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August 14, 2014


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confused by your post

Ben Barros had a point about finding common ground.

People from different parts of the legal field post and comment here. Many times they fail to agree on matters related to legal education and the profession. That's normal. However, to me, for-profit law schools are an issue that all(deans, professors, practicing counsel, unemployed grads, etc.) can and should come together on. There is an opportunity here to put aside the negativity and on this one topic contribute thoughts and ideas as a step toward pushing back against these "businesses."

I encourage all to do so.


If you want to go after federal funding of for-profits, you either have to convince the non-legal for-profits not to fight such a measure or you have to fight and somehow beat the for-profit educational industry.

For-profit law schools are such drops in the overall for-profit educational bucket.

I'm not saying I disagree with anyone on for-profit law schools. I'm just saying going after their federal money is a bigger fight than some may be expecting. It's not everyone versus a few schools.

Just a couple of culinary schools alone make the for-profit law schools look like small potatoes.

(Did you see what I did there?)


tgr and Mack

See, pg. 20 et seq. of this report

Now, we know the reason for certain disparities in this data.

Differing "nuerobiological levels" it is, according to tgr. (MacK states that the LSAT is an "intelligence test.")



anon, you're a law professor, aren't you? The defensiveness, the ignorance of fairly well-established neuroscience, the lack of understanding of quantitative data. Guessing by your defense of LSAT low scorers I'm guessing the school you teach at is not particularly highly ranked.

Your weird fixation on my use of the term "neurobiology" is starting to come off a little bizarre. It's a fairly standard term used in psychological research. Let's look at this:

You're not going to contact those authors and express incredulity that they're making the same arguments I am, are you?

I'm guessing you're also accusing me of sexism through your link. The only problem with that is that it doesn't even look at other variables which could produce that disparity, coupled with the fact that I explicitly stated earlier in the thread that native intelligence isn't the main driver of LSAT scores, simply that it is a large part of them.



"I'm guessing you're also accusing me of sexism through your link."

You're guessing because you clearly did not read the cited report. When you have read that report, perhaps then you will at least attempt to explain the disparities cited throughout based on your understanding of "neurobiology."

You also didn’t read my comment to yours above. You now say: “Guessing by your defense of LSAT low scorers I'm guessing the school you teach at is not particularly highly ranked.”

But, had you read it, my comment above included this:

“As stated above, the LSAT measures these and other skills imperfectly, but at the lowest percentiles performance on the LSAT is highly correlated with inability to pass the bar, etc. And, I would agree that law schools do a disservice to admitted students, violate the ABA standards, and act unethically if admitting such students simply to survive and maintain revenue to support faculty and administrative positions.”

More telling, whatever term you now prefer, you just don't seem to acknowledge your original point concerning "intelligence."

You are perfectly correct, tgr. You didn’t say that “that native intelligence is the main driver of LSAT scores.” You suggested that low LSAT scores can identify low “neurobiological levels” to wit:

“The simple fact is more and more law schools are admitting students who are not smart enough to practice law competently. And for a lot of them it's not because they were ‘failed’ somehow by their undergraduate education but simply that they are on a neurobiological level not able to master a lot of the material.”

Not failed by education, you stated, but incapable of “mastering a lot of the material” based on a lack of intelligence. The point of this discussion in the comments above was that claim: a claim that “low neurobiological levels” are discoverable by looking at LSAT scores and determinative of law school performance. MacK stated this more directly by claiming that the LSAT is an "intelligence test."

To be sure, tgr, you backed off a little bit: “Of course education and environment is the primary determinant determinant [sic] of test scores, but intelligence … is highly determinative as well.”

But, by this point, you seemed to be arguing with yourself, because you had just finished saying that failed education wasn’t the true reason that students who lack “intelligence” were not able to “master a lot of the material” in law school.

In response to my reference to actual data concerning LSAT scores based on a number of variables, you retorted based on a “guess” which was clearly wrong. You obviously, based on your wrong "guess" didn’t even look at the one page cited, when, in fact, and to avoid appearing to be simply too arrogant to look, you should have at least skimmed the entire report. You also didn’t read my comment and lashed out on the basis of having ignored what was actually said there. And, you apparently didn’t even read the Yale study that you cite.

I quite vigorously dispute what I consider to be your “theories” about the LSAT and "neurobiological levels" that evoke claims that I consider creepy and historically ominous. If you had read the report that YOU cited, you would know about the ethical considerations inherent in your rather simplistic assertions and the relevance of my cite to the actual stats and the implications of your claims.

Of course, by so saying, you have responded and will likely respond again by simply implying that I am too stupid and ignorant to understand your point, and weird, and by leveling other speculative and arrogant attacks (by so doing, however, you seem to be positioning yourself as an elitist: which at least is consistent but not a good way to prove your point was not as I understood it!).

I will allow you the last word, so, have at it!

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