Bar Exam Success Overview
Bar Exam Success Overview

Bar Exam Success Analyses Overview

AccessLex Institute® is committed to supporting student and bar exam success for all aspiring lawyers. To that end, we are offering a research opportunity designed to support law schools in analyzing their institutional data to assess the extent to which their students’ academic performance, before and during law school, predicts their likelihood of first-time bar exam passage. These analyses are conducted free-of-charge and can be used to help you:

  1. Understand the extent to which preadmission factors correlate with your students’ academic and bar success;
  2. Develop interventions for bar success and when to apply such interventions;
  3. Target interventions appropriately, especially given limited time and resources;
  4. Build empirical evidence for what you have observed after years of experience and daily interactions with law students; and
  5. Leverage data to advance new or ongoing student success initiatives.

Specifically, the Bar Exam Success Analyses project seeks to identify:

  1. The admission and academic factors that influence first-time bar exam performance among graduates of your specific law school.
  2. The factors that influence academic performance throughout law school, from the first semester to the final year, including whether grades or credit hours earned in particular areas of study (e.g., doctrinal, skills-based, clinic) improve the likelihood of bar passage.
  3. The extent to which performance in specific upper-level UBE-tested subjects (e.g., Business Associations, Family Law) is predictive of first-time bar passage, relative to performance in required 1L doctrinal courses.
  4. Tangible strategies for increasing bar exam passage at participating law schools, based on the analyses conducted for their institution.

Additional custom analyses may be available upon request.

View a sample Bar Exam Success Analyses final report.

View the recorded Bar Exam Success Analyses Information Session webinar to learn more about the initiative, requirements for participating, and next steps for participation.

How to Participate

To participate, your law school will need to:

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  1. Complete the Contact Form to indicate your interest in participating. We will follow up to schedule a meeting with you and provide further instructions regarding execution of the data sharing agreement as well as our secure data transfer process.
  2. Review and sign our data sharing agreement, which holds AccessLex Institute accountable for protecting and safeguarding the data you provide for the purposes of the analyses. We never sell your students’ information to any third party and go to great lengths to anonymize and protect personally identifiable information. NOTE: This project does not require disclosure of student names or readily identifiable information about them.
  3. Provide demographic, admission, and academic data on your law school graduates. The scope of our analyses will be limited to those who matriculated as first-time law students in the years 2015 through 2020 and took the bar exam at the first opportunity after graduation (e.g., graduated in May 2017 and took the July 2017 bar exam, or graduated in December 2018 and took the February 2019 bar exam). Required data elements and details for submission are provided below.
  4. Agree to allow your anonymized school-level data to be aggregated with that of other anonymized,
    participating institutions to be used in the building of a clearinghouse of relevant information as well as in reports, presentations, etc. When aggregated, your school’s name and identifying information (including the specific jurisdictions in which your students sat for the bar exam) are stripped from the data. In any reports, articles, communications, etc., we refrain from any mention of individual school characteristics that may be used to identify it, particularly as it relates to its composition of students based on their race/ethnicity, gender, or other identifying characteristics. By safeguarding the identity of your school, we by extension further protect the identity of your students/graduates.
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The project milestones and priority deadlines for participation are:

  1. Schedule an interest meeting with the Research Team by contacting
  2. Submit a signed data sharing agreement by the priority deadline of June 14, 2024 (submitting agreements after this date may delay the final report).
  3. Submit your institution’s data by the priority deadline of September 13, 2024 (submitting data after this date will delay the final report).

Please note that these are only priority deadlines. Schools that are unable to submit their data before the priority deadline are welcome to participate on a first come, first served basis.

Required Data Elements

For all first-time matriculants in the years 2015 through 2020, the following data are needed to conduct the analyses in full. However, we may be able to amend this list if you anticipate challenges providing any of the data elements indicated. Please contact us at to discuss your options.

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Outcome Variables:

  • Bar exam result: Pass, Fail
  • Scaled MBE score (if available)
  • Bar exam score (if available)
  • Law school GPA
    • End of first semester
    • End of first year
    • Final/At graduation (cumulative)

Predictor Variables:

  • Law School Coursework
    • Credit hours and grades earned in:
      • Doctrinal coursework
        • Criminal Procedure, Evidence, Conflict of Laws, Business Associations, Family Law, UCC Art. 9, and Trusts and Estates
        • Required 1L doctrinal courses
        • Other doctrinal courses
      • Skill-based bar courses
      • Legal writing courses
    • Credit hours only in:
      • Clinics
      • Externships
      • Other
  • Pre-admission Factors
    • LSAT
      • Highest LSAT score
      • Avg. LSAT score
      • Number of LSAT scores reported
    • UGPA
      • First year
      • Final (cumulative)

Control Variables:

  • Demographic Information
    • Unique identifier for each student (all students should be anonymized)
    • Race/Ethnicity
    • Gender
    • Birth year
    • First-Generation College Student Status (Yes/No)
  • Enrollment Information
    • Enrollment term and year (e.g., Fall 2014)
    • Graduation term and year
    • Whether student unenrolled (either transfer or attrition)
  • Undergraduate institution
    • Institution name
    • Whether student attended more than one undergraduate institution
    • Number of years to complete
  • Other
    • Bar exam jurisdiction and year
    • Class rank (if available), final and by year
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Data Transfer Guidance

Data shared with AccessLex should be stripped of student names and identifiers prior to transmission. For more details, please review the data transfer instructions and example transfer data file linked below.

We look forward to assisting you in your efforts to empower the next generation of lawyers at your school. Please email to contact us with any questions.