Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

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jenesaislaw
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Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby jenesaislaw » Mon Apr 30, 2012 1:17 pm

Just wanted to stop by and announce that we have released our clearinghouse for the class of 2010. --LinkRemoved-- This is the most comprehensive, school-specific employment dataset ever publicly produced. We've reconciled data from up to four sources and done our best to make it accessible and consumable.

Observationalist (policy director), DerekTokaz (assistant director of research) and I will be taking questions here. Please also feel free to provide comments and criticisms. This is a work in progress and we can make it better with feedback.

A few things already in the works for today and the rest of this week:

- a school comparison chart for key statistics that will allow you to see how employment and under-employment scores vary
- a better color scheme for the graphs -- the colors are random right now, and that makes zero sense
- more salary data when available on the salary tab of each school
- reverse-lookup by top graduate destination states


Summary from the National Law Journal:

For each ABA-accredited law school, the database includes key employment statistics; charts that break down the percentage of graduates in lawyer and non-lawyer jobs; graphs that detail whether jobs were long-term or short-term; maps showing the states in which the largest percentage of graduates found jobs; salary breakdowns; and the jobs reports that schools submitted to the ABA and NALP.

Law School Transparency has calculated an "employment score" for each school, accounting for all graduates in jobs that require a J.D. but subtracting those in solo practices and those in short-term jobs. ...

By contrast, the raw employment score that law schools historically have submitted to the ABA lump all jobs together, regardless of whether they require a law degree or are for the long term. (The ABA has introduced reforms intended to extract more detailed jobs information from schools in the future).

Law School Transparency has calculated what it calls the "under-employment score" for each school — the percentage of graduates who are unemployed; are in jobs that don't require or prefer a law degree; are in part-time jobs; or are enrolled in a degree program.

The database's "key stats" tab includes the percentages of students from a given school whose employment status is unknown; who reported salary data to their school; in jobs funded by the school itself; in jobs at law firms with 100 or more attorneys; and in public service jobs.

The public service statistics includes only graduates in government or public interest jobs — not judicial clerks or graduates working in academia. "If you go to law school saying, 'I want to work for the public good,' the public service figure will tell you how many people from a specific school do that," McEntee said.

The percentage of students who report their salaries to their law school reflect how happy graduates are with their professional lives, he said, on the theory that only students who are pleased with their jobs are likely to report their salaries.

Law School Transparency's calculations generally offer a different view of a law school's employment statistics that those reported to the ABA or NALP. For example, Law School Transparency's "employment score" for American University Washington College of Law is 54.3 percent — meaning that slightly more than half the class of 2010 found long-term legal jobs, excluding solo practitioners. By contrast, the ABA report for the class of 2010 shows an employment rate of 83 percent, which includes graduates in short-term jobs and in jobs that don't require law degrees. ...

Finally, the database covers tuition including a total debt projection for the classes of 2015 and 2016. The debt projections include interest, inflation and additional factors that many prospective students don't consider when taking out loans, McEntee said.

Paul Campos
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby Paul Campos » Mon Apr 30, 2012 1:30 pm

Awesome work.

DerekTokaz
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby DerekTokaz » Mon Apr 30, 2012 2:04 pm

Hey Kyle,

Could you explain why a law school might choose to not share employment data it has already collected?

Thanks.

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LSAT Blog
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby LSAT Blog » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:36 pm

This is a great public service. Kudos to you all. I'll do a write-up tomorrow.

Tarheel1234
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby Tarheel1234 » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:55 pm

This is great. I've also come across this article which would be relevant for prospective applicants, talking about the ABA releasing data concerning the Class of 2011 sometime soon.

http://www.law.com/jsp/nlj/PubArticleNL ... slreturn=1

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thelawyler
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby thelawyler » Mon Apr 30, 2012 9:55 pm

Thanks for all the hard work you guys at LST put in. Seriously big kudos.

I love the Lost references with the unknown numbers haha

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bk1
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby bk1 » Tue May 01, 2012 12:16 pm

Like the new way info is displayed all around. Great work guys.

