General Law School and Legal Education
- American Bar Association Pre-Law Guidelines.
- This is the pre-law page for the ABA. It includes advice about pre-law preparation and commentary on law school rankings. This page provides links to many other sites, including all ABA-approved law schools and order forms for ABA publications.
- Internet Legal Resource Guide.
- This is the single most valuable, comprehensive Internet source for information about law, law schoools, and the legal profession. It has links to thousands of websites.
- Law School Admission Council.
- The LSAC administers the LSAT, and this is its home page, which has links to all ABA-approved law schools. This site also contains information in the annual LSAT/LSDAS booklet, and it enables you to order materials and register electronically for the LSAT.
- Peterson's Law Channel.
- A useful tool to search law schools in terms of their admission requirements, academic programs, and enrollment.
Law School Rankings
- Internet Legal Resource Guide (ILRG).
- The follow gives the basic ILRG link to a number of law school ranking sites: http://www.ilrg.com/rankings This particular ILRG site provides raw data from the most recently admitted law school classes at most ABA-endorsed law schools. Use this site to estimate your chances for admission in terms of your GPA and LSAT score. The site also indicates for each school the number of applications accepted, student/faculty ratio, bar passage rates, and percentage of graduates employed upon graduation and nine months after graduation.
- Rankings of Law Faculty Quality for 2003-04.
- Accessible via the ilrg.com site, this one evaluates selected law schools in terms of "faculty quality." Intended as a replacement for the U.S. News assessment of law schools' academic reputation, this site gives overall rankings and rankings by such specialty areas as business law, civil procedure, administrative and environmental law, constitutional law, and criminal law and procedure.
- US News Top 100 Law Schools.
- This gives the annual and controversial U.S. News ranking of law schools, and it is also accessible through the ilrg.com site. Criteria for ranking include peer assessment, assessment by lawyers and judges, admissions selectivity, and bar passage rates?but not student satisfaction. This site also has access to the U.S. News' most recent ranking of law schools by the following specialties: clinical training, dispute resolution, environmental law, healthcare law, intellectual property, international law, tax law, and trial advocacy.
- Thomas E. Brennan's Judging the Law Schools.
- A bit dated, because it was prepared in 1996, this "unauthorized" ranking was developed by a former Chief Justice of the Michigan Supreme Court and the founder of Thomas M. Cooley Law School. The ranking system uses a variety of allegedly objective indexes (e.g., quality, faculty, diversity, value, etc.) to give the "top 20 law schools" for each "index."
- The Ranking Game
- is accessible through ilrg.com. Prepared by faculty at the Indiana University, Bloomington, Law School, this site has information that debunks the importance of law school rankings. It also allows you to weigh a long series of criteria to enable you to produce a rank order of nearly all ABA-endorsed law schools in the U.S. Data for the "ranking game" is typically 2-3 years old.
- Stephen Klein and Laura Hamilton, "The Validity of the U.S. News & World Report Ranking of ABA Law Schools."
- Commissioned by the Association of American Law Schools, this 1998 study critiques the value of the evaluation system that produces the annual U.S. News ranking of law schools. The authors note, for example, that the U.S. News evaluation system does not take into account faculty scholarship and teaching ability, student assessment of their law school education, environmental quality of life, "cultural diversity of student body," and summer employment opportunities for law school students.
- Available via ilrg.com or at http://www.aals.org/validity.html
The censor's sword pierces deeply into the heart of free expression. -Earl Warren
Comparing Law Schools
- U.S. News & World Report.
- This tool, which requires purchase, enables you to make side-by-side comparisons, using many categories/criteria, of up to four law schools in one formatting.
Use ilrg.com to go to U.S. News & World Report Top 100 Law Schools. Navigate from that to "Rankings Index." From there, go to "Law," and from "Law" to go (under Tools) to "Compare Law Schools."
Pre-Law Student Services
Using the internet to access pre-law materials can sometimes be quite frustrating. Fortunately, a group of students at the University of Texas School of Law assembled for the Internet Legal Resource Guide a list of websites that they think are especially relevant for people applying to law school. These sites include coverage of LSAT Preparation Commercial Services (i.e., "crash courses" to prepare for the LSAT), LSAT Preparation Online Tutorials, LSAT Registration, and Law School Profiles and Admission Statistics.
At least one ListServ exists for pre-law students who wish to discuss law school and legal careers: PRELAW-STUDENTS@lawlib.wuacc.edu To get on this list, send the following message to firstname.lastname@example.org :
subscribe pre-law students (Your Name)
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