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The Aspen Advisor Week in Review for May 18, 2018

The Aspen Advisor Week in Review for May 18, 2018 random

Change is the theme this week. We see the familiar debates around topics like the ABA allowing online credits for first year law students and supporting the GRE as an appropriate entrance exam for law school admission. In addition, we see new topics which may be a result of the #MeToo Movement.

One such news story, “Female Law Professors Hope Settlement Leads to Change,” covers the $2.6 M settlement between University of Denver Sturm College of Law and 7 female law professors. The discovery of unequal pay for female professors whose median salary was about $11,000 less than their male counterparts, triggered this lawsuit. The law professors hope this increased transparency will lead to a balance in pay for men and women with similar credentials and experience across all of academia, not just law schools.

Another story on this theme relates to forced arbitration agreements. Arbitration is an alternative form of dispute resolution and can be either voluntary or forced. Forced, or mandatory arbitration keeps claims out of the public eye and creates a silencing effect. In “Top Law Schools Ask Firms to Disclose Summer Associate Arbitration Agreements,” we learn that Yale Law School sent a letter on behalf of all T14 law schools to every law firm recruiting on their campuses. The letter asked firms to disclose if they require summer associates to sign mandatory arbitration agreements and nondisclosure agreements related to workplace misconduct, including but not limited to sexual harassment. In at least one example, the letter resulted in a law firm ending its mandatory arbitration policy for its employees. Change, indeed.

Bar Exam

Task Force Recommends Ditching Texas Bar Exam for UBE
Texas law graduates would no longer face the Texas bar exam, and instead take a test with fewer essay questions that could qualify them for a law license in 29 states, if the Texas Supreme Court accepts a recommendation from one of its task forces.

Law Professors

Female Law Professors Hope Settlement Leads to Change
After 31 years working at a law school in Denver, Lucy Marsh learned that she remained the lowest-paid professor on staff. She also was among the most experienced, surpassed by only one other person. The disclosure in a department memo set off years of litigation against the University of Denver's Sturm College of Law that ended Thursday with a $2.6 million legal settlement for Marsh and six other women.

Law School Students

3 Questions for the Director of an Ivy League IP Law Clinic (Part I)
Law students are very, very interested in participating in IP Law clinics. Find out why here.

Law Grads Jobs Report '17: Connecticut Skewing Negative?
The law class of 2017 overall fared better in the entry-level job market, but national figures obscure the extreme stratification of employment success for grads from individual schools. Our 10 charts break down all the latest hiring data, showing the schools that excelled, and those that lagged behind.

Law Student Overcomes Obstacles and Graduates in Front of 3 Sons
Shartory Brown will graduate from South Texas College of Law on Saturday, after overcoming homelessness, physical abuse, teenage pregnancy and single motherhood.

Legal Education

Vote to Toss LSAT Mandate for Law Schools Slated for August
Despite the proposed change, most law schools will continue to use the LSAT in admissions even if the ABA's House of Delegates in August signs off on eliminating the LSAT's required use, experts said.

Top Law Schools Ask Firms to Disclose Summer Associate Arbitration Agreements
Yale Law School and 13 other top law schools are issuing a survey to law firms asking them to disclose whether or not they require summer associates to submit to forced arbitration agreements and related nondisclosure deals.

ABA Set to Approve More Online Credits for Law Students
Supporters say allowing J.D. students to take up to one-third of their credits online, including some during their first year, is validation that distance education can work in law schools.

Suing the ABA Over Accreditation? Get In Line
The American Bar Association is no stranger to litigation when it comes to law school accreditation, but the recent filing of four separate suits is highly unusual.

Another Law School Goes to The Dark Side and Will Accept the GRE
The GRE has set its sights on Los Angeles!

Legal Practice

The Importance of Online Reputation Management for Lawyers and Their Clients
For the majority of lawyers, online marketing is a powerful and effective way to both reach potential clients and convert word of mouth referrals into new business.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Expresses Support for New Law Clerk Hiring Plan
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg spoke favorably of the plan last week during a meeting of the Federal Judges Association in Washington. Justice Elena Kagan said she supports the two-year pilot plan and will "take into account" in her own hiring whether judges and law schools comply with it.


Textbook Authors Sue Cengage Over Subscription Service
Two authors have filed a federal lawsuit against educational publisher Cengage, alleging that the company’s new Cengage Unlimited subscription service will improperly cost them sales and royalty payments.

The Aspen Advisor Week in Review is a collection of interesting articles from the past week that pertain to Legal Education. Some may be especially relevant to law professors and others to law students. Many stories focus on the pedagogical, technical, and financial innovation occurring in law schools today. We hope that these articles inspire you.