A. Nony Mouse wrote:But I have given you my thoughts on the issue. I don't think that med students have a stronger work ethic and necessarily did more in undergrad than law students, or that students who want to go to med school are at heart any better informed or focused about their careers than law students are; their numbers have just been reduced earlier in the process, so the kind of process law students undergo to figure out what they want to do and if law is right for them happens earlier for med students. That is, to the extent med students don't fall into the same kinds of "I don't know what to do with myself" mindset as law students (which I'm not actually convinced of), it's because the application process and even getting to med school at all is different from law school, and weeds out those people.
Beyond that, you have large numbers of really smart people about whom you can't really generalize. (I agree with whoever above pointed out that there are a lot more law schools admitting less-qualified applicants than there are med schools that do so, but you limited your question to top schools only, so we don't need to worry about that.) I don't agree that brain drain is a problem at all - the very top law schools are always going to have very smart students, and to the extent that medians dip a couple of LSAT points or tenths of a GPA, that's not material, because LSAT and GPA are pretty blunt measures for lawyering ability.
Fair enough. I appreciate you articulating your thoughts, though disagree w/ many of your points (e.g. the idea that med students don't do more in undergrad is highly dubious. How else can you account for the higher selectivity in med school apps when, as I pointed out, statistical measures would suggest law/med admissions are equal? The most plausible alternative seems that students are being further selected based off of soft factors, which they presumably have more of. It also simply makes sense from an incentives perspective,which you also touched upon in a different context, given that law students don't have nearly the incentive to pile up soft factors, given their relative lack of importance in admissions).
A. Nony Mouse wrote: That is, to the extent med students don't fall into the same kinds of "I don't know what to do with myself" mindset as law students, it's because the application process and even getting to med school at all is different from law school, and weeds out those people.
I totally agree, but how does that invalidate what I'm saying? You seem to be demonstrating my point that various factors (including the admissions process) tend to shape the profiles of med and law students. Part of the exercise in determining said profile is in identifying those factors, which I give you props for doing.
Once again, you disagree w/ my conclusions, and then use that as support for why the question itself is bogus. The only statement that tries to refute the question itself is the following unsubstantiated declaration:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:Beyond that, you have large numbers of really smart people about whom you can't really generalize.
Why do you immediately assume there are no ways to generalize? What about Hikikomorist's suggestion about comparing SAT scores? Wouldn't that or some other methodology be a good objective way to generalize?