Bar Prep

Bar review courses, in my opinion, are the biggest rip-off ever.

Christopher Carrion, a recent graduate of New York Law School, expressing disappointment over the cost of his bar prep fees. According to Carrion, because bar review courses are often prohibitively expensive, some of his friends did not enroll in a class prior to taking the July 2013 exam.

I’m not here this week; instead, I’m heading out to California to the ABA annual meeting. At the conference, the ABA will discuss the changing nature of legal education.

The ABA, and law schools in general, have been really slow to respond to the new realities of legal education. There’s institutional resistance to changing the way things have always been done.

Arguably, a company like BARBRI can be much more flexible in response to student needs. And, as many tipsters have told us over the past couple of weeks, BARBRI is making some changes. Which is kind of a nice way of saying that BARBRI laid off some people.

I recently spoke with BARBRI president Mike Sims about these moves…

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Yesterday, I reiterated the point that the third year of law school is largely useless. Such a position is not novel. Recently, NYU Law announced a big change to its 3L curriculum because, in part, the current use of the time is silly.

But even changes to the curriculum still contemplate making most students waste another year of tuition while they wait to take the bar and start their job search in earnest.

Out in Arizona (I’m still allowed to write about Arizona without having to prove my status, right?), some are pressuring the state supreme court to skip ahead and allow 3Ls to sit for the bar exam in February. They argue that the change will allow students to pass the bar before they graduate; that way they don’t have to wait until the fall to find out if they’ve passed the bar in a state where there aren’t a lot of jobs for students who have their bar passage “pending.”

Sounds like a great idea, so of course some people have a problem with it. You know, because then students will spend time caring about the bar during their third year, instead of reading Above the Law in class…

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Isn't there anyone here who can pass the bar exam???

As thousands of students are currently embroiled in state bar exams across the country, law schools are beginning to wonder about the next crop of exam takers. They’re wondering if next year’s class will bring shame or glory upon their institutions.

One law school seems to be getting proactive about its bar passage rate. Instead of being content with a rate that is near the bottom in its state, they’re making 3Ls engage in some remedial studies.

The only problem is that they only just informed the students last week, and the mandatory course will only apply to students who received poor grades way back during their 1L year.

UPDATE (5:57 PM): Duquesne responded and defended their requirement; see their statement below…

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* Man busted for drunk driving in a toy car. I hope it’s still legal for me to get wasted and operate my remote control Grave Digger, or else my Saturday night is screwed! [Legal Juice]

* This is a good question: where does the Biglaw coffee come from? I’d also ask the question, “why does it always taste like s**t?” and “how come they serve it to you in thimbles?” Bottom line, back in the day, when secretaries or interns used to make the coffee, you could get coffee just the way you like it, not some generic crap from whatever minimum wage worker handles the machine in the firm cafeteria. [Law and More]

* What nannies need to know about Workers’ Compensation. OR: What expectant fathers wish nannies didn’t know about workers’ comp. [National Nannies]

* Gene patents may truly be capitalism at its worst. [WSJ Law Blog]

* Here’s some more love for Mark Herrmann’s book. Man, I gotta get me one of those. [She Negotiates / Forbes]

* Seriously, good luck this weekend, those of you studying for the bar. [Vault Law]

Dick intentionally spits on Prudence while she is asleep. Several weeks later, Prudence learns of Dick’s act. Dick is liable for battery.

– hypothetical in a bar exam review outline for Torts. A reader posits: “I truly do not think the writer of this example, with an infinite number of possible battery examples at his or her disposal, had an innocent mind at the time of the example’s writing.”

Somewhere down there live law students worse off than you.

You don’t see this every day. We have one law school offering the recent graduates of more prestigious law schools the job of teaching its law students how to pass the bar. It’s probably a great opportunity for people with only limited experience to get into legal academia, but man, I think it would make the students at the offering law school feel kind of crappy.

I mean, the position their school is looking to fill is called “Bar Passage Counselor.” It’ll be a non-faculty, administrative position. One of the core duties will be to “teach a law school course developed to increase students’ likelihood of bar exam success.” Isn’t that, like, the whole point of law school? What does it say about this law school that it’ll be looking for a non-faculty person to spearhead this effort?

At least they’re trying to fill this position with a person who went to a good law school….

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