On Saturday, Brian Leiter released his rank of the 2009 Top 40 Law Schools by Student (Numerical) Quality. How did he determine student quality? LSAT scores. According to his website, "No feasible measure of student quality is particularly ideal, but LSAT scores are the best, crude proxy we have available." To calculate the ranking, Leiter used the average of the 25th and 75th percentile LSAT scores for the fall 2008 incoming JD class. For schools that have part-time and full-time programs, both program scores were included. Class size and average GPA were tie breakers.
Do law schools need to be ranked by LSAT score? With the myriad rankings that take into account more factors, such as class size, student-to-faculty ratios, career prospects and other valuable school qualities, what purpose does a re-ranking serve? In addition, as Professor Paul Caron points out on his blog, Leiter's Top 18 are identical to the U.S. News Top 18. For fun, I've put together a table of the Top 18 Leiter, U.S. News and Vault rankings. See how LSAT translates to academic experience and employability.
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