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In 2018, the State Bar Board of Trustees created the California Attorney Practice Analysis (CAPA) Working Group to take a fresh look at the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed by entry-level attorneys in California to practice law ethically and competently. The CAPA Working Group completed its work in 2020, coinciding with a national practice analysis by the National Conference of Bar Examiners that will drive recommendations regarding content and format of the Uniform Bar Exam (UBE).
To evaluate the recommendations raised by the CAPA Working Group as well as additional policy questions regarding the California bar exam’s format and pass score, the California Supreme Court and the Board of Trustees established the joint Blue Ribbon Commission on the Future of the California Bar Exam.
The Blue Ribbon Commission is charged with developing recommendations concerning whether and what changes to make to the California Bar Exam, and whether to adopt alternative or additional testing or tools to ensure minimum competence to practice law.
In so doing, the commission will review the results of the California Attorney Practice Analysis and the CAPA Working Group’s recommendations; the results of the 2020 National Conference of Bar Examiners practice analysis, and its recommendations for the Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) content and format; and the results of additional recent studies on the California Bar Exam conducted the State Bar, including data examining the pass rates of applicants of color. While its work will be grounded in these studies’ empirical findings, the commission shall explore other issues to ensure that the exam is an effective tool for determining whether applicants are prepared to practice law ethically and competently at a level appropriate for an entry-level attorney including any information that may be gleaned from California’s experience with the temporary provisional licensure program to the extent that it is relevant to the commission’s charge. Read More
In particular, the commission will develop recommendations for the California Supreme Court and the State Bar of California regarding:
The commission consists of 19 members appointed by the Supreme Court. Members have multiple areas of expertise and represent a wide range of stakeholders.
Members reflect the state’s demographic and geographic diversity and diversity in attorney practice sectors and settings.
The Blue Ribbon Commission will begin its work in the second quarter of 2021, and expects to present a final report on its findings and recommendations later in 2022.
Devan McFarland, 415-538-2548, Devan.McFarland@calbar.ca.gov
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