The U.S. News Short List, separate from our overall rankings, is a regular series that magnifies individual data points in hopes of providing students and parents a way to find which undergraduate or graduate programs excel or have room to grow in specific areas. Be sure to explore The Short List: College and The Short List: Grad School to find data that matters to you in your college or grad school search.
The number of students applying to law school continues to decline – according to a March report from the Law School Admission Council – but among those accepted, many students tend to favor enrolling at certain institutions.
[See an infographic of the top law schools.]
At the Yale University School of Law, 80.6 percent of accepted first-year J.D. students enrolled in the fall of 2013. The New England school had the highest yield, or the percentage of accepted students who enrolled, according to data reported by 193 ranked institutions to U.S. News in an annual survey. Yale also topped the list based on the fall 2012 entering class, when its yield was 82.9 percent.
The rates at the 10 schools with the highest yield rates ranged from 42 percent to 80.6 percent for fall 2013 first-year, full-time and part-time J.D. entering students. At these schools, an average of about 383 students were accepted and, on average, 52.3 percent of accepted students enrolled.
The law school at North Carolina Central University, which made last year's list with a yield of 48.2 percent, fell to No. 11 this time. Its yield dropped slightly to 41.2 percent.
[Photos: Best Law Schools 2015.]
University of California—Davis had 11.2 percent of accepted students enroll, the lowest percentage of accepted students according to the survey data. Of the 10 schools where most accepted students did not enroll, the average yield was just 12.7 percent, and the average number of accepted students was about 1,298.
Below is a list of the 10 law schools with the highest yield rates. Unranked law schools, which do not submit enough data for U.S. News to calculate a rank, were not considered for this report.
|School (name) (state)||Students accepted||Students enrolled||Yield||U.S. News rank|
|Yale University (CT)||247||199||80.6%||1|
|Harvard University (MA)||858||568||66.2%||2|
|Brigham Young University (Clark) (UT)||217||139||64.1%||36|
|University of New Mexico||258||120||46.5%||72|
|Southern University Law Center (LA)||487||224||46%||RNP*|
|Stanford University (CA)||392||179||45.7%||3|
|University of Missouri—Kansas City||383||172||44.9%||104|
|University of North Dakota||189||83||43.9%||129|
|Indiana University—Indianapolis (McKinney)||533||227||42.6%||87|
|University of Nevada—Las Vegas||269||113||42%||83|
*RNP denotes an institution that is ranked in the bottom one-fourth of its ranking category. U.S. News calculates a rank for the school but has decided not to publish it.
Don’t see your school in the top 10? Access the U.S. News Law School Compass to find enrollment data, complete rankings and much more. School officials can access historical data and rankings, including of peer institutions, via U.S. News Academic Insights.
U.S. News surveyed 200 ABA accredited law schools for our 2013 survey of law programs. Schools self-reported a myriad data regarding their academic programs and the makeup of their student body, among other areas, making U.S. News’s data the most accurate and detailed collection of college facts and figures of its kind. While U.S. News uses much of this survey data to rank schools for our annual Best Law Schools rankings, the data can also be useful when examined on a smaller scale. U.S. News will now produce lists of data, separate from the overall rankings, meant to provide students and parents a means to find which schools excel, or have room to grow, in specific areas that are important to them. While the data comes from the schools themselves, these lists are not related to, and have no influence over, U.S. News’s rankings of Best Colleges or Best Graduate Schools. The enrollment data above are correct as of March 13, 2014.