Law grads give schools high marks, but want change

A majority of recent graduates believe law school could be condensed into two years, similar to what President Barack Obama suggested recently, according to a survey by Kaplan Bar Review. But overall, law grads gave their schools high marks.

“This is an unprecedented time of introspection within the legal education community,” said Steve Marietti, General Manager, Kaplan Bar Review. “In reality, the length of a law school education is less relevant than whether it’s effective in helping students succeed.”

Kaplan surveyed 712 graduates of the class of 2013, finding that 63 percent “think the traditional three-year law school education can be condensed into two years without negatively impacting the practice-readiness of new attorneys.”

A higher percentage — 87 percent — believe legal education needs “to undergo significant changes to better prepare future attorneys for the changing employment landscape and legal profession.”  

If the third year remains, 97 percent favor a law school model that includes clinical experience.

Overall, survey respondents gave their schools high marks: 37% gave their law school education an “A” grade, 50% gave it a “B”;  11% a “C” grade; 1% scored it a “D”.  No respondents gave their law school education an “F”.