Please consider the following.Then, carefully read the instructions and respond to the question prompt that follows.
Each year, U.S. News & World Report issues its rankings of 184 ABA-accredited law schools. Though there is occasionally some minor movement, year-after-year, the same schools appear at the very top of the rank* and the same at the bottom.** Despite being the subject of considerable criticism (including severe disapproval from the ABA), this is consistently the most influential of the rankings.
The methodology works such that each school is assigned an overall rank which takes into account Reputation (measured by opinion surveys), Selectivity (measured by incoming student profiles and the acceptance rate), Placement Success (measured by bar passage and employment rates), Faculty Resources (measured by expenditures, library volumes, and student/faculty ratio). The magazine gives 40 percent to reputation, 25 percent to selectivity, 20 percent to placement success and 15 percent to faculty resources, thus combining these factors into an overall score.
* Top 10:
7. U Penn
8. U Virginia
9. University Michigan
10. Duke, Northwestern, Berkeley (3-way tie)
** US News does not precisely rank the bottom 46 schools, but among their ranks are:
University of Arkansas
Western New England University
Appalachian School of Law
University of N. Dakota
Texas Southern University
For the record:
U of Maryland is ranked 52nd and U of Baltimore is ranking126th
in a 5 to 10 sentences, respond to the following questions.
One aspect of lawyering that we will think about is the effect of legal education on law careers.What do you think is the overall effect of the US News rankings?The ABA and many others have specifically attacked the methodology used by U.S. News. Do you see anything wrong with the method? If so, what?What kinds of impacts do you think this ranking has?On legal jobs? On client services? In general, do you think this kind of ranking is fair or unfair?