For visitors interested in conducting their own research on affirmative action, this section of the website provides access to several of the largest publicly-available datasets in the field, along with background information on how to use these materials. As the notes below suggest, most publicly-available data in this field has important limitations imposed for privacy reasons, political reasons, or both. These datasets include:
–The Bar Passage Study. The most ambitious empirical data-collection project in legal education to date. The BPS tracked some twenty-seven thousand law students (about 70% of the Class of 1994) from their entry into law school in 1991 through graduation, bar passage, and initial jobs; the data includes responses to periodic surveys, as well as data on student credentials and grades. The Law School Admissions Council, which administered the study, decided to provide only indirect information on which school students attended, which significantly limits its utility.
—Undergraduate data on flagship state schools. These data, collected through freedom-of-information (“FOIA”) requests sent to over one hundred universities in 2007 and 2013, provide detailed data on the demographic makeup, credentials, and admissions outcomes for students applying to dozens of state “flagship” campuses.
—Admissions data from public law schools. These data were also collected through FOIA requests, chiefly in 2007, and provide fairly comparable data on applicants across some forty public law schools.