Chicago-based AdaptiBar Receives Patent for Technology Behind Online Bar Exam Prep Program

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Simulation software adjusts to law students’ performance in real time, offering instant feedback on strengths and weaknesses and helping them focus on subject areas where they need to improve the most.

AdaptiBar makes sure students are always concentrating on areas where they need the most help and not wasting time studying subjects they already understand.

Bar exam review course provider AdaptiBar announced today that it has received a U.S. patent for the technology behind its online test simulation program that adjusts to law students’ performance in real time to help them focus on needed areas of improvement.

The patent, “Method and System for Improving Performance on Standardized Examinations,” makes Chicago-based AdaptiBar the first test prep provider to have patented technology that adapts to students’ individual study needs. The patent covers two proprietary features in AdaptiBar’s Multistate Bar Examination simulator: a formula that automatically adjusts the presentation of questions with each right or wrong answer, and a mechanism that tells students how much time they should spend on specific subjects based on their areas of strength and weakness.

“For more than eight years, we have been using adaptive technology to prepare law students for the bar exam so they have the confidence and skills to pass,” said AdaptiBar CEO and founder Tarek Fadel, who developed and used the supplemental review program to pass the MBE himself in 2005. “AdaptiBar makes sure students are always concentrating on areas where they need the most help and not wasting time studying subjects they already understand.”

Using only licensed questions from previous bar exams, AdaptiBar continuously monitors student performance and adjusts the presentation of questions accordingly. For example, a student who is strong in torts but weak in contracts – as determined by previous answers – would see more questions on contract law. The program algorithm updates after each question.

AdaptiBar also helps students develop their internal test-taking timing by calculating whether they are spending too much or too little time on a given question and alerting them in real time. The estimate is based on a statistical analysis that compares the student’s performance and timing to examination standards and the time allocated for the test. The program also tells students whether spending more time on a particular question increases their chances of answering correctly.

The instant feedback tells students how they are scoring in each of the 34 subtopics at any given time, which allows for the most efficient use of study time.

“While lecture courses are helpful for an overall understanding of subjects, they did little to help me understand the nuances of actual questions from the MBE,” said Stephen Gerring, a law student from Florida. “AdaptiBar constantly attacks your weakest subject areas using actual questions from the bar exam. After using AdaptiBar, I had no trouble passing the MBE.”

The AdaptiBar patent, approved by the United States Patent and Trademark Office in September, applies to all standardized test preparation programs.

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Dave Parro
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