Tuition increases in nominal dollars
Nominal tuition does not account for inflation. The following chart reflects the actual average tuition prices for the each category over the past 29 years.
Public and private law school price increases far exceed inflation
Since 1985, inflation has been a factor in rising law school prices. According to the BLS, inflation has been 101.5% over this period (through 2013). But legal education inflation far exceeds the inflation rate. In 1985, the average private school tuition was $7,526 (1985 dollars), which would now cost a student $16,294 (2013 dollars). Instead, the average tuition is $41,985 (2013 dollars). In other words, private law school is now 2.6 times as expensive as it was in 1985 after adjusting for inflation. Public school (for residents) is now about 5.5 times as expensive.