Paul L. Caron

Monday, February 6, 2023

ABA To Vote Today On Making LSAT Optional Beginning With Fall 2026 1L Class

Reuters, Judgment Day Looms for ABA’s Hotly Debated LSAT Requirement:

ABA Legal Ed (2022)The American Bar Association’s policy-making body is slated on Monday to decide whether to drop the longstanding requirement that law schools use the Law School Admission Test or another standardized test when admitting students.

If the ABA’s House of Delegates approves the change when it meets [this] week in New Orleans, law schools will be fully “test optional”—though not until the fall of 2025. ...

The ABA’s Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar preliminarily approved the rule change in November, adding a last-minute provision that delays implementation until 2025 to give schools time to prepare. Approval by the House of Delegates is the final step.

Those who oppose the change, including [60] law school deans, have warned that eliminating the LSAT requirement will make admissions decisions more dependent on undergraduate grade-point averages and subjective measures such as the prestige of an applicant’s college, which they say could disadvantage minority applicants.

Those who want the rule removed argue that the LSAT is a barrier for minority would-be lawyers because on average they score below white test takers, and because law schools rely too heavily on those scores. A 2019 study found the average score for Black LSAT takers was 142, compared to 153 for white and Asian test takers.

Prior TaxProf Blog coverage:

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