Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

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porzingis3
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Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby porzingis3 » Fri Oct 20, 2017 5:09 pm

For example NYU vs let’s say Cornell or Duke? What are the reasonings for having a large class size? Why do some choose to keep their class sizes small in comparison to others in the t14. Sorry if this question has been asked but I didn’t find it in the search box. Thanks.

Hate me
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Re: Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby Hate me » Mon Oct 23, 2017 9:22 pm

porzingis3 wrote:For example NYU vs let’s say Cornell or Duke? What are the reasonings for having a large class size? Why do some choose to keep their class sizes small in comparison to others in the t14. Sorry if this question has been asked but I didn’t find it in the search box. Thanks.


They have more chairs in their classrooms. Can't let a seat go to waste.

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Barack O'Drama
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Re: Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby Barack O'Drama » Mon Oct 23, 2017 9:38 pm

Hate me wrote:
porzingis3 wrote:For example NYU vs let’s say Cornell or Duke? What are the reasonings for having a large class size? Why do some choose to keep their class sizes small in comparison to others in the t14. Sorry if this question has been asked but I didn’t find it in the search box. Thanks.


They have more chairs in their classrooms. Can't let a seat go to waste.



:lol: LOL

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Kummel
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Re: Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby Kummel » Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:17 pm

Barack O'Drama wrote:
Hate me wrote:
porzingis3 wrote:For example NYU vs let’s say Cornell or Duke? What are the reasonings for having a large class size? Why do some choose to keep their class sizes small in comparison to others in the t14. Sorry if this question has been asked but I didn’t find it in the search box. Thanks.


They have more chairs in their classrooms. Can't let a seat go to waste.



:lol: LOL


not really a joke though.

the law schools are financed primarily through tuition payments (as opposed to undergrads which aren't). if they have more space they take students to fill that space

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Barack O'Drama
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Re: Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby Barack O'Drama » Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:20 pm

Kummel wrote:
Barack O'Drama wrote:
Hate me wrote:
porzingis3 wrote:For example NYU vs let’s say Cornell or Duke? What are the reasonings for having a large class size? Why do some choose to keep their class sizes small in comparison to others in the t14. Sorry if this question has been asked but I didn’t find it in the search box. Thanks.


They have more chairs in their classrooms. Can't let a seat go to waste.



:lol: LOL


not really a joke though.

the law schools are financed primarily through tuition payments (as opposed to undergrads which aren't). if they have more space they take students to fill that space


Yeah-- that's a great point. I still thought it was funny for some reason though

dabigchina
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Re: Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby dabigchina » Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:31 pm

Kummel wrote:
Barack O'Drama wrote:
Hate me wrote:
porzingis3 wrote:For example NYU vs let’s say Cornell or Duke? What are the reasonings for having a large class size? Why do some choose to keep their class sizes small in comparison to others in the t14. Sorry if this question has been asked but I didn’t find it in the search box. Thanks.


They have more chairs in their classrooms. Can't let a seat go to waste.



:lol: LOL


not really a joke though.

the law schools are financed primarily through tuition payments (as opposed to undergrads which aren't). if they have more space they take students to fill that space


undergrads are financed with tuition payments - our tuition payments.

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Kummel
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Re: Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby Kummel » Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:39 pm

dabigchina wrote:
Kummel wrote:
Barack O'Drama wrote:
Hate me wrote:
porzingis3 wrote:For example NYU vs let’s say Cornell or Duke? What are the reasonings for having a large class size? Why do some choose to keep their class sizes small in comparison to others in the t14. Sorry if this question has been asked but I didn’t find it in the search box. Thanks.


They have more chairs in their classrooms. Can't let a seat go to waste.



:lol: LOL


not really a joke though.

the law schools are financed primarily through tuition payments (as opposed to undergrads which aren't). if they have more space they take students to fill that space


undergrads are financed with tuition payments - our tuition payments.


agreed

RedPurpleBlue
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Re: Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby RedPurpleBlue » Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:54 pm

Kummel wrote:
dabigchina wrote:undergrads are financed with tuition payments - our tuition payments.


agreed


For the most part, that just isn't true. Generally, funding stays within the school it was generated from in a given university. It's the only way to make consistent long-term budgets that allow for reasonable growth of each school. For a law school, 50-75% of revenue is generated by student income, 15-33% is generated from endowments, 5-10% is from sponsored support, 5-10% is from gifts for current use, and 5-15% comes from other sources. It varies by school, but that's how it normally works. Again, for all the pieces of the pie to consistently come together, schools don't normally appropriate funds generated from or for one school to another school. Dipping in to the funds of one school to bailout another creates some real headaches, even in the short-term.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Oct 24, 2017 6:04 am

It definitely varies. It was understood at my state flagship university that the law school tuition was subsidizing the undergraduate college(s).

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cdotson2
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Re: Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby cdotson2 » Tue Oct 24, 2017 8:20 am

Barack O'Drama wrote:
Kummel wrote:
Barack O'Drama wrote:
Hate me wrote:
They have more chairs in their classrooms. Can't let a seat go to waste.



:lol: LOL


not really a joke though.

the law schools are financed primarily through tuition payments (as opposed to undergrads which aren't). if they have more space they take students to fill that space


Yeah-- that's a great point. I still thought it was funny for some reason though


That misses the entire point though. Why did they create more seats in the first place, and why don't other schools create more seats? If tuition is the largest fund generator wouldn't law schools all want bigger class sizes?

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icechicken
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Re: Why do some law schools have much larger class sizes?

Postby icechicken » Tue Oct 24, 2017 11:22 am

cdotson2 wrote:That misses the entire point though. Why did they create more seats in the first place, and why don't other schools create more seats? If tuition is the largest fund generator wouldn't law schools all want bigger class sizes?


Law schools are tough to scale for a number of reasons.

1) Facilities - this is probably one of the easier areas to expand in, but investing in physical plant still takes years and millions of dollars, and is especially hard in certain areas (e.g. Manhattan).

2) Faculty - there is, of course, a massive oversupply of qualified candidates who want to teach law, but it's hard to recruit and retain the rock-star candidates that will attract students and raise the school's profile. Moreover, if class sizes get too big, students will (rightfully) worry that they're not going to get much time with the star professors.

3) Student quality - LSAT and GPA medians, along with secondary concerns like diversity, get harder to maintain as class sizes get bigger. One of the easiest ways to shoot up the US News rankings is to shed the bottom of the class and instantly improve one's medians (along with other rankings criteria like dollars/faculty per student). Conversely, expanding class sizes makes it harder to tread water in the rankings, since the marginal student any given school can get to matriculate is probably going to be less-qualified than the ones they have already.

4) Job placement - Important for both rankings and for attracting matriculates. Like input measures of student quality, this problem is worse than it might seem at first because marginal admits are going to tend to be weaker, and if a school's main target markets are more-or-less saturated (they usually are) then taking on more students is basically just going to result in more unemployed alumni, who will in turn weaken the school's reputation through their impact on ABA reports and their complaining. Having a big alumni network is nice, and can inflate certain dick-measuring stats (like gross number of SCOTUS clerks or billionaires or whatever), but the magic numbers people care about (overall job placement, biglaw placement, clerkship placement) are pretty much all inversely related to class size.

Georgetown has slipped out of the T14 mainly because its size causes all these problems. While its gold-standard brand mitigates most of the above, Harvard has lost a lot of rankings/prestige ground to Stanford (and Columbia/NYU to Chicago) because keeping smaller class sizes are like a cheat code for most measures of law-school quality.




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