Law Journal Meta-Ranking, 2019 Edition

Meta-Ranking of Flagship US Law Reviews

2019 Edition of the MetaRanking of Flagship US Law Reviews, by Bryce Newell
JournalMetaRankprRankusnRankwluRankgRankwlu(IF)Rank
Yale Law Journal 121112
Harvard Law Review 2132226
Stanford Law Review 332431
Columbia Law Review 444557
University of Pennsylvania Law Review597343
New York University Law Review666111312
Virginia Law Review 6987125
California Law Review 87915717
Georgetown Law Journal 91314668
Michigan Law Review 98107145
University of Chicago Law Review95421929
Texas Law Review 12151510719
UCLA Law Review 1316169104
Duke Law Journal 14111116169
Cornell Law Review15121316219
Minnesota Law Review 162020121414
Vanderbilt Law Review 171717181611
Iowa Law Review 182825141015
Northwestern University Law Review191412263022
Boston University Law Review 202624201936
Notre Dame Law Review 212422192620
George Washington Law Review222321312434
Southern California Law Review221918382430
Emory Law Journal242123352126
Washington University Law Review251819323223
Boston College Law Review 262930232124
Fordham Law Review 273439131839
Indiana Law Journal 283128272621
William & Mary Law Review 293335222918
UC Davis Law Review 302734342632
North Carolina Law Review 312238294325
Wisconsin Law Review322533363928
University of Illinois Law Review333541303133
Washington Law Review 333731492049
Washington & Lee Law Review353636373341
Florida Law Review 363946243416
Ohio State Law Journal373037394031
Wake Forest Law Review 384440403546
Hastings Law Journal 394052333543
Arizona Law Review 404243423543
Alabama Law Review414127455343
UC Irvine Law Review423226665157
Cardozo Law Review 435359254038
Connecticut Law Review 445256284713
Maryland Law Review 454748464647
Colorado Law Review 464244604369
American University Law Review 474966413540
Arizona State Law Journal484529675182
BYU Law Review495042485360
Georgia Law Review503832518537
George Mason Law Review 515545446535
Utah Law Review 525147476850
Houston Law Review536654524756
Case Western Reserve Law Review546363574071
Tulane Law Review 554651617483
Florida State University Law Review564850687255
University of Miami Law Review565467704762
Pepperdine Law Review586858545960
Lewis & Clark Law Review 598286424741
Seton Hall Law Review608364545954
San Diego Law Review615776725669
University of Richmond Law Review627557696565
Brooklyn Law Review636981566872
Temple Law Review635955837759
SMU Law Review 6564499868115
Denver University Law Review666071718585
University of Cincinnati Law Review678072617774
Michigan State Law Review679792584381
Nevada Law Journal678770745958
Missouri Law Review706775836896
Chicago-Kent Law Review717080856596
University of Kansas Law Review716174887796
Oregon Law Review735689639367
Loyola University Chicago Law Journal747478639362
Tennessee Law Review756261939378
Nebraska Law Review757973985978
Seattle University Law Review7789103507262
Penn State Law Review7892695310147
DePaul Law Review79100109585853
Oklahoma Law Review80786812259125
Indiana Law Review8176948285104
Rutgers University Law Review827383929385
Kentucky Law Journal8370629511678
Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review8465658013591
Santa Clara Law Review84771046310152
Buffalo Law Review8610198727751
Villanova Law Review8786851027796
Marquette Law Review8890101758574
Georgia State University Law Review89726096124115
University of Pittsburgh Law Review90587911510896
South Carolina Law Review919199869385
Louisiana Law Review92102887610666
Mitchell Hamline Law Review93143141901000123
Albany Law Review941261167856115
Catholic University Law Review9596100919074
Saint Louis University Law Journal9598959490105
West Virginia Law Review971109610774105
Arkansas Law Review97958313277161
Hofstra Law Review99991079785118
Syracuse Law Review100949312874141
Mississippi Law Journal101104108899385
Howard Law Journal1029311610210193
UMKC Law Review10310611510093123
Baylor Law Review10488531381000126
Idaho Law Review10511412513353132
Akron Law Review106145134767767
St. John’s Law Review10710387135108141
Vermont Law Review1081091327911673
Gonzaga Law Review109111113108100094
Texas Tech Law Review1101351128710885
New York Law School Law Review1111251318110894
Maine Law Review112105123121108130
Duquesne Law Review11214913811159122
University of Louisville Law Review114107971281000113
University of Hawai'i Law Review1158090170124166
Cleveland State Law Review11614012010510174
Drake Law Review11713111110412496
New Mexico Law Review11885761561000152
Pace Law Review119133136100106110
University of San Francisco Law Review1201191401091000105
Wyoming Law Review121115122141101137
Texas A&M Law Review122134133100010883
Quinnipiac Law Review12313212713693132
Mercer Law Review124120118116135150
University of Baltimore Law Review124122121123100091
Tulsa Law Review12612491151124170
Wayne Law Review127116102142135135
Creighton Law Review128128119111142126
Washburn Law Journal129136130106131105
Chapman Law Review130141129116120103
University of the Pacific Law Review131127137119124155
City University of New York (CUNY) Law Review1321181271361000105
Drexel Law Review1331171141451000138
Stetson Law Review1341121051551000182
Southwestern Law Review134137147123120118
University of Memphis Law Review13614414510913190
Northeastern University Law Journal13784821821000179
Loyola Law Review138113143127148126
Suffolk University Law Review139130150119135146
University of St. Thomas Law Journal1401391261381000118
South Dakota Law Review141146145118135110
University of Arkansas Little Rock Law Review1421081351521000161
Capital University Law Review14316916111110896
Montana Law Review143121124162142152
Willamette Law Review1451231391461000146
New England Law Review1461661611141000130
University of Toledo Law Review146142142125146146
Touro Law Review148167161134108158
FIU Law Review149153110160150170
John Marshall Law Review150150153126150141
Ohio Northern University Law Review151168150140124160
Campbell Law Review1521721481421000110
Northern Illinois University Law Review1531551541481000126
Charleston Law Review1541831611311000113
St. Mary's Law Journal155158159148142141
Regent University Law Review1561871611301000118
University of New Hampshire Law Review1571291061881000189
Northern Kentucky Law Review1581631611441000141
Widener Law Review1581471611521000146
Southern Illinois University Law Journal160152157150155161
Roger Williams University Law Review160154161164135176
North Dakota Law Review162137152173153184
University of Dayton Law Review1631481561571000150
South Texas Law Review164156157168146176
St. Thomas Law Review1651771611461000138
Mississippi College Law Review1661641611571000152
Cumberland Law Review1671511441751000179
California Western Law Review1681611611641000138
Florida Coastal Law Review1691861611521000135
Widener Commonwealth Law Review1701591551691000176
Nova Law Review1701571611671000174
Golden Gate University Law Review1721601611661000164
Western New England Law Review1731741611601000158
University of Detroit Mercy Law Review1741731611621000166
Belmont Law Review175182149100010001000
Barry Law Review1761891611571000132
Oklahoma City University Law Review1771651601701000174
John Marshall Law Journal17817816110001000179
Elon Law Review1791621611791000183
Southern University Law Review180181161100010001000
Thomas Jefferson Law Review1811801611731000155
Thurgood Marshall Law Review1821761611791000166
Western State University Law Review1831921611721000164
University of the District of Columbia Law Review1841751611811000172
Appalachian Journal of Law1851851611771000155
University of Massachusetts Law Review1861701611851000189
North Carolina Central Law Review1871711611861000187
Ave Maria Law Review1871911611761000166
Liberty University Law Review1891881611781000172
Florida A&M University Law Review1901791611861000188
Faulkner Law Review1911841611841000184
Thomas M. Cooley Law Review1921901611831000186

