New MacBook Pro Can’t Be Used for the Texas Bar Exam

A new MacBook Pro feature may compromise the Bar Exam’s security software. The new MacBook Pro’s Touch Bar provides users with a predictive text feature, which suggests words as the user is typing. Because of the Touch Bar feature, Bar Exam committees are forced to decide how to handle these computers moving forward.

North Carolina recently announced that the Touchbar feature on the new MacBook Pro must be disabled before students can take the Bar Exam. ExamSoft, the company who developed the software to ensure that the Bar Exam is secure, has released a guideon how to disable the Touch Bar feature.

While North Carolina has decided that students can use the computer, as long as they disable the feature, some states have banned the use of the computer completely. In an email sent out to all February test takers, the California Committee of Bar Examiners announced that the computer cannot be used in the February, 2017 exam.

While its decision has not been officially announced, when we called the Texas Board of Law Examiners’ office, it confirmed that the board has decided that students cannot use the new MacBook Pro to take the February 2017 Bar Exam. When asked about the use of the MacBook Pro in the future, they indicated that this may be a permanent decision.

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