In the News: Dean Rooksby Co-writes Rankings Column
Jacob H. Rooksby, the Smithmoore P. Myers Dean of the Gonzaga School of Law, took to the pages of the "Seattle Times" this week alongside his peers at the University of Idaho and Willamette University law schools to join the national conversation about the value of rankings such as those published annually by U.S. News & World Report.
Rooksby, along with UI's law school dean Johanna Kalb and Willamette's law school dean Brian Gallini, reflects on how many of the nation's law schools are opting out of taking part of the rankings process run by U.S. News & World Report. The authors note that the rankings "have little, if anything, to do with improving educational outcomes," and "measure the wrong things and do so with imprecision."
The rankings, the authors add, aim to solve a problem that simply doesn't exist.
"The American Bar Association already requires law schools to transparently share information about bar passage, student demographics, entering class medians and scholarship awards — to name a few examples," write Rooksby, Kalb and Gallini. "The rankings largely overlook these critical topics while ignoring a school’s culture and the relationship between faculty and students. Rather than focus on these critical topics — the ones students care about — this flawed ranking system too often leads prospective students to make under or uninformed decisions simply because one school is 'ranked' higher or lower than another."