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Should There Be A Minimum LSAT Score For Admission?
It’s an increasingly pertinent question. If there was ever a glimmer of hope in resuscitating legal education and the legal job market, Jerry Organ, a law professor at the University of St. Thomas Law School (and his heaps of data and stats) squelches it. There’s no way around it. From top to bottom, Organ’s extensive research shows LSAT scores are much lower than they were in 2010.
Specifically, test-takers to score in the range of 165 to 169 and 170+ are down a whopping 40%. The test is scored on a range from 120 to 180. In 2010, more than 40% of entering law students scored at least 160 on the LSAT. In 2015, the number was 32%. Scores below 145 have increased by more than 60% since 2010.
According to reports from The American Lawyer, scoring a 144 right now will put you in the 24th percentile of test-takers. So, not great. And, to be blunt, a lawyer scoring a 170 is probably going to perform better in her legal duties than a lawyer scoring a 140. And yet the amount of 140 test-takers entering law school are growing and the number of 170 test-takers entering law school are falling.
So, should there be a required minimum test score to be admitted into law school? Organ told The American Lawyer it’s too political and he doesn’t have an opinion on it. The American Lawyer also reached out to Kyle McEntee, who holds a law degree from Vanderbilt and founded Law School Transparency, an organization that essentially serves as a watchdog on who law schools are accepting and how they’re doing at getting their graduates jobs. But even McEntee wasn’t riled and said he “isn’t advocating a cut off either.” Fair enough.
However, both Organ and McEntee agree the American Bar Association will have to take action if lower ranked and unranked schools continue to produce graduates unable to pass the bar and pay off debt. “We are in the midst of an experiment at the moment,” Organ told The American Lawyer. “Many people have opinions but there is not a great deal of compelling data yet.”
Let’s all hope there doesn’t need to be too much compelling data.
Source: The American Lawyer
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