Jerry Organ, a professor at the University of St. Thomas School of Law in Minneapolis, published an interesting piece on attrition that found a very strong correlation between average LSAT scores and attrition rates. Specifically, schools with average LSAT scores above 150 had attrition rates that were not very likely to attract the attention of the ABA’s accreditation group. Schools with average LSATs above 160 experienced average attrition rates of just 1.4% for the last academic year. That jumps to 7.9% for schools with average LSAT scores of 150 to 154. Schools with average LSATs below 150, however, had average attrition rates of 16.1% for the same academic year.
We’re especially curious to see if this will help the LSAT test maintain its grip as the preferred standardized test for admissions and how well the GRE, given its much smaller sample size, performs at predicting attrition. Is it possible this could this torpedo the GRE’s chances of long-term success in the law school market if its test takers have been self selected from the low LSAT group? We’re also curious to see if this ends up further hurting the admissions chances of applicants with sub 150 LSAT scores.
In terms of the overall applicant pool, we wouldn’t be surprised if even more grant money (we believe it’s already quite substantial!) from the lower-tier schools starts flowing to applicants with higher LSAT scores. Finally, we won’t be too surprised if law schools continue to close and contract until the overwhelming majority of law school students have LSATs of 150+.