Campbell University News, Campbell Law School Withdraws From U.S. News Best Law Schools Ranking:
The Campbell University School of Law will no longer participate in the U.S. News and World Report’s Best Law Schools ranking.
Dean J. Rich Leonard announced the decision to faculty, staff and students on Monday in an email. Leonard’s statement cited concerns with both the ranking’s purpose and methodologies, among others.
The statement follows, “The Campbell Law School faculty has decided not to participate this year in the U.S. News and World Report’s Best Law Schools rankings. We are not opposed to objective rankings, but the reputational aspect of the U.S. News rankings has always undervalued strong regional law schools. Additionally, the rankings do not sufficiently consider factors most critical to prospective students, such as bar passage and employment outcomes. We believe objective evaluations that value factors like these better serve prospective students.
“As an example of the difference between objective and subjective rankings, in 2015 a North Carolina law professor at another school provided an alternative ranking based simply on student employment outcomes, LSAT scores and citations received by the Law Review. As reported in the lead story by Bloomberg Business, that analysis identified Campbell Law as the most underrated law school in the country.
“The U.S. News methodology is substantially flawed, and we are no longer willing to spend the significant administrative time necessary to comply with requests for data irrelevant to the needs of prospective students.”
Leonard and the Campbell Law faculty join a number of other law schools in disagreeing with the U.S. News ranking system. Most recently, University of Virginia (UVA) School of Law announced it will not provide information to U.S. News and World Report partly because its rankings “fail to capture much of what we value at UVA,” said Dean Risa Goluboff in an open letter Dec. 9.
Campbell is #147-#192 in the latest U.S. News rankings.
Update: Law.com, Campbell Law First Lower-Ranked School to Boycott US News Rankings
Seattle Times Op-Ed: Law School Rankings Worsen Profession’s Socioeconomic Gaps, by Jacob H. Rooksby (Dean, Gonzaga), Johanna Kalb (Dean, Idaho) & Brian Gallini (Dean, Willamette):
A number of law schools have recently announced that they will no longer participate in the U.S. News & World Report law school rankings. The announcements from University of Washington, Harvard, Yale and a slew of others over the last several weeks articulate a number of compelling concerns, including the debt and admissions metrics and law schools’ efforts to support public interest careers for their graduates. We, a varied cohort of leaders and regional competitors in legal education, share those previously articulated concerns and write separately to raise additional concerns as we continue to engage in conversations with our individual communities of faculty, staff, students and alumni about continuing to participate in the rankings.
At the outset, it’s worth pausing to highlight that these rankings reward law schools’ investment in areas that have little, if anything, to do with improving educational outcomes — all while anchoring value to arbitrary measures of quality. The demands of the profession and public we serve have changed, but the ranking methodology has remained fundamentally unchanged for decades. Law schools are therefore incentivized to remain similarly stagnant. ...
[T]he rankings attempt to solve a problem that does not exist. The American Bar Association already requires law schools to transparently share information about bar passage, student demographics, entering class medians and scholarship awards — to name a few examples. The rankings largely overlook these critical topics while ignoring a school’s culture and the relationship between faculty and students. Rather than focus on these critical topics — the ones students care about — this flawed ranking system too often leads prospective students to make under or uninformed decisions simply because one school is “ranked” higher or lower than another. A rankings survey based on inertial reputation might be of some relevance to prospective students, but that’s not how the rankings work in practice.
We are hardly the first to articulate these concerns, but we are the first to make these observations together. By speaking with one voice about this deeply flawed ranking system, flaws that exacerbate the class, race, gender and economic gaps that currently define the legal profession, we hope for a future that rightly incentivizes legal education to further invest in the student experience while strengthening the rule of law and seeking to diversify the profession.
Gonzaga is #116, Willamette is #129, and Idaho is #142 in the latest U.S. News rankings.
