Does It Pay to Go to Law Schools Based on Rankings?

Vigdis Wangchao Boasson, Nancy Jean White

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


It is likely prospective law students will check the rankings of law schools before they decide which schools to apply to in pursuit of their legal studies. Prospective law firms may also check the law school rankings before they make their hiring decisions. Thus, it is important to understand and identify the key factors that might influence the ranking of a law school. Specifically, we attempt to investigate the relationships between the law school rankings and a set of potential key factors such as law school graduate employment, student faculty ratio, tuition, grants or scholarships for students, enrollment, J.D. or LL.B. degrees awarded, GPA, LSAT scores and salary of graduates from the law school in the United States. We conduct a benefit/cost analysis and construct a proxy for return on investment for each law school in our study sample. The literature on identifying the factors that might affect law school rankings and return on investment for law school graduates seems to be relatively scanty. This paper attempts to fill this literature gap and the results of this study could potentially provide guidelines for prospective law students and recruiting law firms to make more informed decisions, and for law school administrators to prioritize on the factors that matter most to law students.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInterdisciplinary Journal of Economics and Business Law
Issue number1
StatePublished - Oct 2013


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