CLS ---> legal academia? pipe dream?

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Feynman
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Re: CLS ---> legal academia? pipe dream?

Postby Feynman » Fri May 07, 2010 10:34 pm

OperaSoprano wrote:A while ago we had a marvelous thread about whether it would be better, generally speaking, to be top 10% + Law Review at CLS or "median" (hard to distinguish) without journals or publications at Yale.

I think the consensus was that CLS students were better for everything. That thread took an unintended turn toward hilarity, but I think the principle holds true for hiring in legal academia. If it were my career, I would hope for the former.


Easily the CLS student if the comparison were Harvard. Yale-Columbia comparison is tougher, I think.

legends159
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Re: CLS ---> legal academia? pipe dream?

Postby legends159 » Fri May 07, 2010 10:41 pm

by legal academia do you mean T14ish schools or are you willing to dip lower? CLS is perfectly fine for academia. Self selection gets thrown around a lot but it has a lot of weight in this situation.

sbalive
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Re: CLS ---> legal academia? pipe dream?

Postby sbalive » Fri May 07, 2010 10:44 pm

notanumber wrote:
of Benito Cereno wrote: Also, wondering if JD/PhDs between two universites (CLS /Princeton or Yale) are workable. I know someone doing a Yale JD with a Columbia PhD who applied to both at the same time but I'm unclear how it would work applying to outside PhDs while a 1L.


I'll 2nd most of what disco_barred has said, except to add: Don't even think about doing a Ph.D. if your only goal is to increase your marketability.

If you have a specific topic that you want to spend 5-8 years of your life exploring, then by all means take a Ph.D., but it's silly to spend that much time of your life to a purely instrumental process that will only provide marginal returns.


What the hell, I'll respond to this anyway. I'm trying to put off studying.

It shouldn't take 5-8 years to get a PhD. If it's taking 8 years, you're doing it wrong.

Columbia students do joint degrees with places like Princeton and Yale, and they also go on to get PhDs at Columbia and elsewhere as well. The point is to get writing time and experience. It might be good to do this in a PhD if you also have to take classes in another field anyway. Or, you can get it via a fellowship, perhaps after working for a few years.

disco_barred wrote:Getting the gig is hard, but it's hardly random.


This is exactly right. Grades, CoA, and Law Review are not dispositive. It depends a lot on field, etc., whether someone gets a PhD, all sorts of things. Academia is very idiosyncratic. For students straight out of undergrad who are not also trying to get a PhD, grades are very important, it's how you get noticed and cultivated by faculty. Grades, LR, and clerkships, also help with getting the kinds of experience that make people more attractive as hires (in addition to the writing, which is essential).

Yale provides a much larger group of fellow students with academic interests, which helps a lot with networking. Note though that most academic-bound Yale JDs end up in fellowships along side Harvard, Stanford, and CCN grads from which everyone sort of goes in the same pool. There's no doubt that a Yale JD will be considered for lots of jobs just on the basis of the degree. But, candidates are hired based on the whole package.

One thing I'll add is that Columbia is a practice/policy-driven school. Students care about what they do with law, not about the law per se. This is the biggest difference (from what I've heard at least) with Chicago. (I think at Harvard or Yale you'll get a number of people in both camps.) If someone is interested in legal theory, philosophy, law & econ, that sort of thing, they won't be happy at Columbia & probably should go elsewhere. But, if someone is interested in more applied areas like international human rights, contracts/business law, tax, gender & sexuality, IP/technology law etc., they would thrive.

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Doritos
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Re: CLS ---> legal academia? pipe dream?

Postby Doritos » Sun May 09, 2010 3:02 pm

Found this video...might be helpful for someone on this thread...http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fiewCHlg69c

notanumber
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Re: CLS ---> legal academia? pipe dream?

Postby notanumber » Sun May 09, 2010 9:28 pm

sbalive wrote:It shouldn't take 5-8 years to get a PhD.

:lol:

How cute.

Unless you're an engineer, in one of a very small number of hard sciences, or very driven and very lucky then it'll take you at least 5 years and more likely in the range of 6-8 to finish your degree. OP, in what I presume would be a political theory program, should budget away 6 years of life and not be surprised if it takes more. . .

sbalive
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Re: CLS ---> legal academia? pipe dream?

Postby sbalive » Tue May 11, 2010 2:15 pm

notanumber wrote:
sbalive wrote:It shouldn't take 5-8 years to get a PhD.

