Michigan Board Of Law Examiners Decides To Scale Essays

On July 9, 2014, the Michigan Board of Law Examiners (MBLE) announced that it has decided to scale essays again. This response is likely due to the backlash over the changed scoring method that took place in February 2012, which lowered the first-time passage rate by nearly 30%.

From the MBLE's website:
Beginning with the upcoming administration of the bar exam on July 29th, an improved scoring system for the essay portion of the exam will be implemented that more accurately measures competence by:

  • ensuring that essay test scores across administrations reflect the same skill level; and, 
  • continuing to reflect differences in the difficulty between the multiple choice and essay portions of the exam. 

The new method establishes a common scale that to the extent possible accounts for differences in difficulty 
across [bar exam] administrations, while making sure the applicant scores accurately reflect their competence on both the multi-state and Michigan portions of the exam.

It's great to hear that the MBLE took the public criticism to heart and reevaluated the scoring system. Good luck to all Michigan takers this July!


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