We have a lot of examinees ask us if the D.C. Bar Exam is easier than the New York Bar Exam. Or they wonder if one state’s Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) is easier than a different state bar exam?
Is the D.C. Bar Exam easier than the New York Bar Exam?
So far, we have not seen any noticeable difference in grading or scoring among UBE jurisdictions. Essay scoring seems to depend more on the grader that happens to grade your essay rather than the jurisdiction where you take your essay exam.
Many students examine the pass rates to determine whether they think one state’s bar exam is easier than another state’s exam. However, pass rates can be misleading. Pass rates can depend on how many repeat takers are in the jurisdiction (e.g. a lot of students flock to D.C. when they pass one part of the bar exam hoping that they can pass the other portion, and this can drive down the pass rate), how many first time takers or attorneys take the exam, and various other factors.
The time and expense it takes to travel to a different jurisdiction in the hopes that it will be easier is likely not worth it (especially when you could get there only to be assigned to a more difficult grader). It is better to spend your time preparing for the exam efficiently and productively so that you can take the exam in your home state or wherever it makes the most sense for you.
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