Career Development » Mounting Backlash Against The Bar Exam

Mounting Backlash Against The Bar Exam

Pushing Tower of Books 420

March 23, 2015

A backlash against the annual bar exam appears to be gathering strength among law school deans and some states, the New York Times reports. Critics say the annual rite of passage is a relict of the guild mentality and is surviving on inertia. But the exam has its defenders, and a spokesperson for the Wisconsin-based non-profit that writes and scores the test calls it a reliable basic tool that does what it’s intended to: protect the consumer. She also maintained, in a statement the Times called “verbal dynamite,” that a recent pattern of lower test scores – last summer’s were the lowest in a decade – were simply the result of less qualified students taking the test. Dozens of law school deans have pushed back, saying they want details about how the tests questions were chosen and scored. For now however, only one state has jettisoned the test, to the extent it offers an alternative route to getting licensed. It’s the same state where the non-profit National Conference of Bar Examiners is located.

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