barrister probably led me to hang around too long on questions I felt I should have known the answer to and if I spent long enough on it, I'd get it right. That was a dumb approach because, thanks to my pride, I found myself short on time.

As posters have said above, it's a time-limited page-flipping exercise. Read and understand the question in 30 seconds. Read and understand the answers in 20. Flip to where you think the answer is in 15. take 15-30 seconds to find the answer, knowing you still need 10 to fill in the thing and double check you filled in the right bubble. Out of time? Move on.  "Wait but if I keep at it I'll get the answer with certainty" you'll say. MOVE ON. The more you adhere to a rigid schedule, the more answers you at least get to invest some time in. It's better to make an educated guess on every question than to be filling in 30 bubbles with C at the end hoping some of em are indeed Cs. 

That's all there is to it. I didn't know or understand the planning act before, and I sure as shit don't understand it now. The key isn't to develop some incredibly fast critical thinking skills between now and the exam allowing you to get a perfect score. The key is to manage your stress and practice sticking to the plan above. Promise yourself you'll move on when you realize you can't find an answer and focus instead on getting all the prof responsibility gimmes correct. 

On that note, don't wait until exam day: devise a system that will allow you to remember which questions you've skipped and which questions you could maybe return to and confirm. I used a system where I put an asterisk in the top left to denote a return question, and a big X to denote I knew 100% I was right. Not the best plan; those look pretty similar. Use your sticky tabs or whatever maybe. Good luck!

Edited by FineCanadianFXs
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2 hours ago, dothebird said:

Thanks in advance for reading this and offering any assurances/advice.  

Wrote the barrister already and have been studying for the solicitor exam.  I have a pretty good knowledge base for this exam; ive taken most courses related to it, albeit in second year.  However,  i have to say my anxiety/nerve levels heading into this exam are markedly higher than for the barrister exam.  The materials are incredibly dense, technical, and frankly, very poorly organized.   The business law materials are basically a shit show.  Moreover, i am concerned about timing on this exam.  I had some peace of mind with the barrister exam because i knew there would be gimme questions allowing me to save time i.e. how many days to respond to a SOC etc. 

But with the solicitor materials my issues are: (1) real estate and business law are so dense, and the DTOC is super long with each chapter having so many subheadings in it that i am finding it difficult to locate my materials quickly enough; and (2) that I will have serious issues with timing due to a lack of gimme questions.  

I wonder how other people feel about this exam, i have friends in law school but i find discussing these things with people adds to stress levels so i prefer to avoid this.  But i mean if i have a decent knowledge base for this exam, ive taken real estate, commercial law, corporate law, income tax, estates, and have exceeded in these courses. yet i still find the potential for this exam to be a shitshow.  What about the people who dont have as much experience with these materials. I mean it must be like reading chinese. 

All this to say, i would love to hear to perspectives on this matter as i have laid out above.  Are my worries misplaced? did anyone else feel the same way heading into the exam and felt fine coming out, or alternatively, felt shitty coming out but ended up passing.  I know this post isnt really asking anything to specific but i am sure many here understand the stress, nerves and angst associated with the exam so essentially i am just looking for some assurance, peace of mind or comfort, whatever you want to call it. Note, that i have done several practice questions and read all the materials, i plan to read to the PR again, but any advice is welcome.  

I felt shitty going into the solicitor and felt shitty coming out.  I was always 20ish questions behind the recommended pace.  During the first half I even had to get up and use the washroom which put me even more behind. - I ended up passing regardless

This is not to suggest the exam is easy or that everyone passes. I know a lot of people that failed. I have read that the pass rate is inaccurate anyway, because it does not take into account the # of re-writes a person did to pass. 

Nonetheless, what really saved me time was I read Professional Responsibility (and the Bylaws) 3 times before the Solicitor. A lot of PR came up in the Real Estate section and being able to answer those questions without having to search for the answers really helped. I also found that for the Solicitor I used my index less and Table of Contents more. 

My strategy was to answer questions normally up until there were 30 minutes left in the exam. At that point I did a cold run-through of all the questions I had remaining and made educated guesses for all. After I did that, with my remaining time I looked up and corrected/confirmed the answers to questions I knew I could quickly find in the materials. 

Goodluck!

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Thanks for all the replies they are helpful. @Rearden granted yes my example wasnt the greatest, but i find there are questions which require you to look in two different places to find the answer. that was really what i was getting at. @FineCanadianFXs ill definitely take this approach into consideration i find myself doing that pretty often and noticed it on the barrister. 

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I haven’t taken Solicitor yet (in the same boat as you and reading through this dense crap), but I found Barrister to be fairly straight-forward. 

My strategy has always been to eliminate as many obviously wrong answers as possible. In your example, you’d know the rules around abutting lands and severance and so anything that doesn’t refer to those things is clearly not the right answer. After that, you use the remaining answers as a launch point to look up the info in your index. 

I feel like that worked for me. I mean, I don’t know yet since I don’t have the results, but I didn’t feel it went badly. 

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Posted (edited)

I haven't even finished reading real estate or business law..... Jesus take the wheel 

Edited by Motions

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