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Deciding which school to go to

Picking which school you go to can help in saving money during law school. To help you with your decision, I suggest using a multi-attribute optimization chart. A multi-what? It’s easier then it sounds, but can be very helpful when deciding which school is best for your.

  1. Think of list of the important attributes you’re looking for in a law school. Don’t list too many or your score in the end will be diluted. But don’t be skimpy either. When I did this, I listed 10 attributes. They included: cost, location, cost of living, job opportunities for Mrs. FLS, facilities, and employment rate after graduation. If you’re in a relationship, you can also include your partner’s attributes.
  2. Next, rank each attribute from 1-10. 1 being the worst and 10 being the best. Again, if you’re married, have your spouse rank as well, but do it separately. After you’re both done, average your scores together. (If you’re single, don’t worry about the averaging thing). You should have something that looks like this:

Preference Order of Attributes

 

 

 

  1. Next, create a chart with the schools you’re choosing at the top and the attributes on the side. Rank each school on that attribute, like this:

 

Big U

State

SmallU

PU

ASU

StateU

  1. Multiply your number from the first chart and multiply by school’s score from each given criteria. For example, take the score from your first chart for location (9 for Mrs. FLS and I) and multiply by each location score for each school. So, multiply 9 by 5 (Big U), 9×4 (State), 9×8 (Small U), and so on. Do this with each criterion. After that, total the numbers under each school. In the end, you should have something like this:

 

Big U

State

Small

PU

ASU

StateU

So, it looks like Small U is the best pick. There’s not much difference between PU and State U, so I would probably be happy with either school. Of course, there is a possibility that you come up with some false positives doing this. Even though you try not to be biased, there’s a tendency to give the school you really want to go to higher scores, even though it really doesn’t warrant that score. You also might be thinking this is a lot of work. It is little involved, but its fun.

I think it would be interesting to see this done with purely financial criteria. Such as scholarships offered, cost of living, transportation, books, ect.