Category: Bar Exam Updates

Cal Bar Clarifies – paper materials for February 2022

The Cal Bar published FAQ’s today, 10/7.  The matter is settled:  paper materials for essays, PTs, and MBE for February 2022:

 

  1. Does returning to an in-person exam mean the administration of the exam will return to “normal” – paper exam materials (question booklets and scratch paper), multiple questions administered per session, access to water, and ability to use the restroom during exam sessions?

    Yes. The administration of the exam will be the same as it was prior to the remote exam administrations. Essays 1–3 will be administered together without breaks during the morning session of Day 1; then, after a lunch break, applicants will return for Essays 4, 5, and the Performance Test, which will be administered together without breaks during the afternoon session of Day 1. The morning session of Day 2 will be comprised of the first 100 Multistate Bar Examination (MBE) questions, after which there will be a lunch break. The last 100 MBE questions will be given during the afternoon session of Day 2. Please see the full
    schedule here.

    Applicants will receive the questions in a paper booklet and will be given scratch paper to use if they need.

    Applicants will be allowed access to water during the exam.

    Applicants may leave to use the restroom, but the clock will run continuously.

 

https://www.calbar.ca.gov/Portals/0/documents/admissions/Examinations/Feb-2022-Bar-Exam-FAQs.pdf

February 2022 Cal Bar Exam Update – IN PERSON TESTING

Hello y’all!

 

Registration is OPEN for February 2022.  Timely filing occurs this month.  Don’t pay late fees, people!  Remember you can submit your Accommodations petitions at any time.  If you haven’t submitted your Moral Character Application, note that it takes 5-6 months to get cleared and that’s if you’re boring.  You want to be sworn in after you get the good news in May, right?  Make sure your admission isn’t delayed due to not filing your Moral Character application as early as you can.

But what is FAR more important for the applicant pool, my friends, is the fact that the Cal Bar is going to be held IN PERSON.  The February 2022 Cal Bar Exam Announcement was published today.  In relevant part, it states:

 

February 2022 California Bar Exam

Date: Tuesday and Wednesday, February 22–23, 2022

Please note that the February 2022 California Bar Examination will be held as an in-person examination. Applicants will be required to select atesting locationand test in-person.

 

So we’re going to party like it’s 2019, people!  Back to the Future, as it were.

 

The Announcement is located in full here:

https://www.calbar.ca.gov/Admissions/Examinations/California-Bar-Examination/February-2022-California-Bar-Exam

 

The exam schedule is here:

https://www.calbar.ca.gov/Portals/0/documents/admissions/Examinations/Feb-2022-Bar-Exam-Schedule.pdf

 

No more remote video proctoring.  Show up on Tuesday, take the exam for 3 hrs., then leave.  Then come back, take the exam for 3-1/2 hrs, and then leave.  Rinse and repeat on Wednesday.  Your results will vary if you have accommodations.

 

And now you know!  If you want a certain location, I’d suggest registering over the next 7 days.

 

By the way, some notable dates for you:

10/1 – 11/1 Registration period for Feb. 2022

11/1  Timely filing deadline

11/1 – 11/30    $50 late fee registration period.

12/1 – 1/3/22  $250 late filing fee

1/3/22  FINAL DEADLINE TO REGISTER FOR FEBRUARY 2022

2/22 – 2/23/2022   February 2022 Cal Bar Exam

2/24, noon    Laptop answer file upload deadline

2/25 OR 2/26, noon  Extended time students’ exam answer file upload deadline (deadline dependent on student’s accommodations).

 

RESULTS DAY

May 6, 2022, 6 pm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

July 2021 Cal Bar Exam Admittance Bulletin

Exam schedule

The July 2021 bar exam will be offered online and remotely proctored to all applicants. In-person exam administration will be provided to those for whom online remote proctoring is not available and to those with approved testing accommodations that cannot be effectively provided and securely administered in a remote environment. The exam is scheduled to be administered on Tuesday and Wednesday, July 27 and 28, 2021.

The July bar exam will have 200 Multistate Bar Exam (MBE) questions, with the essays and performance test on day 1 and the MBE on day 2. Applicants approved to take the Attorneys’ Exam will test on day 1 only.

Applicants must use a laptop and must be logged into the system no later than 8:30 a.m. The exam will begin immediately following establishment of the applicant’s identity and delivery of instructions. You must be logged into the system no later than 2:00 p.m. for the afternoon session on day 1, and 1:30 p.m. for the afternoon session on day 2. Every session begins with reestablishment of your identity.

Review the schedule and plan accordingly. Keep in mind that each exam session will begin immediately after you enter the password for that session. You should enter the password when you’re ready to begin, and no later than the schedule allows. You will have 30-minute breaks between each session and one hour for lunch.

All in-person applicants should arrive no later than 7:30 a.m. The exam will begin immediately following the instructions. You should plan to arrive at least 30 minutes early for temperature screening and to locate your assigned room. Arriving late to the test center will not alter the start time of your exam.

Applicants granted extended time may have different schedules, which are communicated to them individually in advance of the exam.

