The main factors students use in picking law schools For previous years’ Common Law Admission Test (CLAT) candidates, faculty quality of a law school was the most important factor in choosing whether or not to seek admission, according to a study conducted by Nalsar Hyderabad on legal education reforms which was commissioned by the Department of Justice (DoJ) .

The responses to that study also showcased ambivalent opinions on the justification of CLAT itself as an entrance exam.

While more than 38% respondents to the study’s survey answered that it was a “good idea” to use the CLAT as a method to judge an applicant’s aptitude, a nearly equal number – more than 33% – also thought that it was a “bad idea”.

In terms of factors influencing law school choices, faculty quality came first, followed by the law school’s placement track record, the ‘ranking’ of the law school, its physical infrastructure, financial assistance available and its geographical setting.

Consideration of the fee only came in last among the “most important” factors, according to the study.

“The responses to our questionnaire show that after the quality of ‘faculty’, the publicly known ‘Law School Rankings’ are the second most important factor for applicants to choose between NLUs,” noted the survey, adding: With respect to the Common Law Aptitude Test (CLAT), the preferences of applicants seem to be driving the rankings of the NLUs, the latter having a strong correlation with the year of their establishment. These informal ‘rankings’ are then publicized by news-magazines and online publications which in turn shape the preferences of newer applicants. This is not a desirable situation since it gives relatively older institutions an artificial advantage and has already led to complacency on their part when it comes to the actual quality of education offered by them. It would also demoralize newer institutions who may not be able to improve their perceived ‘ranking’ despite significant efforts made to improve teaching standards. Hence, there is a need for an authoritative ranking of the NLUs by a publicly reliable source. We suggest that the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) introduced by the Ministry […]

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