2017 Guide to Finding the Top Texas Law Schools (Best Law Schools in Texas)
When you are considering attending one of the many law schools in Texas, you may wonder how or where to start your search.
Choosing the ideal education for a wonderful career is an incredibly important choice, so it is normal to be filled with many questions, such as:
- Are there any good law schools in Texas?
- What are the best Texas law schools?
- Are there any great law schools in Houston, Texas? What about law schools in Dallas, Texas?
- What are the top law schools in Texas based on nationally recognized rankings?
This article is a guide to help you find these law schools in Texas. We will go over the Texas law school rankings as well as show you all the best resources so that you’ll be able to educate yourself on not only the best Texas law schools but also the best law school for you specifically.
Where Are the Law Schools in Texas Located?
Before we go into finding the top law schools in Texas, it is important to see what options are even available in the state.
Texas is the second largest state in the United States. With well over 260,000 square miles of land, it is easy to see why there is room for so many law schools in Texas and why they are so spread out.
Here is a list of nine accredited law schools in Texas from USLegal. HG.com also offers a list of Texas law schools with a short description of what each school offers. These schools are spread throughout the country. When it comes to law schools in Dallas, Texas, you are not going to find as many options as you do with law schools in Houston, Texas. However, nearby Fort Worth and Waco have great options too.
What Are the Law Schools in Texas?
To start your research on these schools, here are the links to each school’s website. Of course, the official sites will likely not provide unbiased, objective information, but you can at least be introduced to the ideas and missions of each of these Texas law schools:
- Baylor Law School
- Dedman School of Law, SMU
- Houston College of Law (formerly South Texas College of Law)
- St. Mary’s School of Law
- Texas A&M University School of Law
- Texas Tech University School of Law
- Thurgood Marshall School of Law, Texas Southern University
- University of Houston Law Center
- University of Texas at Austin School of Law
Finding the Best Law Schools in Texas
There is a lot of conflicting information out there about choosing the best law schools in Texas. Many times people will try to tell you what they feel is the best decision. While getting perspectives is helpful, the best way to go about finding the top law schools in Texas is to consider a wide variety of resources.
These resources will help educate and inform you so that you can say with confidence that you have applied to one of the best law schools in Texas.
Here is a list of the best online resources for researching good law schools in Texas and learning about the Texas law school rankings.
SmartClass is hands down one of the most helpful and user-friendly resources out there for learning about potential colleges and universities. When it comes to each of the law schools in Texas, SmartClass delivers wonderful and easy-to-understand information.
Through SmartClass, you will find a list of the Texas law schools in the order of what it considers to be the best law schools in Texas. It comes to these conclusions using a number of ways, including using the following:
- Smart Rank: A number SmartClass comes up with by comparing traditional Texas law school ratings with other stats and data.
- Acceptance Rate: How many students that apply are accepted? Lower percentages are considered much better.
- Median LSAT: Average of incoming students’ LSAT scores.
- Median UGPA: Average undergraduate grade point average of incoming students.
SmartClass also uses a simple color-coding system of green (the best options), yellow (the middle options), and red (the worst options) for each percentage or number it shows you. This helps you quickly determine where all the top Texas law schools land.
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Comparing Through SmartClass
You can also use SmartClass’s compare function which allows you to choose a few law schools in Texas to see side-by-side results and get an even more in-depth look at what makes each school one of the top law schools in Texas or not.
Image Source: Best Law Schools in Texas
As you will see, this is some of the most comprehensive information on all the law schools in Texas you will find in one location. When you have chosen the Texas law schools that you want to compare, you will be given detailed information for each school, including:
- All rankings
- Historical US rankings
- Admissions stats
- Historical acceptance rates
- Percent yield
- Historical LSAT
- Historical UGPA
- In-state tuition
- Out-of-state tuition
- Percent of students receiving grants
- Grant types
- Student body number
- Full-time faculty
- Percent of women
- Bar pass rates
- Employment rates
- Most common industry
- Average monthly temperature
While many other websites and organizations will offer you lists and rankings for the top schools in the United States (some of which are law schools in Texas), this is a resource that will inform you whether or not a school is typically considered as one of the top Texas law schools.
