Friday, December 23, 2005

He Puts the B in Undy

Aside from creating a near-perfect algorithm for ordering people on the waitlist for Civ Pro II based on merit, our beloved Professor and Associate Dean Stephen McG. Bundy will not be leaving to be dean of Hastings. (Hat tip: Leiter, and as an aside, I beg to differ on his argument that SF is the third greatest city after New York and Chicago).

SIDENOTE: With the inevitible flu/cold onslaught and the upcoming holidays (I don't like to say Christmas to piss off fundamentalists), I'm gonna seclude myself to a room with plenty of theraflu. Meaning, while I won't be posting much, feel free to use this as an open thread for any post exam rants. And congratulations to the Class of 2007 for being 1/2 way done with law school.

SIDENOTE II: Found the results of the Calbar broken down by schools here (Hat tip: Volokh, where he has also reproduced a table that juxtaposes the bar passage rate with USN&W rankings and SSRN rankings. Why? I don't know. It is noteworthy that UCLA is 88.7%, Stan 88%, and Boalt 87%. Damn those three slackers who put us behind these two schools. And in other news, The Recorder has a story about Gibson raising its first year rates to $135 and increasing all other associate salaries by $5. Obviously Gibson is no Irell, so let's see how long until every other firm follows suit.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...


You should add a link to the Professor Leiter blogs (actually there are two separate ones now, one for politics and philosophy and one for legal academic news). He's got some pretty interesting stuff.

Here are the links for those who are interested

12/23/2005 1:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you think SF is greater than Chicago? It's definitely not greater than NYC and definitely greater than other contenders I could think of, like DC, LA, Houston, Hotlanta, Philly, and Boston. I think all the OCIPers learned this when they saw the over-competitive nature of the SF job market. The only other one that seemed similiarly over-competitive is DC but that's because it's the political capital.

12/23/2005 1:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm pretty out of the loop about law firms ... what does it mean that "obviously Gibson is no Irell"?

12/23/2005 6:46 PM  
Blogger Armen said...

Irell's a regional firm, so when they raised salaries no one followed suit. Unless you argue that Gibson is following suit.

And about SF, I was thinking more of a snarky way because Leiter didn't specify he meant it in a legal sense. So if it's a general city preference thing, then I definitely don't think SF is above LA.

12/24/2005 12:40 AM  
Blogger Mr.Chavez said...


SF is head and shoulders above LA in the mind of everyone except those who had the unfortunate luck of being raised there (or in Phoenix).

Those bar passage rates are fascinating. Thx! BYU put all the CA schools to shame.

A few of the things that I noticed. First, look at how many Boalt grads took the CA bar compared to other "national" schools. Also, the disparity in passage rates across race/ethnicity, umm, well, sux. Finally, if the law firm thing doesn't work out, I'm going to start my own unaccredited law school - seems like there's a market for it. Oh, and finally, finally, those retake passage rates are deathly frightening.

Post-finals thought: Once again, my hands tingle everytime I type - law school induced RSI. Do you think I have a cause of action against the law school for having an outdated, ergonomically-unfriendly work environment?

12/26/2005 11:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agreed on SF v. LA. I'd prefer LA over Houston but definitely not SF.

Re: the bar pass rates, they tend to correlate pretty well with LSAT scores (kids from schools with higher LSAT scores do better). I think this supports the theory that people who do well on the LSAT aren't smarter, they are just better at time-pressure tests. That explains why the LSAT has some (limited) predictive value of who does well on first-year exams. Under this theory we would also expect the same people to do well on the mother of all time-pressure exams, the barzam. And it appears that's the case.
Since one never faces a time-pressure exam in the practice of law, I think we need to just throw out the LSAT and bar exam because they needlessly keep people out of the profession who are totally qualified otherwise. Of course, as we get older, I guess some of us will start to appreciate the "barrier to entry" represented by these tests.
By the way, I think the money is in starting a Scientology law school. Then we can see how the Mormons fare against the Scientologists on the bar exam in a few years.

12/27/2005 11:49 AM  
Blogger Armen said...

I want to see the bar pass rate for people who went to ITT Tech School of Criminal Justice.

12/27/2005 4:31 PM  
Blogger biff said...

I'd be interested to see how someone's LSAT score would translate to his or her CA bar passage chances on the first try.

12/29/2005 11:34 PM  
Blogger Armen said...

I think this supports the theory that people who do well on the LSAT aren't smarter, they are just better at time-pressure tests. That explains why the LSAT has some (limited) predictive value of who does well on first-year exams. Under this theory we would also expect the same people to do well on the mother of all time-pressure exams, the barzam.

Reminds me of:

Sir Bedevere: Exactly. So, logically...
Peasant 1: If she weighed the same as a duck... she's made of wood.
Sir Bedevere: And therefore...
Peasant 2: A witch!

No offense, but you royally fucked over any distinction between correlation and causation.

12/29/2005 11:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Umm, so I guess this means you think that higher LSAT scores and higher bar pass rates both actually reflect that a person is "smarter" and not that they are merely better at a time-pressure test?
Since I don't know what it means to be smarter with enough precission to use the concept to explain much of anything but I do know what it means to be better at a time-pressure test, I must say that I still find the latter explanation more compelling. And even if you do think higher LSAT/bar pass rates are caused by people being smarter, I still think you would have to find the time-pressure argument interesting given all the debate about the LSAT and bar exam.
Here's a (paraphrased) quote for the day: "those who believe in causation engage in superstition."
--Bertrand Russell

12/31/2005 11:23 AM  
Blogger Armen said...

You're the one arguing a specific causation you fucking idiot. But since you seem to have a firm grasp of research methods (as opposed to superstitious beliefs in the mythical standardized test taker who aces every test in sight without regard to content), here's one for you. I think your grandfather's wealth explains BOTH lsats and bar passage rate. *wink wink nudge nudge* I don't really know what explains the correlation and I don't pretend to know because I haven't seen a study that takes into account all the possible variables that can affect someone's performance on tests.

12/31/2005 12:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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12/31/2005 12:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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12/31/2005 3:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

armen, you need to chill out a bit. don't call people fucking idiots on your blog if you want people to continue feeling welcome to post. its not a community if the moderator is hostile. Remember, don't TELL us that the person is a fucking idiot, SHOW us by calmly devastating their silly logic.

1/02/2006 9:01 AM  
Blogger Armen said...

Point well taken, I just don't like quotes thrown at me when it's more appropriate for the quoter.

1/02/2006 1:01 PM  

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