Exam description

The California Bar Exam is comprised of the General Bar Exam and the Attorneys’ Exam. The General Bar Exam consists of three parts: five essay questions, the MBE, and one Performance Test (PT). The parts of the exam may not be taken separately, and California does not accept the transfer of MBE scores from other jurisdictions.

On the first day of the exam, five essay questions and the 90-minute Performance Test is administered. A 90-minute break for lunch will occur between essays 3 and 4.

On the second day, the MBE will be administered in four 50-question sessions, 90 minutes each. There will be a 90-minute break for lunch between Part 2 and Part 3 of the MBE.

Applicants with disabilities who are granted extended time accommodations will have slightly different schedules, which will be communicated to them prior to the exam.

July’s exam will be scaled and graded as described here. The passing score on the exam is 1390.

The Attorneys’ Exam consists of the five essay questions and the PT from the General Bar Exam. An applicant can earn up to 100 raw points on each essay question and up to 200 raw points on the PT. The same methodology as described above will be used to convert the written scores to a 2000-point scale. The score for the Attorneys’ Exam is 100 percent based on the written portion. The passing score is 1390.

If an applicant is absent for any portion of the exam, the applicant will be considered as having not taken the exam and their written answers will not be graded, and if the applicant intends to take a future administration of the exam, they will be subject to the same application filing deadlines applicable to first-time applicants, rather than the deadlines applicable to immediate repeaters.

The Committee of Bar Examiners (CBE) judges the validity of the exam, and at its discretion, may determine that the result of any test, any part of any test, or any individual’s score is not valid. Should the CBE invalidate any part of the test, or if any individual’s test is declared invalid, or for any reason, any part of the test cannot be graded, at its discretion, the CBE may decide to make a pass/fail decision on the basis of the valid portion of the applicant’s test product available to the CBE.

If you are an attorney applicant and have been approved to take the Attorneys’ Exam, you are not permitted to take the MBE. Written notification of an attorney’s decision to take the General Bar Exam instead of the Attorneys’ Exam, or to take the Attorneys’ Exam instead of the General Bar Exam, must be received in the Office of Admissions by the final filing deadline for applications. Requests for changes received after that date will not be processed; applicants must pass the exam selected and approved by the Office of Admissions.

For attorney applicants with disabilities who have been granted accommodations that include an extended day schedule, the number of testing days will be specified in their Testing Accommodations Notice.

Examination administration rules and policies

Failure to follow exam rules while the exam is in session will result in notice to the State Bar of California of a violation of exam rules in accordance with the provisions of Title 4, Division 1, Chapter 6 of the Rules of the State Bar of California (Admissions Rules). Conduct that results in a violation of security or disrupts the administration of the exam, which includes but is not limited to having unauthorized items with you during the exam (such as cell phones, digital watches, and timing devices, notes, etc.), writing or typing after time has been called, attempting to cheat or avoid/override the remote proctoring system, leaving the view of the camera while the exam is in session, or ignoring warnings about minimum system requirements that result in gaps in the audio/video recording will result in notice to the State Bar of a violation of exam rules, or in some cases, can lead to a negative referral to the Moral Character Determination unit.

In addition, applicants who are testing in person are expected to maintain a professional attitude toward other applicants, staff, proctors, and other exam personnel at all times. Behavior that is abusive or disruptive may result in dismissal from the test center and will be reported to the State Bar or the CBE for appropriate action. It is expected that all applicants will demonstrate integrity, honor, and ethical behavior during all exams administered by the State Bar of California.

The remote-proctored exam will be continuously monitored by artificial intelligence and human proctors, and any and all anomalies or suspicious behavior will be flagged accordingly. Flagged video files will be reviewed by the State Bar, and conduct violations determined to be serious will result in strict sanctions. Sanctions may include but are not limited to a zero for the flagged exam session, a zero for the entire exam, and a negative impact on your Moral Character Determination. For less serious conduct and rule violations, the State Bar or the CBE may take whichever action it deems appropriate.

Applicants may not wear hats, caps, hoods, or any other type of headwear during the exam. The CBE, however, will consider petitions filed by applicants seeking exemptions from that policy, which would permit them to wear headwear due to religious beliefs while in a secure exam test center or while testing remotely. Such petitions must be submitted online through the Applicant Portal no later than the final deadline for filing testing accommodations petitions. Upon arrival at an in-person test center, applicants must be prepared to show a letter from the CBE that permits them to wear the headwear in the exam room. The headwear may be subject to inspection. Applicants attempting to enter the test center wearing headwear who do not have a letter from the CBE authorizing them to do so will be issued a Chapter 6 Notice and will be asked to remove the headwear. Letters allowing headwear for applicants testing remotely will be kept on file with the State Bar and compared against the applicant’s uploaded video file to determine whether a violation has occurred.

