Bar Exam Preparation
KU Law's Free Bar Prep Program
KU Law offers students a free, post-graduation bar preparation course and a Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination preparation course.
Provided in partnership with Themis Bar Review, the program is designed to enhance students’ ability to succeed in law school and on the bar examination. The law school also offers a series of programs prior to graduation, again at no cost to students.
The KU Law Free Bar Prep Program guarantees every KU Law student has access to the resources they need to succeed on the bar exam, without the added financial pressure associated with a bar exam review course.
KU Law's Free Bar Prep Program is designed to give students the information and resources they need to succeed on the bar exam, starting during their first year of law school. The program includes several courses and components.
Post-Graduation Themis Bar Review Course
The KU Law curriculum empowers students to pass the bar exam and excel as professionals after they have completed that hurdle. The Themis Bar Review Course supplements this principal educational experience.
Every law student receives the post-graduation Themis Bar Review Course. The Bar Review Course includes instruction over the summer – or January and February for December graduates – on the substance and skills needed to succeed on the bar exam. Printed materials, online resources, personalized feedback, guidance, practice questions, exams and more are available to students. The Bar Review Course is outlined in great detail at themisbar.com.
Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam (MPRE) Preparation Course
KU Law’s Professional Responsibility course forms the core preparation for the MPRE. The Themis MPRE materials supplement the school’s Professional Responsibility class with online access to lectures with assessment questions, interactive handouts and practice MPRE questions with answers. The program also provides a hard copy of study materials and practice problems.
Extended Bar Exam Preparation Course for J.D. Credit
KU Law offers an elective course, for J.D. credit, in spring semesters to all 3Ls. It is offered to 2Ls who will not be in residence during the following spring term (i.e., December graduates, 6th Semester in D.C. students, visiting students, etc.).
The class is taught by a KU Law instructor, using Themis materials. The course is designed to ensure students know what to expect from both the post-graduation Themis bar review course and the bar exam itself.
The course covers three subtopics which are heavily tested on the Multistate Bar Exam (MBE) and the Multistate Essay Exam (MEE): Hearsay, Negligence, and Jurisdiction (personal and subject matter). It will include a series of MEE and Multistate Performance Test (MPT) skills workshops. It will also include analysis of a sampling of MBE questions, with instruction on how to analyze both correct and incorrect answers for maximum learning.
The course is intended to develop and strengthen the analysis and writing skills required for the bar exam, by having students participate in a series of essay-writing exercises and then receive feedback from both the instructor and Themis personnel. The course exists to supplement, not replace, the post-graduation bar review course.
Bar Examination Instructor
The instructor for the Extended Bar Exam Preparation Course holds office hours in Green Hall and is accessible by email during the bar preparation periods of May-July and January-February. The instructor is available to assist students, even if they did not take the Extended Bar Exam Preparation Course.
First-Year Diagnostic Exam
Without preparation, students may not know if they are on track for bar-examination success until after graduation, when they begin their bar-examination studies.
This program gives students early, formative feedback to students on their understanding of 1L course materials tested on the bar exam. Students will take the not-for-credit, diagnostic exam at the end of the spring semester during their 1L year.
Themis First-Year and Upper-Level Law School Essentials Materials
Class lectures, clinical and skills training, professor-assigned readings, and legal writing instruction constitute the essence of a legal education. We know, however, that many students spend substantial sums on supplemental resources to augment these experiences – including study guides, practice questions, and the like.
KU Law has long provided these supplemental resources to students through the Wheat Law Library and online via the school’s CALI subscription. Under "Bar Prep Program," students have access to Themis’ online and hardcopy supplemental resources as well.
Frequently Asked Questions: Bar Prep Program
The law school pays for all program expenses. Students bear no additional cost. Because KU Law automatically enrolls all students in the Themis program, it negotiated a substantial discount on the per-student price.
Yes. The full scope of the program is available to December graduates at no cost. Themis offers a January/February post-graduation bar exam prep course. Prospective December graduates may also enroll in the Extended Bar Exam Preparation Course (LAW 943) during the spring semester of their 2L year.
Yes. LL.M. and S.J.D. students may elect to participate.
They will not be automatically enrolled, but must opt-in by notifying the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs by September 15 of their final year in school. These students must present the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs with a statement attesting that the student has not yet sat for an American bar examination and that the student intends to sit for an American bar examination within a 12-month period. The student must also demonstrate eligibility to sit for an American bar examination.
The law school automatically enrolls entering 1L students and transfer J.D. students in the program.
Themis Bar Prep prepares students to take the Kansas and Missouri bar exams, which is where the supermajority of KU Law graduates sit for the bar. Additionally, Themis offers bar examination prep in 43 states plus Washington, D.C.
Yes. Even if you enroll in a different post-graduation bar prep course, you may participate in all pre-graduation programming during law school. Students who wish to participate in a competing bar prep program after graduation must notify the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs by September 15 of their final year in school. KU Law cannot financially support graduates using a competing post-graduation vendor in jurisdictions covered by Themis.
The law school’s research shows that in most years 100% of graduates will sit for a bar exam in a state covered by Themis. If you have a legitimate need to sit in a jurisdiction not covered by the Themis plan, please inform the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs as soon as possible.
While KU Law cannot guarantee financial assistance for such graduates, the Associate Dean will evaluate each such student’s request, taking into consideration the cost to the student and whether a third party is available to assist with funding. The Associate Dean may ask students for documentation or attestations to support such a request.
Yes. Themis uses an online platform in order to track students’ performance and provide relevant feedback. As a result, graduates may access the full scope of its resources from any location.
KU Law also hosts regularly scheduled group lecture viewings in Green Hall in the summers.
KU Law expects all its graduates to sit for the bar exam immediately after graduating from law school. It is at this point that most students are best positioned to succeed.
Students with a hardship or other good cause to delay taking a bar exam may seek to delay their use of the Themis Bar Review program for up to one year. These students must inform the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs by September 15 of their final year in school. Other requests to delay the Themis course may be allowed on a case-by-case basis.
KU Law expects all its graduates to sit for the bar exam. Our research shows that graduates seeking employment in J.D.-Advantage and other professional jobs benefit from having sat for and passed the bar exam.
Nevertheless, students may unenroll from the program completely by informing the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs by September 15 of their final year in school.
KU Law administers a 1L diagnostic exam at the end of the fall and spring semesters. Students take the exam online.
The Extended Bar Exam Preparation course is an elective course that is not part of KU Law’s required course list.
Students taking the Extended Bar Exam Preparation course will count the class toward the 90 hours needed to obtain the J.D.
Yes. The 3L course is designed to supplement, and not replace, the post-graduation bar review course.
The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.