Measuring Legal Research Skills on a Bar Examination

by Stephen P. Klein

Download

Download Free Electronic Document

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 0.2 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 7.0 or higher for the best experience.

Purchase

Purchase Print Copy

 FormatList Price Price
Add to Cart Paperback6 pages $20.00 $16.00 20% Web Discount

Abstract

Reports on an investigation of whether Multistate Bar Examinations and essay scores in bar examinations were good predictors of how well applicants could perform some of the day-to-day tasks that are required of practicing attorneys. One part of this study involved assessing the relationship between bar exam scores on a test that was designed to measure certain important legal research skills. The study also investigated whether differences in performance level among racial groups on the Research Test paralleled differences among these groups on the bar exam and whether Research Test scores were related to an applicant's legal training and experience. The findings indicate that the inclusion of a Research Test on the bar exam could make a small but important difference in who passes. And, while the use of a Research Test would not narrow the gaps in average performance level among racial groups, neither would it increase the difference among these groups.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

Permission is given to duplicate this electronic document for personal use only, as long as it is unaltered and complete. Copies may not be duplicated for commercial purposes. Unauthorized posting of RAND PDFs to a non-RAND Web site is prohibited. RAND PDFs are protected under copyright law. For information on reprint and linking permissions, please visit the RAND Permissions page.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.