Top marks for Osgoode

Osgoode Hall Law School of York University has been ranked the number one law school in Canada in Canadian Lawyer magazine’s 2006 Law School Survey. It is the first time that Osgoode has taken top honours in the annual survey, moving up from fourth place last year.

Left: Osgoode Hall Law School

Osgoode Dean Patrick Monahan said the survey results confirm that major improvements made to the law school’s program over the last five years have had a beneficial impact on students. Those improvements include recruiting outstanding new faculty, renovating Osgoode’s facilities and making good academic use of the latest forms of information technology.

“I am particularly delighted that 100 per cent of our recent alumni who responded to this survey indicated that they would recommend Osgoode to a prospective law student,” Monahan said. “That is a magnificent vote of confidence in the dedication and responsiveness of our faculty and staff.”

Right: Patrick Monahan

Almost 500 recent Canadian law school graduates, who have been called to the bar within the last five years, responded to the magazine’s survey, which ranked their alma maters in seven categories: quality of curriculum; quality of law faculty; percentage of caring and competent professors; quality of fellow students admitted; standards of testing; adequacy of facilities; and relevance of their education to their actual law practice. The law school graduates were asked to grade their schools on a five-point scale, ranging from “excellent” to “very poor” that were then translated into points and then letter grades. The average number of points according to each grade helped Canadian Lawyer magazine arrive at an overall mark for each school.

Respondents were also asked a broad range of questions about the role of law schools, the law school experience and the general direction of legal education today. They were asked to comment on tuition increases, student aid, and the need for more practical, hands-on training at 15 of the 19 law schools across the country.

Monahan said that since news of Osgoode’s top ranking was circulated to the law school’s alumni earlier this week he has been inundated with e-mail messages from alumni “expressing pride in these results and remarking that this recognition is long overdue.”

The survey ranked the law school at the University of Toronto in second place, and University of Victoria Law School in third place. Detailed survey results will be available in the January 2006 issue of Canadian Lawyer magazine.

Osgoode Hall Law School is the largest common-law law school in Canada with a history of more than 100 years of leadership and innovation in legal education and legal scholarship. A total of about 900 students are enrolled in Osgoode’s three-year Bachelor of Laws (LLB) Program. Osgoode’s Graduate Program in Law is also the largest in the country and one of the most highly regarded in North America.