The latest ‘best law school rankings’ have been announced by the QS World University Rankings by Subject with – surprise, surprise – Harvard Law School and Oxbridge duo leading the charge as the world’s best law schools.
The rankings comprise an independent analysis of 342 law schools over 56 countries, showing that 88 law departments had improved their rankings in the survey with 118 remaining static and 103 declining in their rank.
Following Oxford and Cambridge are Yale and Stanford completing the top five in the list.
The country leading the list in the law school top 100 is the US with 17 schools followed by the United Kingdom with 13, Australia with eight.
One of the fastest-moving schools in terms of a lift in rankings was the China University of Political Science and Law, which reached joint 38th place after moving 63 positions (equal with Chile’s Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile).
Harvard University got top marks for achieving a near-perfect score, banking top marks in all but one of QS’s ranking criteria – citations per paper, with a score of 96.3. However, not to be outdone, Newcastle University in the UK comes first in the world by this measure with an indicator score of 100.
The top law school in Australia was University of Melbourne (12). In Asia, the top school was Singapore’s National University (at number 11). The University of Cape Town was the best in Africa.
“What we see in the Law rankings is a complete top-5 hegemony – Harvard, Oxford, Yale, Stanford and Cambridge – all of which provide excellent research in the legal field,” said QS research director Ben Sowter. “In fact, the world’s top publisher of law research by volume is the University of Oxford, closely followed by Cambridge – spotlighting the UK as a bastion of legal study. Perhaps less intuitive is the University of Melbourne in fourth.”
“However, the story goes beyond research prowess alone, the upper echelon of the legal field is further enshrined by an unwavering global reputation across the board, from academics and employers alike, within a subject area that places a high premium on renown,” Sowter said.
The QS rankings are compiled using four indicators based on a global survey of 130,000 academics and 75,000 employers and assessing research impact, productivity and other factors.