January 20, 2016

$25 million naming gift for the law school at...

January 18, 2016

Ian Ayres (Yale) argues that the U.S. News rankings have actually helped low-ranked schools during the decline in applicants over the last few years

He sets out his theory here.  Briefly:  highly ranked schools have enrolled fewer students during the decline, rather than taking the more students with weaker credentials, in order to maintain their rank in U.S. News; the result was more students with good (but not top-flight) credentials available for lower-ranked schools.  To which I say:  maybe.  The decline in enrollments at top schools has been small, and many have seen declines in their student credentials anyway.  But it's an intriguing possibility!

January 18, 2016 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Rankings | Permalink

January 13, 2016

Early January stats from LSAC...

...applicants up a little over 1%, applications down not quite 2%.  Reasonably, applicants are feeling a bit more confident, so submitting fewer applications.  Given the trend towards more applications later in the cycle, I think we can say with confidence that we won't see fewer applicants this year, and may still see a very small increase (I'll be surprised if it's more than 5% in the end).

January 13, 2016 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest | Permalink

January 12, 2016

Underemployment among college graduates since the Great Recession

A new study by two economists debunks the "barista with a B.A." myth.  They do not look at those who earned a J.D. since the Great Recession, but one suspects it's an even bigger myth in that case--not that any factual information would dissuade the group-polarized crowds that congregate on blogs!

January 12, 2016 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest | Permalink

January 11, 2016

Law students who transfer, updated data...

...courtesy of Prof. Jerry Organ (St. Thomas/Minnesota).  Most, but not all, schools taking large numbers of transfers are clearly doing it for U.S. News reasons:  it allows them to reduce the size of their 1L class, whose median credentials count for ranking purposes.

January 11, 2016 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest | Permalink

January 08, 2016

False advertising claims against Thomas Jefferson Law in San Diego to go to trial

WSJ report here.  Longtime readers will recall that almost all the other suits brought against law schools were dismissed (for example).  California, however, has more stringent consumer protection laws than many states.  My guess is a lay jury is not going to view Thomas Jefferson Law sympathetically in this matter.

January 8, 2016 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest | Permalink

January 06, 2016

Two more free-standing law schools added to U.S. Dept. of Education's financial watch list

December 24, 2015

In Memoriam: Joe Jamail (1925-2015)

Not a law professor, but a fabulously successful trial lawyer in Houston and a major benefactor of my former employer the University of Texas at Austin (I once held the Joseph D. Jamail Centennial Chair in Law).  I recall a speech he once gave to the law faculty, he was extremely humble and complimentary towards us, and he always spoke in support of interdisciplinary legal education.  He was probably about 80 then, and everyone said he had mellowed from the days when he was banned for life from the courts of Delaware for his, shall we say, "combative" manner, some of which is famously captured in this YouTube video of a deposition (Jamail is not visible on the right, except for his hands.  He calls opposing counsel, variously, "big boy" and "fat boy," and the witness being deposed "asshole" [the witness was an asshole actually!].)  Jamail was also a liberal Democrat in a state not known for them.  After the Hopwood striking down affirmative action, I recall that he donated ten million dollars to create a private fund for the recruitment of African-American students to the university.

December 24, 2015 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest | Permalink

December 21, 2015

California July 2015 Bar Exam results by school

Blog Emperor Caron charts the results.  A strong showing by USC grads, not so much by Berkeley grads, relative to the reputation of the school.  UC Irvine grads did better than UC Davis and UC Hastings grads.  Loyola-LA grads had a typically strong showing, trailing Irvine only slightly.  Some ABA-accredited law schools in California, by contrast, had awful results (e.g., Golden Gate, Whittier).

December 21, 2015 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest, Rankings | Permalink

December 16, 2015

Total law school applicants now up 3.4% from December 2014...

...according to LSAC.  This is consistent with my earlier forecast, indicating, yet again, that we've arrived at a new normal level for enrollments, and may even see a slight increase in the next couple of years.

December 16, 2015 in Legal Profession, Of Academic Interest | Permalink