Clinical Law Prof Blog

Editor: Jeffrey R. Baker
Pepperdine University
School of Law

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Bob Kuehn: Data Show Most Law Schools Are Not Preparing Students Well for Practice

In a post at the Best Practices blog, Prof. Robert Kuehn examines empirical data on the performance of law schools in preparing students for practice.  He finds and demonstrates that most law schools continue to fall short of preparing students for practice, even many years after the ABA and most law schools declared preparation for practice to be a principal goal of legal education.

More recent studies have not reflected any improvement in the role of legal education in preparing graduates for practice. The American Bar Foundation’s After the JD study tracks the careers of a sample of lawyers who passed the bar in 2000. It asked lawyers three and seven years of out of school if “law school prepared me well for my legal career.” On this fundamental objective of legal education, law schools failed miserably — 40% of lawyers after three years of practice and 50% after seven years said that law school did not adequately prepare them. Both groups overwhelmingly agreed that law school was too theoretical and unconcerned with real life practice. In another study of early-career lawyers, only 28% believed that law school prepared them to practice law.

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/clinic_prof/2017/01/bob-kuehn-data-show-most-law-schools-are-not-preparing-students-well-for-practice-.html

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