New US law school accreditation standards proposed

May 9, 2013 US law schools may soon be subject to more stringent accreditation standards. The proposed standard - which saw approval in committee - would require law schools to show that 80 percent of its graduates who sat for the bar exam in the two years after graduation passed the exam.

The current standards require schools to show a 75 per cent pass rate for graduates who took the bar in at least three of the previous five years, or to show that its first-time bar passage rate was no more than 15 points below the average bar passage rate for ABA-approved law schools in states where its graduates took the bar.

The proposed new standard also requires schools to account for all their graduates, up from the 70 per cent requirement now in place. Many argue that getting reliable accreditation data for all students across all states is an impossible task.

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