Baylor Law Students Again Ranked as Nation's 'Most Competitive'

Oct. 2, 2006

by Alan Hunt, associate director of media relations, (254) 710-6271

For the third consecutive year, law students at Baylor University have been ranked the "most competitive" in the nation, according to The Princeton Review, the New York-based education services company that publishes the law school guide, "Best 170 Law Schools."

Baylor Law School, which was similarly ranked in the 2005 and 2006 editions of the publication, is again ranked number 1 in the "most competitive student" category of the 2007 edition of the guidebook, which goes on sale Oct. 3. The Princeton Review said this category is based on "law student assessment of the number of hours they spend studying outside of class each day, the number of hours they think their fellow law students spend studying outside of class each day, the degree of competitiveness among law students at their school, and the average number of hours they sleep each night."

The student category is one of 11 ranking lists of top 10 law schools in categories from academics to career prospects featured in the book. The Princeton Review said it compiled the lists based on its surveys of 17,000 students attending the 170 law schools and on school-reported data during the 2005-06, 2004-05 or 2003-04 academic years. A "Students Say" profile, containing comments by law students about their schools, also is included in the book.

One Baylor law student is quoted as saying the school has "a strong academic reputation" and produces world-class litigators with "practical skills" galore. The student warned, however, that Baylor lives up to its "hard-core" reputation as "the Marine Corps of law schools" thanks to "very strict" attendance policies and a "workload designed to push your limits." One student pointed out that "while the third year at most other law schools is cake," Baylor's unique, intense, and rigorous Practice Court Program makes the third year grueling.

Another student noted that Baylor's "dedicated, enthusiastic," and mostly approachable professors are "unapologetically demanding [lawyers] with plenty of real-world experience [who] rely solely on the Socratic method." Said another, "This is definitely not the school to go to if all you want is philosophy and obscure legal theories. [But] if you want to know how to practice law, Baylor Law is your place." Observed another student, "Baylor lawyers know enough substance and enough procedure to successfully try a case from beginning to end."

Law Dean Brad Toben said, "Our students are competitive in the best sense of the word. They are challenged by one another to reach for the high bar of expertise and service set by the faculty. They also know that every client will demand of them their best. Appreciating that reality, our students mutually strive to deliver their best in the classrooms and courtrooms of the law center."

Baylor Law School has been featured in a number of prestigious top law school rankings. In U.S.News & World Report's "2007 Best Graduate School" rankings released earlier this year, Baylor Law School's trial advocacy program was placed sixth best in the United States. And in a previous ranking, The Princeton Review described Baylor Law School as "the Marine Corps" of law schools and termed Baylor's Practice Court Program as "arguably the best training ground in the nation for practical lawyering."

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