The Washington Post

Examsoft’s bar exam disaster

All over the country, recent law graduates are taking their bar exams this week.  The stakes are high.  For many, failure to pass the bar will virtually eliminate any prospect of gainful legal employment for the next six months (until the exams are administered again).

Examsoft makes exam software that is used in many law schools and, apparently, many state bar exams.  The software enables students to type their exams on a computer while locking out all other programs and internet access.  It then saves an encrypted exam file that can be printed or uploaded for grading.  When it works, it works great.  But when it doesn’t . . . well, think the early days

It appears that Examsoft’s servers had some problem dealing with the crush of bar applicants trying to upload their exams last night.  As Inside Higher Ed and Above the Law report, many bar applicants were unable to upload their exams on Tuesday evening or had significant upload difficulties.  Were that not bad enough in itself, the bar exam is delivered over multiple days, so even those who were able to upload their exams late into the night had to get up early this morning to take the next part of the exam.

Examsoft has tried to address the problem, and worked with states to extend the deadlines for uploading exams.  Don’t be surprised, however, if this doesn’t make the problem go away.  Recent law grads can be a litigious set, and I suspect more than a few will blame any bar failures on Examsoft’s snafu.

(Hat tip: Taxprof)

Jonathan H. Adler teaches courses in constitutional, administrative, and environmental law at the Case Western University School of Law, where he is the inaugural Johan Verheij Memorial Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Business Law and Regulation.
Show Comments

Sign up for email updates from the "Confronting the Caliphate" series.

You have signed up for the "Confronting the Caliphate" series.

Thank you for signing up
You'll receive e-mail when new stories are published in this series.
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Close video player
Now Playing

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.