TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Thursday, April 5, 2018

The Economist: Why Are Law Schools Accepting The GRE?

GREThe Economist, Why Are Law Schools Accepting the GRE?:

[17] law schools [ArizonaBrooklyn, BYU, Cardozo, Columbia, Florida State, George Washington, Georgetown, Harvard, Hawaii, John Marshall, Northwestern, Pace, St. John's, Texas A&M, Wake Forest, and Washington University] have announced that they will allow applicants to submit the GRE as an alternative to the LSAT. The number continues to climb.

Part of the appeal of the GRE is its accessibility. The GRE is offered almost every day of the year at more than 1,000 testing centers across the country. The test is computer-delivered, and students can view their preliminary scores immediately upon completion. By contrast, the paper-based LSAT is offered just four times per year; scores take three to four weeks to arrive.

In other words, the GRE is simply more convenient than the LSAT. It’s also more widely accepted. The GRE is the standard test for graduate school admissions, and most business schools accept it as a GMAT alternative. ...

For many school officials, accepting the GRE is part of a larger mission to broaden the applicant pool. Between 2015 and 2016, 585,677 students took the GRE, whereas 105,883 students took the LSAT. By offering an alternative testing option, admissions officers hope to reach students who might not have previously considered themselves candidates for a law degree. ... Law schools are particularly eager to attract STEM students because of the growing need for technical expertise in the legal field.

(Hat Tip: Nick Allard.) Prior TaxProf Blog coverage:

Legal Education | Permalink


I can't speak to the rest of the country, but at least in Boston, "looking for STEM-trained lawyers" translates to "M.S. in STEM or higher; preferably PhD." I imagine most large cities overflowing with the over-educated are of a similar ilk. And while the percentage of actual scientists looking to practice law is not zero, I don't think it's a very large number, either. And now you're talking about asking people to spend more than a decade in higher education; that also limits the pool. Believe me, having a garden-variety B.S. in Biology or Electrical Engineering whatever does not make you stand out from the pack all that much.

Posted by: Unemployed Northeastern | Apr 5, 2018 7:43:57 AM