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January 27, 2015


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"What's most confusing is that Iowa's tuition for this year is $41,296, data that's been public since last summer. So why are the calculations based on a starting point of $51,864?"

I'm not sure if you're trolling or not reading the web site. That's 2013 school year data. What part of that is unclear?

Steven Freedman


I think you just proved my point that the webpage is confusing and misleading. Iowa's tuition in 2013 was not $51,864, it was $49,025. In fact Iowa has never charged $51,864 for tuition, that's an estimate provided by LST. Iowa's tuition for this year is $41,296. The fact that LST's estimate is off by about $10,000 per year results in a significant over-estimation of the cost to attend Iowa. A curious mistake since the actual tuition cost has been available for some time.

terry malloy

"What's most confusing is that Iowa's tuition for this year is $41,296, data that's been public since last summer. So why are the calculations based on a starting point of $51,864?"

The "starting point" of the calculation is the 2013 out of state tuition; 49,025.

Serious question: Do you not understand that fact or are you concerned a prospective student would not understand that fact?

Second serious question: If Kyle relies on the ABA data, and the .pdf files came out in December, how quickly would you like to update his free website: within the hour? Within the week?

How much should he pay the staff he would have to hire to get this done (quick guide, how much do you pay your staff to compile the ABA reports)?


What is the delay with the ABA Disclosures website? Last year for example once the employment data became available, if I am recalling correctly, I could immediately pull either by school (html/pdf format) or by all schools in EXCEL format.

But the admissions data this year only provides per-school basis, one-at-a-time, which is frankly a pain to do any analyses from (even for me, and I'm only interested in various subsets of the data).


"... followers of LST organized to update all 200+ ABA accredited law schools’ wikipedia entries ... Will [LST] encourage its followers to correct the Wikipedia entries?"

This is just plain disingenuous. LST's "followers"?

You mean a couple of thousand or so of anonymous kids over at toplawschools [-dot-] com?

How do you imagine McIntee is supposed to contact them?

Carrier pigeon, one supposes.

Michael Risch

concerned - strange indeed. I suspect that word is on a list of disallowed words set up in high spam filtering by Typepad.


"If you would like to find student volunteers to do data entry in a timely fashion, please do so and I will coordinate with them to get the data entry completed through our QC process."

Would these be "JD Advantaged" positions?


Why do the hard work of combing through "real data" when you can just make it up?


Why the hate for LST? Kyle has done so much to improve information disclosure and with so little money. Steven's complaint seems to be that Kyle's skeleton team cannot get Kansas's price cuts up on its site fast enough? I have an idea; help the guy out. Give him data and a donation.


Steve Freedman,

I have to echo what many others have said, which is that if law schools were a reliable source for information, then LST would not even exist. The real value of LST is that it uses a formula that takes into account all of the costs a student will incur. I don't know any other source that accounts for accumulated loan interest and tuition increases. Together these can easily exceed 20,000 over three years. I think it is relatively frequent that students end up with a loan balance that is far higher than what they anticipated at the outset, even by as much as $50 -$100k. Especially if you count bar exam expenses, which LST does not even include in their estimate.

The criticisms of LST's data come across as petty. They don't owe you anything. If you used their formula on your website, you could update the data instantaneously. Prospective students are on your side. They want to believe it is a good idea to enroll. You start with the home court advantage. It's your fault that you have lost it.


This is shoot-the-messenger concern trolling, at least with regard to LST and its methodologies. Given that the Law School Cartel has massaged data for decades prior, attacking LST in 2015 for being a couple of months late and a few dollars short is akin to the classic "So, when did you stop beating your wife?" line of questioning. It's (1) intellectually dishonest and (2) misses the forest for the trees.


So let me make sure I have this right: students looking at data on LST have the obligation to understand that the data is based on reasonable assumptions and is not actual data, but students looking at the data on law school websites are hopelessly unable to critically examine the law school statistics presented there, so have been wronged.

Got bias?

Kung-Fu Panda

Let me try to see what the author is getting at:

"Listen, I like Law School Transparency."


I'm going to pen and entire post out of the blue on how their data is erroneous, when even I admit that they are projections and maybe I am too lazy to click on a link or look at the methodology.

Did I get it?


Ok, so Steven Freedman is engaged in a bit of pay back.

From his pov, he was unfairly attacked because he declared that now is a great time, perhaps the best time, to attend law school because, among other reasons, there will be a demand for lawyers in a few years. As an Admissions Director, to many this seemed unseemly and inapt, and many said so.

So, Steven presumably feels that it is only fair to say that LST also has stated "facts" that aren't so much "facts" ...

The difference, it seems based on a quick read here, is that Kyle didn't lash out and insult, but tried to explain the errors and promised correction (although, perhaps, correction not as quickly as some would prefer).

COmpare that to the responses that Steven initially tendered when questioned. Of course, the comments have been trending to attacking Steven, just as the comments in support of Steven trended to attacking "scam bloggers" ...

What matters most, IMHO, is to compare Steven's responses (as a member of the law school establishment) to Kyle's (as a member of a group trying to remedy perceived deficiencies in disclosures).

Kung-Fu Panda

I so wish people wouldn't use this site for any kind of pettiness. I read this post first thing in the morning, before my coffee, and it ruined the rest of my day.

If the Admissions Director has an issue with the data, shouldn't he/she just take it up with LST with a phone call or email? This entire attempt at an exposé reeked of puerile payback from the get-go, rather than "maybe you did this look look everyone"???


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