UF Law Grads Excel on Bar Exam
July 2009 results were very strong for the 328 UF grads who took the Florida Bar Exam for the first time and passed at an 86.3 percent rate (7.2 percent above the rate for all other takers). Although UF ranked second among the state's 10 law schools on this test, the University of Florida College of Law still has a better and more consistent pass rate than any other Florida law school, including FSU, which came in first this year.
“Obviously, there are different ways to present statistics, and taking a small sample on one testing event is one way to do it, but the fact is that when bar exam results are compared on a class-by-class basis (combining February and July exam results to achieve a single class year result), UF Law has ranked first or second in the state five of the last six years. This is the best record in the state,” said UF Law Dean Robert Jerry. “FSU is second, having placed either first or second three of the last six years. When a longer time frame is used, UF Law has ranked first or second 11 of the last 12 years, again, the best record in the state.”
Florida’s worst test performance was on the February 2009 exam and is attributed to an aberration produced by the record small sample (37), where only 16 of these first-time takers had completed law school in the prior semester, and a number of test-takers were adversely affected by severe illness or unusually stressful events in their personal lives.
“Although we are proud of our graduates’ performance on the Bar, we would, of course, prefer to be number one every year,” said Dean Jerry. “Toward this goal, we recently initiated an Academic Achievement Program, one purpose of which is to identify students at higher risk of bar exam failure and place them in targeted academic support activities.”