Paul L. Caron

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

California Announces Online Bar Exam, But Will It Work?

Following up on my previous post, California Supreme Court Orders July Bar Exam Delayed To Sept. 9-10, Administered Online:

California State Bar (2014)ABA Journal, California Announces Online Bar Exam, But How Will It Work?:

If the novel coronavirus pandemic leads to online remotely proctored bar exams, controlled test-taking environments, one of the most equalizing factors, will be eliminated. ...

“People say, ‘Just put the test online. This isn’t a situation like the [traditional] bar exam, where we’re all sitting in the same ballroom taking the test. It’s actually a technical system, and you can’t just wish it into existence; you have to build it,” says Kellye Testy, president of the Law School Admission Council. Her organization is offering its first remote LSAT in May, and another is planned for June.

This was possible, she adds, because they determined, based on decades of question data, that the test could be shortened from five to three sections and still have valid and reliable results.

Testy describes an online remotely proctored bar exam as a “very heavy lift,” and says many states are planning for the scenario but hope they can ultimately administer a traditional in-person bar exam in the summer or fall.

“I’m not going to say it would be impossible or that it won’t happen, but it’s a really big lift for states. They’re not testing organizations,” Testy says.

TaxProf Blog coverage of the July 2020 bar exam:

For complete TaxProf Blog coverage of the coronavirus, see here.

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