The topnotchers of the 2013 bar exam. Photo by Sun Star
The topnotchers of the 2013 bar exam. Photo by Sun Star

Manila, Philippines – Supreme Court Associate Justice Arturo Brion proclaimed on Tuesday the official result of the recently held Licensure Examination for aspiring lawyers in which 1,174 examinees beat the 73% passing rate imposed on October 2013.

5, 593 examinees were screened at the University of Santo Tomas where they completed the four consecutive Sundays of examination.

Earlier in August, the high tribunal imposed examination guidelines which helped the examinees prepare in advance and be able to pass the procedures. The guideline includes the restriction in using proper English in the essay portion which comprises the 80% of the questionnaire. The challenge was tighten as examiners anticipate a construction of 5-6 words in a sentence which is a 10-point item each.

20% in the questionnaire was a multiple choice with five-fact situation.

Stretching lines

According to the Supreme Court, 13.3% of the examinees would have passed the considered “most difficult” Licensure Examination if they retained the previous year’s passing grade of 75%.

The said court confer to aid the concern by considering the difficulty and type of exams, the structure of the grades obtained by all examinees, and the precedents upon finally adjusting the passing rates to accommodate higher number of passers.

In year 2012, examinees must reach a passing rate of 17.76%, a 12-year low compared to the 2013’s 73% passing grade. On the other hand, adjustment of passing rates alters from time-to-time as various factors are being considered. 31.95% was the passing rate on 2011 and 20.26% during the 2010 bar.

Meanwhile, on top of the 2013 bar was Nielson G. Pangan, a University of the Philippines College of Law student who got 85.80% of passing grade.

At his back was the UP Law Dean Danny Concepcion who proposed to the Supreme Court Committee for the trimming of subjects covered in the exams with the purpose of maximizing students’ time on studying the global or international law practice rather than conventional subject matters.

“There is a need of modernization. Students should study courses which can make students become competitive in the region”, Concepcion explains.

The 1,174 passers are expected to have their oath taking on April 28, 2014 at the Philippine National Convention.