Why make the Meta Ranking? (see more information, and the first edition of the ranking here)

In short, as an interdisciplinary scholar who publishes work in both peer-reviewed social science journals and law reviews, it strikes me as odd that legal scholars would discount measures of journal impact completely when choosing where to submit and which offers to prioritize. To be sure, all of the plausible contenders for ranking law reviews have their flaws (in methodology and/or coverage). Regardless, though, it appears important that some measures of citation or impact are taken into account, as direct correlations between US News rankings of law schools and law journal importance seem a bit weak as the primary (or only) measure to evaluate.

So, to get to the point, I decided to create a meta-ranking of the possible contenders for gauging the relative importance of journals and offers: US News Overall Ranking (averaged over ten years from 2011-2020), US News Peer Reputation Ranking (also averaged over 2011-2020), W&L Combined Ranking (at default weighting; 2010-2017), and Google Scholar Metrics law journal rankings (2019 edition; averaging the h-index and h-median of each journal, as proposed here by Robert Anderson). I’ve ranked each journal within each ranking system, averaged these four ranks using a 25% weighting for each, and computed and ranked the final scores. I think this approach benefits from incorporating a couple different forms of impact evaluation (W&L + Google) while not disregarding the general sentiment that law school “prestige” (something involving one or both of US News’ combined rank or Peer Reputation rank, each averaged over the 10-year period from 2011-2020) is an important factor in law review placement decisions. (Note that I have also included a ranking by the Impact Factor reported in the W&L ranking, but I have not included it in the meta rank.)

Additional notes about method:

Google Scholar Metrics are currently based on the most recent Google index (updated in July 2019; if a school has not been listed in Google Scholar Metrics within the past 2 years (2018-2019), I have generally used its most recent W&L score twice rather than rely on old Google Metrics).

W&L: Some journals that began after 2010 are effected by W&L’s ranking formula described here. If a journal does not have full ranking data available in the W&L ranking index, I have used the prior year’s rank (when available; if not, I have used Google Metrics data twice).

Because the US News Ranking has changed how it reports 3rd and 4th Tier schools over the relevant period, I have done the following: for the 2010 and 2011 editions of the ranking, I gave all “Tier 3” schools a value of 115, and all “Tier 4” schools a 150; for 2012-2017, I assigned all unranked schools (those not ranked 1-149) to 150.

* As some schools were not included in the US News Rankings for all 10 years (e.g., UC Irvine was only in the 2016-2020 rankings), I have averaged the ranks over just the years they appear, rather than by 10.

** Rutgers and Mitchell-Hamline both recently consolidated two law journals into one and Penn State now also has two ranked law schools but only one flagship law review. For each of these schools, I have used the rank in each category (W&L/US News, etc.) that is the highest. Similarly (although not appearing in the top 100 reported here), Widener split and was ranked separately in 2017 by US News (each school taking a separate flagship journal). As such, I have used the separate 2017-2020 ranks from US News but shared the single Widener school ranking reported in US News in its 2011-2016 editions of the rankings.

*** In the 2019 US News rankings, Pepperdine received a peer score of 2.6, but was listed as unranked after originally submitting incorrect data about incoming JD students (see Paul Caron’s note about this for more about this). As such, I used the 2019 peer score and the 2018 overall rank for Pepperdine for that year.

**** The following journals do not appear in either of the W&L or Google Metrics rankings: Belmont Law Review, John Marshall Law Journal, Southern University Law Review.

Last note: I cannot locate the 2015 US News Peer-Reputation score (or rank) for Loyola-New Orleans (it is missing from Paul Caron’s annual posting at TaxProf, and I don’t have access otherwise). If someone has that information and could pass it along, I would appreciate it.