Progress at TU College of Law Praised

U.S. News and World Report has recognized The University of Tulsa College of Law for its recent academic and reputational advancements, according to the magazine’s 2011 edition of “America’s Best Graduate Schools.”  The College, which jumped 24 spots in the rankings to 123rd in this year’s survey, showed increases in nearly all categories ranked by the magazine when comparing data from last year’s edition.

These advancements align with the college’s strategic goals of improving the academic quality of incoming classes, creating an unparalleled student experience that opens post-graduation opportunities, and raising its national reputation through the accomplishments of its faculty, students and alumni.

This 24-place rise in the rankings exceeds jumps by any of the other 188 schools listed in the survey, based on information made publically available by U.S. News and World Report.

TU’s most notable increases came in reputational assessments by both peer law schools, as well as judges and lawyers. The reputational scores are the most heavily weighted component of the magazine’s survey, accounting for 40 percent of the final rankings. Historically, these have been the most difficult categories in which to capture gains.

The magazine noted that the TU College of Law has seen an overall increase in its graduate employment placement rates.  The college’s 2008 graduates reported a 92.3 percent placement rate nine months out of law school, a jump from 89.6 percent reported for 2007 graduates. Further, TU College of Law will report an increase in next year’s reporting to the magazine with its 2009 class securing a 95.7 percent placement rate at nine months after graduation.

The magazine also noted improvements in TU law students passing the Oklahoma bar exam, moving from an 86.9 percent passage rate last year to 92.6 percent this year.

The magazine report showed LSAT scores for incoming TU students at the 25th and 75th percentile were unchanged from the previous year at 152 and 157 respectively. TU’s median LSAT scores, which are also used in determining the law school’s ranking, increased to 155, up from 154 last year. This continues an upward trend for TU’s median LSAT scores, which have increased eight points since 2000.

Additionally, the magazine reported to the dean that the school was among the top 100 for library support and financial expenditures per student for academic and instructional support. TU was among the top 50 for its low student-faculty ratio.  
Janet K. Levit, Dean and Dean John Rogers Endowed Chair, said progress seen in the law school’s profile is the result of long-term, strategic plans to enhance legal education at TU.

“This latest report affirms our progress towards establishing TU as one of the nation’s premier centers for legal education,” Levit said. “These improvements in our statistical indicators are the result of hard work and determination by the law school faculty, staff, students, and TU’s administration. Through our team work, we are creating an environment that will attract and retain the nation’s top law faculty and students to create a vibrant College of Law community rooted in passion for law and justice.”