After the JD Monographs
The After the JD (AJD) study is a longitudinal study of the career choices and subsequent career progression of a nationally-representative sample of lawyers who were first admitted to the bar in the year 2000. The study was designed and is overseen by an interdisciplinary group of scholars and funded by multiple institutions, among them NALP, the NALP Foundation and the American Bar Foundation. It is the first research effort of its kind to examine the early careers of a cohort of more than 4,500 newly-certified lawyers. Sample members were first surveyed in 2002 and will be re-contacted in 2007 and 2011.

Responses to the first-wave survey questionnaire, which was mailed out in 2003, included information about sample members’ jobs, their professional affiliations, their educational – and especially law school – experiences and their demographic characteristics.  Respondents were asked detailed questions about the positions they occupied in 2002-03, including the nature of their work settings and of their work; their salaries and other benefits; their satisfactions, perceived levels of success, and future plans. They were also asked about their first jobs, if the jobs they held at the time of the survey were not the first; and the factors that led them to make the choices they made. Among the latter were questions about their reasons for attending law school; their law school experiences; their family and financial circumstances, including educational debt; and their plans for the next several years. Many of the “large” questions that inspired the study initially and that informed analysis of the data had to do with the relationships between the responses and subjects’ gender and minority status, and the legal markets in which they started their careers.  Follow-up surveys will focus on the trajectories of respondents’ careers as their life circumstances and the society around them change.  A full account of the methodology of the study and selected findings from the first wave of data collection may be downloaded from the ABF or NALP Foundation websites.

From time, to time, a monograph based on the data from the AJD study about a particular topic will appear on this website.    


Are Minority Women Lawyers Leaving Their Jobs? (PDF)
    by Gita Wilder, August 2008

Law School Debt Among New Lawyers (PDF)
     by Gita Wilder, January 2007

Women in the Profession: Findings from the First Wave of the After the JD Study (PDF)
     by Gita Wilder, August 2007

Race-Ethnicity in the Legal Profession (PDF)
     by Gita Wilder, March 2008

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