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Through our very own editors and guest writers, this blog will discuss the INSIDE scoop on the admissions process of various schools and programs. If you wish to ask a specific question, please write to us, and we will make every attempt to address your questions in our future blog discussions.
Sunday, April 22, 2012
Too Dumb for Law School?
Here are just three of the internet headlines I stumbled upon this week: "Are Smartest People Avoiding Law School? Stats Show Bigger Drop in High LSAT Applicants" (ABA Journal), "Caliber of Law School Applicants Drops" (Miami Daily Business Journal) which is more scathing than its title may indicate, and the least diplomatic-"The Wrong People Have Stopped Applying to Law School" (The Atlantic). So how do these bloggers really feel?

Last month, the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) released official numbers regarding the dramatic decline in applications to American Bar Association (ABA) accredited law schools in the U.S. in 2011. This week, the LSAC released more specific information regarding the demographics of the decline in applications.

It turns out that the largest drop in law school applicants has been amongst those with the highest LSAT scores. The obvious explanation, according to some bloggers? The smart people are no longer applying to law school.

In the real world, standardized test scores and paramount intellect aren't always wed, but in the arena of elite-law, LSATs are the defining characteristic. Super high LSATs are the entry ticket to the most elite schools, which are, in turn, the only stages from which top firms pluck their talent.

A few bloggers rationalize that the shift may be a good thing. Students with mid to low-level LSAT scores can only expect to emerge as mid to low-level legal practitioners, who clearly have lower career expectations, which will make them more than happy to practice in small towns or public sector jobs. (Someone's got to clean the toilets, right?)

The acidic response to these findings may just be white noise, but it is proof once again that when it comes to the law school bubble-burst, emotions continue to run high.


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