Only the following items are allowed in the exam areas without prior approval. All items are subject to inspection at the in-person test centers:

  1. Valid government-issued photo ID
  2. Eyeglasses (no cases or sunglasses)
  3. Foam earplugs (cannot be wireless and must not be connected to any mechanism or device)
  4. Menstrual products
  5. Inhalers
  6. Diabetes-related items and equipment (does not include food or drinks)
  7. Eyedrops in single-use vials
  8. One back support (without a cover)
  9. One orthopedic cushion (without a cover)
  10. One standard-size pillow (without a case)
  11. One footrest
  12. Splints, braces, casts, crutches, wheelchair
  13. Hearing aids
  14. TENS units
  15. Disability-related items that have been approved through the testing accommodations petition process

Online applicants will be allowed the following items during the PT session only:

  • Nondigital pens
  • Nonmechanical pencils (with eraser incorporated; no separate erasers)
  • Pen-style highlighters
  • Eight pages of physical scratch paper no larger than 8.5” x 11” (both sides must be blank); Applicants will be required to hold up to the camera the front and back of each piece of scratch paper (Failure to do so will result in the issuance of a Chapter 6 Notice of Violation)

The following laptop accessories are allowed:

  • Separate keyboard
  • Mouse (wired or wireless)
  • Laptop riser/stand no higher than 4”
  • Solid color mouse pad with no writing on it

Additional instructions for in-person test takers

Applicants who will be testing in person are allowed to have the following items in addition to those listed above:

  1. The admittance ticket with no writing on it (detach ticket from instructions above prior to arrival at the test center)
  2. Silent analog watches
  3. Prescription medications (does not include cough drops)
  4. Cash (must not have extraneous writing on it)
  5. Credit/debit cards that might be needed for the lunch breaks
  6. Keys
  7. Face masks (with no patterns or extraneous writing on them)
  8. Protective gloves
  9. Applicants who are handwriting or have certain testing accommodations may be allowed the following beyond the PT session: Nondigital pens (standard blue or black ink), Nonmechanical pencils (with eraser incorporated; no separate erasers), Pen-style highlighters (must not be used on answers), Nondigital timers and nondigital clocks measuring 4”x 4” or smaller.

Applicants who are handwriting or have certain testing accommodations may be allowed the following beyond the PT session: nondigital pens (standard blue or black ink), nonmechanical pencils (with eraser incorporated; no separate erasers), pen-style highlighters (must not be used on answers), nondigital timers and nondigital clocks measuring 4”x 4” or smaller.

Applicants who will be handwriting their exam answers must bring their own standard blue or black ink ballpoint pens. Applicants must also bring their own pencils for the multiple-choice portion of the exam (several sharpened pencils are recommended). Mechanical pencils are not permitted. Pencil sharpeners and separate erasers will not be allowed into the exam room.

Please note that, whether testing remotely or in person, applicants cannot have wallets, tissues, lip balm, cough drops/throat lozenges, gum, candy, or other food or drinks in the exam room. Water and tissues will be available nearby at the in-person test centers. Applicants testing in-person with an online format because of extenuating circumstances will not have access to these items during testing; only during breaks.

During the in-person MBE sessions, the items listed above are allowed in the exam room, except pens, highlighters, back supports, orthopedic cushions, pillows, bookstands or footrests, and laptops or laptop accessories. If you need any of these items due to a disability, you must request them through the timely filing of a Testing Accommodations Petition.

If unauthorized items are brought into the exam room, either intentionally or inadvertently, they will be confiscated or noted, and the applicant will receive a Chapter 6 Notice and possibly additional sanctions imposed by the State Bar or the CBE. In accordance with the CBE’s policies, applicants will receive a score of zero for any session during which they are found to have brought an unauthorized electronic device, such as a cell phone, digital watch or timer, or activity tracker device (e.g., Fitbit) into the exam room, as well as any additional sanctions the State Bar or the CBE, may impose.

General instructions: Remote-proctored administration

The system will prompt you to establish your identity at the beginning of each session (at the start and after each break). However, if the system cannot confirm your identity, you will be able to proceed with the exam, but your video will be reviewed later.

The following conduct will be prohibited:

  1. Leaving the view of the webcam outside of scheduled breaks.
  2. Any attempt to bypass or avoid the remote proctoring mechanisms and protocols, or to obtain or receive assistance on the exam.
  3. Individuals (other than the applicant) entering the exam room.
  4. Possession of cell phones or other electronic devices, including a tablet or additional computers in the exam room, or connected remotely to any other devices or equipment in the exam room.
  5. Possession of notes, study aids, or other papers or exam resources in the exam room, including scratch paper (digital scratch paper will be provided). An exception is made for scratch paper only for the PT session and only under the specified terms and conditions.
  6. Possession of any digital timers, watches, or clocks in the exam room (the exam software has a built-in timer that allows applicants to set timed reminders).
  7. Possession of books of any kind in the exam room within view or access during the exam session.
  8. Possession of food or beverages in the exam room, including but not limited to coffee and water (unless you have been granted a testing accommodation that allows for these items).
  9. Smoking in the exam room.
  10. Possession of any item(s) other than the allowed items listed in the Admittance Bulletin in the exam room (unless you have been granted a testing accommodation that allows for these items).
  11. Possession of any radios, stereos, or other devices/equipment (including smart home devices such as Google Home or Alexa) that can make audible sounds in the exam room. Any such items must be turned off at all times during the exam and scheduled breaks.

