Some mixed results for February 2016 first-time bar exam test-takers

I depicted earlier the 33-year low in February Multistate Bar Exam scores from the February 2016 test. But, as one commenter noted, that doesn't necessarily tell us a whole lot about the first-time pass rate, particularly if there is a glut of repeaters taking the bar inflating the failure rate. Now that results are trickling in, we are seeing declining pass rates across the board among first-time test takers--but, at least in a piece of good news for bar test-takers, the declines are not as dramatically sweeping and across-the-board as we've seen before.

The results are decidedly more mixed, albeit with more in the negative direction than a positive direction. Admittedly, it is important to note that these are only a handful of jurisdictions. Additionally, the February pool of test-takers are much smaller than the July pool of test-takers, which may skew results. The following results are the change in pass rates year-over-year, and I listed them only among first-time test-takers, when the statistics were available. (More states had overall pass rates, but these tend to be more valuable in terms of identifying trends among recent law school graduates.)

Florida, -6 points (February 2015: 64%; February 2016: 58%)

Indiana, -12 points (February 2015: 74%; February 2016: 62%)

New Mexico, -9 points (February 2015: 90%; February 2016: 81%)

Oregon, unchanged (February 2015: 69%; February 2016: 69%)

Pennsylvania, +5 points (February 2015: 69%; February 2016: 74%)

Tennessee, +4 points (February 2015: 64%; February 2016: 68%)

Washington, -4 points (February 2015: 75%; February 2016, 71%)