Robespierre wrote:Just thinking out loud here ... I'm wondering if a lot of people decided not to take the June '11 test because, as of early '11, the economy looked like it was picking up (LS applications are traditionally down when the economy is good). Whereas people considering the October '11 test made their decision during the last couple of months, with the economy tanking again (stock market down, U.S. credit downgrade, Europe problems, etc.)
In other words, I'm not totally sold that there will be a big decrease in test-takers, and thus applicants, for the '11-'12 cycle as a whole.
But I hope I'm wrong. I hope the number of test-takers is down because people are getting the message that the profession is overcrowded and legal hiring is off. That's not about to change very soon; certainly not this cycle.
You make some valid points, hence why I added the "assuming we can extrapolate" statement. However, I do think we'll see a decline in applicants for the 2011-2012 cycle even if it is only a small one for a number of reasons. First, the difference between October and June is only 4 months and the difference between the recent economic fears and and October is even smaller making the time frame to register and prepare for October relatively small. Second, the allure of law school was partially attributed to the hype of a law degree and now with many lawyers jobless, the hype is somewhat mitigated. The hype is further decreased by media outlets reporting on the dangers of a JD. Finally, even if October does not show a decrease, the decrease from June will carry over creating a cumulative effect. I understand that the economic situation we are facing is unique and that using past data to try and predict current data isn't reliable, I did notice that decreases and increases happened in trends. In other words, a decrease or increase has always happened for at least 3 years before changing direction since 1987.
tl;dr *makes BS reasons to convince himself of an applicant decrease and crosses fingers*