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Author Topic: Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"  (Read 863 times)

Maintain FL 350

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Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"
« on: June 14, 2014, 04:17:39 PM »
http://www.businessinsider.sg/samuel-alito-criticizes-law-school-rankings-2014-4/#.U5ysWUrn9jo

Interesting article. Apparently Alito, a Yale grad, thinks USNWR's law school rankings are a bunch of bunk. He seems to practice what he preaches and has only hired two Ivy League grads as clerks recently (of course, those clerks may have been from places like Michigan or Chicago).

LawOwl

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Re: Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"
« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2014, 10:43:48 PM »
Interesting. I think regional schools don't get enough credit for local students. The legal community as a whole is blinded by the USN rankings to an extent. Good to see someone fro the top "ranked" school to offer a real world view on the subject
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Re: Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"
« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2014, 10:55:47 PM »
Interesting. I think regional schools don't get enough credit for local students. The legal community as a whole is blinded by the USN rankings to an extent. Good to see someone fro the top "ranked" school to offer a real world view on the subject
Maybe, but it won't change anything. People WANT a ranking system and even if new ones were created (and respected enough to do any good) they'd just fall prey to the same issues soon enough

Burning Sands, Esq.

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Re: Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"
« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2014, 11:56:38 AM »
We definitely need to do away with the US News & World Report rankings. Even if new ones pop up, so be it. But the current rankings have way too much influence over our profession. It's ridiculous actually.
"A lawyer's either a social engineer or a parasite on society. A social engineer is a highly skilled...lawyer who understands the Constitution of the U.S. and knows how to explore its uses in the solving of problems of local communities and in bettering [our] conditions."
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Re: Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2014, 02:34:46 PM »
We definitely need to do away with the US News & World Report rankings. Even if new ones pop up, so be it. But the current rankings have way too much influence over our profession. It's ridiculous actually.
How do you propose we actually do that though?
Cooley style where we hope no one will see how clever we are by placing one Ivy school above us and the rest beneath us?

LawOwl

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Re: Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2014, 03:11:03 PM »
We definitely need to do away with the US News & World Report rankings. Even if new ones pop up, so be it. But the current rankings have way too much influence over our profession. It's ridiculous actually.
Something like Above The Law rankings may suffice. I think these rankings really need to be entirely based on employment outcomes and debt to income ratio over ten years. At the end of the day, you're going to law school to get a job and for the most part, you really chart the course of your career after your first lawyer job.
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Maintain FL 350

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Re: Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2014, 03:36:17 PM »
No lawyer needs USNWR to tell them that Harvard, Yale and Stanford are elite institutions. They were conferring elite pedigrees long before USNWR came up with it's rankings scheme.

The true absurdity of these rankings is the attempt to rank the 190 or so law schools which are not elite. What on earth does it mean to say that New Mexico is in a three way tie for #72 while San Diego is #79? The implication is that New Mexico is somehow a quantifiably "better" school.

The problem is that many young law students make their decision based solely on the rankings. So a young kid from San Diego who wants to live by the beach after law school will decide to go to New Mexico, or Iowa, or Dallas for law school because they've been told that rankings are everything.

As Burning Sands said, the impact is actually ridiculous. It has distorted many young people's ideas about how the legal market works. If you talk to older lawyers they will often tell you that before all of this there was far less distinction between schools. Harvard and Yale et al were always elite, but nobody was freaking out about whether Wisconsin was ranked higher than Illinois.   

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Re: Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"
« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2014, 10:21:09 PM »
No lawyer needs USNWR to tell them that Harvard, Yale and Stanford are elite institutions. They were conferring elite pedigrees long before USNWR came up with it's rankings scheme.

The true absurdity of these rankings is the attempt to rank the 190 or so law schools which are not elite. What on earth does it mean to say that New Mexico is in a three way tie for #72 while San Diego is #79? The implication is that New Mexico is somehow a quantifiably "better" school.

The problem is that many young law students make their decision based solely on the rankings. So a young kid from San Diego who wants to live by the beach after law school will decide to go to New Mexico, or Iowa, or Dallas for law school because they've been told that rankings are everything.

As Burning Sands said, the impact is actually ridiculous. It has distorted many young people's ideas about how the legal market works. If you talk to older lawyers they will often tell you that before all of this there was far less distinction between schools. Harvard and Yale et al were always elite, but nobody was freaking out about whether Wisconsin was ranked higher than Illinois.   
supply and demand market economy
if people will pay for it, it doesn't matter if ten more that number dislike it
it will continue
those "Rankings" sell paper, it will continue into  perpetuity

Maintain FL 350

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Re: Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2014, 11:41:43 AM »
I agree, the rankings are popular and will continue to make money for USNWR. In fact, they're beyond popular. People get absolutely obsessed with them, making predictions about which school will be #20 this year and which will be in a three way tie for #10.

I don't even necessarily mind such rankings, I just think people have lost all sense of context.

Burning Sands, Esq.

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Re: Alito calls USNWR rankings an "abomination"
« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2014, 06:02:07 PM »
No lawyer needs USNWR to tell them that Harvard, Yale and Stanford are elite institutions. They were conferring elite pedigrees long before USNWR came up with it's rankings scheme.

The true absurdity of these rankings is the attempt to rank the 190 or so law schools which are not elite. What on earth does it mean to say that New Mexico is in a three way tie for #72 while San Diego is #79? The implication is that New Mexico is somehow a quantifiably "better" school.

The problem is that many young law students make their decision based solely on the rankings. So a young kid from San Diego who wants to live by the beach after law school will decide to go to New Mexico, or Iowa, or Dallas for law school because they've been told that rankings are everything.

As Burning Sands said, the impact is actually ridiculous. It has distorted many young people's ideas about how the legal market works. If you talk to older lawyers they will often tell you that before all of this there was far less distinction between schools. Harvard and Yale et al were always elite, but nobody was freaking out about whether Wisconsin was ranked higher than Illinois.   


Hear hear!!!
"A lawyer's either a social engineer or a parasite on society. A social engineer is a highly skilled...lawyer who understands the Constitution of the U.S. and knows how to explore its uses in the solving of problems of local communities and in bettering [our] conditions."
Charles H. Houston