It is never too early to start thinking about applying to law school. The Office of Pre-Law Advisement provides individualized guidance to students and alumni from the time they begin to consider a career in law until they matriculate to law school. Students are encouraged to meet with the Pre-Law advisor at least once each semester to map out courses and learn of internship and volunteer opportunities. Students and alumni are always welcome to meet with the advisor to work on the components of their internship and law school applications.
Why go to law school?
A law degree (juris doctor or J.D.) is a professional graduate degree that enables its recipient to practice law, upon passing the state bar exam and meeting the character and fitness requirement for admission to practice in a given state.
It is crucial to address the question of “Why should I go to law school?” before you apply or even start preparing for the Law School Admission Test (LSAT.) Take time before applying to explore the legal field through shadowing, internships, summer jobs and talking to as many lawyers as possible, including those who became discontent and changed careers. Only you can decide if law school is right calling you, and the best way to decide this is through practical, hands-on experience and networking with current legal professionals.
What should I major in?
There is no right or wrong undergraduate program that best prepares a student for academic success in law school. Law schools are looking for well-rounded, curious and highly motivated students. The American Bar Association suggest students develop their analytical thinking, reasoning and writing school prior to law school. You should select a major that matches your strengths, values and interests. Common major choices include liberal arts subjects such as Political Science, History and English.
According to the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC), the highest percentages of applicants major in Political Science (17.5%), Psychology (5.2%), Criminal Justice (4.96%) and English (4.59%). "Other" majors make up 6.29% of all applicants. Download 2018 Applicants By Major for a complete list.
If you are considering patent law, you should consult the list of approved STEM majors on the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) web site.
Exploring law-related careers
Law School graduates go on to become:
- State and Federal Judges
- District Attorneys
- United States Attorney
- In House Counsel
- Real Estate Practitioners and Investors
- Tax Counsel
- Intellectual Property Attorneys
- Angel Funders
YU Pre-Law Advising Website: https://www.yu.edu/academic-advising/pre-law
The Law School Admissions Council: http://www.lsac.org/
Boston College Law School Locator: http://www.bc.edu/offices/careers/gradschool/law/lawlocator.html
NALP Pre-Law Portal: http://www.nalp.org/prelaw_portal
Law School Transparency: http://www.lawschooltransparency.com/
American Bar Association: http://www.americanbar.org/aba.html
National Jurist (Pre-Law): http://www.nationaljurist.com/prelaw-home
FinAid sponsored by the National Association of Student Financial Administrators: http://www.finaid.org/
LexisNexis: http://www.lexisnexis.com/hottopics/lnacademic/ (accessible from YU computers)
Find Law: http://www.findlaw.com/
Your Pre-Law Advising Team
Law School Application Timeline
Selecting A School
Letters of Recommendation/Evaluations
Suggested Reading List
The Application Process--FAQs
Updated: January 2020