If items other than those allowed are detected during the exam, you will be flagged by the system and a corresponding sanction may be issued after review by State Bar staff.

You are not allowed to make notes from memory prior to the start of the exam session. Laptop users may not access any notes or other documents at any point during the exam. Digital scratch paper will be available in the Examplify program.

The exam is electronically timed, and applicants can set a timer in the system. Applicants are encouraged to keep track of their own time.

Please note that extra time is not granted to any individual applicant for any reason. If you attempt to continue completing the exam after the session has ended, you will receive a Chapter 6 Notice.

You should use the restroom before the start of each exam session. You will not be permitted to use the restroom or leave the view of the web camera during the exam session.

If you leave the exam area during the exam session, you will be issued a Chapter 6 Notice, and you will receive a score of zero for the entire exam session.

No smoking: In-person and remote exam instructions

Smoking is not allowed during any exam session, both in-person and remote. Smoking is prohibited at test centers located in buildings that do not allow smoking in accordance with city ordinance. Regardless of whether smoking is prohibited, any applicant who exits the secure exam area in order to smoke while the exam is in progress will not be allowed to re-enter to complete the examination.

Laptop computer users

After you have been notified that your admittance ticket is available, you are eligible to have your laptop registered for use during the exam. You must download and install the required security software onto your laptop (Examplify with ExamID and Exam Monitor), and you must complete the registration process by July 16, 2021, with the completion of both mock exams. Complete the following steps to make sure your laptop is ready for exam day:

  1. Download the required security software (Examplify) onto your computer and register with ExamSoft.
  2. Take the two required mock exams and upload the answer files by July 16, 2021.
  3. Download the 10 bar exam answer files between July 20 and July 23, 2021.

Confirmation: After you have downloaded the 10 exam files, you will be advised via email by ExamSoft that you have done so. Those 10 confirmation emails are the only certification that your laptop is ready for the exam. You may also check your status and view your download/upload history online by launching Examplify from your laptop and confirming you have the 10 downloads. Log in using the Exam Takers box, click the Exam History button to review your record, and confirm that you have downloaded the exam and mock exam files, and have uploaded the mock exam answer files. You should have a total of 10 answer files for the July 2021 California Bar Exam.

It is the responsibility of applicants using laptops to timely upload their exam files containing their answers to the five essay questions, one Performance Test, and four parts of the multiple-choice exam. Applicants must also timely upload their video files for each exam session, for a total of 10 video files. Applicants who fail to upload their answer and video files by the published deadline will have a deduction of 10 scaled points taken from their scaled score. Applicants who fail to upload their answer and video files within two weeks of the published deadline will be given a grade of zero for each answer that is not received by the State Bar Office of Admissions by the published deadline. Applicants are expected to comply with the published deadlines; there are no waivers of the deadlines or the sanctions that will be imposed as a result of applicants’ failure to upload their exam and video files.

