A Forked River Runs Through Law School:  Toward Understanding Race, Gender, Age, and Related Gaps in Law School Performance and

Timothy T. Clydesdale

But the Supreme Court's decision includes a clear time limit and a notable caveat that "Michigan is a highly selective law school; our results may not generalize to people who have graduated from other law schools" (2000, 395). ... Academic score variables included LSAT scores (retrieved directly from LSAC's data files, and averaged if more than one set of scores), undergraduate GPAs (also retrieved from LSAC's data files), and final law school GPA (see above; used in analyses of bar passage only). ... The typical (i.e., modal) first-year law student is a white male in his early twenties, who speaks English as his first language, attends law school ... Students who report overt race discrimination in law school have lower first-year GPAs (in addition to the significantly lower GPAs that come with membership in a racial minority; see race results above and discussion below). ... Put differently, socioeconomic status index scores closely track LSAT scores and undergraduate GPAs, but they reveal no direct association with final law school GPAs net of LSAT and undergraduate GPA (true of models 3, 4, 5, and 6 on table 4b, but not model 3, table 4a). Law students who experienced race discrimination before entering law school also have lower final GPAs than law students who did not experience race discrimination; but as with socioeconomic status, this result gets absorbed by prior academic scores.
  • Print Location 29 LAW & SOC. INQUIRY 711

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