Applying to law school and tempted to use ChatGPT or other generative AI to get through you personal statement? A majority of applicants don’t think you should be able to do that. According to a new survey of prospective law students by Kaplan, 66 percent say it shouldn’t be allowed. Fourteen percent say it should be cool, and the remaining 20 percent don’t know what to think about GenAI in admissions.
Why are they against it? A sampling of the responses reveals it comes down to competition for many of them:
- “The use of AI in a personal statement makes an individual’s personal statement disingenuous. It is also an act of plagiarism because the work is not the student’s own.”
- “I think it takes away from the other applicants who actually do know how to write and research and such. It feels like it’s cheating me out of a position.”
- “Using GenAI would defeat the entire point of writing a personal statement, which I believe is to express a key part of your identity in a short but impactful piece.”
Amit Schlesinger, executive director of legal and government programs at Kaplan, said this about the results:
“Pre-law students took their admissions exams on Test Day without the use of GenAI and built up their GPAs without using it either, so it’s not entirely surprising that they think it shouldn’t be a part of the admissions process either. One common thread in the survey results is the concern that it would unfairly level the playing field for applicants who are not strong writers, in addition to permit inauthenticity. Preliminary results from Kaplan’s law school admissions officers survey show that as the 2023-2024 application cycle begins, most schools have no policy at all, but we don’t believe that’s a tenable position, as they are going to get more and more questions from prospective students who want guidance and guardrails.”
So far, law schools are split on what to do about GenAI in admissions. The University of Michigan Law School has banned it, while Arizona State explicitly allows it; but the majority of law schools have no official policy. Seems like something they really need to get on.
Kathryn Rubino is a Senior Editor at Above the Law, host of The Jabot podcast, and co-host of Thinking Like A Lawyer. AtL tipsters are the best, so please connect with her. Feel free to email her with any tips, questions, or comments and follow her on Twitter @Kathryn1 or Mastodon @Kathryn1@mastodon.social.