General instructions: In-person administration

  1. Your admittance ticket contains your applicant number, your file number, and your NCBE number. Do not write anything on the ticket. You will be required to show your ticket to the proctor when you enter the test center. You must keep it in your possession throughout the exam.
  2. If items other than those allowed are brought to the test center, you will be required to leave them at your own risk outside of the exam area. The State Bar, CBE, Office of Admissions staff, and proctors assume no responsibility for the safekeeping of items that you bring to the test center. You are not permitted access to those items while the exam is in session.
  3. You should bring any small permitted personal items (e.g., prescription medication, foam earplugs, pens, etc.) into the exam area in a small, clear plastic bag. Larger items, such as pillows, do not need to fit into the clear plastic bag that holds your smaller items.
  4. Proctors will provide you with seating information upon your arrival at the test center.
  5. Upon arrival, you will be provided with a badge that will be your identification credential during exam administration, which you may be required to show at any time. The badge must be fastened so it can be easily seen by the proctors. You will be told to relocate the badge if it is not placed appropriately. The badge must be left at your seat during the lunch break.
  6. At some time during exam administration, you may be required to provide your fingerprints. If you refuse to provide the required fingerprints, you will be issued a Chapter 6 Notice.
  7. During the exam, you will be required to show a valid government-issued photo ID (e.g., Driver’s License, California Identification Card, or Passport) for the purpose of identity verification. You must carry this photo ID card at all times during the exam.
  8. Those applicants that are handwriting their answers will be instructed to write their applicant number, name, and signature in the upper right-hand section of each of their answer book covers at the beginning of each written exam session (essay and PT). Do not write notes, outlines, answers, time schedules, or make any marks on the inside or outside of your answer book covers. Prior to grading, your personal information will be removed after a code number has been assigned. Thereafter, answers are identified by a code number only; nothing about an individual applicant is known to the graders.
  9. You are not allowed to make notes from memory prior to the start of the exam session. If you are using your laptop, you may not access any notes or other documents on your computer after you have entered the secure examining area. Applicants using laptops will have access to virtual scratch paper. Physical scratch paper is not permitted during any of the Essay Question sessions or during the MBE sessions of the exam. An exception is made for physical scratch paper only for the PT session of the exam and only under the specified terms and conditions. Some applicants with documented disabilities requiring them to have physical scratch paper will be accommodated. Nothing written on scratch paper will be graded. You must not make notes or write anything on your admittance ticket. If writing is found on your admittance ticket, the ticket will be confiscated, and you will be issued a Chapter 6 Notice.
  10. If you are handwriting your answers, there is a separate answer book for each written question, and you must be certain that the answer to Question No. 1 is written in the book for Question No. 1, etc. Answers written in a wrong answer book or typed in the wrong answer window while using Examplify, or more than one answer typed in the text box screen while using Examplify, require special handling and could delay the grading of an applicant’s answer.
  11. If you handwrite your exam answers and need additional lined paper to write your answers during the exam, raise your hand and a proctor will provide you with what you need.
  12. If you are handwriting, you should do so as legibly as possible. A ballpoint pen with standard blue or black ink must be used to write your answers. Answers to the essay and PT questions written in pencil are not acceptable. Only nonmechanical pencils may be used for the MBE portion of the exam. Neither highlighters nor white-out may be used on your answers to the essay and PT questions.
  13. If you are testing with paper MBE exam materials, all answers to the MBE portion of the exam must be marked on the Scantron answer sheets provided. If you have circled or otherwise marked your answers in the question booklet, extra time to transfer answers to the answer sheet will not be granted. Only answers properly marked on the answer sheets will be scored.
  14. If you are testing with paper exam materials, exam questions, and used scratch paper may not be taken out of the exam room. After completing each session of the exam, the exam questions and used scratch paper must be placed in the envelope designated for that purpose.
  15. If you handwrite your exam answers, it is your responsibility to turn in your written exam answers to the proctors. If you leave the test center with your answers, the answers will not be graded.
  16. The exam is electronically timed, and you are encouraged to keep track of your own time since wall clocks are not provided. Laptop users will have the ability to set two timers while in the exam session.
  17. Timing devices (i.e., watches and clocks) that are allowed to be brought into the exam test centers are to be used solely for the determination of the passage of time. They cannot have a digital display, must be absolutely silent, and cannot be larger than 4″x4″. Timing devices that are digital, programmable, and/or make noise are not permitted. If found, they will be confiscated, and the applicant will receive a Chapter 6 Notice.
  18. Writing and typing of answers must be completed when time is called. Please note that extra time is not granted to any individual applicant for any reason. If you attempt to write anything after time has been called, you will receive a Chapter 6 Notice.
  19. Restrooms and water will be available at each test center. Applicable to applicants who are NOT required to use the online remote-proctored version of the exam: You should use the facilities before taking your seat so you have time to go over the instructions prior to the start of each session. Extra time to use the restroom will not be granted. You will not be permitted to use the restroom or leave your seat during the last several minutes of the exam session (5 to 15 minutes depending on the session). After time is called, you will not be permitted to use the restroom or leave your seat until all materials are collected and inventoried. If you fail to remain seated after being advised to do so, or while the exam materials are being collected and inventoried, you will receive a Chapter 6 Notice. Applicable to applicants who are required to use the online remote-proctored version of the exam: You should use the restroom before taking your seat at the start of the exam session. If you leave the view of the webcam at any time while the exam is in session, you will be flagged by the AI proctor and you will receive a Chapter 6 Notice, as well as a score of zero for the exam session.
  20. If you leave the secure exam area during the exam session, you will not be permitted to return for the purpose of completing your exam answers. For applicants who are required to use the online remote proctored version of the exam, any answer typed thereafter will not be graded if you leave the secure exam area during the exam session.
  21. The proctors’ chief function is to proctor the exam; however, if asked, the proctors will attempt to assist with any problems that may arise.
  22. If there is an emergency of any kind, you should remain seated and wait for instructions on how to proceed.

In-person test center environment

While every effort will be made to keep the environment of the test center comfortable and quiet, there are times when events, conditions, or actions of third parties occur that are beyond the control of the State Bar or the CBE. For instance, the temperature of the test center may fluctuate due to the weather or the test center’s cooling/heating equipment; applicants should be prepared for either warm or cold temperatures. Efforts will be made to keep the test center quiet, but there may be forces outside the control of the State Bar or the CBE that prevent such an environment from being guaranteed. You should come prepared to accommodate noises, such as those made by other applicants taking the exam, proctors carrying out their duties, people entering/exiting the exam room, equipment inside or outside the test center that may make sounds while operating, other meetings or conventions in the same facility, etc. Earplugs of the type specified earlier are strongly recommended.

Exam attendance policy

If you do not attend or are unable to complete a required, scheduled exam session, you will be considered a partial exam taker and your exam will not be graded. For instance, if you are taking the exam in person, if you are absent for the Tuesday morning session, you will not be allowed to take any remaining sessions of the exam. If you are absent for any portion of the exam, you will be considered as having not taken the exam and your written answers will not be graded. If you intend to take a future administration of the exam, you will be subject to the same application filing deadlines applicable to first-time applicants rather than the deadlines applicable to immediate repeaters, if any. Applicants must make a good faith attempt to complete each session of the exam for which they are present. Failure to do so may lead to receipt of a Chapter 6 Notice and being prohibited from attending any remaining exam sessions.

