It might be smaller--July 2010 numbers were available. But about 525 people sat for the 2/11 exam. Seems like a large sample to me.
<p>Sorry, your logic is still incorrect.</p>
<p>Bar candidates are divided into two groups: "first-time takers" (who are brand new law school graduates that have never taken the bar exam before) and "repeaters" (who have previously failed the exam one or more times, and are therefore taking it again). </p>
<p>The meaningful statistic -- the one that people care about, and that law schools are ranked by -- is the pass rate for "first-time takers". And first-time takers normally take the bar exam in July. You graduate from law school in May, you cram like crazy for several weeks, and then you take the bar exam in July. That's the norm.</p>
<p>If you fail in July, then you take the February exam in the following year. But then you are a "repeater", and so the outcome of your exam no longer factors into the law school rankings. </p>
<p>The February exam consists predominantly of "repeaters", with relatively few "first-timers". It simply doesn't make sense for brand new law school graduates to take the bar exam in February. You would do this only if you had fallen off of the normal academic schedule (for whatever reason) and graduated in the middle of the academic year (rather than at the end). This certainly does happen sometimes -- but it's not the norm. </p>
<p>So it may be true the total number of examinees in February is one-third of the total in July. But this is not meaningful, because most February examinees are "repeaters", and their pass rates don't count as far as comparative rankings are concerned. Only a small percentage of February examinees are "first-timers", and the "first-time" pass rate is what the legal community actually cares about. The vast majority of "first-timers" graduate from law school in May, and then take the bar exam in July.</p>