The bar passage rate for new graduates at the University of Hawaii's law school has increased to 83 percent over the past three years.
There was also a 7 percent increase in the passage rate for all William S. Richardson Law School graduates taking the test.
School officials say the jump in passage rates resulted from the law school's concerted effort by the Law School to get students thinking about the bar exam earlier and to help them prepare.
"Even excellent students often face challenges on the bar exam. We've just tried to raise awareness among students," said Liam Skilling, director of the Law School's Academic Success Program and Evening Part-Time Program. "We provide a number of workshops to give students information about what they can expect, as well as practice opportunities so they can have the experience of taking real bar questions even before starting their bar preparation
Bar passage rates play an important element for prospective students and rankings bin the U.S. News & World Report.
Over the past several years, law schools nationwide have seen bar passage rates drop. "When the numbers dropped three years ago, that was part of a national trend," said Skilling. "We really don't know why. Schools have done various things to respond."
Students are also taking bar-related courses more frequently, and looking for opportunities for more experiences that reflect bar exam preparation.