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American University Washington College of Law Receives Top Specialty Rankings by U.S. News, Jumps Eight Spots in Overall Ranking

March 29, 2022

Dear WCL Community:

U.S. News and World Report released its 2023 law school rankings today, and WCL is trending upward.

Our overall ranking rose eight places to #73, a significant jump over last year and a return to the top-75 for the first time in seven years. Importantly, our rank improved in many key components of the overall rank, including employment rates, peer assessment and lawyer and judge assessment of our reputation, and student selectivity, among others. 

U.S. News also rates many of our programs among the best in the country, including three in the top-5, and five in the top-10 – Clinical Law (#3), Trial Advocacy (#3), Part-Time Program (#5), International Law (#7), and Intellectual Property (#8). We are also highly ranked in other areas, including Health Care Law (#16) and Criminal Law (#24). Four other programs are ranked in the top-50.

These latest rankings tell a positive story about our school, but they are not the only story.  To be sure, we take seriously the impact U.S. News and other rankings have on the perception of our outstanding law school among prospective and current students, peer institutions, employers, and alumni.  As I have explained, I am focused on utilizing all the institutional research and other tools at my disposal to ensure that WCL continues to employ a sound, ethical, and data-driven strategy toward the U.S. News rankings. 

However, while rankings may fluctuate with changes in methodologies and market conditions beyond our control, one thing will remain constant – WCL will be committed to excellence and leadership in legal education, with a student-centered focus on teaching, scholarship, diversity, service, and the preparation of the next generation of well-trained, ethical lawyer-leaders who Champion What Matters.   

 With gratitude,

 Roger A. Fairfax, Jr. 

Dean and Professor of Law


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