Late login to the system

Applicants testing in-person and arriving at the test center after one hour of testing time has elapsed will not be permitted to enter the test center for any portion of the exam.

Applicants testing remotely and logging in after 10 minutes of testing time have elapsed will not be permitted to begin the exam session that has started and will be locked out of the question in progress. Any answers to questions in subsequent exam sessions will not be graded or scored.

Address change

Applicants are encouraged to notify the Office of Admissions of a change of address as soon as possible. Applicants are able to update their admissions file with the new address by accessing their account through the Applicant Portal.

Moral Character

The Admissions Rules require a positive moral character determination before the CBE may recommend that an applicant be admitted to practice law. The process is initiated by filing an Application for Determination of Moral Character. The processing of these applications generally takes a minimum of 180 days and sometimes longer to complete. If you have not already filed a moral character application, you should do so now to avoid delays in your admission to practice law if you are successful on the California Bar Exam. The application must be filed online through your Applicant Portal.

Admittance ticket

Applicants will receive an email alerting them when admittance tickets are ready to be printed. The admittance ticket can be located in the exam case record through the Applicant Portal. Admittance tickets only need to be printed for applicants testing in person

Further communication

For particular questions regarding your status or the other requirements for admission, you should contact the State Bar’s Office of Admissions by sending an email directly from your Applicant Portal. If you need to contact the office by phone, please use one of the following numbers:

Los Angeles
845 South Figueroa Street
Los Angeles, CA 90017
213-765-1500

San Francisco
180 Howard Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
415-538-2300

California Bar Exam results

Results from the July 2021 administration of the California Bar Exam will be available to applicants through their Applicant Portal on November 12, 2021, at 6:00 p.m. Communications regarding exam results will be sent to the applicant’s contact information on file. Please note that applicants will not be able to change their contact information the week before the exam results are released.

You will be able to determine whether your name appears on the pass list through the State Bar website at 6:00 p.m. (Pacific Time) on November 12, 2021. You will need your file number and applicant number, which are listed on the admittance tickets and ID badges, to access the pass list.

Update re: in-person v. online Bar Exam testing

Hello everyone!

An update about in-person v. online Bar Exam testing for the February 2022 Cal Bar Exam.  Perhaps not a given that we will return to in-person testing for February 2022?

The Cal Bar announced yesterday that the October 2021 Baby Bar Exam will be an online exam.  No explicit announcement about the Cal Bar format for February 2022.  Based on the timing of this announcement for the Baby Bar (i.e., July 1, or a week after the Baby Bar was held), it’s safe to assume that we should know more information about the February 2022 Cal Bar Exam format on Monday, August 2, if not before.

More info about the October 2021 Baby Bar exam format here:

http://www.calbar.ca.gov/Admissions/Examinations/First-Year-Law-Students-Examination/October-2021-First-Year-Exam

 

Date: October 26, 2021

Applicants must log into the exam between the time the password is released at 7:40 a.m. and the latest start time of 8:00 a.m. for the first exam session to verify their identification. In the morning, the exam will be administered in four, one-hour sessions (one hour per essay question). There will be a 25-minute break between each one-hour question session. Other than scheduled breaks, applicants are not permitted to leave the view of their web camera unless they finish the session early and upload their answers. In the afternoon, multiple-choice questions will be split into two 90-minute sessions, each containing 50 questions. There will be a 25-minute break between the sessions. Other than the scheduled break, applicants are not permitted to leave the view of their web camera unless they finish early and upload their answers.

 

Important deadlines

Application filings

July 1 Exam application open
August 2 Timely filing deadline
August 3–31 $25 late filing fee
September 1–15 $200 late filing fee
September 15 – Final filing/reinstatement deadline

– Testing accommodations petition final filing deadline*

October 1 Appeal of Testing Accommodations Petition Decision*
October 12 – Final eligibility deadline

– Proof of Law Study (first-time applicants for the exam)

October 15 Emergency Testing Accommodations Petition final filing deadline*

*Documents must be complete and received in the San Francisco Office of Admissions

Withdrawal refund policy

Requests to withdraw from the October 2021 First-Year Law Students’ Exam must be received by the State Bar’s Office of Admissions on or before the dates listed below in order to qualify for a refund. See the Withdrawal Refund Policy.

July 1–September 1 Withdrawal with 60% refund
September 2–15 Withdrawal with 30% refund
September 16–October 12 Withdrawal with no refund
October 12 Final deadline to withdraw from exam

Exam preparation and exam day

September 28 – First date admit tickets available

– ExamSoft mock exams open

October 15 Deadline to complete two mandatory mock exams
October 19 Exam files open for download
October 25 Deadline to download exam files
October 27 12:00 p.m. (Pacific Time) Laptop upload date
October 28 12:00 p.m. (Pacific Time) Testing accommodation upload date

Fees

All applicants must pay the required fees:

First-Year Law Students’ Exam $624
Laptop computer fees $153
Late Laptop Computer Fee $15* $15

*Request received subsequent to filing application

The transfer of fees from one exam to another is prohibited.

