The Destruction of the Holistic Approach to Admissions: The Pernicious Effects of Rankings

50 Pages Posted: 7 Dec 2005  

Alex M. Johnson Jr.

University of Virginia - School of Law

Abstract

In this Article, I contend that the Supreme Court's recent decisions in Grutter v. Bollinger and Gratz v. Bollinger, affirming the continuing use of affirmative action in higher education in certain contexts, require selective educational institutions (law schools in particular) to use an evaluative admissions process or holistic approach. Per this approach, soft variables, including race and ethnicity, must be taken into account as part of the admissions process in order to produce a diverse student body. The reason why such an approach must be used in admissions is that members of underrepresented groups continue to score about one standard deviation below that of white applicants on high-stakes, standardized tests such as the LSAT.

Keywords: Affirmative Action, Law School, Admissions, Legal Education, Race and the Law, LSAT, LSAC, Gratz v. Bollinger, Grutter v. Bollinger

Suggested Citation

Johnson, Alex M., The Destruction of the Holistic Approach to Admissions: The Pernicious Effects of Rankings. Indiana Law Journal, Vol. 81, 2006. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=863004

Alex M. Johnson Jr. (Contact Author)

University of Virginia - School of Law

580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States

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