DOE Definitions of Race, as Published by LSAC at


As you may be aware, the US Department of Education (DOE) will implement new race/ethnicity reporting requirements for the 2010-2011 academic year. (For specifics, please visit http://nces.ed.gov/IPEDS/reic/resource.asp.)

In anticipation of these changes, starting in June/July 2009 LSAC will revise the ways in which it collects and reports the race/ethnicity of test takers and applicants in the LSAT and LSDAS registration process. Changes that individual law schools make to their LSAC electronic applications will be accommodated, and LSAC will continue to transfer that data (including multiple selections) back to the institutions via ACES2 in the same way that it is currently done.

Data Collection

Individuals registering for the LSAT or LSDAS by paper or phone will self-identify with one or more of the following nine race/ethnicity categories, in accordance with the new DOE policy.

  • Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander Australian
    • A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Australia or the Torres Strait Islands.
  • American Indian/Alaska Native
    • A person having origins in any of the original peoples of North and South America (including Central America) who maintains cultural identification through tribal affiliation or community attachment.
  • Asian
    • A person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian Subcontinent, including, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and Vietnam.
  • Black/African American
    • A person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa.
  • Canadian Aboriginal
    • A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Canada.
  • Caucasian/White
    • A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa.
  • Hispanic/Latino
    • A person of Cuban, Mexican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race.
  • Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander
    • A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands.
  • Puerto Rican
    • A person having origins in Puerto Rico.

Applicants registering for the LSAT or LSDAS through LSAC’s online system will also select subcategories from within the nine main categories. Multiple selections across categories and subcategories will be possible. Below are the categories and subcategories that will be available through LSAC’s online system.

  • Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander Australian
    • Australian Aboriginal
    • Torres Strait Islander Australian
  • American Indian/Alaska Native
    • Alaska Native
    • American Indian
  • Asian
    • Cambodian
    • Chinese
    • Filipino
    • Indian
    • Japanese
    • Korean
    • Malaysian
    • Pakistani
    • Thai
    • Vietnamese
    • Other Asian
  •  Black/African American
    • Black or African American
  • Canadian Aboriginal
    • First Nation
    • Metis
    • Inuit
    • Other Canadian Aboriginal
  • Caucasian/White
    • European
    • Middle Eastern
    • North African
    • Other Caucasian/White
  • Hispanic/Latino
    • Central American
    • Chicano/Mexican
    • Cuban
    • South American
    • Other Hispanic/Latino
  • Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander
    • Native Hawaiian
    • Pacific Islander
  • Puerto Rican
    • Puerto Rican
  • Declining to indicate race/ethnicity

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