Paul L. Caron

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Law School Applications Down 16%

LSAC, Three-Year ABA Volume Comparison:

As of 12/06/13, there are 90,032 Fall 2014 applications submitted by 14,171 applicants. Applicants are down 13.6% and applications are down 15.7% from 2013. ...

A line chart titled Fall ABA Applications by Week. The horizontal axis represents months November through August. Along its vertical axis are numbers 0 through 800,000 indicating number of applications. The line labeled Fall 2012 curves gently beginning with 107,415 in November, reaching 433,632 in March, then gradually plateauing to end in August at 469,507. The line labeled Fall 2013 increases from 77,985 in November to 342,993 in March, ending at 385,358 in August. The line labeled Fall 2014 rises slightly from 67,195 to 90,032.

Paul Campos (Colorado), Law School Applications Continue Their Steep Decline:

A first year class of 35,000 next fall (and note this is at the optimistic end of estimates given the analysis above) would mean that the total national enrollment over the previous three years will have been around 119,000, as compared to 153,700 from 2008-2010, i.e., there will be 22.6% fewer law students than there were four years earlier, despite a radical decline in admissions standards.  

Update: Matt Leichter, Week 49: 51,300 Applicants Projected for 2014:

No. Applications Over App Cycle


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BD, are intruding upon the last refuge of the scoundrels - "Pay no attention to that, you know, *data* behind the curtain - It is all Scamblog Panic!"

Actually, Scamblog Panic would make a h*ll of a band name.

Posted by: cas127 | Dec 12, 2013 10:00:52 AM


I think we've covered this ground before, but how many prospective law students do you really think read TaxProf Blog? (no offense intended, Professor Caron)

Posted by: Unemployed Northeastern | Dec 12, 2013 9:43:19 AM


i suspect increased transparency isn't helping the cause of the law schools either. 0Ls are smart enough to read the writing on the wall. Take out a quarter million dollars in debt to get a 60 percent chance of earning circa $50 - 60k, with few opportunities for further advancement in a very competitive field, doing work that many loathe.

Posted by: Bobby Dobb | Dec 12, 2013 7:38:19 AM

The largest factor driving down applications is panicky articles like those cited here.

Posted by: michael livingston | Dec 11, 2013 10:18:43 PM