It’s time to check out U.S. News’s latest law school rankings (2021). The rankings are based on expert opinions about the quality of each program and statistical indicators to quantify and measure the quality of a program’s faculty, research, and students. The reputation surveys were sent to academics and professionals in fall 2019 and early 2020.
This year, for the first time, the specialties of criminal law, constitutional law, business/corporate law, and contracts/commercial law are ranked.
In order to rank each school, U.S. News assessed the data for each quality indicator and then standardized the value of each indicator about its mean. Each indicator has a weight assigned to it, which indicates U.S. News’ judgment about their relative importance, after consulting with experts in the field.
These final scores were rescaled to give the highest-scoring school a score of 100, with the other schools’ scores recalculated as a percentage of the top score. A school with a score of 100 did not necessarily receive the highest score on every indicator, it merely had the highest total score.
Highlights of the 2021 law school rankings
Yale Law School continues to be ranked #1 by U.S. News, while Stanford and Harvard maintained the second and third spots. Columbia Law School gained in the rankings, jumping from #5 last year to a tie for fourth place this year with the University of Chicago.
Top 10 law schools in 2021: U.S. News ranking
|1||Yale University||New Haven, CT|
|2||Stanford University||Stanford, CA|
|3||Harvard University||Cambridge, MA|
|4||Columbia University||New York, NY|
|4||University of Chicago||Chicago, IL|
|6||New York University||New York, NY|
|7||University of Pennsylvania (Carey)||Philadelphia, PA|
|8||University of Virginia||Charlottesville, VA|
|9||Northwestern University (Pritzker)||Chicago, IL|
|9||University of California, Berkeley||Berkeley, CA|
|9||University of Michigan, Ann Arbor||Ann Arbor, MI|
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