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Thomas M. Cooley Law School

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Admitted students who enroll 3.86 / 10

Ratings Rankings

Colored bars represent the range of average school ratings. Black line is this school’s rating.


Practical/Clinical Training

Career Counseling

Financial Aid Advising

Social Life

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US News Rank

What do these ratings mean?

The ATL School and Firm Insiders Survey asks self-identified current students, alumni, and practicing lawyers to rate major aspects of life at their law school (academics, social life, clinical training, career services, financial aid advising) and/or law firm (compensation, hours, morale, culture, training). We then translate these ratings into letter grades, where the mean score for each particular ratings category is the equivalent of a “B.”

We require a minimum threshold of responses for each institution before we publish any survey-based ratings content. Using a standard formula for statistical validity, we adhere to a threshold that gives us an 85% confidence level and a 10% margin of error. The precise threshold number will of course vary depending on the size of the individual institution. For example, for a law firm of 1,000 attorneys, we would require 50 responses in order to publish ratings for the firm.


Long-term, full-time jobs at law firms that employ 101 or more attorneys. Due to data limitations, this score may include paralegals and administrative staff.

Long-term, full-time federal clerkships. Usually, these jobs have a duration of one year, though sometimes graduates obtain two-year appointments or “career clerk” positions.

All jobs funded by the school, including long-term, short-term, full-time and part-time.

The percentage of the entire class working in long-term, full-time positions. Excludes solo practitioners.

All employment nine months after graduation, including short-term, JD advantage, professional, and non-professional positions.

Non-respondents and unknown credentials.

All unemployed students including those seeking graduate degrees and not seeking employment.

The ATL Career Center’s goal is to reconcile publicly available employment data for the class of 2013, nine months after graduation. We compared data from the American Bar Association, Law School Transparency, National Association for Legal Professionals, and individual school websites. If any information is inaccurate, please contact us at [email protected]

Student Career Plans

Insider Reviews

from students and alumni of Thomas M. Cooley Law School

Thoroughly understand the risks of NOT getting a job by attending a 4th-tier law school. Especially if your goal is practice outside of the state of Michigan. Cooley grads are NOT able to find work.

It seemed to me that I was mostly on my own when it came career counseling and job search help and financial aid advising.

It s a great school if you re on 50% or greater scholarship. I wouldn t have attended if I had to pay full price.

Though saddled with a negative reputation, Cooley really is a flexible institution offering the opportunity of a free legal education to good students (you don t even need to be a great student mid-160s LSAT is all it takes).

Cooley is a lot harder than people think. It s gets a bad rep but it is a good school for those who choose to commit to it.

Understand the costs + where that tuition money is going. At Cooley, the school is spending money opening more campuses around the country rather than improving the quality of education at the already existing ones. They are not concerned with current students or their performance but rather, how they can make more money for themselves.

TMCLS s reputation outside of the local markets it s located in is fairly negative. The open admission policy- admitting anyone with a undergraduate degree, crappy LSAT score and ability to get a student loan- has hurt TMCLS s standing nationally. We are the butt of many jokes. Although we counter that Cooley s students must be hardworking and capable in order to avoid getting booted, that does little to improve our reputation. If you can go somewhere else, seriously consider it. Even if it s a state law school in your local market rather than a top tier school. Even if you are getting a full scholarship at Cooley, it might be better to fork over some cash and go somewhere that is more appealing to the market you plan on practicing. That said, if you d like to make 40k a year and do doc review Cooley might just be a good option. It also might be a good option, if you are willing to work for below market wages in small to mid-size firms in one of Cooley s local market and are such a special snowflake that you KNOW you ll graduate in the top 10%. You only have a 90% chance of being wrong. Finally Cooley could be a good hobby for you, if you have extra time on your hands, LSAT scores above 174 and no desire to practice law. You can bore 50+ people at a time with long winded answers if the professor is ever unfortunate enough to call on you and attempt to con students who are desperately stuggling to get off academic probation to join your study group. It ll feel almost like you have friends!

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