courtroom gavel resting on a book

Note: In October 2023, NCBE announced that Family Law would be added to the list of foundational concepts and principles starting with the July 2028 NextGen bar exam.


NCBE has published the content scope for the NextGen bar exam, outlining the breadth of material to be covered on the new exam in eight areas of legal knowledge and seven categories of practical skills and abilities. This marks the latest milestone in the development of the new bar exam, which will launch in July 2026.

 The content scope reflects the work of a 21-member content scope committee made up of legal educators, law school deans, practicing attorneys, and bar examiners. The committee’s recommendations are based on a three-year study of the bar exam, which included a nationwide practice analysis survey to identify the knowledge and skills that are necessary for effective practice by newly licensed attorneys. The survey drew responses from nearly 15,000 practicing lawyers and members of the legal academy.

Preliminary content scope outlines were published in early 2022. A public comment period, during which members of the legal community were invited to submit comments on the preliminary outlines, drew responses from nearly 400 stakeholders, including law school deans, faculty, and administrators; practicing attorneys; judges and justices; law students; and bar examiners and admissions staff.