California Bar Exam pass rates by law school
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
This post includes statistics from the July 2009 bar exam. For a look at statistics from the July 2010 exam, go to this post.
The State Bar of California has released data from last July’s administration of the California Bar Examination. Names of all 4,997 who passed are available on the State Bar web site, but ProtectConsumerJustice.org has obtained some breakdowns of the data we thought you would find interesting.
More than two-thirds (70.4%) of the 6,152 applicants who were taking the general bar examination for the first time passed. Only 22.1% of the 2,515 repeaters who took the exam were successful. Here’s the breakdown for first-time exam takers by racial/ethnic group, with the number of test takers in each group:
Broken down by gender, the pass rate for first-time test takers was almost identical: 70.8% for males, 70.1% for females. (Slightly more than half those first-timers, 52.8%, were male.) For repeaters, women had a slightly better pass rate, 23.1% to 21.3%. (A majority of repeaters, 54.8%, were male.)
The law school that had the most graduates taking the bar exam was UC Hastings College of the Law, which also had the most graduates pass. But while 86% of Hastings alums taking the exam for the first time passed in July, that was not the highest pass rate among California’s ABA-approved law schools. Here’s that breakdown, with the number of graduates who passed and the number of graduates who were taking the exam for the first time:
Note that the pass rate for first-timers from California ABA-approved schools was 79%, nine points higher than the overall pass rate.
While Berkeley and Stanford and had the highest pass rates for California law schools, three out-of-state law schools had even higher rates, led by Yale. All 39 graduates of Yale Law School who took the California bar exam for the first time in July passed. Harvard had more graduates take the exam than any other out-of-state school, and its pass rate was also better than any California school, as was the rate for graduates of New York University.
Here are the figures for all out-of-state ABA-approved schools that had at least 20 graduates take the exam:
Harvard led all out-of-state schools with 81 graduates who took the bar exam for the first time in July, followed by Georgetown with 77. George Washington University was a distant third with 58, edging out Columbia and NYU.