What is the deal with Stetson?
Time and time again, it's ranked at the top in all of the country in Trial Advocacy and Legal Writing, yet Stetson is only ranked 119 in the country. It'd be great to see Stetson break 100 and become more well known throughout the country. I don't understand why it's not ranked higher overall with being ranked so high in Trial Advocacy and Legal Writing.
Ya, specialty rankings are kind of a joke. Not the same serious methodology as the full us news rankings. Here's exactly how it's done:
U.S. News believes that this calculation is a more realistic presentation of the employment data that is currently available to U.S. News.
Bar passage rate (0.02): The ratio of the school's bar passage rate of the 2010 graduating class to that jurisdiction's overall state bar passage rate for first-time test takers in winter 2010 and summer 2010. The jurisdiction listed is the state where the largest number of 2010 graduates took the state bar exam. The state bar examination pass rates for first-time test takers in summer 2010 and winter 2010 were provided by the National Conference of Bar Examiners.
The American Bar Association's 2011 Annual Questionnaire required law schools to report their bar passage rate results for first-time test takers for the same calendar-year, winter and summer 2010.
Faculty resources (weighted by 0.15)
Expenditures per student: The average expenditures per student for the 2010 and 2011 fiscal years. The average instruction, library, and supporting services (0.0975) are measured, as are all other items, including financial aid (0.015).
Student/faculty ratio (0.03): The ratio of students to faculty members for 2011, using the American Bar Association definition.
Library resources (0.0075): The total number of volumes and titles in the school's law library at the end of the 2011 fiscal year.
Overall rank: Data were standardized about their means, and standardized scores were weighted, totaled, and rescaled so that the top school received 100; others received their percentage of the top score.
Extended law school rankings: In response to interest from both readers and institutions in knowing where more law schools sit, for the second year in a row, we have extended the list of numerically ranked institutions from the top 100 to the top three quarters of the schools. The remaining schools, or the bottom 25 percent of those that are ranked, are listed alphabetically as Rank Not Published (see full explanation below of Rank Not Published).
Schools not ranked and listed as Unranked: University of California—Irvine was not ranked because as of February 2012, it was only provisionally approved by the American Bar Association and thus is listed as Unranked. Three law schools in Puerto Rico—Catholic University of Puerto Rico, Inter American University School of Law, and the University of Puerto Rico—Rio Piedras—are listed as Unranked. To be ranked and listed on the overall ranking tables, a law school must be accredited and fully approved by the American Bar Association and must draw most of its students from the United States.
Specialty rankings: These specialty rankings are based solely on votes by legal educators, who nominated up to 15 schools in each field. Legal educators chosen were a selection of those listed in the Association of American Law Schools Directory of Law Teachers 2009-2010 as currently teaching in that field. In the case of clinical and legal writing, the nominations were made by directors or members of the clinical and legal writing programs at each law school.
Those programs that received the most top 15 nominations appear and are numerically ranked in descending order based on the number of nominations they received as long as the school/program received seven or more nominations in that specialty area. This means that schools ranked at the bottom of each law specialty ranking have received seven nominations.