Refunds requested due to hospitalization, death, or call to active duty will be considered in accordance with the Committee of Bar Examiners’ refund policy. The refund form and copies of the policy are available on the State Bar website. Withdrawal requests can be submitted by logging into the Applicant Portal.

Address change

Applicants who change their address after filing the application can make updates by logging into the Applicant Portal to update their profile. If admittance tickets are lost, a duplicate can be requested by contacting the Office of Admissions. Deadline to change address: September 15.

Release of results

Results from the October 2021 First-Year Law Students’ Exam are scheduled to be released electronically through the Applicant Portal to applicants on December 10.

 

NCBE wags the Bar Exam Dog… in-person bar exams for February 2022

Friends:

The NCBE is only going to provide in-person materials for the February 2022 exam.  That means hardcopy materials.  This is a strong leverage play.  “OK, state bar licensing entities, you can do what you want, so long as you do what I say.”  You want Uniform Bar Exam materials?  Enjoy our hardcopy exams, people:  you really didn’t want to think about having another remote exam, did you.

What does this mean for California?  You want those MBE materials for 50% of your test, don’t you?  Welcome back to in-person testing, people.  California has about 60 days to decide right after the July 2021 Cal Bar Exam that, hey, it really was our idea, it really was!  But we’re doing in-person testing for February 2022… and now you know.

NCBE’s press release from June 1 appears below.

 

NCBE Anticipates Return to In-Person Testing for February 2022 Bar Exam

MADISON, WISCONSIN, June 1, 2021—The National Conference of Bar Examiners (NCBE) announced today that February 2022 bar exam materials will be made available to jurisdictions for in-person testing only, unless restrictions by a public health authority prohibit a jurisdiction from administering the February exam in person.

NCBE is the not-for-profit corporation that develops the licensing tests used by most US jurisdictions for attorney admissions. In the second half of 2020 and throughout 2021, NCBE made bar exam materials available to jurisdictions for both in-person and remote exam administrations. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the bar exam had been administered by each jurisdiction in person, in a secure, proctored testing environment. The July 2021 bar exam is expected to be the last that includes a remote testing option; 29 jurisdictions plan to administer that exam remotely, while 24 will administer it in person.

NCBE has advocated for in-person testing as the best mode of administration of the bar exam.  According to Beth Hill, NCBE Director of Test Development, Operations, and Security, “Remote exams have been a valuable stopgap for jurisdictions during this time, allowing examinees to take the test without having to gather in a larger group. However, remote exams create challenges for exam security and uniformity, and for this reason, we have consistently advocated for in-person testing as the best option whenever possible.”

Hill acknowledges, however, that both NCBE and jurisdictions must continue to monitor the public health landscape: “Throughout the pandemic, jurisdictions have worked closely with their state and local health authorities to ensure that examinees may take the bar exam consistent with each jurisdiction’s safety requirements. Although conditions appear to be improving, NCBE recognizes that any jurisdiction’s public health authority may establish that candidates cannot test in person. Should that occur, we are committed to working with that jurisdiction on a solution that will enable its candidates to take the bar exam.”

The National Conference of Bar Examiners serves bar admission authorities, courts, the legal education community, and candidates by providing high-quality assessment products, services, and research; character investigations; and informational and educational resources and programs. It promotes fairness, integrity, and best practices in bar admissions for the benefit and protection of the public in pursuit of its vision of a competent, ethical, and diverse legal profession. For more information, visit the NCBE website at http://www.ncbex.org.

Last day to register for the July 2021 California Bar Examination!

Hello y’all!

You might have found the key to a products liability essay.  Or the cluster to use in a negligence exam.  Or a multiple permutations issue that is the difference to passing or failing a Civ Pro essay.

But none of that is going to matter if you aren’t registered to take the next exam!

That’s right, sports fans.  The first ability is availability.  If you’re not registered, you ain’t available.  And as the ancient philosopher Harris once noted, “You can’t pass that which you don’t attempt.”

So, please, I beseech you, go to the applicant portal.  Check your account.  Make sure one last time that you’ve registered to take the exam AND that you’ve completed the Acknowledgement and Acceptance of Testing Conditions form.

And… if you’re thinking about applying for accommodations, today is the deadline as well.  Make sure to submit all relevant paperwork.

Once you’ve done that, then get back to work.  When in doubt, do another set of MBEs, or go write an essay.  Don’t memorize!  Too early!

February 2021 Cal Bar Exam Results

 

As per the Cal Bar.  Press release below.

 

Takeaways:

 

General Bar pass rate is 37.2%, highest for a February exam since February 2015.

 

Attorneys’ Exam pass rate is 57.2%, highest for a February exam since February 2003!

 

Today the State Bar released results of the February 2021 California Bar Exam and announced that 1,151 people (37.2 percent of applicants) passed the General Bar Exam. This pass rate represents an increase of 10.4 percentage points, or nearly 39 percent, from the February 2020 General Bar Exam pass rate of 26.8 percent. If those who passed the exam satisfy all other requirements for admission, they will be eligible to be licensed by the State Bar to practice law in California.

