The “baby bar” is another name for the First-Year Law Students’ Examination (FYLSE). It is administered by the State Bar of California in both June and October. Not everyone has to take the baby bar exam! It is primarily administered to those who study law at unaccredited law schools (including online law schools). Note that some students who get into academic trouble at accredited law schools in California also have to take the baby bar to continue on in law school.
Students are allowed to take the exam after their first year of study.
What is the Baby Bar like? What subjects does it test?
The Baby Bar is similar to the actual bar exam in that it includes both essay and multiple-choice questions. However, instead of testing all areas of law, it tests Contracts, Criminal Law, and Torts. The test focuses on general principles of law. It is administered in California, but the examiners make it clear that a “detailed knowledge of California law is not required.”
How long is the Baby Bar?
It is a day-long, seven-hour-long test (four hour-long essays and three hours of 100 multiple choice questions). Both the essay and multiple choice section are weighted equally. Each portion is converted to a 400-point scale. Examinees need a score of 560 or higher (70%) to pass.
Why is it important to pass the Baby Bar?
Applicants must pass the exam the baby bar the first time they take it or within the first three administrations that they are eligible to take the exam to receive full law school credit for the courses they have taken. If an applicant instead passes the baby bar after the first three times that they are eligible to take it, they will receive credit for their first year of law studying only.
Does the Baby Bar have a high passage rate?
Unfortunately, it does not. For the October 2014 baby bar exam, the passage rate was 25.3% (with a 31.3% passage rate for first-time takers and a 21.3% passage rate for repeat-takers). It was even lower for the June 2014 baby bar exam – with a 27% passage rate for first-time takers and a 19.6% passage rate for repeat takers, making for an overall 23% passage rate.
Basically, this means that you have to study for the first-year law students’ examination if you are serious about passing it! You should develop a solid game plan, and make sure to put in a lot of time both learning the material and applying it to essay and multiple choice fact patterns.
Do you tutor for the Baby Bar?
Yes. We offer tutoring services for the for the baby bar. Click here to read more about our baby bar tutoring services. Our tutors have helped students study for the baby bar. Our tutors have been successful in helping students both learn the law they need to know to pass the baby bar, and importantly, learn how to apply it to the types of fact patterns they will see on the baby bar exam (something that baby bar takers struggle with!).
If you are interested in tutoring for the baby bar, please do not hesitate to contact us at [email protected] or 248-228-5547. We are happy to help you!