February 21, 2013
National Jurist Acknowledges 67% Error Rate, But Sticks With Revised Law School Rankings
The National Jurist has revised its new law school rankings system after admitting it made errors in 67% of the law school data it originally reported from RateMyProfessors.com (which counts 20% in their rankings). Jonathan Adler (Case Western) and Brian Leiter (Chicago) rightly argue that the National Jurist should scuttle their rankings:
Adler: "Even if one were to believe that it was reasonable to use RMP scores in the first place — and it was not (as discussed here and here) — this degree of sloppiness is appalling. It was utterly irresponsible for NJ to go to press with rankings based on such slipshod work, and a disservice to the prospective students NJ was purporting to serve. Brian Leiter is correct – NJ should simply confess error, deep six these rankings, and start over from scratch."
Leiter: "The editors have appended a list of articles on "Rate My Professors," but as I noted before, the literature (if you actually read it) does not support the use to which National Jurist put it. They still should withdraw the entire ranking, and hire some educational and statistical consultants to come up with a worthwhile metric."
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Scuttle or just remove RMP data? I've read published law review articles that use questionable data. Academics need to get off their high horses and offer some constructive solutions.
Posted by: HTA | Feb 21, 2013 11:05:27 AM
@HTA: one of the academics mentioned (Brian Leiter) does just that, and offers his own system of law-school rankings. People who regularly criticize academics should let go of their anti-academic bias and stop criticizing academics just for being academics. Critics should at least take the time to Google. I would start with searching "leiter law school rankings"
Posted by: Guy 2 | Feb 21, 2013 11:43:12 AM
@Guy2 Leiter's rankings aren't helpful to students. Do you honestly think I haven't seen them? Students don't care if their faculty belong to an academy. They don't care about faculty cite counts. Nor does Leiter provide any comprehensive ranking system. They care whether they will learn the law, pass the bar, and get a job. Leiter can be proud about a lot of things, but lately his blog is just filled with vitriol directed at Campos and the National Jurist.
Posted by: HTA | Feb 24, 2013 5:14:18 PM