December 13, 2012
Law Schools Face 'Calamity' as Applications Are 'Collapsing' -- Down 25% From 2012
LSAC reports that as of December 7 (roughly 30% through the cycle), applications for the law school class entering in 2013 are down 24.6% from 2012 and applicants are down 22.4%:
Paul Campos (Colorado), Applications to Law School Are Collapsing:
These numbers suggest that law schools will have a total of somewhere between 52,000 and 53,000 applicants to choose from in this cycle, i.e., slightly more than half as many as in 2004, when there were 188 ABA accredited law schools (there are 201 at the moment, with an emphasis on "at the moment").
To put that number in perspective, law schools admitted 60,400 first year JD students two years ago. Since a significant percentage of applicants are unwilling to consider enrolling at any school below a certain hierarchical level, and/or will decline to enroll at certain other schools without receiving massive discounts on the advertised tuition price, these numbers portend fiscal calamity for more than a few schools. But out of that calamity will come the beginnings of a more rational and just system of legal education for the next generation of lawyers.
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This should come as no surprise:
Skeptics who continue to deny that legal academia suffers from real problems are increasingly irrelevant.
Posted by: Brian Tamanaha | Dec 13, 2012 4:58:52 PM
Law schools suffer from a simple problem: they are now required (*finally*)to make basic information about REAL employment outcomes available to consumers.
You know you're running a questionable enterprise when the response to basic consumer information is abstention from buying your product. All those 170 LSAT scoring folks get it.
And it's telling that Tamanaha's peers would rather poo poo his attempts to conceive of solutions to save the enterprise instead of acknowledging the obvious unsustainability of the current model and offering up viable substantive alternatives of their own.
Law school are going the way of the Dodo bird, and fast.
Posted by: Anon | Dec 13, 2012 5:55:09 PM