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Law Schools Offer Big Discounts for Top LSAT Scores

Some lawyers went to law school to avoid math, but you can't ignore the math if you are thinking about law school now.

Many schools have begun giving deep discounts to students who score high on their law school admission tests. According to reports, top LSAT scorers could see "as much as $100,000 tuition discounts."

It's part of the law school economy, as educators look for ways to boost dwindling enrollments. Tuition discounts may make more sense than dollars.

More Sense Than Dollars

As prospective students have shied away from law school, educators have dealt with it in different ways. Many law schools lowered admission standards, but that led to lower bar passage rates.

Some law school deans dug in deeper by lobbying for lower bar exam standards. Other schools faced the inevitable and closed down or merged with others.

Meanwhile, tuition discounting has increased at some private law schools. According to a survey, discounts at high-tuition law schools increased by five percent between 2015 and 2016.

"If you look at the Access report, there has been an increase in discounting as the markets have become more competitive, and law schools have had to use money to maintain credentials and the quality of incoming students," said Austen Parrish, dean and professor of law at the Maurer School of Law at Indiana University-Bloomington.

Biggest Discounts

U.S. News reported on grants at the top 15 private law schools last year, and Washington University in St. Louis topped the list with the highest median grant of $35,000 a year.

That was against an annual cost of $42,117, with 88 percent of the full-time students receiving grants. Cost of attendance was calculated by subtracting the total cost of tuition and fees, room and board, books, and miscellaneous expenses from the median grant.

Eric Greenberg, president of a consulting firm for college and grad school admissions, said the economic pressures on law schools are working in favor of students.

"Most of the students we see for law school admission are ending up a lot better off in terms of finances than they were even five years ago," he said.

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