Florida Record

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Florida State University's law school rises in Best Graduate Schools rankings

By Chandra Lye | Apr 13, 2017

TALLAHASSEE — Florida State University's (FSU) law program has been recognized in U.S. News & World Report’s Best Graduate Schools.

The College of Law is ranked the 48th best law school overall in the United States and 24th best public law school. The college moved up two spots from 50 overall last year.

“We are particularly excited to rise in the ranking as we are celebrating the 50th anniversary of the law school,” Erin O’Hara O’Connor, dean of FSU's College of Law, told the Florida Record.

O’Connor said that there were three main components that she credited for the school’s bump in ranking.

“The peer assessment scores are what others out there in the law school community think about Florida State,” she said. “Where do they see us as falling in kind of the pecking order of law schools. The peer assessment score is a score that is incredibly sticky. It is very, very hard to move in peer assessment.”

She said she attributed the boost to the college's faculty, who are “very productive” and “very visible.”

“The hard part of my job is keeping our faculty from being pulled away to other schools," she said.

O’Connor said another contributing factor to the schools bump in ranking had to do with the credentials of the incoming class.

“Our median LSAT score rose up, so that means we have even stronger students in the building this year at least in terms of LSAT predictors," she said.

An additional factor in helping the law school improve its rankings were the number of alumni employed.

“We did incredibly well this year, which we can attribute to our hard working placement office and our go-getter students to kind of take the initiative to take care of their careers," O’Connor said.

The college's environmental law program also jumped from 18th place to 14th place.

In addition, FSU's library and information studies program was recognized as No. 1 in the nation for the fifth year.

Other colleges in the university that earned a higher rank than previous years include the College of Nursing master and doctor of nursing practices programs, which jumped over 20 spots each.

The university's graduate program in history also increased 23 spots, and its English and economics graduate programs also increased in ranking.

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