The Rhode Island bar exam takes two days and consists of the Rhode Island Essays, Multistate Performance Test (“MPT”), Multistate Essay Exam (“MEE”), and the Multistate Bar Exam (“MBE”). Rhode Island law is tested on the Rhode Island bar exam.
Rhode Island Essays
Rhode Island tests three (3) Rhode Island essays and will test subject matter that is not included on the MEE exam during that particular testing cycle. Subjects may include:
MPT (Performance Test)
Rhode Island tests one (1) MPT performance test.
Rhode Island tests six (6) MEE essays. Subjects may include:
MBE (Multiple Choice)
Rhode Island uses the standard MBE. Subjects include:
MBE Score Transfer
Rhode Island accepts MBE scores from other jurisdictions for concurrent exams only. Rhode Island also offers the Rhode Island Attorney’s Exam where eligible attorneys are only required to take the first day written portion of the exam and not the second day MBE.
Morning – 1 MPT (90 minutes) 3 Rhode Island Essay (90 minutes)
Afternoon – 6 MEE Essays (3 hours)
Morning – MBE Part I (100 questions; 3 hours)
Afternoon – MBE Part II (100 questions; 3 hours)
The Rhode Island bar exam is held on the last Tuesday and Wednesday of February and July. There is no late filing. Applications can be found on the Rhode Island Judiciary’s Website.
|Exam Date||Application Deadline|
|February 21-22, 2017||December 1|
|July 25-26, 2017||May 1|
Rhode Island Bar Exam Weight
The essay and MPT answers are graded on a six-point scale. The MPT score is multiplied by two so that the MPT is worth twice as much as one essay. The written scores are added together for a maximum possible written point total of 66. The applicant’s written raw score will then be scaled against the MBE scores of Rhode Island applicants but will ignore the scores of applicants with MBE scores below 130. The NCBE grades the MBE on a scaled scoring system with a maximum of 200 possible points. The written scaled score and MBE scaled score are then added together for the total bar exam score.
Applicants need to achieve an MBE scaled score of 130 or greater to pass the Rhode Island bar exam. If this score is not obtained, Rhode Island will not score the applicant’s written portion of the exam. Applicants need a total bar exam score of 276 to pass the Rhode Island bar exam.
For the Rhode Island Attorney’s Exam, attorneys must obtain a written scaled score of 138 or greater to pass the Rhode Island bar exam. The attorney’s score is scaled to other applicants taking both the written and MBE portions of the exam.
Not currently available.
Review and Appeal for Applicants Failing the Rhode Island Bar Exam
Applicants who fail the exam may file a request, in writing, with the Clerk of the Rhode Island Supreme Court for a conference with a member of the Board to review the applicant’s answers and grades.
Applicants may reapply to take the Rhode Island bar exam up to five times.