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Messages - Bullsh1tDetector

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41
I agree with almost everything you say.  What you're missing, however is the fact that UT is actually rated even HIGHER among lawyers and judges than it is among academics.  The difference beteen UT's lawyer/judge assessment and that of other 11-15 schools is negligible.

You're right, that 4.2 is very close to the schools at 4.3/4.4.  I suppose the best argument against Texas jumping is that it lacks the cachet of other schools in its range.  Consider that a number of people that pick Cornell over other 7-14s because of its Ivy name, in spite of the fact that it's probably in the worst location of any of the top 14 and isn't exactly an academic/professional powerhouse.

But Austin is a helluva city and Texas is booming.  We've seen more unlikely things happen (like WUSTL's ridiculous rise in the UG rankings).

42
The mistake the Texas contigent is making in this thread is considering peer assessment scores over real-world assessments.

For example, in the USNews surveys, lawyer/judge assessment is much more important than peer assessment, considering that (outside of HYSCh) most students will not secure a clerkship or go into academia.  The most relevant statistics to ~98% of us should be the lawyer judge assessment and the employment statistics.

That's the primary flaw in Leiter's promotion of his ranking system.  He proposes it to be some sort of remedy, when in fact it measures things that are relatively unimportant.  Hardly anyone outside the insulated world of academia could care less about scholarly work or clerkship placement.

It's almost like people bragging about how their car can go 180 when they'll never take it above 70 anyway.  Since most of us will never clerk SCOTUS or CoA, it's important to focus on things that will benefit us.  I don't care if my professor wrote some treatise on a sub-branch of a sub-branch of law and philosophy, I care if I get a damned good job.

In short, outside of a small subset that can realistically expect clerkships/academia, there is no reason to place much weight on "peer assessment" or "faculty quality" scores.  This is where Texas really shines, and unfortunately, it's somewhat irrelevant.

BTW- This is more relevant in the short term.  Perhaps 40-50 years down the road, improved faculty quality will lead to increased prestige.  As it stands now, it is outside of the three public schools that make most people think "wow" (berk, umich, uva, with ucla a notch below), so it'd take quite a bit to bump them up to that level (like someone else said earlier, it's about branding).  And please don't bring up WUSTL or schools like that, their real-world name recognition is nowhere near their USNWR ranking, it's anomalous because they game the rankings, much like they did in the LS rankings for a few years.

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And as relates to numbers, there has been a cascade effect as more people have had higher numbers.  What used to get someone into HYS now (in many cases) gets then into CCN, CCN numbers now seem to filter towards Penn, NU, and UVa (of course Boalt and umich are wacky as hell).  And as you get further down, you get the refuse of other schools.  Granted, there was an example (of burgh) wanting UT over T14, but that is certainly the exception rather than the rule

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