An American Bar Association committee recently issued a report complaining about shortcomings in the US News law school rankings, which the committee suggested had effects including some upward pressure on tuition, an overemphasis on the LSAT and an underemphasis on diversity. Nevertheless, the committee concluded, the US News rankings were likely to continue to be influential. US News subsequently issued a pointed response in its own defense.
In yesterday’s post, I talked about a tendency among some preparing for the LSAT, after making an error in their practice, to continue to think that their answer was better than the LSAT’s, arguing with the LSAT and injuring their prospects of obtaining their highest LSAT score. I attributed part of that tendency to the natural argumentativeness and high self-estimate of intellectual ability that are often characteristic of prospective law school students and lawyers.
Yes, it’s a loaded question. Not complicated? Well, I guess you can make it as Byzantine as you like, and many LSAT takers complexify to no end.
The Advise-In blog has been a little quiet this week. I’m doing my annual pro bono LSAT preparation and advising workshop for about 30 students this year. A full, fun week, during which there are sometimes a few LSAT-related items that come into sharper focus.
Beginning next Monday, July 26, I’ll conduct a week-long LSAT preparation and application advising workshop at the foot of the Wasatch Mountains in Utah. This will be the 13th consecutive year I’ve done this. As in the past, I’ll be donating my services (students pay a little to cover travel and other expenses; there's sometimes a little left over, which goes to non-profits).
Summer Associate Hiring Down Dramatically, with Little Indication of Prospects for Next Summer: What Does It Mean for Law School Students?
The AmLaw Daily yesterday released the results of its survey of summer associate hiring for 2010. It’s not surprising that, of the 114 law firms that responded to the survey (many firms did not), summer associate hiring was down 44% from 2009. That’s a considerably sharper decline than had been indicated in some prior press, but is the most reliable number we’re aware of.
In June, I did two posts about “The Goldilocks Problem in LSAT Preparation” (link to Part One). Briefly put, the Goldilocks problem is the difficulty that prospective LSAT takers have in calculating the right amount of time and effort to put into getting their highest LSAT score. Not too much, not too little. On the “not too much” side, I said that excessive preparation risks increasing the scariness of the LSAT, a loss of momentum and exhausting the relatively small amount of good LSAT prep materials. You also may just have better things to do with your time (for your sake, I hope so). A good LSAT advisor will develop a program to reduce these risks for you and save you a lot of wheel-spinning time in the process.
A lot of LSAT talk on social media and websites is about the price of LSAT prep programs. There are two basic service-delivery models available, whether online or in person: large classroom instruction and per-hour tutoring. (Advise-In’s single-fee structure, with no pre-set limit on consultations with me, is an exception designed to overcome what I think are significant educational shortcomings of the per-hour and classroom models.)
It’s nice to read stories about people who once didn’t get it and now do. Jennifer Harris, a law student entering her second year, writes in The National Law Journal that after an up-and-down start, she is approaching her second year “with the goal of studying not for the next exam, but for the practice of law that awaits me after graduation.”
A headline on the blog The Careerist earlier this week asks new lawyers looking for work if it’s “Time to Take That Unsexy Job?” The “sexy” jobs, apparently, are “associate or junior lawyer” positions.
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