Obama: Make law school two years

President Obama on Friday suggested that law schools would be “wise” to consider reducing requirements so students would only need to enroll for two years before graduating.

“This is going to be controversial, but what the heck ... I'm in my second term, so I can say it,” Obama said. “I believe, for example, that law schools would be wise to think about being two years instead of three years.”

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Obama said “universities and faculty need to come up with ways to cut costs while also maintaining quality,” and that mission included re-examining norms about how academic programs should be organized and run.

At the same time, Obama said that he did not want to advocate “some cookie cutter approach that doesn't take quality into account.”

“I taught in a law school for 10 years, so I'm very sympathetic to the spirit of inquiry and the importance of not just looking at x’s and o’s and numbers when measuring quality,” Obama said. Obama worked as a lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School before being elected to the U.S. Senate.

But the president heralded universities that were “experimenting with how we can compress the time and thus lower the costs.”

“One of the best things we can do for students is to make sure they graduate in a more timely fashion,” Obama said.