Following up on my previous posts (links below): Law.com, ABA Considers Tossing LSAT Requirement, Disagreement Ensues:
The debate over the GRE in law school admissions is headed to Washington this week.
The American Bar Association is holding a public hearing April 12 on a proposed change to its law school standards that would drop the requirement that schools use the Law School Admission Test when selecting students.
Proponents and opponents of the change have already laid out their arguments in written comments submitted before the hearing, and the legal academy appears markedly split on the issue. Unsurprisingly, the organizations behind both standardized tests are at odds over whether the ABA’s Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar should eliminate the LSAT rule.
The Law School Admission Council argued that the LSAT requirement benefits schools by offering a reliable predictor of whether applicants will succeed on campus, while also protecting the consumer interest of weak candidates by signaling that they will likely struggle should they enroll—and assume debt in the process.
“No one wins if this decision turns out poorly—not law school candidates, not law schools and certainly not the consuming public,” warned LSAC president Kellye Testy in a 10-page letter urging the ABA council to conduct further study on the admission test matter before voting on the proposal.
Educational Testing Service, which administers the Graduate Record Examination, countered that law schools need greater flexibility in admissions to combat a long-term decline in applications. The GRE is used for admissions to most graduate programs outside of law, business and medicine, and is offered on a rolling basis throughout the year, unlike the LSAT’s six annual test dates.
“ETS commends the ABA for its efforts to innovate law school admissions and hopes the council will approve revisions to the standards that give institutions flexibility in determining how to address the challenges that the legal profession faces and meet their obligation to enroll candidates they believe are capable of satisfactory program completion,” reads the letter from ETS vice president David Payne.
But groups within and outside the academy that are devoted to teaching, diversity and other education matters are coming down on both sides of the issue, at times citing the exact same goals to support their opposing positions.
Prior TaxProf Blog coverage:
- Is Wake Forest Law School's Offer To Pay Students To Take The GRE A U.S. News Rankings Ploy? (Jan. 30, 2016)
- Christine Hurt (BYU), Could The GRE Replace The LSAT? (Feb. 6, 2016)
- Arizona Is First Law School To Admit Students Based On GRE Instead Of LSAT (Feb. 11, 2016)
- WSJ: Law Schools Replace LSAT With GRE To Goose Enrollment (Feb. 23, 2016)
- The First Two Law Schools to Drop the LSAT Could Be Just the Beginning (Feb. 25, 2016)
- The Empire Strikes Back: LSAC Threatens To Expel University Of Arizona Over Use Of GRE In Law School Admissions (May 1, 2016)
- 148 Deans Demand LSAC Rescind Threat To Expel University Of Arizona Over Use Of GRE In Law School Admissions (May 5, 2016)
- The Antitrust Implications Of LSAC's Threatened Expulsion Of University Of Arizona Over Use Of GRE In Law School Admissions (May 8, 2016)
- LSAC Backs Down (For Now) On Threat To Expel University Of Arizona For Use Of GRE In Law School Admissions (May 9, 2016)
- Poll: Majority Of Law Schools Are Not Racing To Follow Arizona In Replacing LSAT With GRE (June 6, 2016)
- Taylor: The GRE Is No Law School Diversity Tool (June 16, 2016)
- University Of Arizona Is 'Preying On Low-Information Prospective Law Students' (June 21, 2016)
