“How do you calculate your score on the California Bar Exam? How does grading work? i WeNt tO lAw ScHoOL bEcAusE i SuCk aT mAth LOL”
I can feel a blood vessel dilating in my head and an urge to throw my keyboard out the window every time I hear someone say this. If this is your idea of a joke, just leave this planet now before things get more embarrassing for both of us.
While it isn’t politically incorrect for Americans to brag about deficiencies in their math skills, I won’t have that around here.
First of all, stop using this self-deprecatory language. You took the SAT and a shitload of math classes until you were old enough to drive. You can do basic math. Or “maths” if you’re British and like to make words unnecessarily complicated (Worcestershire sauce anyone?)
You are capable—of doing math, doing Pereira and Van Camp calculations, and passing the bar exam.
Second of all, why are we still confused about how grading works for the California Bar Exam? Should I blame the State Bar for its lack of transparency? Are my optimism and faith in you people misplaced?
But if you’re frustrated and confused by the numbers, I’m happy to put a rest to this once and for all.
You’re probably wondering how this whole remote bar exam thing is going to work.
Do I get scratch paper?
Can I use a desktop?
How many monitors can I use for ExamSoft/SofTest/Examplify (or whatever exam software)?
Do I need to be online?
Can I print?
Are they going to proctor me through a camera?
Can I take bathroom breaks?
What about cheating?
What about the MBE? How many questions? Is it all on a screen?
What if I’m handwriting?
Uh, yeah, I’m sure you have a lot of questions.
Right now, all the states are having a brawl and doing whatever they feel is necessary to conduct their bar exams.
Many states are shifting from in-person paper testing to an almost entirely digital exam, at least for the 2020 Fall bar exam. This is a significant change, and something worth discussing in terms of preparation and test-taking strategies.
All right, so you just want to pass the easiest bar exam in the easiest state and get it over with.
No honor, no warrior spirit, or any of that shit—just gimme the bar card! This is especially true if you plan to practice in a state that accepts UBE scores (or MBE scores). You may be able to transfer your UBE score from an “easier” state.
You also want to avoid the hardest bar exams, naturally. Why waste a good six months torturing yourself again just because you missed a few points?
No judgment from me. You’re here to move on with your life and forget I ever existed. That’s cool.
So what are we going to look at to figure out the easiest bar exams to pass?
Recent pass rates by state
Minimum passing UBE scores
Number of applicants by state
Score portability and transferability
The verdict – a shortlist of three states to consider, and states to avoid