Even though you can’t bring your mates into the exam room with you, preparing for the MCA Oral Exam really is a team effort. Whether or not you attend college/a prep course, working in a small group is the best way to pass your orals. If the rest of the group are smarter than you, then that’s even better.
Revising for your orals, especially if you haven’t sat one before, can be very intimidating experience. There are a lot of myths (something for a future post, perhaps) and the format of the exam itself almost seems designed to scare the wits out of even the strongest candidate. Even though it’s really not that bad, you need a band of brothers and/or sisters around you who understand what you’re going through and can pick you up on the bad days when it all just seems too much.
Looking over your shoulder
You have a huge amount to learn in the run up to your exam but it’s often difficult just to know what to revise and how deep to go on a certain subject. It’s also very easy to misinterpret when translating a convention from legalese into English. Having a group around you means that you’ve got people who’re looking over your shoulder to make sure you aren’t going astray or missing an important area out entirely.
50% confidence & 50% competence
You absolutely must practice answering questions out loud. It’s all very well to have reams of beautifully highlighted notes but if you’re not able to synthesis that information into a coherent sentence on the day, it’s all over. That’s why the most important reason to work in a group is that you’ll have people to practice speaking to; people who will take great pleasure in asking you awkward questions and tearing your answer to pieces if it isn’t solid. Sounds unpleasant but what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, and it’ll make your answer stronger too.
In the same vein, bringing a small group along to some orals prep sessions with us can be even better than coming by yourself, whether it’s in person or remotely using our clever online whiteboard. We find that listening to, and critiquing, other people’s answers is really helpful and it also makes sure that the whole group is singing off the same song sheet. Finally, it gets a lot cheaper per person, so that’s a bonus.
If you want some more info about our orals prep services click here.