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December 16, 2016


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Again, just to make the point crystal clear: probation is insufficient if a prior probation within the last 10 or so years failed to result in sustained compliance. Repeated failure merits a harsher sanction, and here, the lack of seriousness that accompanies so quick a relapse into non compliance merits swift and sure action, i.e., suspension of accreditation with the right to reapply in five years for reinstatement. (At least in California, this would not be a fatal and determinative blow ... but enough, perhaps to get the attention of some who apparently don't care how exploitative their conduct becomes.)

Charles I. Nelson

I was surprised to find Faulkner listed here. We did have a "one off" in bar passage two years ago when the UBE was adopted in Alabama but that has been corrected and we are the only school in Alabama with a significantly improved bar passage rate (second in our state). Even the bottom quartile of our graduating class this year passed at a 62% pass rate. We will have a bottom quartile score of 145 for our entering class in 2017.

confused by your post


Do you feel any concern that you may be prevented from making posts like this that are openly critical of law schools' admissions practices?

The statistics you cite are valuable but there are those here who are hostile to your views.

Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance King

A good percentage of my clients are on Probation too. ABA probation is meaningless, however. Can't lock up Dean Wormer for violating the terms and conditions of his probation.

David Frakt

confused -

I'm sure there may be some who are hostile to my views, but I am not aware of any efforts to prevent me from stating them. Even if there were, it is unlikely that I would be deterred. I welcome reasoned civil counterarguments, and have repeatedly stated that I would welcome anyone to come forward with actual data that undermines or contradicts any of my conclusions. In the two plus years I have been writing on this site, that has never happened.

David Frakt

Charles Nelson,

As Dean of Faulkner Law School, I appreciate that you would want to highlight any positive developments at your school, but your actions in admitting a class with a 149/145/142 is, in my opinion, inconsistent with the ABA Standard on admissions. It appears to me that having seen what happened to Charlotte, Valpo, and Ave Maria, you are planning to adjust your admissions practices to try to avoid ABA sanctions by announcing that you plan to raise your bottom quartile to 145, much as the Dean of Florida Coastal announced a plan to raise their LSAT median by 5 points after just admitting a class that was just as bad as the year before. Your bar pass rate may not be terrible, but based on what is in your 2016 509 report, it is in a steady downward trend: in 2013, it was 92%, in 2014, in was 69% and in 2015 it was 65%. I have not seen the 2016 results, but if you showed significant improvement, then I congratulate you for it. But I must also note that out of 104 matriculants in 2013, you had academic attrition of 18 first year students in 2014 and 5 "others" (plus 9 transfers), and then lost another 3 students in the second year class. So, the bottom quarter of the class actually never made it to graduation. This puts your comment that the bottom quartile had a 62% pass rate somewhat more in perspective. How many students who started law school at Faulkner in the fall of 2013 graduated on time and passed the bar on their first attempt? Almost certainly it was less than half. I would also note that the 2013 entering class which achieved these improvements on the bar was stronger than this year's entering class, with higher LSATs 151/146/142 and significantly higher UGPAs, 3.42/3.14/2.77 in 2013 compared to 3.45/2.92/2.51 this year. As I have written, if you are going to admit students with low LSATs, then those low scores should be counterbalanced by good UGPAs. That does not appear to have happened at Faulkner this year, so you are unlikely to be able to replicate the same results with these students. But hopefully your students will prove me wrong and do very well. I wish them all the best.

minor point

This is a minor point in the context of the overall post, but you write: "8. North Carolina Central - class size dropped from 199 to 183 while LSATs dropped to 149/144/141 from 149/145/142, a decline the school could ill afford."

This reads to me as a small improvement, not a decline. Not impressive, either way, of course.

Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance King

There will always be a market for these types of schools. Your name is Jake and you were born in 1993 and graduated with a BA in Exercise Arts from Central Indiana Baptist Torah Tech earning a 2.45 GPA. You were hired by Hardess to be an Asst. Regional Manager at 31K working 70 irregular hours per week with very few holidays off. Or your name is Amber and you are the Assistant shoe manager at Ross in "Evansville." You are bored and your career is an endless sting of being a retail monkey. So, the cultural attraction and TV pulls you toward being a LAWYER. The mystique and allure of being the next Clarence Darrow....the endless possibilities of a million dollar degree....Even if you cant make BIG LAW and those 180K salaries, at least you can be a solo making around 35K. At least you don't work 70-80 hours a week, have weekends off and just maybe, just maybe, you will hit the legal jackpot after one of your cousin twice removed calls when he gets smooshed by a bus that has INSURANCE!


