Statistics on the 2014 Bar
Another possible source of injustice, is the answer itself. The U.P. Law Center often gives three different answers to a single question, either because the question is vague, or there is no established correct answer. Will the examiner favor an answer different from his?
Of the all the possible injustices done to the examinees by entire bar process, nothing stands out so egregiously as the process of scoring.
First off, does the examiner really have time to correct each and every answer to each question, totaling 30 questions, of each of the 6,000 examinees? Or does he just skim through it? Even law professors have trouble checking the answers to 5 questions of 40 students.
Usually, each problem is worth 4 points. Does the examiner write down a score for each and every problem? Such as “3 points out of 4?” How generous is the examiner? For example, even if your answer is correct in a given problem, will the examiner credit you with a “4 points out of 4” which is 100% for that problem, or merely “3/4” which only just a passing grade of 75%?
So, it’s either you get 100% (4/4) or 75% (3/4)! No wonder only 5% get the grade of 75. A grade of 75 means that the examinee is almost perfect, getting 3 points of 4 in each problem.
Thus, if the examiner religiously uses the point system for each problem, there are only five grades in the bar: 4/4 (100%), ¾ (75%), 2/4 (50%), ¼ (25%), and 0/4 (0%). Although, it is the doubtful that this scoring system is used, given the short time to check 6,000 notebooks. But if this point system is not used, what’s the point of assigning points to a problem?
With this illustration, can you see why getting a grade of 79 is almost like getting a perfect 4/4 in most of the problems and getting ¾ in others. No wonder a grade of 79 belongs to the top 3% in the 2014 bar. Ah, you’re still wondering why we choose an odd grade of 79 as an example in the beginning of this article?
So, who’s to say, that even with a perfect answer, the examiner will still refuse to give you 4 out of 4, but only a 3 of 4? This minor stroke has an huge deleterious effect. Your grade is either 75% barely passing or 100% topnotcher.
Anyway, I could write more about this issue, and if given a chance to share my ideas with the Supreme Court; I would gladly do so.
(End of Part 9)