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Washington, D.C. Bar Exam Takers Will Be Allowed to Type on Personal Laptops
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The D.C. Court of Appeals recently announced that bar exam takers will be allowed to type their answers to essay questions on their personal laptops.

Summary: The D.C. Court of Appeals recently announced that bar exam takers will be allowed to type their answers to essay questions on their personal laptops.

According to the National Law Journal, those planning to take the bar exam in the nation’s capital in July will be able to use their own laptops to type their essays, according to a decision made earlier this week by the D.C. Court of Appeals.


Why have bar exam passage rates declined?

Many other jurisdictions allow bar exam takers to use their personal laptops. Extegrity, the company that provides bar exam software for the Washington, D.C. exam, has links available on its website for individuals in ever state to download programs. ExamSoft Worldwide, Inc., has supplied software for bar exams in 43 states.

The D.C. Court of Appeals changed its local rules on May 1 to allow those taking the exam to register to use their personal computers for the July test. Registration opened on June 19 and must be completed by June 30.

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Of course, technology is not always 100% reliable. Last year, bar exam takers nationwide sued ExamSoft after technical issues arose during the July 2014 test. Many students were up late due to the problems they experienced, cutting into their study time, the Washington Post reported. The event was aptly nicknamed “Barmageddon.” After facing a class action suit in federal court, ExamSoft agreed to settle the case for $2.1 million. Claimants are eligible to receive $90.

Read about the class action suit here.

The program that these companies provide blocks the use of the Internet or additional programs while the exam software is active. For the July exam, test takers must pay $92 for the software.

Last summer, ExamSoft users were unable to upload their answers.

Source: National Law Journal

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