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January 18, 2007

Snippets from LSSSE report

I want to thank Joe for highlighting the fascinating recent report from the 2006 Law School Survey of Student Engagement (LSSSE), entited Engaging Legal Education: Moving Beyond the Status Quo.  The report is intriguing and quite reader-friendly, and is chock full of interesting findings for the would-be law school innovator.

In addition to encouraging everyone to read the report in full, I wanted to spotlight just a few notable findings that first caught my attention from the report (these are all direct quotes from the report):

  • Student-faculty interaction was more strongly related to students' self-reported gains in analytical ability than time spent studying, cocurricular activities, or even the amount of academic effort they put forth.
  • The vast majority of law students (88%) do not frequently work together with other students on projects during class. However, those students who do are more likely to report higher gains in several areas. For example, of the students who "very often" worked collaboratively, 39% felt that their legal education helped them acquire job or work-related knowledge and skills "very much."  Of those students who "never" participated in collaborative in-class work, only 18% said the same.
  • Nearly a third of 3L respondents (32%) reported that they had not done any pro bono or volunteer work during law school, and had no plans to do so.
  • During the second and third years of law school, students who had a clinical internship or field experience or who did pro bono work report gaining more than other students in several desirable areas. These areas included higher order thinking skills, speaking and writing proficiency, and competence and confidence in solving complex realworld problems.
  • Women and students of color were more likely to join and hold leadership positions in school-sponsored organizations.  Women and students of color were just as likely as their male and White counterparts to participate in moot court.  However, Black students were slightly underrepresented on law journals (10% participation versus 15% for Hispanic and Native American, 18% for multiracial, and 22% for Asian and White students).

Posted by DAB

January 18, 2007 in Serving students | Permalink


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