Software woes prompt format change for Indiana’s bar exam

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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Persistent software troubles have prompted the Indiana Supreme Court to change the format of the state’s bar exam, which is set to be administered remotely Tuesday due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The state’s high court issued an order Wednesday specifying that test questions for the exam would be sent by email to applicants, who will also be allowed to refer to notes and course materials during the test, The Indiana Lawyer reported.

The court had already changed the bar exam earlier in the pandemic to a one-day test that would be given remotely. Technical complications with the testing software from ILG Technologies also forced the exam to be delayed to Tuesday.

But the court stated in last Wednesday’s order that the software problems were continuing and would not be fixed by Tuesday’s test date. The order states that rather than doing a “disservice to the applicants” by delaying the test once more, the court instead opted to change how the exam will be administered and completed.

Under the new format, the bar exam will be open-book with no live monitoring or proctoring. Applicants will receive the exam questions by email and submit their responses by email. The test includes both short-answer questions and essay questions.

The court’s order says the Indiana Board of Law Examiners would provide applicants with instructions on receiving questions and submitting responses.

Indiana isn’t the only state experiencing problems with the testing software for its bar exam. Nevada, for instance, also postponed its remote bar exam until Aug. 11-12 and has changed to an open-book format.

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