Nowadays these exams are usually taken as part of the Bar Vocational Course.
Etymology: The expression 'call to the bar' is said to have originated from a conversation between two benchers in the smoking room of Inner Temple. Members sometimes cite 'the conversation' to pupils admitted to Inner Temple. The details of the conversation are said to have been lost. Like Mornington Crescent 'the conversation' is a red herring and has no formal content, and often leads to apocryphal embellishments.
In Hungary the Bar Examination is called "Jogi Szakvizsga", can be translated as "Legal Profession Examination". This exam is composed of 3 parts: 1. Criminal Law, Criminal Procedural Law and Penal Law 2. Civil Law, Civil Procedural Law and Economy Law 3. Constitutional Law, Administrative Law and Law of the European Union. After passing these exams the candidate can be a barrister or secretary at the court or at the public prosecutor's office or legal executive or may operate individually at any field of law.
For those who fail to meet the requisite 50% pass mark, repeats are held in the following August and September.
The Philippine Bar Examination is administered once every year during the four Sundays of September. It covers eight areas of law, namely: (1) Political Law, (2) Labor Law and Social Legislation, (3) Criminal Law, (4) Civil Law, (5) Commercial Law, (6) Taxation Law, (7) Remedial Law and (8) Legal ethics and practical exercises. It is considered to be one of the most difficult bar exams in the world, having a passing rate that averages in the mere 20%-30% mark, a waiting period of six months and limitations set for exam retakers.
Bar examinations in the United States are administered by agencies of individual states. The state agency is invariably associated with the judicial branch of government, because American attorneys are all officers of the court of the bar(s) to which they belong.
Sometimes the agency is an office or committee of the state's highest court or intermediate appellate court. In some states which have a unified or integrated bar association (meaning that formal membership in a public corporation controlled by the judiciary is required to practice law therein), the agency is either the state bar association or a subunit thereof. Other states split the integrated bar membership and the admissions agency into different bodies within the judiciary; in Texas, the Board of Law Examiners is appointed by the Texas Supreme Court and is independent from the integrated State Bar of Texas.
In almost all jurisdictions, the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE), an ethics exam, is also administered by the National Conference of Bar Examiners (NCBE), which creates it and grades it. The MPRE is offered three times a year, in March, August and November.
The bar examination in most U.S. states and territories is two days long and consists of:
A majority of U.S. jurisdictions also require a performance test, which is intended to be a more realistic measure of actual lawyering skill. The candidate is presented with a stack of documents representing a fictional case and is asked to draft a memorandum, motion, or opinion document. Many jurisdictions use the Multistate Performance Test (MPT), while California drafts and administers its own performance tests.
The MEE and MPT, as uniform though not standardized tests, also must be administered on the same day across the country — specifically the day before the MBE.
All examinees must be present in person, and most states have strict guidelines about what people may take into the examination room, what they may wear during the exam, and when test takers may leave their seats for any reason.
While I may have learned how to 'think like a lawyer' at Harvard, I had few concrete thoughts. I did not know, for example, the different degrees of murder, and for how many years in prison one could be sentenced for each. I did not know when a contract had to be in writing and when it could be oral. I did not know when a bank was liable for a forged check. In short, I knew about Law but did not know the laws.
Therefore, to learn the "black-letter rules" actually tested on the bar, most students engage in a regimen of study (called "bar review") between graduating from law school and sitting for the bar. For bar review, most students in the United States attend a private bar exam review course which is provided by a third-party company and not their law school. Bar review is considered by many to be one of the most stressful and unpleasant experiences which a law student faces before becoming a lawyer.
A statement by the Society of American Law Teachers (SALT) articulates many criticisms of the bar exam. The SALT statement, however, does propose some alternative methods of bar admission that are partially test-based. This statement was also published in 54 JOURNAL OF LEGAL EDUCATION 442–458.