2. U.S. News
U.S. News is considered a prime resource for learning university rankings, including Texas law school rankings. It currently has the list of “Best Law Schools” for 2017 up on its website. You can see that one of the top Texas law schools made the top 25 on this list, and good law schools in Texas continue to pop up as the list goes on.
U.S. News offers the ranking, cost of tuition and fees, and number of full-time students enrolled for each law school, including the best Texas law schools. More information can be seen with a paid membership of $29.95 to its website. This includes:
- Percentage of those employed after graduating
- Bar passage rate
- Assessment score of lawyers/judges
- Peer assessment score
- Acceptance rate
These facts can be highly valuable pieces of information when searching for the best law schools in Texas. It may be a good idea to consider paying for this service to learn more about the top law schools in Texas.
3. Above The Law
Above The Law is another nationally recognized system that ranks law schools and can be helpful in finding top law schools in Texas. It looks at four main factors when deciding upon which school will be ranked in which position:
- Large firm placement
- Federal clerkship placement
- Tuition cost
Multiple top Texas law schools made it on Above The Law’s list for 2016. This is yet one more of the Texas law school ratings to help you learn more about your options.
4. Business Insider
Business Insider has been offering a wonderfully respected list of the 50 best law schools for numerous years. In 2016, three particular top Texas law schools showed up on its list. Business Insider came to these conclusions by looking at which schools lead the most students to top jobs.
Beyond simply offering this ranked list, Business Insider gives you valuable information for each school, including the law schools in Texas, such as:
- Percent of graduates with highly coveted positions
- Bar passage rate
- Median LSAT score
- A short description of why the law school is so great
You can also check out Business Insider’s similar list from 2014 for more information. Top Texas law schools made the top 50 list then as well.
Understanding which universities offer the best law schools specifically is the most important factor for finding good law schools in Texas. However, it is also valuable to understand more about all these universities in general.
Image Source: Finding Good Law Schools in Texas
Bestcolleges.com offers you this information on Texas universities, including those with Texas law schools. Perhaps once you have narrowed down your list of law schools in Texas, it will be a good idea to visit bestcolleges.com to learn more about these schools in general.
You can find out information like:
- Comparative cost of attendance
- Overall graduation rate
- In-state and out-of-state tuition
- Application fees
- Average room and board cost
- Number of years accredited
- Student-teacher ratio
- Student demographic breakdowns
- Enrollment numbers
- Acceptance, retention, and graduation rates
Though these may not be directly related to legal education, they greatly impact your decision in finding the top law schools in Texas.
Other Resources on Top Law Schools in Texas
While you are doing your research to find the best law schools in Texas, take a few moments to read through these other recent articles which discuss Texas law schools:
- The Dallas Morning News: Information on the best Texas law schools rising in national law school rankings
- Texas Tribune: More on Texas law school rankings
Additional Information on Texas Areas
Since attending one of the law schools in Texas will be such a huge part of the next few years of your life, it is important to not only find the one of the best law schools in Texas but to also make sure it is in the area you want.
Factors such as cost of living, walkability, job availability or weather conditions could play a role in your decision regarding Texas law schools. Perhaps you find you would prefer law schools in Dallas, Texas. Or maybe the law schools in Houston, Texas fit your needs best.
Here are links to information for each major area with a school.
What About Online Law Schools in Texas?
Online law schools are a relatively new option for the legal community. And when it comes to online law schools in Texas, you will not find many options for one important reason: the only state in the United States that allows you to receive your Juris Doctor degree online and still take the bar exam is California.
While you could potentially take online law courses in the state of Texas from an online school, like Concord Law School, you will have to relocate to California if you wish to practice law at all.
For those who are looking for online law schools in Texas for reasons other than practicing law, know that almost every single online program is based out of California, with no options based out of Texas law schools. You can still take these courses from your area in Texas, however.
Are Texas Law Schools Right for You?
Now that we have given you quality online resources and tools for discovering the best law schools in Texas, it is up to you to decide which school fits in best with your hopes and goals.
The resources mentioned in this article will help start you off on the journey to find the best school for you and your legal education goals. Remember to take into account all statistics, rankings, background information, and missions of each of the Texas law schools before starting your application process.
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