Apart from the AI generated customized test papers in Barbri, Kaplan has an edge over all other learning aspects. It offers all the prep materials at a lower price too.
Picking the ideal bar prep course can often be a challenging task. There is massive information to recapitulate with so many classes to choose from.
For most students passing or failing the bar exam depends on how well your chosen prep course prepares you. If you pick the study material that does not go with your learning style, it can result in a lower score and might even be the reason for your failure in the bar exam, resulting in you losing time and money.
We do not want that to happen. So, to help you make a selection, we handpicked two of the best bar prep courses. In this guide, we will do an intensive Kaplan vs Barbri review.
Right from the start, the Bar Association has stipulated rigorous standards. Moreover, the pass percentage in the Bar exams can be particularly intimidating, even for the hardest-working law students.
Both Kaplan and Barbri are two of the most prominent companies that offer comprehensive coursework, live classes, and a medium to keep a tab on your progress. Hence, how to pick one, given the vast range of similarities between the two?
Well, we will give an extra point to Kaplan since it has better course comprehensiveness and more practice questions at a slightly cheaper rate.
Kaplan Bar Review Vs Barbri – Comparison Table
|Base Cost||Listed Price: $2,745 for Live; $2,495 for on-Demand.
Books require a deposit of $275, which is refunded once they are turned back in after the exam. $25 shipping fee.
|Listed Price: $2,995. Includes the cost of materials.
$25 materials shipping fee. Some
students have gotten this fee
|Video Lectures||Over 100 hours||Over 100 hours|
|Refund||There is a moneyback guarantee.||There is no moneyback guarantee.|
|Practice Questions||3500 plus MBE||2000 plus MBE|
|Access||Four Months||8-10 weeks|
Kaplan provides a vast range of personalized courses to suit your individual needs. You can choose from their LLM Bar Review Courses, Complete Bar Review Courses, and various Multistate Bar Exam Courses and Supplements.
The company has been in the industry offering test prep classes for over seven decades and is famous for its full-length simulated exams and comprehensive review. You can watch their lectures synchronously live, in the classroom, or via on-demand videos from the comfort of your home, depending on your selection.
Now, before we help you pick from Kaplan or Barbri, we will brief you on the Barbri.
Barbri Bar Review courses have been widely popular among law firms and students. You can find it in all fifty American states. The company has successfully prepared students for the bar exams for almost half a century.
They are comprehensive but pricey and offer an array of study materials and tools to help students learn whatever they must know for the exam.
Anyone who signs up for their exams will have an in-depth understanding of the law for a state-specific portion of the test and the Multistate Bar Exam (MBE).
The question that might bother many is whether their in-depth knowledge scene is worth the price if their goal is only to pass the exam.
Comparing the Features of Kaplan and Barbri
Let us compare the Kaplan vs Barbri features to help you make an informed choice.
A. Available options and pricing
With Kaplan, students get two-course options – The Convenience and the Complete Bar Review Package.
Their Convenience Package is ideal for budding lawyers who hope to work in over two states. Its attributes are much like their second course (discussed next). But there is an option to study for the bar exam for the additional state you hope to practice.
Beyond this, there are also minor inclusions like flashcards, among other things. It is a deluxe option suitable for people who are risk-averse or wish to represent clients in two states.
Moreover, both Kaplan and Barbri are head-to-head in terms of pricing. Barbri, too, provides a comparable top-tier program. Kaplan’s premium classes are priced almost equal to Barbri at $4000.
In contrast, you can also pick their flagship course, the Complete Bar Review package. It is an excellent prep package that opts for a traditional approach in conducting a bar review view in a live class.
In totality, the students get over 160 hours of live classroom instruction – online or in-person. The class spans eight weeks and costs you around $2200, much more affordable than Barbri’s analogous Guided Pass course.
Comparing Kaplan bar review vs Barbri, we found that the latter has three offerings instead of two. Their three packages include:
- Ultimate Pass
- Guided Pass
As you may expect, the Ultimate Pass from Barbri is much like the deluxe “Convenience Package.” It has a good range of resources and comes with access to its eight-week Barbri course, iPad, multi-state prep access, and a few other attributes. It can be a good pick for students interested in practicing across state lines.
In the Guided and Self Pass prep packages, you will find many similarities in lesson delivery, content, and other features. However, the main difference is that in the Guided Pass package, you will receive unlimited graded essays, hard copy prep books, and multiple perks around Barbri’s job network.
We believe these perks are worthwhile for opting for the upgraded plan. Beyond that, these courses are more or less the same in their usual study resources comprising immersion workshops, 2,000+ MBE practice problems, Online Personal Study Plan, and more. You can buy the flagship guided pass for $3000, and the Self pass course costs $2000.
