I have nothing against the exams I think they are very important, and they should be there. However, if I was on trial for a crime I would also want to be sure they knew how to write a motion properly etc. I have just heard from numerous places that law school teaches you the theories and not necessarily the practice of law. Maybe the exams could up make 50% of your ranking, and there could be a school wide competition where you file motions and perform a trial to make up the other 50% of your ranking. That way it would be based on both knowing the theory and the practice of law. The current system is benefiting me, but all I am saying is I don't know if I will or will not be a better lawyer than some of my classmates based on a few 3 hour exams. It is a level playing field, and you have to deal with whatever situation you are in. I really compared the exams to the NFL, NBA, combines where they measure someone's ability to bench press, 40 yard dash, etc. Then they tend to ignore the player's performance in actual games if someone can bench press 300 lbs a few times, sign them up. However, mere strength is only a small indicator of game-day performance. Jamarcus Russel was a STUD in the combine he is a 6'6 280 LB beast, but he cannot play quarterback and if you watched him in college you would see he cracked under pressure, had minimal leadership skills, and his teammates did a lot of the heavy lifting. Tom Brady on the other hand is not a physical specimen by any means he is 6'2 215 lbs and does not have a great arm, but he knows how to play quarterback. He is accurate under pressure, he is a great leader, and he knows how to win games. He would be better if he had Jamarcus's physical attributes no question, but strength and speed are a significant component of your ability to play a sport, but it is not the end all be all. Just as you need to be able to see the nuance between B and C is important it is again not the end all be all of your ability to be a lawyer.
So even if you aced legal writing, but on the torts final you picked A instead of B on some tiny nuance on a MC question, you would not be highly ranked.
The analogy you used makes perfect sense. Game day ability is more important than the workout warrior's strength
Your contention that there is virtually no difference in selecting b as opposed to c on a torts exam is unfounded. Most legal issues that end up at trial are very nuanced in much the same way that the difference between selecting b or c is very nuanced. The ability to recongize a difference between seemingly identical shades of grey is the skillset for which clients are willing to pay. ... if I were on trial for a crime that I did not commit, whether my attorney could notice the difference between b and c on his criminal law exam might be of significance if the underlying issue in that question would be dispositive on my case.
The issue spotting under time pressure is important and the exams are an indicator of your ability to be a lawyer. I think that these trial advocacy and pre-trial litigation classes should be required and create a separate ranking system for your performance. You could rank everyone in all three of this categories i.e. this person finished in the top 17% in the exams, finished in the top 34% in trial advocacy, and top 8% in legal writing.
I just really feel as though law schools and from what I know about the bar don't necessarily teach you the skills to be an effective attorney.
This is just a random tangent that blows my mind is when people get freaked out about getting called on. If you can't read 20-30 pages that you were told to read and be able to speak somewhat intelligently on a subject where you won't even get penalized if you are wrong. Then I have no idea how you will be able to handle the pressure of being an attorney.