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Albany Law School sees big jump in bar exam pass rate

Syracuse U shows moderate gain; UB flat

Alicia Oulette

Alicia Oulette

Albany Law School saw a double-digit increase in the bar exam passing rate for graduates who took the test for the first time in July, while rates at law schools at Syracuse University and the University at Buffalo showed a moderate gain and were flat, respectively.

The overall results for the July exam were released at the end of October, but a school-by-school breakdown was not immediately available at that time.

At Albany, the passing rate of 83 percent was 14.5 percentage points above the previous July results.

“The credit goes to our hard-working students,” Alicia Ouellette, president and dean of the school, said in a statement.

“They should be proud of all the preparation they did this summer, as well as throughout three rigorous years of law school. This is a major milestone in their career as lawyers and leaders,” she said.

Ouellette also credited the work the faculty in preparing prepare students for the exam.

“This is a faculty that cares about its students, and the results this year demonstrates our commitment to students,” she said.

The preparation included weekend review sessions, one-on-one coaching, academic advising, and integrating bar exam preparation throughout the curriculum.

“This was an effort by the entire school,” she said.

“As a law school, our work will not be complete until all of our students pass the bar. We intend to work with those who did not pass to prepare them for the next bar exam, which includes examining where the common weak spots were. We know that if our students can successfully earn a juris doctor at Albany Law School, they can pass the bar,” she said.

The passing rate for New York’s July bar exam was 64 percent, 3 percentage points above last year, but it’s still lower than 11 of the last 12 years.

The pass rate for all ABA law school graduates was 83 percent for first-time takers (up from 79 percent last year) and 75 percent (up from 73 in 2015) for first-time and repeat takers combined.

The passing rate for graduates of New York law schools who took the bar exam in July for the first time was 82 percent, a 4 percentage point increase from a year earlier.

Craig Boise

Craig Boise

At Syracuse University College of Law, of the 105 graduates who took the bar exam for the first time in July, 89.5 percent passed, up from 83.3 percent in 2015.

“We are proud of our graduates’ strong performance on the 2016 New York State Bar Exam,” said SU College of Law Dean Craig M. Boise.

“This continued upward trajectory for the College of Law’s New York bar pass rate is a credit to their hard work, our exceptional faculty and fully supportive staff, and a well-conceived curriculum that prepares our graduates for bar exam and professional success,” he said.

At the University at Buffalo School of Law, 168 graduates took the bar exam in July and 73 percent passed, which is an increase over the 72.2 percent who passed last year.