How Law Schools Manipulate Their Rankings

March 17, 2014 in Daily Bulletin

The Economist took a look at how law schools misrepresent the number of graduates that are able to get jobs:

  • US News publishes an annual ranking of the top law schools in America. One of the metrics it tracks is the proportion of graduates who get a job.
  • There are a few weird discrepancies in the data. Even though one law school is ranked ninth for scores on tests, it had the highest proportion of students who found a job after graduation.
  • This is because several schools have set up programs where they pay their graduates for about a year after they get their degree. Such programs can account for up to 22% of each class.
  • The universities are essentially spending a few million dollars to boost their rankings and make their school look more attractive.
  • The schools argue that they’re not trying to manipulate statistics. Rather the programs are investments in the community as they often serve those with low incomes, and that this is valuable job experience for graduates.
  • Yet the jobs are usually not well paid and many students will have decided to take on six figure debts to go to law school – perhaps being misled about the number of jobs that would be available

Read more over here.

Source: The Economist