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National publication ranks USD School of Law 'Best Value' for fourth year in a row

VERMILLION, S.D. -- The University of South Dakota School of Law has been ranked as the fifth “Best Value” law school in the nation for the fourth consecutive year by preLaw magazine, a National Jurist publication.

In addition to bar passage, the magazine’s rankings take into account in-state tuition, debt and the percent of graduates employed nine months after getting their degree. The top 20 list is featured in the August issue of preLaw magazine and is dominated by public law schools, including the top five schools on the list.

“Being ranked a ‘best value’ demonstrates the commitment our institution has to providing a quality, reputable legal education at an affordable cost. Receiving this recognition four years in a row, even during this time of rising educational costs, further demonstrates our faculty and administration’s dedication to keep legal education accessible while preparing our students for a successful career after law school,” said Tom Geu, dean of the USD School of Law.

Criteria used to identify the “Best Value” law schools, according to the magazine, were based on a two-year average for both first time bar pass rate and percent of students employed. A complete list of “Best Value” law schools and additional information about the rankings can be found at


USD’s Knudson School of Law prepares students for leadership in the administration of justice in South Dakota, including in rural areas where the demand is great, and for private practice, public service, business and other law-related endeavors anywhere. Its joint degree program allows students to also earn one of nine master’s degrees within the traditional three-year law curriculum, which includes course tracks in business, commercial, constitutional, criminal, employment, environmental, Indian, real estate and tax law as well as civil litigation and estate planning.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 78 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.

This material is available in an alternate format upon request. Please contact University Relations at 605-677-5759. If you are a person with a disability and need a special accommodation to fully participate in any university activity or event, please contact Disability Services at 605-677-6389 as soon as possible, but no later than 48 hours before the event, so that appropriate arrangements may be made.


Hanna DeLange
USD News