Marino Bar Review

Declining Nationwide Bar Exam Pass Rates

The bar pass rates have been dropping nationwide, particularly in states administering the Uniform Bar Exam (UBE). Pass rates have declined (dramatically in some cases) from the July 2013 bar exam to the July 2014 bar exam in the majority of the UBE states. The pass rate for people taking the bar exam dropped a whopping 22% in Montana, 15.2% in Idaho, and 13% in North Dakota. The pass rate is down 7.7% and 7.5% in Arizona and Washington, respectively. Other UBE states reporting a lower pass rate include Alabama, Wyoming, and Utah. While there are a few states that have yet to report their 2014 pass rates, the trend is clear: people are failing the bar exam at higher rates across the country.

This news is troubling, not only for those unsuccessful examinees who will have to retake the bar exam, but it is cause for great concern for law schools across the country. Has something gone wrong to result in such a dramatic decline in the number of people who are passing the bar exam? How are the big bar review courses responding to severe drops in pass rates across the country?

Most bar review courses offer a free repeat of their course to unsuccessful applicants, but is it wise to stick with something that didn’t work the first time? Marino Bar Review offers a unique Retaker Course for the New York and New Jersey bar exams.

The Retaker Course is specifically designed for people retaking the bar exam. The course, which includes 3 hours of personal tutoring, trains previously unsuccessful examinees to pass bar exam. In the midst of declining pass rates across the country, Marino Bar Review students maintained a 96% bar exam pass rate.

Marino Bar Review provides free evaluations of bar exam score reports.

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retakerIt’s 12:01 a.m. Your phone dings as an email arrives from the Board of Law Examiners. The results are here. You nervously open the email and quickly scan through until you see, “We regret to inform you …” Why bother reading any further, you know what it says. A rush of emotion pours over you. Anguish. Embarrassment. Anger. Then questions start popping up. What am I going to tell my parents? Why didn’t I study harder? What is wrong with me? What do I do now?

Over the coming days, people will tell you how Hillary Clinton failed the bar or that U.S. Supreme Court Justice Benjamin Cardozo failed several times, but that won’t make you feel better. You’ll get words of encouragement from friends and family, but that will only make things worse. What you need is a plan…

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New York has always been the vanguard when it comes to making legal precedent. When Justice Benjamin Cardozo left the New York Court of Appeals to join the U.S. Supreme Court, many viewed it as a step backwards. New York is proposing adopting the Uniform Bar Exam (UBE).

Is this a step backwards or a move forward for New York and the rest of the country?

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Ed. note: Please welcome our newest columnist, Professor Joseph Marino of Marino Legal Academy, who will be writing a bimonthly column about law school and legal education.

Your first year classroom experience is not all that different from the classroom scenes in the well known 1973 movie, The Paper Chase.

“Look to the left, look to your right. Because one of you won’t be here by the end of the year.” It sounds like an urban legend, but it’s not that far off from reality. According to the ABA, roughly 5,000 1Ls across the country will not come back for their second year of law school.

By now you should be familiar with case briefing and the Socratic method, the decades-long dominant pedagogical approaches for teaching first-year students. It is dramatically different from the days of rolling out of bed after a night out partying and acing the exam that you were used to in college. Unlike college and high school classes where your professor taught you the subject area, in law school you have to take responsibility for your own education….

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UPDATE: Based on reader feedback, we’ve added information for Pieper Bar Review and Marino Bar Review.

Congratulations 3Ls! The grind of law school exams is over, or soon will be. Now you get to study for the bar exam — which, for some reason, law school didn’t really prepare you for.

Most newly minted J.D.s will be heading straight from law school classes into bar exam prep classes. We assume you all have been pitched all year by bar prep companies touting their costs, features, and success rates. With everyone claiming to have the secret to passing the bar exam, how to choose?

Since the last time we visited this question, bar exam prep courses have proliferated, offering a range of prices, technological formats, and philosophies.

As we here at ATL are all about service journalism, we’ve distilled the information about the major bar prep providers into a handy guide. For those of you mulling over which course best fits your needs, the crucial analyzing variables are cost, format, guarantees, discounts, and pass rate. Nobody want to have to take the bar exam more than once, so this is a serious investment decision. After the jump, check out an “apples to apples” look at the major prep companies…

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