As usual the Captain feels compelled to fart in every room. The comment above is so off topic, so banal and so insulting in so many ways that it reminds us all that until there is a comment policy enforced in the FL, the Captain's efforts to disrupt and undermine the comments on this site will continue.

Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance King

What? I am sooooooooo sorry. You like Hardees?

terry malloy

if you accept tuition dollars from someone who scored 142 on the LSAT you are a snake oil salesman. full stop.



Unbelievably, the response by many on this site to your observation would be "No, I am selling opportunity."

The key here is to identify to whose benefit this "opportunity" is most likely inure ...

In the case of bottom feeders, with a track record of institutional failure, inability to meet their core mission, obliviousness to prior sanctions, and stubborn refusal to acknowledge and address these failures frankly, only one answer comes to mind.

Operation of such a law school inures to the benefit, principally, of the self interested persons who operate it. The fact that a minority of its grads may actually pass the bar and an even smaller minority of those admitted may obtain employment as attorneys is not the point, insofar as these greedy, self interested persons are concerned.

Instead, it is their survival, at any cost, that is at stake, and, for that reason, they will bring to bear all of their powers of rationalization, legal argument, phony moral appeals and all sorts of other techniques to forestall any reckoning for their malfeasance.

Ethical Professor

See also Western State College of Law which, among many other falsities, touts being "ranked first in state ... for bar success" despite having one of the lowest bar passage rates in the state as well as abysmal employment records. Shameful!

Greg Sergienko

Dear David,

I’m sorry you didn’t give me a call before posting your statement on Concordia. Please let me correct some misapprehensions.

First, the visit we just had from the ABA was our two-year visit, not our full approval visit. You can verify that by looking at the approval date on Concordia's 509.

Second, the site visit was very positive. That reflects things like our excellent bar pass rate. In July, our bar pass rate was 80% in Idaho, despite Idaho's having a UBE cut score that ties with Alaska for the highest of any state.’s-idaho-state-bar-passage-rates-announced.

We already comply with the proposed ABA bar passage requirements for both our graduating years, even though none of our graduates have had two years to take the bar. We also have an extremely low non-transfer attrition rate, as you can tell from our 509, so we easily comply with the proposed standards on attrition.

Given all our outcome measures, I am confident that we will obtain full ABA approval when the time comes.

Best regards,

Greg Sergienko
Associate Dean of Academics
Concordia University School of Law


The author of this post applied for jobs at two of the law schools attacked in this post. In fact, he had callback interviews at no less than two of the law schools attacked in this post (and perhaps more of which I am unaware). He is a failed academic with a bone to pick, using Faculty Lounge in much the same way our President-elect is using a Twitter account.

J.R. Goodwin

Minor point:
With regard to "while LSATs dropped to 149/144/141 from 149/145/142, a decline" I believe the referenced decline was with respect to the slight drop in LSAT scores. Taken in conjunction with the significant decrease in class size, however, this could be construed as an overall net positive.

David Frakt

Dear Dean Sergienko,

Thank you for your polite post and for the update regarding Concordia, and for correcting my misstatement about the full accreditation visit. I am glad that things are going well from your perspective. My concerns have to do with the drop in admissions standards this year, and the longer-term economic viability of the school. I am not convinced that Boise can support two law schools, and financial viability is something that ABA accreditation teams are supposed to carefully scrutinize. But I certainly wish you and your colleagues the best.



Derek Tokaz

Greg Sergienko,

The 25th percentile uGPA at Concordia is 2.60. What gives?

terry malloy

Greg Sergienko, do you sleep well at night taking 30,000/year from people who you know very well have little chance at a career that will pay back the debt they incur?

Is it more like marquis de evermond 'this is the order of things' or more like PT Barnum?


DOE today yanked CSOL's access to federal financial aid....

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