jenesaislaw wrote:I kind of get what you're saying, I think. Before I respond, do you want to clarify? The point of those columns is to show just how little of the class the salary figures people rely on reflects.
Oh, I get that part
But that's only "private sector" salary and doesn't include clerkships/gov't salary data, which is there, but there is no % reporting column of that. If you get them, you can combine the two and then get a more accurate picture of which schools report at all. Otherwise, you're leaving out a chunk of some of the classes (i.e. Yale places a HUGE % of the class in clerkships and they would be "left out" of the salary data and look like bad data reporters when... they're Yale).
Right, so this is a legit worry. The U.S. News survey does not collect the % reported for public service, though it is a wonder why they don't. As such, the median number doesn't tell us anything more than "one graduate might have made X." And it's only might because if only 2 reported, then the median is really just an average. It's simply dangerous to do anything with the median public service salary (not that you suggested it). It just about follows then that all salary information is subsumed by the private salary quartiles.
Could I add the one word to the column? Yeah, and maybe I will in the future. But for now I think it better serves the purpose of rebutting median salary discussion, which almost never is precise.
What you say about Yale is a crucial thing for people to understand. I wrote a relatively long post about it a while ago, and I should try to find it. I'm going to write a blog post sometime soon that points this problem out too. You really have to look at all numbers to get a feel for the class.