Kaplan Test Prep’s 2012 Survey of Law School Admissions Officers

Responding to the reality that the toughest job market for new lawyers in 20 years may be the new normal for the foreseeable future, law schools are taking unprecedented steps to course correct.  According to Kaplan Test Prep’s 2012 survey of law school admissions officers, 51% of law schools have cut the size of the entering class; 63% said the reason was the contraction of the job market in the legal industry.  And more cuts may be on the way; of the law schools that have not cut the size of their entering classes, 28% say they will likely do so for the current application cycle.

For more complete results in PDF format, click here.  Below are some key findings:

Which would you say is the MOST important factor in the admissions process?  Is it…

  • LSAT score: 63%
  • Undergraduate GPA: 25%
  • Personal statement: 10%
  • Relevant work experience: 2%
  • Letters of recommendation: 0%

In order to make graduates more “practice ready,” some schools have made changes to their curriculum.  Which of the following best describes where your school stands in this regard?

  • We’ve already implemented changes to our curriculum: 68%
  • We’ve decided to make changes to our curriculum, but haven’t implemented them yet: 5%
  • We are considering making changes to our curriculum: 9%
  • We have no plans to make any changes to our curriculum at this time: 18%

Have you ever Googled an applicant to learn more about them?

  • Yes: 47%
  • No: 50%
  • Not sure: 3%

Have you ever visited an applicant’s social networking page like Facebook to learn more about them?

  • Yes: 36%
  • No: 61%
  • Not sure: 3%

(If “Yes” to either of the previous two questions) Have you ever discovered something online about an applicant that negatively impacted their application?

  • Yes: 28%
  • No: 69%