New York Law Journal reported on Fordham Law School’s withdrawal from participation in U.S. News & World Report rankings.
Fordham University School of Law is now the 24th school to withdraw from participating in the U.S. News & World Report education rankings, despite the news agency’s efforts to revamp the rankings.
On Jan. 2 and Friday, U.S. News sent emails to law deans explaining proposed changes to its methodology. Still, Fordham Law, which was ranked at No. 37—tied with four other schools—in the rankings last year, made its announcement on Friday.
“Each year, I am proud of the work of our faculty and administrators in teaching and supporting our students and in awe of the accomplishments of our alumni and the support they provide to our law school,” Matthew Diller, dean and Paul Fuller Professor of Law, wrote in a letter to the Fordham Law community. “Yet each year I know that whether our achievements will be reflected in our U.S. News ranking is a roll of the dice.”
While U.S. News has recently announced adjustments to its algorithm, its methodology remains “deeply flawed,” Diller wrote.
“More fundamentally, the project of creating a unitary ranking of the nation’s 200 law schools that functions like sports standings sows more misunderstanding than clarity for prospective law students,” he wrote. “Rather than treating the U.S. News rankings as the scorecard for law schools, we need to take it as one curious data point about law schools among many—a data point that reflects U.S. News’ problematic values and judgments which are baked into its algorithm.”
Further, Diller wrote that the rankings do not capture Fordham Law’s “strength and warmth of our community” nor the “excellence of our faculty, our commitment to service” and “the ways a Fordham Law degree provides value over the arc of our graduates’ careers.”
Providing information to U.S. News that is not otherwise publicly available “contributes to the fallacy that U.S. News’ ranking is valuable because it is grounded on more information than is available to prospective students directly,” he added, and in the letter provides numerous links from which information about the school can be obtained.