I've been tied up this week by the latest flare-up in the fat wars (people who want to look at the data can find a long analysis here, a shorter, more technical one here, and the tl;dr version here), so this post is a quick round-up of some interesting developments over the last few days.
(1) Recent law graduate Chris Fletcher has a very useful summation of the law school crisis in the Wall Street Journal. Keep in mind that, as familiar as the statistics he's quoting are to regular readers of this blog, they remain only tenuously understood or largely invisible to many if not most prospective law students, so this sort of high-profile media exposure is crucial.
(2) This post by Bernie Burk at the Faculty Lounge generated a fascinating comment thread, in which regular ITLSS commenter Bored JD attempted to engage in consciousness-raising with a recalcitrant law professor. I'm hardly a disinterested observer, but it seems to me the professor question could have benefited from an internet argument version of the mercy rule.
(In regard to Burk's OP I'm curious regarding his assertion that "there is no empirical evidence, and no coherent argument, that whatever
you think law schools are doing wrong today made one-third or more of
all entry-level law jobs suddenly disappear between 2008 and 2010." NALP reports 28,890 graduates getting full-time jobs requiring bar admission in the class of 2008 and 25,654 graduates in the class of 2010. Perhaps he means one third of big firm entry level jobs. Such jobs have always been a small minority of all entry level legal jobs, and the focus on that sector of the market tends to obscure that no more than two-thirds of all law graduates have been getting legal jobs of any kind -- and this number counts a significant number of what could more properly be termed "legal jobs" -- for at least a decade now.)
(3) Also at the Faculty Lounge, Dan Filler says that the number of first-time takers of the December was down 16% from last year. I don't know from where he's getting this number (LSAC makes total LSAT taker numbers public by month of administration, but doesn't to the best of my knowledge publish stratified data on first time takers versus repeaters per administration). He also says October first-time takers were down 16.9% year over year (total administrations were down 16.4%).
(4) I'd like to endorse to this comment from the always-insightful Dybbuk.