60 law schools earn top honors for practical training

The National Jurist has unveiled its first honor roll of law schools that deliver practical training. The magazine will honor 60 schools in the March issue of The National Jurist and the Spring issue of preLaw magazine.

“The majority of law schools have vastly improved their practical training opportunities in recent years,” said Jack Crittenden, Editor In Chief of The National Jurist. “This is the first effort to try to quantify which schools are delivering on their promises to make legal education more experiential.”

The magazine will rank the top 21 schools and list the others alphabetically by grade — either an A+, A, A- or B+.

The magazine based the ranking on four factors — three objective and one subjective. The three objective factors include the number of clinic positions per enrollment, the number of field placements or externships per enrollment, and the number of simulation courses per enrollment. The magazine pulled data from each school's 509 form. 

The magazine then contacted the 90 law schools that ranked the highest in that assessment and gathered detailed information on other practical training offerings. It then assigned a score based on the data.

Final grades were assigned on a modified curve.

“We rank the top 21 because that is the number of law schools that earned an A or A+,” Crittenden said. “It is great to see so many schools making improvements. But there are still some big differences between the honor roll schools and schools that earned a C or lower.”

The honor roll in alphabetical order:

Baylor University School of Law
Boston University School of Law
Brigham Young University
Brooklyn Law School
Capital University
Case Western University
Catholic University
Chapman University
Cooley Law School
Duke University
Emory University
Florida Coastal School of Law
Golden Gate University
Gonzaga University
Hamline University
John Marshall Law School
Lewis & Clark Law School
Liberty University
Loyola University Chicago
Michigan State University
New York Law School
Northeastern University
Northwestern University
Pacific McGeorge School of Law
Pepperdine University
Rutgers — Camden
Saint Louis University
Santa Clara University
Seton Hall University
Southern Illinois University
Southwestern Law School
St. John's University
SUNY Buffalo Law School
Temple University
University of Arizona
University of Cincinnati
University of Colorado
University of Connecticut
University of Denver
University of Detroit
University of Georgia
University of Hawaii
University of Illinois
University of Kansas
University of Maryland
University of Massachusetts
University of Missouri — Kansas City
University of New Hampshire
University of Oregon
University of St. Thomas -  Minneapolis
University of the District of Columbia
University of Utah
University of Washington
University of Wisconsin
Washburn University
Washington and Lee University
Washington University
Whittier Law School
William Mitchell College of Law
Yale Law School