B. Lessons Comprehensiveness and Quality
If you do not know whether to opt for Kaplan or Barbri, you must contrast them on another one of the first vital factors (beyond price) – coursework and curriculum quality.
To clear the bar exam, you must take a preparatory class with a comprehensive study plan for completing the entire material on time. In addition, it must be full of detailed lessons and practice material. Fortunately, you get it all with Kaplan, and it ranks better than Barbri.
So, whether you are interested in live lessons or 100% digital lessons, Kaplan’s syllabus is the spine of the course. The syllabus that works as the online portal dashboard directs you to your assignments.
Typically, these daily assignments account for about five to seven hours of practice. But they will mostly take longer if you factor in the time allocated towards re-reading the text, breaks, and reviewing the practice problems. Moreover, their classes are full of quizzes, lessons, reading recaps, and practice exercises.
Their proficient instructors are behind all the online sessions. All the experts readily walk the extra mile to ensure you comprehend and learn the subject better.
In our belief, all the Kaplan teachers are highly knowledgeable and well-versed in their subjects. Moreover, they are also very helpful. So, you can ask your questions during the break hours. The experts even take the effort to give you an intensive plunge into the issues if needed.
The Kaplan classes are composed in a detailed format, but they do their best to detail with preciseness, ensuring that you learn what you must know to ace your test. If you find it impossible to attend their in-person class, you can opt for online learning via video lectures.
Comparing the Kaplan vs Barbri lectures, Kaplan holds an upper hand courtesy of their knowledgeable, highly-intellectual experts. You will find similar concepts in their live classes as in video lectures led by top-notch attorneys and great communicators.
Their videos are well-produced with a PPT slide attribute to guide you through them. The classes are divided into workable segments. So, if you miss a class, you will have recorded lectures to view.
On the other hand, Barbri offers an intensive curriculum in the bar review. The courses span over eight weeks, and you will study via videos, work on practice problems, take review tests, engage in multiple content-rich outlines, and more. Hence, with Barbri, you can expect an all-around preparation.
If you cannot decide from Kaplan or Barbri, we can help. One thing that works in Barbri’s favor is its Avant-Garde AI system. It has a tailored learning plan to cater to your needs. The company refers to it as PSP, and it gives a fantastic direction for the class.
It continually nudges you to take the routine assignments and updates and modifies the tasks accordingly. Moreover, if you are excelling in one aspect but not so good at the other, AI will alter the assignments to solidify your weaker areas and help you improve them. It is a standout feature, which makes Barbri a winner in Kaplan vs Barbri battle.
That’s not all. The lessons from Barbri are intensive and comprehensive. They are one of the best, but we still rate Kaplan’s courses somewhat better. However, with Barbri, too, you will be equally satisfied.
Barbri has some of the big, renowned names associated with them, such as Richard Freer and Erwin Chemerinsky. Moreover, its video sessions also rank high in production value. But, we found some lessons bland, and it might take extra effort from your end to stick around.
With Barbri, you can opt between in-person or on-demand online classes from the comfort of your home. There is an option to pick one or a combination of two options. It is an excellent benefit, given that Kaplan’s classroom courses are pricier, and it is advantageous if you have an unpredictable schedule.
C. Practice Material and Books
Kaplan’s practice material is their top highlight. They have over 3500 MBE questions in the Qbank, a vast library of previously used, real essays with sample answers, flashcards, books, and online drills. Hence, there is no shortage of prep work. Moreover, its quality is also praiseworthy.
Kaplan’s army of bar experts and in-house attorneys carefully craft the MBE questions to assure you receive top quality learning. Licensed from the NCBE, Kaplan’s essay bank also has real, past essay prompts. You will also find sample outlines with model answers.
Moreover, Kaplan also provides you access to Qformative and Qbank practice tools. With Qbank, you can create tailored problem sets filtered by difficulty, timing, topic, and more. Qformative is also beneficial as it gives you a different outlook on the MBE questions.
On comparing Kaplan bar review vs Barbri, we found such a vital factor is absent in Barbri. Moreover, you get only around 2000 MBE questions from Barbri.
However, Barbri has well-designed and beautifully structured preparation study material that is in line with your study plan. You will receive several books after signing up for a class with Barbri. Broadly, the material comprises three broad categories – practice books, lecture handouts, outlines, and some miscellaneous books.
But, it is not about the quantity alone. All these books are rich in content. All the model solutions are rich in quality and communicate the legal concepts and principles.
