Sep 20, 2021 @ 14:46

Some 11, 000 Bar hopefuls have applied so far for 2020-2021 exams

Some 11,000 examinees have already applied so far for the 2020-2021 Bar examinations — arguably the toughest professional licensure exam in the country — which will be held this November in 24 testing centers nationwide.

The increase in the number of examinees was due to the postponement of the bar examinations in 2020 brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic now sweeping the country and the rest of the world.

The online examinations will be conducted by the Supreme Court in four Sundays this coming November.

The high court has introduced changes in this year’s Bar exams, though pro hac vice (for or on this occasion only).

Departing from tradition, there will be no announcement of topnotchers in the 2020-2021 Bar examination, senior Supreme Court Associate Justice Marvic Leonen recently said in a Bar bulletin.

The high court will instead recognize examinees who got an 85 % or higher weighted score for “exemplary performance.”

This was a departure from SC tradition of announcing bar topnotchers with the release of the list of passers.

Furthermore, the SC will have a list of law schools ranked from the most to the least number of passers among first time examinees, and a separate list ranked from those with the most to the least number of examinees recognized for exemplary performance.

“It is hoped that by shifting the focus away from how select individuals excel and onto a school’s collective performance, this will encourage deep-seated and wide-ranging improvements in legal education,” Leonen said.

He stressed however that changes during 2020-2021 Bar examinations was adopted pro hac vice (for or on this occasion only).

Leonen said “these are designed to enable a more equitable approach to appraising and reporting on Bar examination performance.”

“Similarly, the modifications were adopted to initiate reforms that address the debilities and inequities arising from traditional, competitive mechanisms, as well as the false tendency to associate Bar Examination performance with overall legal acumen and even future professional success,” he added.

For purposes of the 2020/21 Bar examinations, each Bar subject will have a total of 15 to 18 straightforward questions designed to address
entry-level legal competency. There will be no sub-questions.

“The points earned by an examinee’s answer to each Bar subject’s questions shall be added to determine the examinee’s raw score for a given Bar subject. To compute an examinee’s overall score in the Bar Examinations, the scores obtained in each Bar subject shall be given a relative weight,” Leonen explained.#

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