Tuesday, May 1, 2012
Law School Transparency Project creates database to answer question: "Will I get a job as a lawyer?"
The database can be accessed here. Click on the "select a school" tab in the middle of the page and you'll get a variety of data on rates of employment for 2008, 2009 and 2010 (the figures for last year aren't available yet). You'll also get an estimate for the total debt upon graduation for those paying full-freight who expect to enroll in the fall. Karen Sloan at the National Law Journal has done a nice job summarizing the features of the new database.
The database relies on information the law schools have reported to the American Bar Association, U.S. News & World Report, the National Association for Law Placement and on their own Web sites about their classes of 2010, the most recent year for which information is available.
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For each ABA-accredited law school, the database includes key employment statistics; charts that break down the percentage of graduates in lawyer and non-lawyer jobs; graphs that detail whether jobs were long-term or short-term; maps showing the states in which the largest percentage of graduates found jobs; salary breakdowns; and the jobs reports that schools submitted to the ABA and NALP.
Law School Transparency has calculated an "employment score" for each school, accounting for all graduates in jobs that require a J.D. but subtracting those in solo practices and those in short-term jobs.
The database is designed to answer what prospective law students want to know, McEntee said. "It really comes down to the question, 'Am I going to be a practicing lawyer?' Our employment score really gets to that."