When you prepare for bar exams, you must have the ability to learn and memorize the material in a manner that is easy to recall. You should be able to mentally recall definitions, main principles, and concepts. In this aspect, these books can come in handy.
Moreover, the Barbri books with practice material can be quite beneficial. You can materialize most of the assigned homework via a personal study of these books. The books have essay prompts, MCQs, and performance assessments with concise explanations.
Kaplan Pros and Cons
1. Comprehensive course
Kaplan’s course comprises several resources and is available in almost every American state. In their bar review class, you will have access to live lectures (on-demand, live-online, or in-person), over 3,500 exam-like MBE questions, unlimited essay grading, a final countdown study plan, and full-length simulated exams with the review.
2. Structured bar program
An excellent feature of Kaplan is its straightforward outline that helps you stay focused. In their Bar prep course, you will find about thirty-six days of comprehensive subject review (different between states).
There are seven days of MBE prep, about two weeks (differs between students) for a final countdown study plan and four to five days of simulated exam preparation for each part of that state’s exam.
Firstly, Kaplan offers its complete course in almost every state. Moreover, students can choose to attend the lectures live online. Further, students can access their online bar lecture library to take notes on-demand and review the course lectures. You also get access to the mobile app, wherein you can access the content regardless of where you are.
Kaplan has a massive degree of content, but it is also one of the more costly courses in the market. Prices typically start from $1895 and go up to $3600, depending on geography.
2. Massive workload
The degree of work can be overwhelming for students. This lengthy class touches on every concept included in the bar exam and demands numerous essays, assignments, and personal outlines. In addition, you will also have to complete several MBE questions outside the course for optimal preparation.
The bottom line is Kaplan’s courses are flexible, easy to follow, and available in several locations. The only unfortunate downside is the overwhelming content and the high price tag.
Barbri Pros and cons
1. Well known
Barbri has a long history. It has been in the Bar Review scene for more than five decades. They offer an intensive bar review course comprising in-person and live-online lectures. You will find a mobile application, multiple workbooks, online study material for progress tracking, multiple outlines, essay feedback, and simulated exams in both classes.
2. Available in all states
Barbri is one of the very few companies that has its spread in all fifty American states. Hence, it is a vital consideration for students seeking more state-specific material.
Sadly, you do not get a bargain price with Barbri, making it one of the most expensive options. Their prices start from $1400 and go up to $3895, depending on where you take the class.
If you seek a reputable bar exam course, Barbri can be a good pick. They have been around for almost half a century, so they know what they are doing. Moreover, their vast spread adds to their accessibility. However, remember their classes are far from cheap.
Kaplan Vs Barbri Which Is Better and Why – Final Verdict?
Bar Exams are probably one of the most significant tests you will take. It is not something you would want to take more than once. Hence, pick the suitable class that best meets your needs. But, it will not be an easy decision.
However, with our comparison, we hope the decision gets a little simpler for you. If you still have doubts, let us break them down point-by-point.
Price: Kaplan’s courses are almost $100 cheaper than Barbri’s. Moreover, you can find them on sale more often than Barbri.
Quality: Kaplan’s curriculum is somewhat better than Barbri’s because of its everyday lesson plan and superior practice material. Of course, Barbri’s AI-driven tailored study format and coursework are also good, but Kaplan ranks higher in curriculum quality. They have superior lessons and a better organized study plan.
Sessions: Both Kaplan and Barbri tie as they have their pros and cons. With Kaplan, you get top-class classroom sessions and decent video lessons. However, some students complained of low audio quality in the video lessons.
Barbri, too, has similarly solid courses with above-average production value, but they may seem a little dull. Hence, they get the same points on this factor.
Study material: Kaplan’s books rank higher than any other course’s books.
User interface: It is a tie because both platforms guarantee an easy-to-navigate digital interface.
Hence, depending on your chosen aspect, you can decide between Kaplan vs Barbri.
Frequently Asked Questions
Ques 1. Which bar prep has the best pass rate?
Ans. Barbri and Themis have the best pass rate, between 85 and 90 percent for first-time test takers.
Ques 2. What’s Kaplan bar prep pass rate?
Ans. As a first-time student, if you solve seventy-five percent of the practice module, your chances of success are almost ninety percent.
Ques 3. Which is more expensive between Kaplan and Barbri?
Ans. Barbri is more expensive than Kaplan.
Ques 4. In how many days can you complete Kaplan and Barbri?
Ans. You can complete the bar test preparation course in three to four months.
Ques 5. Is there any free bar test prep?
Ans. BarMax is one of the free bar test prep companies.
Ques 6. Do you get books with Kaplan or Barbri prep?
Ans. Yes, both Barbri and Kaplan courses offer books for preparation.