Looking at salary page, you say "X% of this school's graduates made $Y or more." Just took a quick look at some T14's (which generally have quartiles all at 160k) and you only add up 2 of the quartiles rather than 3. So, for example, each quartile of salary data covers 19% of Columbia grads so since the 25th percentile is 160k, we know that 57% of them make 160k or more. But the site only says 38% of them make 160k or more.

DerekTokaz
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby DerekTokaz » Tue May 01, 2012 12:29 pm

bk1 wrote:Looking at salary page, you say "X% of this school's graduates made $Y or more." Just took a quick look at some T14's (which generally have quartiles all at 160k) and you only add up 2 of the quartiles rather than 3. So, for example, each quartile of salary data covers 19% of Columbia grads so since the 25th percentile is 160k, we know that 57% of them make 160k or more. But the site only says 38% of them make 160k or more.


Thanks for pointing this out, and I'm discussing it now with Kyle.

Glad I'm not the one who does the programming.

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jenesaislaw
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby jenesaislaw » Tue May 01, 2012 12:44 pm

Thanks, made the change.

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bk1
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby bk1 » Tue May 01, 2012 12:56 pm

jenesaislaw wrote:Thanks, made the change.


I realize now that before you had at set so that it would always just report the median and the percent who fell above it.

I guess I don't necessarily understand why you use median rather than 25th. I could see some sort of logic if you were trying to approximate 6 figure salaries and would choose whichever of the 25th/50th/75th that fell close it (e.g. for American the median is 90k). But for the terrible schools (e.g. Barry) why say 8% made 45k or more rather than 12% made 40k or more? To me it seems that the simplest thing to do would be just to report the 25th and the percent of people who fell above that rather than using median. The time I could see this making a difference is for schools with a fairly large drop between 25th and median, though there are also a lot of schools where the 25th is close to the median. Maybe median is deemed more representative since it's median but generally the 25th percentile salary seems to be closer to the actual median student at most schools.

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jenesaislaw
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby jenesaislaw » Tue May 01, 2012 1:35 pm

Good points. We're going to talk about it and decide what to do. I appreciate you taking the time to think about it. Keep the comments coming.

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ThreeRivers
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby ThreeRivers » Tue May 01, 2012 2:28 pm

I have a question.

Is "school-funded" positions considered "bar required." If so does it count in the employment score?

I noticed it stated bar required - solo practioners - short term firm jobs)... so are short-term law school funded positions included in there?

DerekTokaz
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby DerekTokaz » Tue May 01, 2012 2:32 pm

ThreeRivers wrote:I have a question.

Is "school-funded" positions considered "bar required." If so does it count in the employment score?


It depends on what the requirements for the school funded job are. Some are BPR, some are not, but we don't really have the details on that.

I noticed it stated bar required - solo practioners - short term firm jobs)... so are short-term law school funded positions included in there?

Short term school funded jobs at law firms would be excluded just as every other short term law firm job is. That said, we typically don't know where school funded jobs are.

Tarheel1234
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby Tarheel1234 » Wed May 02, 2012 11:28 am

Do you guys think that if/when the ABA releases Class of 2011 data, it will be reported in this format?

http://www.americanbar.org/content/dam/ ... eckdam.pdf

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jenesaislaw
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby jenesaislaw » Wed May 02, 2012 12:19 pm

It will be similar, though it will not include salary information. We're working with the ABA Section of Legal Education's Council to improve that chart, but who knows how much of our advice they will take.

The chart you linked is actually the chart the Standards Review Committee had proposed to the Council for the new Standard 509. The modified chart (whatever it ends up being) will appear on every school's webpage. The data on the ABA's site, again, will be very similar.

bruss
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby bruss » Wed May 02, 2012 12:24 pm

When I saw this I almost threw up. Becoming a lawyer is now the equivalent to being a trashman. You get 50k and your chance at becoming partner is as likely as you becoming sanitation commissioner. The difference is that the trashman isn't a quarter million in debt.

answer23
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby answer23 » Wed May 02, 2012 1:06 pm

Can you explain why Georgetown's score is so low at 67%? Is it possible that the JD preferred jobs that their student's are getting might be desirable ones in dc think tanks etc.

