Tuesday, March 15, 2016

ABA Council recommends 75% bar passage rate, paid externships

Significant actions!   There are a couple of dozen (maybe more) law schools right now that might run afoul of the 75% bar passage rate requirement.  My guess is the main effect of this change will be that these schools will focus more and more on bar prep rather than other aspects of legal education.

CLARIFICATION:  A useful correspondence with Prof. William Gallagher (Golden Gate) made me realize that my reference to "other aspects of legal education" was ambiguous.  I was not thinking in particular of, say, interdisciplinary courses (though those would be affected by a shift in focus), but primarily the traditional doctrinal courses, where it seems to me there‚Äôs still a big difference between teaching them with an eye to the bar versus teaching them to explore policy, argument, underlying principle etc.  The pressure to do less of the latter may be substantial at some schools in the wake of this change.  That may help some graduates pass the bar, which is good, but it may also deprive them and others of other useful learning experiences.


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