What if Law Schools Bid For Law Students?

Techcrunch mentions a new service called Usphere where undergrads can pay $65 to apply to 33 unnamed colleges. The colleges then send acceptances letters (or not) with the costs of tuition that the student would pay.

LSAC (Law School Admissions Council and purveyors of the LSAT) has had a service for a long time where law students can fill out a single application and have it transmitted to many (most?) law schools that participate in the program. It’s a single-sign-on idea applied to law school applications which are pretty similar from school to school.

What if they took it one step further and like Usphere allowed law schools to affirmatively "bid" for students. This already happens to a certain extent – schools compete for students – but the current system does not expose a law school applicants application to every law school. Applicants pick a small number of schools to apply to and the costs of applying to law school is not trivial (several hundred dollars in many cases).

My idea is a riff on Usphere where law schools can view all the applications whether the student has indicated they want to apply or not. This would allow them to approach students that might not otherwise have applied. I believe it could be handled smoothly without generating a boatload of unwanted spam. Schools could indicate a willingness to make an offer and applicants could see who is looking at them.

The network statistics from this would also be amazingly interesting. What kinds of applications result in what kinds of offers? What types of applicants are schools looking for?

As the Techcrunch article points out about USphere, this is more like a Match.com or dating service where personality traits and desired personality traits are matched up …. maybe more like an eHarmony for law school admissions.

It would be difficult to predict if law schools would participate or if there would be any benefit. It sure seems like it would be a good idea. It’s a way to escapte the "tyranny" of measuring applicant quality by only LSAT score, GPA and undergrad institution rank.

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