Mapping Questions for the Bar Exam

The same mapping techniques that your professors used to map out relationships in Torts and Contracts -- and that you may have used on the LSAT --  can also be useful for the Bar Exam.

Here’s how mapping and diagramming can work for the Multistate multiple choice questions:

  • Mapping a Bar Exam Multistate Question – Consider this sample multiple choice question provided by the Multistate examiners (which I slightly modified here):

 Davis decided to kill Adams. Before he got to Adams’ house, he mistook Brooks for Adams, and shot at Brooks. The shot missed Brooks, but wounded Case, nearby but unseen by Davis.

 In a prosecution under a statute that proscribes any attempt to commit murder, the D.A. should show that the intended victim(s) was/were:

(a)   Adams only

(b)   Brooks only

(c)    Case only

(d)   Adams and Brooks

For this question, I would map out by hand the following (here, with slight changes when using the keyboard):

D  ≠  A

→ B

→  C

Clearly, Davis did not attempt to murder Adams, so I would immediately cross out any answers that include Adams (a & d). My possible answers now are Brooks or Case. Looking at the diagram, it would have to be Brooks, at whom Davis fired the shot. So the answer is (b).

For me, mapping is a way to work through the question and actively analyze the information as I’m reading. Some of you may feel comfortable keeping all this in your head, but I like to see it laid out. Plus, if you’re completely stumped, it can help you feel like you’re at least starting to answer the question.

Good luck on the Bar Exam!

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