Tarheel1234
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby Tarheel1234 » Wed May 02, 2012 1:14 pm

Hi all, I called the ABA and spoke with Ken, who is the Data Specialist, to ask when Class of 2011 data is expected to be released. He said within around three weeks it should come out. I received their contact information from here:

http://www.americanbar.org/groups/legal ... ct_us.html

He also stated the reporting format will include a litte more information than how the Class of 2010 statistics were presented.

Twit
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby Twit » Wed May 02, 2012 1:35 pm

This is fantastic. Thank you, guys.

Can someone explain to me why Cornell brings up the bottom of the T14 with employment numbers like that? No respect.

bruss
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby bruss » Wed May 02, 2012 1:53 pm

Twit wrote:This is fantastic. Thank you, guys.

Can someone explain to me why Cornell brings up the bottom of the T14 with employment numbers like that? No respect.


was just checking that out. So many people on this site try to shit on Cornell and it really makes no sense. I understand that Ithaca is a shithole to most, but the school def deserves more respect.

bruss
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby bruss » Wed May 02, 2012 1:55 pm

O yeah forgot to mention: Hell of a job guys

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jenesaislaw
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby jenesaislaw » Wed May 02, 2012 1:57 pm

Tarheel1234 wrote:Hi all, I called the ABA and spoke with Ken, who is the Data Specialist, to ask when Class of 2011 data is expected to be released. He said within around three weeks it should come out. I received their contact information from here:

http://www.americanbar.org/groups/legal ... ct_us.html

He also stated the reporting format will include a litte more information than how the Class of 2010 statistics were presented.


Ken is a good guy. However, they are understaffed and just hired another data specialist, so don't get your hopes up.

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jenesaislaw
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby jenesaislaw » Wed May 02, 2012 2:03 pm

answer23 wrote:Can you explain why Georgetown's score is so low at 67%? Is it possible that the JD preferred jobs that their student's are getting might be desirable ones in dc think tanks etc.


Sure, it is possible that the JD-preferred jobs are desirable ones in DC, but it's more likely that these were not their first choices unless the composition of GULC's class has drastically changed. It's also likely that a good number are people returning to their pre-law school employer (or stayed with their current employer if they were part-time students.)

Just a few years ago GULC had just a small, small handful of people in JD-preferred jobs. We're talking about 2% of the class compared to over 19% for the class of 2010.

What makes more sense: GULC graduates are having trouble getting the jobs they want or GULC admitted significantly more people who want to pursue JD-preferred jobs? The truth is that the thinktank jobs have always been hard to get, and this didn't change, especially not as nonprofit funding has dried up.

rad lulz
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby rad lulz » Wed May 02, 2012 2:08 pm

So Paul Campos called yall out on his blog, and said that part of the reason yall do this is because yall don't have jobs.

In the alternative, if you're affiliated with Vanderbilt's or NYU's law school, you might try to help your alums out a little more, so that your extremely intelligent, hard-working, and public-spirited graduates don't end up with quite so much time on their hands.


I know Obs caught the magic unicorn and got some sort of sick international law job, but what do the rest of yall do on the day to day?

answer23
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Re: Law School Transparency's Class of 2010 Data Clearinghouse

Postby answer23 » Wed May 02, 2012 2:16 pm

jenesaislaw wrote:
answer23 wrote:Can you explain why Georgetown's score is so low at 67%? Is it possible that the JD preferred jobs that their student's are getting might be desirable ones in dc think tanks etc.


Sure, it is possible that the JD-preferred jobs are desirable ones in DC, but it's more likely that these were not their first choices unless the composition of GULC's class has drastically changed. It's also likely that a good number are people returning to their pre-law school employer (or stayed with their current employer if they were part-time students.)

Just a few years ago GULC had just a small, small handful of people in JD-preferred jobs. We're talking about 2% of the class compared to over 19% for the class of 2010.

What makes more sense: GULC graduates are having trouble getting the jobs they want or GULC admitted significantly more people who want to pursue JD-preferred jobs? The truth is that the thinktank jobs have always been hard to get, and this didn't change, especially not as nonprofit funding has dried up.



I see that their under employment score is only 6.2%. How is the JD preferred category weighted in the overall score. Is JD-preferred considered undesirable, desirable or somewhere in between?




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