- Rick Bales (Dean, Ohio Northern),75% Of Law School Deans Support Arizona's Use Of GRE As Substitute For LSAT, Not Its Use Of 'Misleading Employment Stats' (June 23, 2016)
- The Empire Strikes Back, Part II: LSAC Stops Certifying Matriculant Admissions Data In Response To Law Schools' Use Of GRE (Aug. 4, 2016)
- LSAC Rescinds Threat (For One Year) To Stop Certifying Matriculant Admissions Data In Response To Law Schools' Use Of GRE (Sept. 25, 2016)
- Proposed ABA Accreditation Rule Sets Process To Determine Validity Of GRE, Other LSAT Alternatives In Law School Admissions (Feb. 15, 2017)
- Khan Academy Offers Free LSAT Prep; Is Free Bar Exam Prep Next? (Mar. 3, 2017)
- Harvard Is Second Law School To Admit 1Ls Based On GRE Rather Than LSAT (Mar. 9, 2017)
- NY Times, Will Dropping The LSAT Requirement Create More Miserable Lawyers? (Mar. 19, 2017)
- Bill Henderson (Indiana), U.S. News Eliminates The Rankings Advantage Of The GRE, But Harvard Has Started A 'Quant' Arms Race For Diverse Students Who Will Thrive In A Transformed, Tech-Driven, Disrupted Legal Profession (Apr. 11, 2017)
- LSAC Moves Toward Digital LSAT (Ten Years After MCAT), Says It Was Not Due To Growing Use Of GRE In Law School Admissions (Apr. 20, 2017)
- Harvard Law School, The GRE, And Moneyball (Apr. 26, 2017)
- Facing Competition From GRE, LSAC Allows Applicants To Take LSAT An Unlimited Number Of Times (May 20, 2017)
- Chicago Law Schools Consider Accepting GRE As Test Alternative To LSAT (May 31, 2017)
- Northwestern Is Third Law School To Accept GRE For Admissions, Finds It Is Just As Accurate As LSAT In Predicting 1L Grades (Aug. 7, 2017)
- Georgetown Is Fourth Law School To Accept GRE For Admissions, Finds It Is Just As Accurate As LSAT In Predicting 1L Grades; LSAC Disagrees, Says 'The Rest Of The Top 14 Will Go Like Lemmings Off The Cliff' (Aug. 8, 2017)
- The GRE Is Shaking Up Law School Admissions (Aug. 9, 2017)
- More On Using The GRE In Law School Admissions (Aug. 11, 2017)
- Do We Really Want To Make It Easier To Go To Law School? (Aug. 17, 2017)
- 25% Of Law Schools Plan To Accept The GRE (Sept. 19, 2017)
- Washington University Is Sixth Law School To Accept GRE For Admissions (Oct. 4, 2017)
- Columbia Is Seventh Law School To Accept GRE For Admissions (Oct. 17, 2017)
- Arizona Deans: It's Time To Rethink The Law School Entrance Exam Monopoly (Oct. 26, 2017)
- ETS Releases Study Establishing Validity Of GRE In Predicting Law School Success, Using Data On 1L Grades From 21 Law Schools (Nov. 1, 2017)
- ABA Council Clears The Way For All Law Schools To Admit Students Based On The GRE (Or To Ignore Admissions Tests Entirely) (Nov. 4, 2017)
- Texas A&M Is Ninth Law School To Accept GRE For Admissions (Nov. 16, 2017)
- Wake Forest Is Tenth Law School To Accept GRE For Admissions (Nov. 16, 2017)
- BYU Is Eleventh Law School To Accept GRE For Admissions (Nov. 21, 2017)
- Can The GRE Cure What Ails Law Schools? (Nov. 30, 2017)
- WSJ: Law Schools Say: Please Come, No LSAT Required (Dec. 6, 2017)
- Kent Syverud And Dan Rodriguez On The GRE/LSAT Debate (Dec. 13, 2017)
- Nick Allard And David Brennen Continue The GRE/LSAT Debate (Dec. 18, 2017)
- John Marshall Is Fifteenth Law School To Accept GRE For Admissions (Feb. 3, 2018)
- Two More Law Schools Admit 1Ls Based On GRE Rather Than LSAT (Feb. 25, 2018)
- George Washington Discontinues Use Of GRE In Admissions Because It Has Not Done A School-Specific Validation Study (Mar. 18, 2018)
- The Economist: Why Are Law Schools Accepting The GRE? (Apr. 5, 2018)
- NY Times: The Contentious GRE v. LSAT Debate (Apr. 6, 2018)
- Chicago-Kent Is 18th Law School To Accept GRE For Admissions (Apr. 8, 2017)