Episode 6: Can we bridge the LSAT diversity gap?

In this episode, Ben and I analyze UVA professor Alex Johnson’s “African-Americans, Law Schools and the LSAT,” a surprisingly candid look behind the scenes of the LSAT and law school admissions. Why do average scores of African Americans and Latinos trail the general population by such a wide margin? What does this mean for their admissions chances? Is there anything we can do to bridge this gap? Ben and I announce our search for one student of color who we can coach toward the September 2014 LSAT. Please email us if you’re interested!

12 Comments


  1. Hello Nathan,

    I am an African American student in Indianapolis, IN I plan to take the LSAT in September 2014. I would like assistance with the LSAT!

    Reply

    1. Hey Michael-

      Thanks for getting in touch! We’ve already got a couple different candidates for this program… check out episode 11 to hear one of them. But we’d still like to help as much as possible. Please ask questions here, and we’ll be happy to respond. Thanks for listening!

      Reply

  2. I actually came across Professor Alexander’s video a while ago, waaay before I was really serious about the LSAT or even law school, and after a few months of prep and a lot more info on the whole process; these numbers just seem insane. Average of 143? Fewer than 1,000 test takers above 153? I don’t know whether I should be excited for my admissions chances or depressed that we still don’t know why this is happening… I guess both :-/ Did you guys ever find out how current/accurate those numbers were? I’m knew to the podcast, so forgive me if this is something you’ve covered since this one. Thanks in advance. Loving the show so far.

    Reply

    1. We haven’t revisited this topic, and I haven’t done any further research. Would love to hear what you find out, if you do!

      Reply

  3. Well, I took a look and it seems like Professor Johnson was pretty damn accurate. I found his article that was cited throughout the video.

    http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1428&context=ilj

    Pretty much goes over everything he discussed in the video(index scores, admissions processes, rankings, etc.) with a little more detail and adds the tables for the average LSAT scores by race/ethnicity (pg 333). I’d say it’s a good read for anybody in the law school business; applying or advising.

    Also, I found the official LSAC performance measures, which are more current than what Professor Johnson uses.

    http://www.lsac.org/docs/default-source/research-(lsac-resources)/tr-14-02.pdf

    Tables by racial/ethnic make-up start on pg 22. The 141-143 average for African Americans has stayed pretty consistent through the years along with the 153 total average. There were a few category changes in 2009, but for the most part still consistent.
    Another interesting point from this data is how far the numbers of total takers has gone down in the last 6 years or so. Also the score differential by testing month is pretty crazy. 152 in Sept/Oct vs. 148 in Feb.
    Anyways, the stats junkies will get a kick out of this one. I do believe there’s a way to bridge that gap, we just have to actually try and do it…

    Reply

    1. Thanks for looking all this up. I agree that we should be taking action. It’s a small thing, but I’ve been offering scholarships in my Los Angeles class. If you know anyone who might be interested, here’s the blurb:

      —–
      Nathan Fox (author of six LSAT books and co-host of the Thinking LSAT Podcast) is offering LSAT prep scholarships for students who would otherwise be unable to afford a class. Applications are now open for the 50-hour program starting on August 23 in downtown LA.

      Click here to apply.

      Classes are held at the LA Athletic Club (7th/Olive, DTLA) and all materials are included. Full schedule available at foxlsat.com. Seats are limited and will be awarded to students who express a financial need and can commit to attending the full program. Please direct questions to Nathan Fox, nathan@foxlsat.com.
      —–

      Reply

      1. Wow! This is great. I definitely know some folks that could really get some use out of a scholarship this. Thanks, Nathan.

        Reply

  4. Stumbled upon this and as an African American male can attest to many of the things mentioned. Definitely know numerous African-Americans that have very good GPA’s but cannot get over the LSAT hump (myself included). Basically the LSAT is keeping alot of qualified applicants from attending law school.

    Here’s the link where the math has been broken down regarding LSAT scores and total number of African American applicants: http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=195443

    Is the scholarship still be a thing that is around??

    Reply

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