“We heartily congratulate the 1,151 applicants who passed the General Bar Exam and the 247 candidates who passed the Attorneys’ Exam, particularly after facing and overcoming the many challenges of 2020. We hope to welcome all those who passed to California’s legal profession very soon,” said Donna Hershkowitz, Interim Executive Director of the State Bar.

This year’s February exam was the second administered remotely, after the near-record cohort who took the exam in October. It was also the second graded under the reduced cut score of 1390, directed by the California Supreme Court in July 2020. If the cut score remained at 1440, approximately 734 General Bar Exam takers (23.7 percent) would have passed this examination.

The February exam cohort was approximately 3,100 for the February exam (approximately 3,100 compared to 4,000–5,000 on average), likely attributable to the increased number of test takers for the October 2020 exam cohort, the availability of the new provisional licensure program, and the higher pass rate on the October exam. As is typical, a majority of the February exam cohort were repeat takers, although at a lower percentage than average (approximately 60 percent compared to the typical 70 percent).

February 2021 General Bar Exam preliminary statistics

  • Completed the exam: 3,098 applicants
  • First-time applicants: 1,227 (39.6 percent of total)
  • Pass rate for first-time applicants: 53.0 percent overall
  • Repeat applicants: 1,871 (60.4 percent of total)
  • Pass rate for repeat applicants: 27.0 percent overall

Pass rate for the General Bar Exam (rounded to whole numbers) by law school type:

School Type First-Timers Repeaters
California ABA

65%

39%

Out-of-State ABA

58%

26%

California Accredited (not ABA)

44%

17%

Unaccredited: Fixed-Facility

0%

0%

Unaccredited: Correspondence

43%

20%

Unaccredited: Distance-Learning

47%

17%

All Others

47%

23%

All Applicants

53%

27%

 

General information about the structure and content of the General Bar Exam.

The Attorneys’ Examination is open to those who have been admitted to the active practice of law and are in good standing for at least four years in another U.S. jurisdiction. Of the 432 attorneys who completed the Attorneys’ Examination, 247 (57.2 percent) passed.

A pass list from the exam will be published on the State Bar website on May 9, 2021, at 6:00 a.m. More detailed statistics about exam results will be available in four to six weeks on the State Bar website.

Successful applicants who satisfy all requirements for admission may take the Attorney’s Oath individually or participate in admissions ceremonies held by their law school or others. Due to the current COVID-19 restrictions, the State Bar’s Office of Admissions will not hold its admissions ceremonies and has posted instructions for individuals to be sworn in remotely.

If they have satisfied all other requirements, applicants are eligible to practice law in California after taking the Attorney’s Oath and submitting their oath card to the State Bar. Approximately two weeks after forwarding the oath card to the State Bar, their names will appear on the agency’s roll of licensed attorneys accessible on the State Bar website.

July 2021 Cal Bar Exam results release date – earlier than usual!

Hello everyone!

FYI – The Cal Bar released the July 2021 Bar Exam FAQs today.  On page 14, in the Scoring, Scaling and Grading section, Question 4:

 

“Results are scheduled to be released by November 12, 2021.” 

 

This is one week EARLIER than usual.  Typically the results publish the Friday before Thanksgiving.  But Thanksgiving is Thursday, November 25, which would make the traditional results day Friday, November 19 (which, not for nothing is the day before a certain Big Game!).   At any rate, if the November 12 date remains, that’s not a bad result for repeaters, who will have more time to get some work done before the holidays, which is always a tricky exercise.

 

July-2021-Bar-Exam-FAQs 32521

July 2021 Bar Exam Announcement

Hello everyone!

The July 2021 Cal Bar Exam announcement is provided here:

 

http://www.calbar.ca.gov/Admissions/Examinations/California-Bar-Examination/July-2021-California-Bar-Exam

 

Note that the first version of the FAQ Document for the July exam is here!   I’ve attached it.  Note it will change over time, so make sure to check the document online periodically.  Pro-tip:  Look at the LAST page of the document first because that’s where the tips are!

 

July-2021-Bar-Exam-FAQs 32521

 

Finally, the July 2021 Bar Exam Schedule (under traditional time) is available as well.  It’s attached.

 

July-2021-Bar-Exam-Schedule

Registration and other important deadlines for July 2021 Cal Bar Exam

Important deadlines

Application filing

  • Exam application open: March 1, 2021
  • Timely filing deadline: April 1, 2021
  • $50.00 late filing fee: April 2, 2021–April 30, 2021
  • $250.00 late filing fee: May 1, 2021–June 1, 2021
  • Final filing deadline and final filing deadline for petitions for accommodations: June 1, 2021
  • Acknowledgment and Acceptance of Testing Conditions: June 1, 2021
  • Mock exam available: June 29, 2021
  • First date admit tickets available: June 29, 2021
  • Proof of law study (applicant for the General Bar Exam): July 13, 2021 (important for 1st time takers!)
  • Deadline for remote exam takers to complete two required mock exams: July 16, 2021
  • Exam files open for download: July 21, 2021
  • Deadline for remote exam takers to download exam files: July 23, 202