Duquesne University School of Law graduates achieved a 87.88% first-time pass rate on the July 2019 Pennsylvania bar exam, placing them among only four schools to achieve a first-time pass rate of 87% or above.

"These results exemplify the School of Law's continued dedication and commitment to its students," Duquesne Law Dean April Barton said. "We're especially thankful to our bar studies team and our dedicated faculty and staff. We are grateful for the steadfast support of the University and our alumni association, and the discipline and work ethic demonstrated by the Class of 2019." Additional results include:

  • Duquesne's first-time pass rate of 87.88% outpaced the statewide average of 80.6%
  • This marks the fourth consecutive year that the law school has outperformed the state average
  • Duquesne's overall pass rate of 83.81% exceeded the statewide overall pass rate of 73.07%.

For both first-time and overall takers, Duquesne University finished ahead of Drexel, Penn State University-Penn State Law, Rutgers, Temple, Villanova, Widener Commonwealth Law and Widener Delaware Law.

"Duquesne Law is committed to assisting graduates achieve first-time bar passage by providing comprehensive training in the knowledge, skills and ethics required of practicing lawyers," said Richard Gaffney Jr., director of bar studies and assistant professor of legal skills. "Our Bar Studies program of individualized student support begins during new student orientation, continues throughout our program of legal education, includes specific bar exam training and continues after graduation."

Since February 2018, the American Bar Association (ABA) requires law schools to report their "ultimate bar passage rates," which track law school graduates for a period of two years or four bar exam cycles (July and February). In 2019, the School of Law reported an ultimate bar passage rate of 96.72%. More information on the ABA and its ultimate bar passage rate can be found here.

"It's incredibly rewarding to see the ongoing success attained by our law school graduates on the bar exam," said Duquesne President Ken Gormley. "The law school's priority to ensure that all students are thoroughly prepared for the practice of law makes this outstanding achievement possible. Congratulations to our recent graduates as they begin the next chapter as legal professionals in Pennsylvania and beyond."


Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and horizon-expanding education. A campus of nearly 8,500 graduate and undergraduate students, Duquesne prepares students by having them work alongside faculty to discover and reach their goals. The Universitys academic programs, community service, and commitment to equity and opportunity in the Pittsburgh region have earned national acclaim.

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October 11, 2019