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ERIC Number: ED502056
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Sep
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Does Affirmative Action Really Hurt Blacks and Latinos in U.S. Law Schools? TRPI Policy Brief
Kidder, William C.
Tomas Rivera Policy Institute
In a "Stanford Law Review" article, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) law professor Richard Sander claimed to statistically prove that affirmative action at American law schools actually depressed the number of African Americans who become lawyers by "mismatching" them at schools where they were in over their heads academically. This policy brief demonstrates that Sander's prediction of a 7.9% net increase in black lawyers if affirmative action ended today is so unlikely that it is essentially impossible. In fact, based on the 2004 admissions data, an annual decline of 30% to 40% in African American attorneys is more likely if affirmative action ended. This policy brief also reviews the key methodological flaws in Sander's study of African Americans in legal education, and also situates Latinos in this analysis. The benefits Sander projects would result from ending affirmative action and shunting underrepresented students to lower-ranked schools are quite speculative. (Contains 1 figure, 1 table, and 41 endnotes.)
Tomas Rivera Policy Institute. University of Southern California, School of Policy, Planning, and Development, Ralph and Goldie Lewis Hall, 650 Childs Way Suite 102, Los Angeles, CA 90089-0626. Tel: 213-821-5615; Fax: 213-821-1976; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Ford Foundation, New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: Tomas Rivera Policy Inst., Claremont, CA.
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A