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Saturday, February 16, 2013

National Jurist Backtracks on Use of RateMyProfessors.com in Law School Rankings

NJ CoverAfter initially defending its new law school rankings system despite assigning a 20% weighting to the execrable ratemyprofessors.com, the National Jurist  is now backpedaling:

When we were deciding which data to use to represent student satisfaction, we carefully compared the Princeton Review and RateMyProfessor scores. In the aggregate, we found a strong correlation between the two studies.

However, some have now reported that the website includes non-law school faculty and former faculty. We did an initial search of the website and found that this was true for at least a few schools.

We are now in the process of reviewing the data for every school, searching by individual professor currently on staff. We hope to have this review done by Feb. 19, at which time we will make any necessary corrections to ensure a fair and accurate study. If we find that the RateMyProfessor inaccuracies are significant and prevalent, we will consider removing it as a data source from the study.

Jonathan Adler (Case Western) and Brian Leiter (Chicago) are not impressed. Leiter concludes:

As I indicated in an earllier post, I spoke with Mr. Crittenden just a few weeks ago about what would be required to do a sensible alternative to U.S. News.  He never let on that he and his staff had already concocted this nonsense ranking, and that he was going to use my quotes in an article accompanying this ranking, whose existence he had not disclosed to me.  Mr. Crittenden is clearly not an honest man or journalist.  He can only redeem his reputation by repudiating this whole fiasco.

NJ was always a bit of a joke, a magazine so unneeded that it is given away free in piles at every law school in the country (most copies end up in the trash).  But now they've done something perniciously stupid, which doesn't help students, and groundlessly defames dozens of law faculties.  I hope it marks the end of a pointless magazine.

Update: The Faculty Lounge, More on the National Jurist Rankings

http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2013/02/national-jurist-.html

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Comments

At least Crittenden has created a new way of ranking law schools and is openly addressing suggestions for adjustments, taking on the establishment that has accepted lies in self-reported data of law schools wanting to protect their turf and which uses its own questionable methodology. Calling Crittenden a liar is not a way to make the process better and raises suspicion of the motives of those who try to stifle him. Rather than limiting information, let the propective students have additional data to make their own decisions.

Posted by: Woody | Feb 16, 2013 9:26:19 AM

I wonder if the domain name ratemyrankingsystem.com is available.

Posted by: AMTbuff | Feb 16, 2013 10:48:29 AM