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Pepperdine University School of Law

Thursday, October 4, 2012

A Law School Crisis Reader (Updated)

Following up on yesterday's post, The Law School Crisis: What Would Jimmy McMillan Do? (complete version here):  I have updated my Law School Crisis Reader:

ABA Journal:

American Lawyer:

The Atlantic:


Bernard Burk (North Carolina):

Paul Campos (University of Colorado),

Jim Chen (Louisville):

Steven Davidoff (Ohio State):


Bill Henderson (Indiana University):

Law School Admissions Council:

Law School Transparency:

Jeff Lipshaw (Suffolk):

Massachusetts Bar Association:

Deborah Jones Merritt (Ohio State University):

National Association of Law Placement:

National Law Journal:

New York Times:

Jerry Organ (St, Thomas):

Nancy Rapoport (University of Nevada, Las Vegas):


Jason Solomon (William & Mary):

John Steele (Legal Ethics Forum):

Brian Tamanaha (Washington University):

Reviews of Brian Tamanaha's Failing Law Schools (University of Chicago Press, 2012)

U.S. News & World Report:

Wall Street Journal:

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Lots of things from 2012. But there are commentaries from early in the previous decade, e.g.,

Bar Exam Pass Rates, Legal Education, and a Plea for More Law School Clinics

Law Schools: Preparing Students for Practice?

Beer, Softball, 4-Day Weekends: Is This Any Way to Learn Law?

The Law School Curriculum: Ready for a Change?

So What's the Problem with the Problem Method?

So What Do You Buy When You Pay Tuition?

Is the J.D. Degree Merely a Ticket to More Training?

Posted by: Jim Maule | Oct 4, 2012 8:04:35 AM

And I found some more, not as long ago:

The Future of Legal Education and Law Faculty Activities

Team Teaching as a Component of Law School Curricular Change

Why Law School Education Doesn't Mesh with Law Practice

Bringing Practical Awareness Into Law School Education

Posted by: Jim Maule | Oct 4, 2012 8:10:05 AM

As Mr. Maule's list points out, the law school scam has been in effect for *decades* (one reason, perhaps, why only about *50%* of ABA-documented licensed lawyers appear to show up as *employed* lawyers in BLS and other stats).

Wondering - how would the suit-dismissing judges (relying upon the "You Should Have Googled" defense) view the years of defrauded students who relied upon law school stats (cooked, shredded) in the pre-Google years when there was little to no other available employment data - other than law school stats (cooked, shredded).

Perhaps this is another set of potential class action plaintiffs - whose suits have been tolled by the considerable efforts the law schools have made to hide the facts.

No way to Google when there was no Google. Or ScamBlogs.

Dear Law Schools,

You have made hundreds of thousands of motivated mortal enemies.

The suits will not stop coming - wave after wave, with continuously evolving causes of action.

Posted by: cas127 | Oct 4, 2012 10:53:54 AM

The long term employment and earnings data for those with law degrees--not just those who choose to practice law--is excellent compared to those with only liberal arts degrees.

Law graduates do extremely well relative to their peer group even though many law school graduates do not practice law. There is nothing alarming about the versatility of the law degree.

If you look at the data, you'll find that many graduates of engineering programs do not practice engineering, that many graduates of biology programs and chemistry programs do not become biologists or chemists, that many graduates of political science programs do not become political advisors or government officials.

And many students enter law school intending all along to go into business or government, not practice law.

The long term data doesn't come from the law schools, it comes from the U.S. government, collected directly from the population. It has been publicly available for decades.

Internet search has been available since the mid 1990s, and before that, there were things called "libraries", books, and within them, statistical tables. Perhaps law school applicants will have encountered libraries and books during their 16+ years of formal education (K-12 + 4 year BA) prior to law school.

Posted by: Anon | Oct 5, 2012 4:21:06 AM

Jason M. Dolin, and attorney in Columbus, OH and an adjunct professor at Capital U. Law School has published articles about legal employment in the current environment. The articles are based on information he gathered from public law schools in Ohio, (e.g. Ohio State, Cincinnati) by means of public record requests. Here is the most recent one. There were previous articles, but I could not find them.

Posted by: Walter Sobchak | Oct 6, 2012 4:21:24 PM