Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Disinterested Law School Rankings

Thomas Cooley's release of the 8th annual edition of its law school rankings, Judging the Law Schools, brings to mind a question we asked in our Moneyball article (What Law Schools Can Learn from Billy Beane and the Oakland Athletics, 82 Texas L. Rev. 1483, 1524, n.235 (2004)): why is it that the various alternative law school rankings have one thing in common -- the ranker's law school always fares better in the alternative ranking that it does in the U.S. News ranking?

The new Cooley rankings give equal weight to 32 objective variables from the Official ABA Guide to Approved Law Schools and favor large law schools, producing this Top 20:

1. Harvard
2. Georgetown
3. Texas
4. Virginia
5. NYU
6. Yale
7. Northwestern
8. Columbia
9. George Washington
10. Minnesota
11. American
12. Michigan
13. Fordham
14. Penn
15. Berkeley
16. Thomas Cooley
17. Temple
18. UCLA
19. Hastings
20. Miami

Here is the chart from our Moneyball article comparing the alternative rank of the rankers' law school with the U.S. News rank:

For more, see Size Matters: The New Thomas Cooley Law School Rankings (TaxProf Blog).


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