Tuesday, March 13, 2012

SUCK IT, MARCOTTE:  Very few changes in the T14 for US News and World Report's annual ranking of America's law schools -- except that for the first time since the rankings began in 1990 the T14 is now a T15, with Texas now tied for 14th -- and it remains nonsense that the school in Morningside Heights remains above Chicago and NYU.

Okay, so I linked to last year's rankings.  Let's try again, and UT is out of the T14; Stanford ahead of Harvard for the first time since 2007; big leaps for Washington and Arizona State.


  1. The then-Dean of NYU Law (now president of the University) had two pecularities about rankings:

    1.  He would insist on referring to us not as a "top X" law school, but rather as "one of the X law schools that can legitimately claim to be number one!"
    2.  Certain other schools were not referenced by name, but rather "That law school in Boston," "That law school in New Haven," and "That law school in Harlem."  (Oddly, neither Chicago nor the West Coast schools ever really came up.)

    I do think part of what weighs NYU down a bit (and buoys Columbia) is the respective strength of their undergrad programs.  NYU is (rightly or wrongly) heavily viewed as a party school for rich left-leaning kids who want to live in the city on their parents' dime at the undergrad level, while the other schools at the top of the law rankings are all highly-esteemed.

  2. Uh, that's last year's list. This year's has Texas at 16th. (And Chicago still above NYU, as the nonexistent God intended.)

  3. Chin Music1:02 PM

    I feel like maybe I should know this, but what is the significance of a top 14?  Is it a US News cutoff or something they do across all of their rankings? I understand that 10, 15 and 20 are each as arbitrary as 14, but usually there is a reason to deviate from the norm.

  4. The T14 has been the same 14 schools, in whatever order, every year since 1990 -- except for Texas's one-year incursion.

  5. Chin Music1:17 PM

    Wow, without that piece of information I read the original post as saying nothing more than that this was the first time there was a tie for 14th place in the rankings (which would be true, but didn't seem that noteworthy).  But, this is much more impressive.  A completely non-arbitrary reason for the cutoff and for keeping a suspicious eye on Texas.

  6. isaac_spaceman1:29 PM

    School rankings are like IQ scores.  They are an imperfect match with what they claim to measure, and the granularity of their results exceeds the accuracy of their instruments of measurement. 

  7. GoldnI1:39 PM

    After holding steady at #19 for several years, and tying for #18 this year, Wash U has dropped down to #23.  I realize this isn't that big of a deal, but I'll be curious to see the full numbers--a drop like that is bound to happen when half your graduating class is unemployed.

  8. Saray3:01 PM

    At Fordham, we're just chilling over here at #29 until the new building gets finished...and then we will crush you.  (Or so they keep telling the alumni...)

  9. The Pathetic Earthling7:08 PM

    The couple of Wash U lawyers I've worked with impressed me.  I had no idea they were that bad off in employment statistics.  What any ugly, ugly world.

    (Goldnl - are you there now?)

  10. I think part of the problem with Wash U is that it's not located in or near a major legal employment center (Chicago, LA/NY, DC, NY, Boston, Texas), and lot of firms HQed or with tons of lawyers in the big markets kept recruiting closer to home.  I think we've cut basically all active recruiting at places where we had to send people and focus just on local places.