Integrating Performance Tests into Doctrinal Courses, Skills Courses, and Institutional Benchmark Testing: A Simple Way to Enhance Student Engagement While Furthering Assessment, Bar Passage, and Other ABA Accreditation Objectives

Document Type

Law Review Article

Publication Date



educational psychology and metacognition


This article explores ways to weave performance tests into the law school curriculum to enhance student engagement and active learning, and to further ABA-mandated assessment and accreditation objectives. Some options include using them as discrete simulation exercises in doctrinal courses, as content for certain dedicated skills courses, or as possible institutional benchmark testing. Section II provides an overview of PTs, suggesting how they can be effective teaching tools. Section III demonstrates how integrating PTs into the law school curriculum, at both the course and institutional levels, may help law schools comply with numerous ABA Standards, including those regarding assessment and bar passage — without undue time or costs. Lastly, Section IV of this article exposes and addresses certain objections to the use of performance tests in law schools.