Law School Admissions

Title

JD-Next: A Valid and Reliable Tool to Predict Diverse Students’ Success in Law School

Document Type

Law Review Article

Publication Date

5-2021

Keywords

incoming indicators, law school diversity, standardized test scores

Abstract

As one of two companion articles, this report tests the validity and reliability of a 2019 pilot test of the exam developed as the precursor to the JD-Next program: a fully-online, non-credit, 7.5-week course to train potential JD students in case reading and analysis skills, prior to their first year of law school. We recruited a national sample of potential JD students, enriched for racial/ethnic diversity, and randomized them to the course or an active placebo (consisting of television shows). We also recruited a sample of volunteers at one particular university who self-selected into the course. All participants (treatment and placebo) took a multiple-choice and essay exam, graded with a standardized methodology. We found that the course exam was a valid and reliable predictor of law school performance, comparable to other standardized tests frequently used for law school admissions. In a companion article, we report on the efficacy of the course for preparing students for law school.

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