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Cooley Law School Facing Third Straight July Bar Exam Majority-Fail Results
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Summary: The students from Cooley Law School are facing a third straight year of majority-fail results for the July bar exam. 

The Michigan Board of Law Examiners has released new data that shows that graduates of the Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School took part in a third straight summer of failing the state bar exam, according to Crain’s Detroit Business.


The law school operates campuses in Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor, Auburn Hills and Lansing, Michigan. It also has a campus in Tampa Bay, Florida.

If the 953 students who took the bar exam in July of this year, 317 were from Cooley Law School. Of those 317 students who took the exam, 177 of them failed it, which is good for 56 percent of the class.

To read more about Cooley Law School, click here.

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The statistics released are pre-appeal stats, but the appeal period will end this week after beginning on November 6.

The interim executive director of the Board of Law Examiners, Timothy Raubinger, said that there is no data available right now for how many appeals were filed. The state board oversees the bar exam, which is administered twice per year, in February and in July.

Of the Cooley students who took the July bar exam, 55 percent of the first-time takers passed the exam. On the other side of things, 75 percent of the students who were taking the bar exam for a second, third or subsequent time failed it.

To read more stories about the July bar exam, click here.

“The school’s faculty has adopted a bar examination results improvement program, and the faculty remain actively involved in carrying it out,” said James Robb, associate dean of external affairs for Cooley. “At least as to first-time takers, I think we’re starting to see some results on that.”

From July 2012 to last July, first-time bar exam takers from Cooley improved from 52 percent to 53 percent.

Prior to appeals this summer, 87 percent of the 38 applicants from University of Michigan who took the July bar exam passed the test. The Michigan State University College of Law sent 154 applicants to take the bar exam in July and 80 percent passed the test.

There were 155 applicants from Wayne State University Law School who took the exam, with 74 percent of them passing the test. The University of Detroit Mercy School of Law had 123 students sit for the exam, with 55 percent of them passing.

Even if the appeals process adjusts the number of students who passed the test by four percentage points, the law school at Cooley would still see its third straight majority-fail July result since 2012. This trend follows the school passing every bar exam for more than seven straight years.

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Image credit: Cooley Law School


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