With all the thunder surrounding the legal education crisis, there has been a couple of new law school rankings systems which attempt to steal some of USN's thunder. The National Jurist was one such one, whose methodology is broken down here.
Post-Graduate Success: 50%
Employment Rate: 22.5%
Super Lawyers: 12.5%
Partners in NLJ 200: 10%
Bar Passage: 5%
Student Satisfaction: 35%
Princeton Review: 15%
Affordability and Diversity: 15%
ATL gave those rankings hefty criticism, calling it "pure ridiculousness." Now, however, they have gotten into the law school ranking game.
The basis of their rankings system is that they don't care about inputs, such as LSAT, GPA, and student scholarships, while focusing on outcomes, such as FT jobs, quality of jobs, cost, and alumni satisfaction.
Their ranking methodology is:
30% - Quality Jobs Score (combining NLJ250 firms with federal judicial clerkships)
30% - Employment Score (FTLT jobs with bar passage required, solos/school-funded positions excluded)
15% - Educational Cost
10% - ATL alumni ranking
7.5% - % Active Federal Judges
7.5% - % SCOTUS Clerks
There are immediately some problems with the ranking methodology, and if I wanted to I could nitpick, but I won't. ATL says that they are focusing on what students care about, and their methodology makes a certain amount of sense.
They rank only 50 schools, and the top 10 are:
10. New York
Of special mention are Yale, with most SCOTUS/Federal Clerks, Pennsylvania, with best employment score/quality jobs, and BYU (#28), which had the lowest cost.
Why only 50, you ask? Well, according to their scores, Yale has an 85.87, and #50, Arizona State University, had 36.83. So the other 150+ law schools have an abysmal score compared to even the lowest of the 50 on the ATL rankings, and I would be surprised if there was much difference between ASU and schools ranked at 100 or even 150/200.
Do you think the ATL ranking is the best we have? What do you think about their methodology? What would you do differently?
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