Friday, September 11, 2009

"Bar exam pass rate hits record low

"The pass rate for this year's bar exam hit a new low of 27.6 percent, the Ministry of Justice has announced.

"The ministry's National Bar Examination Commission said on Thursday that the pass rate for the latest bar exam dropped for the third consecutive year, going below 30 percent for the first time.

"The number of successful examinees stood at 2,043, well shy of the target number set by the commission at 2,500 to 2,900. Among the successful applicants, 1,503 were men and 540 were women.

"While the government aims to raise the number of successful examinees to 3,000 by 2010, the nation has failed to achieve the increasing yearly target for the past two years in a row.

"This year's exam was the fourth one designed for those who completed the nation's law schools, which were first introduced in 2004. There are currently 74 law schools across the nation, from which a record high of 7,392 applicants sat for this year's bar exam.

"The average age of successful examinees was 28.8 years old, with the eldest examinee aged at 55.

"Hitotsubashi University had the highest pass rate at 62.9 percent, while the University of Tokyo had the largest number of successful candidates at 216, followed by Chuo University at 162, Keio University at 147, Kyoto University at 145 and Waseda University at 124.

"The pass rate of applicants who studied under the law schools' three-year curriculum aimed at those without an undergraduate law degree stood at 18.9 percent, falling far short of that of those who studied under the two-year curriculum aimed at those with such a degree, at 38.7 percent.

"There were 493 applicants who failed this year's bar exam at their third try, the maximum number for the newly designed exam."

By Mainichi Shimbun (9/11/2009), Link to article (last visited 9/11/2009)

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