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STATEMENT TO UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA COMMUNICATIONS RE: U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT RANKINGS

Abstract

Thursday, February 19, 1998

WRITER: Kathy R. Pharr, (706) 542-5172

CONTACT: Assoc. Dean Paul M. Kurtz, (706) 542-7140

STATEMENT TO UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA COMMUNICATIONS

RE: U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT RANKINGS

(Sent for inclusion in the overall University press release)

ATHENS, Ga. -- The University of Georgia School of Law ranks in the top 20 percent of the nation's accredited law schools and is one of the top three public law schools in the Southeast, according to the 1998 rankings published by U.S. News & World Report. UGA ranked 34th overall in the survey of 174 of the nation's accredited law schools.

U.S. News bases its law school rankings on four criteria: reputation among lawyers, judges and faculty; student selectivity (median LSAT and GPA and proportion of applicants accepted); employment success and bar passage; and faculty resources (total expenditures per student for instruction, library and supporting student services; student-teacher ratio; financial aid; and law library volume count).

The law school earned high marks in the categories dealing with objective reality such as placement (94%) bar passage (97%) and student selectivity (22nd ranking) -- all of which are central to the concerns of students and potential students. In many cases, these scores were better than those of several schools which ranked higher in the overall survey.

"We reiterate our long-held position that any attempt to rank order all the nation's law schools is haphazard at best and runs the risk of misleading both the public and the potential law student," said Associate Dean Paul M. Kurtz. "Such a ranking is shaped and often skewed by the reviewer's selection of and weighting of the criteria. Our relatively low score in reputation underscores the fact that perception often lags reality."

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