Comprehensive Bar Preparation

Photo of Professors Richard Gaffney and Ashley London

Bar Studies

National Jurist
Duquesne Law

No. 9
in country
for bar exam preparation

Learn more.



Duquesne Law makes it a top priority to ensure that you are thoroughly prepared for the bar examination, so you can be practice ready when you graduate.  

Our success in bar passage speaks for itself. And it begins early, because our admissions practices look beyond cold statistics to see the potential in every applicant. 

During every year of study you can take advantage of academic excellence programs, followed closely by comprehensive bar preparation. Duquesne Law's bar services offer you a rigorous curriculum taught by acclaimed professors, a nationally ranked legal writing program, hands-on learning gained through unique clinical programs, and special bar preparation options. 

Our upper-level core competency courses review legal concepts encountered on the bar examination and in practice. The courses "flip" the classroom, posting substantive lectures and black letter law online and using classroom time for application of legal principles. You will hone your analytical skills by applying the law to new fact scenarios in multiple choice and essay forms. Lecture topics include substantive law, character and fitness requirements, and performance testing skills. 

We look forward to telling you more about our bar preparation. Read on to learn about recent bar passage results that place Duquesne Law No. 3 among 10 law schools.


Duquesne graduates have taken the bar exam in these and other jurisdictions:

California Indiana North Carolina Virginia
Colorado Maryland Ohio Washington
Connecticut Massachusetts Oklahoma W. Virginia
Florida Nevada Pennsylvania Wisconsin
Georgia New Jersey Texas  
Illinois New York Utah  


Bar Exam Results


Duquesne Ranks Third in Pa. Bar Exam Results

Graduates taking the bar exam for the first time achieved an 86.7 percent pass rate, exceeding the statewide average of 79 percent by more than 7 percentage points. This marks the 13th time in the last 14 years that the pass rate for Duquesne’s first-time takers has exceeded the state average.

Duquesne’s overall pass rate, which includes graduates who had taken the Pennsylvania bar exam previously, was 80.9 percent. This also exceeds the statewide average for all takers of the July 2018 Pennsylvania bar exam, which was 71 percent.

“These results reflect the exceptional dedication of our students and faculty and the high standard set by Duquesne,” said Duquesne Law Dean Maureen Lally-Green, a 1974 graduate of the law school and a former judge in the Superior Court of Pennsylvania. “We are grateful for the wonderful commitment of our alumni and friends to the success of our students. The graduates’ performance was a team effort and reflects the foundation of community spirit and excellence we have here at Duquesne.”

Duquesne finished among the top three with the University of Pennsylvania Law School and Penn State Law School. These results contrast with the national trend: scores on the Multistate Bar Examination dropped to a 34-year low with law schools across the country reporting an overall decrease in bar pass rates.

“We’re proud of our students and faculty for their tireless work to prepare for excellence on the bar exam and in the practice of law,” Duquesne University President Ken Gormley said. “Their effort speaks volumes and shines a positive light on Duquesne Law School, which has a 106-year history of educating highly talented, ethical lawyers, leaders and public servants.”



Duquesne Law graduates achieved a 90.74 percent first-time bar passage rate on the July 2017 Pennsylvania Bar Exam, exceeding by almost 10 points the Pennsylvania first-time pass rate (81 percent).

This is the 11th time in the last 12 years that Duquesne has exceeded the statewide average.  The University was among only three schools with first-time pass rates exceeding 90 percent, placing Duquesne in an elite category among Pennsylvania-area law schools again in 2017.

In July of 2014, a cum laude graduate from Duquesne Law's evening division, Anya Lernatovych, achieved the highest essay exam score in the state on the Pennsylvania bar examination. Lernatovych earned a perfect score on one essay and accumulated a total of 181.144 points, well above the state average of 144.27 points. Her score was higher than 1,980 other applicants from 141 law schools, including Harvard and Yale.

View historical results for first-time takers of the Pennsylvania Bar Exam and more bar passage data


Bar Review Course Scholarships

A limited number of bar review course scholarships are available for current students. Learn more


Questions from Prospective Students

Prospective students are welcome to contact the Bar Studies Department to learn more about all of Duquesne Law's bar preparatory programs. 

Richard Gaffney, Jr., J.D.
Director of Bar Studies
Assistant Professor of Clinical Legal Skills 


Ashley M. London, J.D.
Associate Director of Bar Studies
Assistant Professor of Clinical Legal Skills