U.S. News coverage:
- Yale Law School Will No Longer Participate In 'Profoundly Flawed' U.S. News Rankings (Nov. 16, 2022)
- Harvard Joins Yale In No Longer Participating In The U.S. News Law School Rankings (Nov. 16, 2022)
- UC-Berkeley Is The Third Top 10 Law School To Refuse To Participate In The U.S. News Rankings (Nov. 17, 2022)
- With Stanford, Columbia And Georgetown, 6 Of The T14 Refuse To Participate In The U.S. News Law School Rankings (Nov. 19, 2022)
- The U.S. News Law School Rankings Are Like The Hotel California: You Can Check Out Any Time You Like, But You Can Never Leave (Nov. 19, 2022)
- U.S. News Law School Rankings, ABA Optional LSAT, And Harvard Affirmative Action Supreme Court's Case (Nov. 21, 2022)
- Why Law Schools Outside The T14 (Like UCLA, Wash U, George Mason, Boston University, Pepperdine) May Refuse To Join The U.S. News Rankings Boycott (Nov. 21, 2022)
- Michigan Is Seventh T14 Law School To Refuse To Participate In The U.S. News Rankings (Nov. 21, 2022)
- Antitrust Implications Of The U.S. News Law School Rankings Boycott (Nov. 21, 2022)
- With Duke And Northwestern, Nine Of T14 Refuse To Participate In U.S. News Law School Rankings (Nov. 22, 2022)
- Colin Diver: Are The U.S. News Rankings Finally Going To Die? (Nov. 22, 2022)
- UCLA Is Tenth Top 15 Law School To Refuse To Participate In U.S. News Rankings (Nov. 22, 2022)
- Dan Solove: Slaying The U.S. News Law School Rankings Dragon (Nov. 23, 2022)
- Bill Henderson: The Dollars And Math Behind Yale Law School's Withdrawal From U.S. News — 'Are Limits on Federal Student Loans The Best Way To End The Rankings Madness?' (Nov. 23, 2022)
- UC-Irvine Is First Non-Elite Law School To Join U.S. News Rankings Boycott (Nov. 24, 2022)
- Chicago And (Maybe) Cornell Are First Elite Law Schools To Refuse To Join U.S. News Rankings Boycott (Nov. 24, 2022)
- Is This The Beginning Of The End Of The U.S. News Rankings Dominance? (Nov. 25, 2022)
- Penn Evaluates Whether To Join Boycott Of U.S. News Rankings By Ten Of Top 15 Law Schools (Nov. 26, 2022)
- Law School Admissions Without LSATs, Race, And Rankings (Nov. 26, 2022)
- Here’s Why Top Law Schools May Be Pulling Out Of The U.S. News Rankings (Nov. 28, 2022)
- Yale Law School’s Revolt Of The Elites (Nov. 28, 2022)
- UC-Davis Is 12th Law School (5th In California) To Boycott U.S. News Rankings (Nov. 29, 2022)
- More Commentary On The U.S. News Law School Rankings Boycott (Part 1) (Nov. 30, 2022)
- Wash U Joins Chicago And Cornell In Refusing To Boycott U.S. News Law School Rankings (Dec. 1, 2022)
- More Commentary On The U.S. News Law School Rankings Boycott (Part 2) (Dec. 2, 2022)
- With Penn And University Of Washington, 14 Law Schools Are Not Participating In U.S. News Rankings; Georgia Is 4th School To Resist Boycott (Dec. 3, 2022)
- George Mason Is 5th Law School To Reject Boycott Of U.S. News Rankings (Dec. 5, 2022)
- The Impact Of The U.S. News Rankings Boycott On Individual Law Schools (Dec. 5, 2022)
- NYU Is 15th Law School (And 12th Of Top 15) To Boycott U.S. News Rankings (Dec. 5, 2022)
- More Commentary On The U.S. News Law School Rankings Boycott (Part 3) (Dec. 6, 2022)
- U.S. News Law School Rankings Boycott Is A Big Nothing Burger (Dec. 8, 2022)
- A Law School Rankings Revolution? Hardly. (Dec. 9, 2022)
- The U.S. News Law School Rankings Boycott Is A Chance To Rethink Legal Education (Dec. 10, 2022)
- Virginia Is 16th Law School (And 13th Of Top 15) To Boycott U.S. News Rankings (Dec. 10, 2022)
- Simkovic On The U.S. News Rankings Boycott (Dec. 12, 2022)
- Deans Of Lower Ranked Law Schools Join Boycott And Criticize U.S. News Rankings (Dec. 13, 2022)
- Dean Of Georgia Law School (1 Of 5 Schools Publicly Not Joining Boycott Of U.S. News Rankings) Has Questions For The 17 Boycotting Schools (Dec. 15, 2022)
- New Hampshire Is 18th Law School To Boycott U.S. News Rankings (Dec. 16, 2022)
- CLEA Statement On U.S. News Rankings For Clinical Programs (Dec. 17, 2022)
- More Commentary On The U.S. News Law School Rankings Boycott (Part 4) (Dec. 20, 2022)
- With Southwestern, 10% Of ABA-Accredited Law Schools Are Boycotting The U.S. News Rankings (Dec. 20, 2022)
- Cal-Western Is 20th Law School To Boycott U.S. News Rankings (Dec. 24, 2022)
- Morrison: AALS Should Provide A Law School Guide To Supplant The U.S. News Rankings (Dec. 27, 2022)
- Muller: What Is The Endgame For Law Schools Boycotting The U.S. News Rankings? (Dec. 28, 2022)
- With UC-SF, St. John's, And Idaho: 23 Schools Are Now Boycotting The U.S. News Law School Rankings (Jan. 7, 2023)
- U.S. News Law School Rankings Boycott Scorecard (Jan. 9, 2023)
- Fordham Is 24th Law School To Boycott U.S. News Rankings (Jan. 14, 2023)
- Roger Williams Is 25th Law School To Boycott U.S. News Rankings (Jan. 18, 2023)
- Law School Rankings Revolt Spreads To Medical Schools: #1 Harvard Will Not Send Data To U.S. News (Jan. 18, 2023)
U.S. News Response to Boycott