The Legal Beat
The Most Politically Moderate Law Schools (2022)
Posted on Monday September 19, 2022
The country continues to be incredibly divided politically, and whether people are strongly in favor of President Joe Biden’s policies or adamantly opposed to them and cheering on Brandon, people have been inspired to go to law school as a means to somehow change our country’s future. Luckily, there’s a law school out there for just about everyone, whether they’re super conservative or ultra liberal.
But what about those who don’t lean to the left or to the right in their political beliefs? As it turns out, there are law schools out there for them too.
A new ranking for law school politics come to us from preLaw magazine, and after reviewing two prior studies, it has grouped law schools into one of five categories: very conservative, conservative, moderate, liberal, and very liberal. Here’s the methodology that preLaw used:
The two studies — “The Political Ideologies of American Lawyers” and “The Legal Academy’s Ideological Uniformity” — looked at the political ideologies of alumni (in 2016) and professors (in 2018), then ranked schools on an ideological continuum. The survey, by The Princeton Review, asked students to rate their schools on a similar liberal-to-conservative continuum. We compiled the results of these studies and, including anecdotal evidence as well, categorized the 193 schools for which we felt we had enough data.
We’ve delved into the most liberal and most conservative law schools in the past, so today, we’re going to take a look at the law schools that find themselves at the center of political debates. Like the Goldilocks of law school politics, they’re not too liberal, they’re not too conservative — they’re juuuuust right. Although more than 30% of the U.S. population identifies as moderate, just 11.9% of law schools fall into that political category.
Without further ado, according to preLaw, these are the law schools that moderates may want to consider (in alphabetical order):
Indiana U. Indianapolis
Loyola New Orleans
Ohio Northern University
Oklahoma City University
South Texas College of Law
St. Mary’s University
Texas A&M University
University of Dayton
University of Kentucky
University of Memphis
University of Oklahoma
University of South Carolina
University of South Dakota
University of St. Thomas – Minnesota
University of Wyoming
Some of these law schools are a bit suspect (e.g., “Coups 4 Dummies” author John Eastman used to serve as dean at Chapman) but when out searching for a political figment of prospective law students’ imaginations, it’ll have to do.
Click here to see the lists of the law schools that rank as most liberal or conservative. Best of luck in your law school journeys, moderates.
Most Liberal and Most Conservative Law Schools [preLaw Magazine]
Staci Zaretsky is a senior editor at Above the Law, where she’s worked since 2011. She’d love to hear from you, so please feel free to email her with any tips, questions, comments, or critiques. You can follow her on Twitter or connect with her on LinkedIn.