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Law Schools Want Statement on GRE

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By William Vogeler, Esq. on July 18, 2017 6:57 AM

Most law schools want the American Bar Association to say whether they should accept the graduate record exam in lieu of the law school admissions test.

According to a recent survey of 120 law schools, 61 percent of the respondents said the ABA should make a statement about the GRE. Traditionally, the bar association has approved only the LSAT.

"The ABA is the accrediting body of law schools," said one law school admissions officer in the telephone survey. "It would be helpful to get their sense of the GRE."

Input From Law Schools

Kaplan Test Prep reported its survey during a recent meeting of the ABA's Section of Legal Education and Admissions in Chicago. Kaplan, a leader in the test prep industry, said the responses were diverse.

Twenty-seven percent said the ABA should not make a statement on the GRE, and 13 percent were not sure. Some respondents strongly opposed the idea.

"I don't think blanket statements are a good idea," one person said. Another criticized the ABA for making educational decisions without input from law schools.

"They don't have a good understanding of what they are regulating," said one admissions officer. "Most don't have experience in higher education or law school administration."

GRE v. LSAT

In the meantime, some law schools have already adopted the GRE as an alternative entrance test for law school. Last year, the University of Arizona College of Law became the first law school to accept the test. Others soon followed, including Harvard Law School this year.

"This is a very big deal," Professor Bill Henderson said at the time.

Henderson, who teaches at the Maurer School of Law at Indiana University, has written extensively about legal education and rankings. He said the move to accept GRE scores is better for students and schools.

"I can't imagine other top law schools not following suit," he said.

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