Recently, several law school graduates have sued their alma maters claiming that law schools have misled them by posting inflated hiring statistics on their admissions websites. While schools such as Thomas Jefferson School of Law are contesting the charges, the ABA Council on Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar has decided to respond.
The ABA recently announced (“ABA Reforms Employment Outcome Disclosure”) that it is rethinking the way it gathers statistics by changing its law school questionnaire—apparently the origin of the controversial statistics.
Some of the central changes to be made include:
- Schools must make public the percentage of employed graduates.
- In the questionnaire, students must include their job credentials, and if unemployed, students must also explain whether they cannot find a job or their unemployment is due to personal reasons.
- Students must describe the law firm or company for which they are working and include information about their job location, whether it is in the United States or abroad.
- Students must also explain whether their job is full-time/part-time, long-term/short-term, along with salary information.
The Careerist, a lawjobs.com blog, explains that the ABA has made a bold move in transforming their questionnaires (“Law School Transparency Gets R-E-S-P-E-C-T”). But the blog largely attributes the credit to the Law School Transparency (“LST”) project, a group that is working to make law schools provide more information.
LST calls the ABA’s action “an enormous step . . . towards helping prospective law students make informed decisions.” While the changes made by the ABA are exciting, we can only hope that LST inspires more organizations and schools to continue sharing data that applicants need.
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