Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Brian Leiter's poll of "most important characteristics in evaluating law schools" - legal writing # 5 and "practical skills" # 8

Professor Brian Leiter conducted a poll last week asking his readers which "characteristics are most important in evaluating the quality of a law school."  Not surprisingly, of the 17 criteria listed, 184 voters overwhelmingly chose as number one "scholarly distinction/quality of the faculty."

Below is the entire list of 17 criteria readers were asked to evaluate.  I'm pleasantly surprised that "legal writing" made the top 5 list while "practical skills" ranked # 8 (I always assumed that "legal skills" is larger category that subsumed "legal writing" but apparently voters did not see it that way).

The poll results are displayed both as the set of 5 choices selected most often by readers and the top choices if each criterion is considered individually. 

The most often selected top 5 are:

  1. Scholarly distinction/quality of the faculty
  2. Students numerical credentials (LSAT, GPA)
  3. Emphasis on legal doctrine & analytical skills
  4. Emphasis on legal research & writing skills
  5. Small class sizes

If considered individually, the ranking of the 17 criteria is as follows:

  1. Scholarly distinction/quality of the faculty
  2. Students numerical credentials (LSAT, GPA)
  3. Emphasis on legal doctrine & analytical skills
  4. Emphasis on legal research & writing skills
  5. Small class sizes
  6. Bar exam pass rate
  7. Quality of scholarly conferences & speaker series
  8. Emphasis on practical lawyering skills
  9. Practical experience of the faculty
  10. Quality of the law library
  11. Modern & technologically equipped facilities
  12. Ranking of the school by US News
  13. Percentage of graduates employed in legal profession
  14. Quality of career services office
  15. Curriculum emphasizing public service & pro-bono
  16. Curriculum emphasizing working in teams
  17. Student success in moot court competitions

You can read the rest here.

(jbl).

https://lawprofessors.typepad.com/legal_skills/2010/11/brian-leiters-poll-of-most-important-characteristics-in-evaluating-law-schools-legal-writing-5-and-p.html

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