University of Chicago Law School
|University of Chicago Law School|
|Parent school||University of Chicago|
|School type||Private non-profit|
|Location||Chicago, IL, US|
|Faculty||56 (full time)|
70 (part time)
|Bar pass rate||91%|
|Undergrad. GPA 75th%||3.87|
|Median Undergrad. GPA||3.78|
|Undergrad. GPA 25th%||3.59|
|Outlines||284 (See List)|
The University of Chicago Law School, having recently celebrated its centennial in the 2002-2003 school year, has established itself as a high profile part of the University of Chicago. It is ranked 6th overall in the US News & World Report graduate school rankings, with its student body ranking 5th in the nation . Additionally, Chicago's faculty has the highest per capita article citation rate of any American law school . The Law School is also notable for having the third highest gross and second highest per capita placement of alumni as U.S. Supreme Court clerkships, with roughly 15-25% of each graduating class going on to clerkships at the federal or state level. Private career prospects are equally bright for graduates, placing highly into elite firms . The school awards the Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree, having been the first American law school to do so, as well as the L.L.M., J.S.D and D.Comp.L solely to foreign trained lawyers.
The Law School is well-known for its advancement of the application of social science to the law. A significant movement in jurisprudence began at the law school when Aaron Director initiated the first modern systemic investigation between the intersection of law and economics, an area in which the law school's faculty figure prominently.
The University of Chicago Law Review is one of the school's flagship student-run journals. The Chicago Journal of International Law and the University of Chicago Legal Forum are the Law School's other student-run journals. Students interested in membership on any of these journals participate in a writing competition at the end of the first year. The Law Review selects 19 students for membership based on first year GPA ("grade on"), and 10 students for the quality of their writing competition submission ("write on"). The other two student-run journals select members on the basis of writing competition submissions alone (without regard to GPA). All three student-run journals also allow second and third year students to "write on" by submitting a piece of legal scholarship worthy of publication.
The Supreme Court Review, published by the law school and overseen by faculty since the 1960s, remains the most cited legal journal internationally with respect to commentary on the nation's highest court. The faculty also oversees publication of the Journal of Law and Economics.
The Law School is home to one of the three founding chapters of the conservative Federalist Society, and to the 'Antient and Honourable Edmund Burke Society', a conservative debating organization. It is also home to the Edwin F. Mandel Legal Aid Clinic and a large chapter of the progressive American Constitution Society for Law and Policy.
The Law School employs a unique grading system with a range from 155 to 186. These numerical grades convert to the more familiar alphabetical scale as follows: 155-159 = F, 160-167 = D, 168-173 = C, 174-179 = B, 180-186 = A. For classes of more than 50 students, the median grade is 177, and the number of As should approximately equal the number of Cs.
A student graduates "with honors" if a final average of 179 is attained, "with high honors" if a final average of 180.5 is attained, and "with highest honors" if a final average of 182 is attained. The latter achievement is rare; typically only one student every few years will attain the requisite 182 average. Additionally, the Law School awards two class-rank based honors at graduation. The top 10% are honored as "Order of the Coif," and the top 5% are honored as "Kirkland Scholars" (a designation created in 2006 by a $7 million donation from the law firm of Kirkland & Ellis).
The grading scale was previously 55-86, but the school prefixed their grades with a "1" in 2003 to avoid confusion with traditional grading scales.
- Douglas Baird
- Emily Buss
- Adam Cox
- Ronald Coase
- David P. Currie
- Judge Frank H. Easterbrook
- Richard Epstein
- Daniel Fischel
- Judge Douglas Ginsburg
- Bernard Harcourt
- Richard H. Helmholz
- Dennis J. Hutchinson
- Dallin H. Oaks (former faculty member)
- William Landes
- Lawrence Lessig (former faculty member)
- Saul Levmore
- Catharine MacKinnon (former faculty member)
- Judge Michael W. McConnell (former faculty member and alumnus)
- Bernard D. Meltzer (former faculty member)
- Judge Abner Mikva
- Martha Nussbaum
- U.S. Senator Barack Obama (on leave of absence)
- Judge Richard A. Posner
- Eric Posner
- Gerald N. Rosenberg
- Justice Antonin Scalia (former faculty member)
- Geoffrey Stone
- David Strauss
- Cass Sunstein
- Judge Diane Pamela Wood