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10 October 2008

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J Macias

The world was a different place in 1993. I was recently talking to a Law Firm partner who went to Columbia Law in the late 1980s and he couldn't believe that the plurality of my class came from California. He stated that most of his class came from the tri-state area. My point is that there may be a recent trend of law students going to the best school impossible, as opposed to the best school in their region. That would lead to people with higher GPAs and LSATs to concentrate at better schools. I wonder if the schools ranked 50-100 have recently had lower numbers as a result of this trend.

Ken Krayeske

I am a 3LE, and attended a third tier school for two years before transferring into a top tier school, which rejected me outright the first time around.

It became clear to me that even the third tier school played the numbers game in admissions. Of the top 15 people (out of 70) in the evening division at the end of our 1L year, four of them had been wait listed.

Of those four waitlisters, two (myself as one) have since transferred into top tier schools.

My gut has long been that my personal statement and resume never got a look, and this story confirms that notion.

For schools to only look at LSAT/UGPA is a travesty, because in the end, they are not the best predictors of quality of jurist (and by implication, jurisprudence). The composition of the bar in the future will reflect the stress placed on the numbers game, and not character and inclination. This, I fear, is all to our detriment.

Matt

My personal experience would seem to support the hypothesis above. When I applied to law schools, it didn't seem like law schools placed any weight on undergrad major. I have a high GPA (3.8) in Electrical & Computer Engineering. The average GPA in most courses was just under a 3.0 at my undergrad school.

Yet I generally did not do any better in law school admissions than one would predict using the aggregate GPA and LSAT information for the schools in question. That aggregate GPA data is derived from all incoming law students from the previous year, most of whom were in majors that gave higher grades.

Of course, it is not always good to generalize based off personal experience as there are other factors that go into admissions.

Anonymous

Current median scores are probably correlated to a fair degree with recent past median scores, so I wonder whether the difference between the baseline and 2007 is in fact explained by momentum carried over from the good times that were happening in 2004-2006, prompting lots more individuals to go to lawschool and drive up those numbers.

biglaw partner

What are the factors identified by Kerma Partners?

Anonymous...

This will all be moot in a few years. Illinois is following Michigan in its GPA only admissions policy, except UI will only require a paltry 3.0.

This is a scandal. I hope UM and UI have to release the black/white ratio of students accepted under these programs. I suspect they won't.

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