A Closer Look At California Bar Exam Results By Law School
October 4, 2022
The July 2017 California Bar Exam results have been released, and now we can take a closer look at how each law school performed on this important exam! Here’s a breakdown of the bar exam results by law school so that you can see which schools are your best bets if you’re trying to determine where to study law in the Golden State. This is based on data from the State Bar of California and covers both the overall passage rates as well as the passage rates broken down by subject matter and test types, such as MBE, essay, MPT, and MPRE!
Law school grads had their eyes on Berkeley for the July 2017 California bar exam, with 221 out of 378 students passing on their first try. Of those 221 graduates, 156 are women and 65 are men.
UC Berkeley has the second highest number of females who passed among all UC law schools and the fourth highest total number of first-time passes in the state. Only Stanford (247), UCLA (234), and USC (179) had more law school graduates who passed the bar test on their first try in July 2017.
According to the recent results of the July 2017 California bar exam, UC Davis did not have a particularly high passage rate with 67% of first-time examinees passing.
The figure is far lower than most other law schools in the state which range from 75-80%. The average is 77% among graduates and it’s important to note that UC Davis has a larger percentage of Asian-American students who tend to do better on standardized tests.
#9 Berkeley (seven sentences)
Of Berkeley’s class of 113, just 79 were awarded degrees. Among all law schools with more than 100 graduates on the board, this is one of the lowest figures recorded. Fortunately for those hoping to attend school at Berkeley, their employment outcomes are among some of the best in California.
All told, the first-time pass rate for the July 2017 sitting was 68%, an all-time low for any administration of the exam. The nationwide average bar exam passage rate is about 55%. However, different law schools seem to experience significantly different outcomes.
UC San Diego
If you’ve recently graduated from UC San Diego and will be taking the CA Bar this summer, congratulations! Good luck!
To see how you did in comparison to your peers, we looked at California bar exam results by the law school and found that 70% of graduates from
Hastings’ bar passage rate was 13% lower than the state average. There is only a 6% difference between Hastings and Stanford, yet Hastings graduates almost twice as many students annually.
Hastings also has higher tuition rates and students at other schools may be better prepared for the exam. This could be due to their high first-year law school grade average. Inequity in admissions is one possible reason for the bar passage differential. There might not be a level playing field when it comes to taking the exam at different schools or programs within a school as well.
Loyola LA College of Law
McGeorge had the highest passage rate of 91.2 percent, which was 3.2 points higher than the state average of 88 percent. Across all nine areas measured by the exam, McGeorge students outperformed the state on six of them. Some schools that McMichael beat are prestigious law schools, including Cornell (85.5 percent), Yale (81.7), and USC (87).
McGeorge has been ranked as one of the best law schools in America for a long time and is considered one of the top public law schools in California by US News and World Report, but this latest performance is remarkable even for such a distinguished institution.
McGeorge School of Law at the University of the Pacific
Though the overall passage rate for the July 2017 bar exam was 73.60%, that figure masks a disparity in performance by school type. Schools with higher LSAT scores and average GPAs saw passage rates of between 82.00% and 89.10%.
Schools in which students are less academically prepared had success rates below 70.00%. Given these disparities, it is not surprising that admissions consultants recommend applicants to choose law schools carefully and research the data before making a final decision on matriculation to minimize the risks involved in any given academic endeavor.