:lol:

How cute.

Unless you're an engineer, in one of a very small number of hard sciences, or very driven and very lucky then it'll take you at least 5 years and more likely in the range of 6-8 to finish your degree. OP, in what I presume would be a political theory program, should budget away 6 years of life and not be surprised if it takes more. . .


Um, I do know a little bit about this topic. And yeah, even in science and engineering, 6 years is pretty standard. But, I was speaking more specifically about the length of time it would take to do a PhD after law school. Assuming your work is somewhat related to the courses and writing that you do in law school, it shouldn't take longer than 4-5 years. A lot of the first few years of a PhD is about getting on the learning curve about research and writing and taking more sophisticated graduate courses, and this is something a JD won't have to do. This is certainly the case for most JD-PhDs working in academia who I know of or have actually met.

That's why it makes more sense to do a JD first -- it's a fixed time commitment, while the PhD is more under an individual's control, and going through the JD will help make subsequent PhD work more focused and efficient. The overall time should be less, and you can supplement a research fellowship by teaching law or law-related classes as an adjunct.

notanumber
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Re: CLS ---> legal academia? pipe dream?

Postby notanumber » Tue May 11, 2010 3:41 pm

sbalive wrote:Um, I do know a little bit about this topic. And yeah, even in science and engineering, 6 years is pretty standard. But, I was speaking more specifically about the length of time it would take to do a PhD after law school. Assuming your work is somewhat related to the courses and writing that you do in law school, it shouldn't take longer than 4-5 years. A lot of the first few years of a PhD is about getting on the learning curve about research and writing and taking more sophisticated graduate courses, and this is something a JD won't have to do. This is certainly the case for most JD-PhDs working in academia who I know of or have actually met.

That's why it makes more sense to do a JD first -- it's a fixed time commitment, while the PhD is more under an individual's control, and going through the JD will help make subsequent PhD work more focused and efficient. The overall time should be less, and you can supplement a research fellowship by teaching law or law-related classes as an adjunct.


I see what you're getting at. Yeah, I agree with what you're saying - it shouldn't take more than 4-5 years after law school, making the total (JD+Ph.D.) 6-9ish.

Sorry if I was a bit filp. I've just been chatting with a lot of folk IRL who are applying to Ph.D. programs and are just assuming that they can finish in 4-5 years and that they'll have a lot of control over the amount of time to degree completion. It's an important myth to dispel.

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of Benito Cereno
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Re: CLS ---> legal academia? pipe dream?

Postby of Benito Cereno » Tue May 11, 2010 3:49 pm

notanumber wrote:
sbalive wrote:Um, I do know a little bit about this topic. And yeah, even in science and engineering, 6 years is pretty standard. But, I was speaking more specifically about the length of time it would take to do a PhD after law school. Assuming your work is somewhat related to the courses and writing that you do in law school, it shouldn't take longer than 4-5 years. A lot of the first few years of a PhD is about getting on the learning curve about research and writing and taking more sophisticated graduate courses, and this is something a JD won't have to do. This is certainly the case for most JD-PhDs working in academia who I know of or have actually met.

That's why it makes more sense to do a JD first -- it's a fixed time commitment, while the PhD is more under an individual's control, and going through the JD will help make subsequent PhD work more focused and efficient. The overall time should be less, and you can supplement a research fellowship by teaching law or law-related classes as an adjunct.


I see what you're getting at. Yeah, I agree with what you're saying - it shouldn't take more than 4-5 years after law school, making the total (JD+Ph.D.) 6-9ish.

Sorry if I was a bit filp. I've just been chatting with a lot of folk IRL who are applying to Ph.D. programs and are just assuming that they can finish in 4-5 years and that they'll have a lot of control over the amount of time to degree completion. It's an important myth to dispel.

If I did the JD/PhD at Columbia I would expect the total degree to take 6-7 years (advanced standing shaves a year off phd coursework and previous research degree means I know exactly, really very exactly, what my dissertation would be).

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thisamericanlife
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Re: CLS ---> legal academia? pipe dream?

Postby thisamericanlife » Thu May 13, 2010 1:01 pm

Yes, Harvard and Yale dominate the market, but the next best alternative is CLS/Michigan/Chicago. Look at images on pages 9 and 10.

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm? ... id=1352656




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