Bar Failure: A Simple Solution

Although it may seem unbelievable, there is a cheap and simple fix to the problem of bar failure. As authors Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner state in their New York Times bestseller, SUPER Freakonomics, “The most amazing thing about cheap and simple fixes is they often address problems that seem impervious to any solution.”

In this case, the problem with the plummeting decline in the bar passage rates nationwide seems without a viable solution. However, based upon my four decades of experience, the fix is both cheap and simple.

The simple solution is for law professors to learn how to teach linear thinking in the context of using the Socratic Method. The process for teaching law professors how to use a linear approach can be taught in a matter of hours.

If law professors teach their students how to think and work linearly, professors and their students will share the same foundation. Students will not be overwhelmed by their course materials. By reinforcing the application of linear approaches, students will learn the substantive law far better.

Equally as important, professors and students will share a common frame of reference. As a result, the classroom experience will be much more fun. In the process, students will learn how to excel in law school, on bar exams, and in their careers.

Years ago, a student reached out to me after her dismal first year performance. Apparently her first year grades were so awful that according to her, the dean of her law school suggested she withdraw from law school.

Instead, she studied with me during the summer before her second year. After meeting with me for six sessions, she went on not only to graduate, but to become an appellate court judge. She has since received a letter of apology from her former dean.

Linear thinking can be taught. At the Skillman Method™, one of the first concepts taught is how to use a linear approach for learning courses. The Skillman Method™ in combination with the Socratic Method has produced amazing results for decades.

We encourage faculty, deans, and bar examiners to work directly with Professor Skillman to turn this bar failure problem around with a cheap and simple fix.