Ultimate Guide to Iowa State Bar Exam

Your complete guide to Iowa bar exam prep.

Pass Rates · Bar Review Courses · Format · Essay Topics · Schedule · Dates · Location · Application Fees & Deadlines · What to Bring · Scores & Grading · Results · Reciprocity · Law Schools · Groups · Other Resources

*Updated January 2024

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Iowa State Bar Exam | Basic Information

The Iowa State Bar Association was formed in 1874, and is the oldest bar association in America. It is a voluntary association open to all licensed attorneys and current law students.

Iowa is one of 40+ jurisdiction that have adopted the Uniform Bar Examination (UBE). Iowa first administered the UBE in February 2016.

Iowa State Bar Exam Pass Rates

July 2023 (176 takers)

Overall Pass Rate: 86%
First-Time Pass Rate: 88%
Repeat Pass Rate: 45%

February 2023 (49 takers)

Overall Pass Rate: 51%
First-Time Pass Rate: 70%
Repeat Pass Rate: 35%

February 2022 (73 takers)

Overall Pass Rate: 64%
First-Time Pass Rate: 81%
Repeat Pass Rate: 48%

July 2021 (203 takers)

Overall Pass Rate: 71%
First-Time Pass Rate: 77%
Repeat Pass Rate: 28%

Iowa Bar Review Courses

Compare top Iowa bar exam prep courses from Crushendo, Barbri, Themis, Kaplan, AmeriBar, and BarMax.

Crushendo Barbri Themis Kaplan AmeriBar BarMax
*Cost $970 $1,999-4,199 $2,695 $2,199-3,999 $1,299-2,599 $1,895
Facebook Rating 5.0 Disabled 4.8 Disabled Disabled 4.3
Google Rating 5.0 N/A 2.8 3.2 N/A N/A
NCBE Questions 1,750+ 100+ 1,350+ 1,200+ 1,400+ 1,700+
Audio Flashcards
250+ Mnemonics
Access Period Lifetime 8-10 weeks 4 months 4 months Up to 3 years Lifetime
Financing 3 payments $250 registration
Founded 2017 1974 2008 1938 1999 2010
Phone (385) 482-1776 (888) 322-7274 (888) 843-6476 (626) 390-7170 (877) 942-2763 (800) 529-2651

Last updated: 1/7/23

*Cost ignores promotions and live tutoring.

Iowa Bar Exam Format

What’s the format of the UBE?

The Uniform Bar Exam (UBE) is administered twice each year in Iowa (in February, and July). The examination is administered over two days in four, three-hour sessions. The UBE has three parts: the Multistate Bar Exam (MBE), the Multistate Essay Exam (MEE), and the Multistate Performance Test (MPT).


The MBE is a six-hour test and consists of 200 multiple-choice questions that test your understanding across seven subjects. Your MBE score comprises 50% of your overall UBE score.

Watch Crushendo’s free MBE tips video.


The MEE consists of six 30-minute legal essays. The MEE makes up 30% of your score.

Essay topics may include the following: Business Associations, Civil Procedure, Conflict of Laws, Constitutional Law, Contracts, Criminal Law and Procedure, Evidence, Family Law, Property, Secured Transactions, Torts, Trusts, Unincorporated Business Entities, Wills and Estates, etc.

Crushendo offers the most recent MEE questions and includes the point sheets that the graders used. Watch Crushendo’s free MEE tips video.


The MPT consists of two 90-minute tasks where you analyze and apply laws to specific scenarios. The MPT makes up 20% of your score. Crushendo offers the most recent MPT questions and includes the point sheets that the graders used. Watch Crushendo’s free MPT tips video.

What’s the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination?

The Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE) tests your understanding of established standards of conduct for lawyers. The MPRE is administered three times each year (in March, August, and November). The test consists of 60 multiple-choice questions and is two hours long. Check out this MPRE Tips video!

Upcoming Bar Exam Schedule, Dates, Location


Morning Afternoon
Day 1 MPT (3 hours) MEE (3 hours)
Day 2 MBE (3 hours) MBE (3 hours)


  • July 30–31, 2024
  • February 25–26, 2025


February Exam Location

July Exam Location

Iowa Bar Exam Application

Are you interested in taking the Iowa State bar exam? Here’s some basic information on applying to take the Iowa bar exam.

Iowa State Bar Admissions Office

Physical address:
1111 E Court Ave
Des Moines, IA 50319

Email: Bar.Admissions@iowacourts.gov

Iowa Bar Exam: What to Bring

What to bring

  • Your current driver’s license.
  • Your Bar Examination Identification & Certification Card that has your photo, NCBE number, and examinee number.

Important notes

  • You need to have these items with you for each of the four testing sessions.
  • Pens and pencils are provided to examinees.
  • Laptop testers should not bring their laptop in a case or bag.

Prohibited items

  • Any item that can connect to the internet
  • Any item that can record audio or video
  • Backpacks
  • Books
  • Briefcases
  • Calculators
  • Cameras
  • Notes
  • Phones
  • Food or drink
  • Purses
  • Radios
  • Rulers
  • Scratch papers
  • Study materials

Iowa Bar Exam Scores and Grading

A passing score for the UBE in Iowa is 266/400. Scores of the three tests comprising the UBE are weighted as follows:

  • MBE = 50% of your total UBE score
  • MEE = 30%
  • MPT = 20%

*A passing score for the MPRE in Iowa is 80/150.

Iowa Bar Review Course

Crushendo’s comprehensive UBE Suite comes with everything you need to crush the Iowa bar exam.

  • MBE, MEE, and MPT Prep
  • 250+ Proprietary Mnemonics
  • 1,750+ Licensed NCBE Questions
  • Audio Attack Outlines
  • Audio Flashcards
  • Lifetime Access

Iowa Bar Exam Results

View lists of those who passed the Iowa State bar exam, posted on the Iowa State Bar Association’s website:

Frequently Asked Questions

When are my Iowa bar exam results released?

Iowa bar exam results are usually posted six to nine weeks after the exam date. February bar exam results are normally posted in April. July bar exam results are normally posted in September.

Can I see my Iowa bar exam score?

If you passed the Iowa bar exam, you won’t be able to see your score.

Can I appeal to have my Iowa bar exam re-graded?

Yes, if there are extraordinary circumstances.

Iowa Bar Exam Reciprocity

Applicants seeking admission to the Iowa State Bar, without taking the bar exam, must comply with Reciprocity Requirements.

If you are a part of a bar in any of the states, territories, or jurisdictions in the United States, you are able to have reciprocity with the state of Iowa if approved by the Board. In order to be eligible for admittance to the Iowa State Bar, without taking the bar examination, you must have:

  • A Certificate of Good Standing form last state
  • Proof of active legal standing in at least five of the last seven years
  • Must not have failed the Iowa bar within the last five years, or have failed any bar exam five or more times

Law Schools in Iowa

Here’s a list of law schools in Iowa.

Drake University Law School

  • Founded: 1865
  • Located: Des Moines, IA
  • Enrollment: about 300
  • Tuition Cost: $42,400 View tuition cost
  • Bar Passage Rate: 83%
  • ABA Accredited: Yes
  • Website: drake.edu/law

University of Iowa College of Law

  • Founded: 1865
  • Located: Iowa City, IA
  • Enrollment: about 450
  • Tuition Cost: $45,796 View tuition breakdown
  • Bar Passage Rate: 87%
  • ABA Accredited: Yes
  • Website: law.uiowa.edu

Helpful Groups

Here are some Facebook groups you may find helpful before, and after, passing the bar exam:

Drake University School of Law

University of Iowa School of Law