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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.
Monday, January 21, 2013
Picking the Right Law School
When it comes to picking an undergraduate program, the number of guidance resources are virtually endless. College admissions counseling has become a cottage industry, offering books, mentors, spreadsheets, checklists and web advice. If you want to casually research schools on your own, the internet is rife with resources. You can find out everything from a university's average SAT scores to the quality of pizza at the student union.

For aspiring law students, the decision process is more complicated. While all undergraduate institutions are reduced to nation-wide rankings, that list is nowhere more gravely worshipped than in the law school arena. The top fourteen in the national rankings even come with their own nickname (T14) and an aura of awe and sanctity.

The problem is that law schools have taken a notable fall from grace over the past few years. Scandals have rocked big institutions that have been caught falsifying test scores and other data in an effort to boost their rankings. Perhaps more significantly, law graduates are not getting jobs. A woeful market has led to a major decline in applications.

The silver lining here has been the push for transparency from law schools. If we can agree that the T14 have been largely unscathed by the scandal and bad job market, then how can the rest of the aspiring law student pool hope to pick the right school?

Law School Transparency, a nonprofit legal education group with a self-explanatory name, aims to help. Their website offers statistical overviews of the country's law schools, including crucial regional data and employment stats relevant to students doing some school shopping. The site offers info about the nature and extent of post-graduate employment, as well as overall costs. There certainly isn't as much hand-holding in the law school admission process, but sites like this may be the first step towards a trend in the right direction.


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