Law Pre-Professional Guide

REQUIREMENTS:

Preparation for the practice of law generally requires a college degree (in most states) and the completion of three (full-time) or four (part-time/evening) years of law school, after which you earn a Juris Doctor degree (J.D.)

Academic preparation for law school takes place at the undergraduate level through a rigorous, comprehensive educational experience. Law schools are looking for well-rounded individuals with highly developed skills in the following areas: written and verbal communication, critical reading, analysis, and problem solving, logic, listening, general research, and task organization and management. Law schools do not require or prefer any particular major, and pre-law is not a major.

LAW SCHOOL ADMISSIONS FACTORS:

UNDERGRADUATE GRADE POINT AVERAGE (G.P.A.)

The more competitive law schools are looking for grade point averages in the range of 3.5 or higher. Since most law schools emphasize your grade point average (G.P.A.), you should choose a course of study that engages your genuine interests, in which your communication and reasoning skills are emphasized, and your academic performance is high. Admissions committees look at your cumulative G.P.A. from all colleges and universities you attend and consider a year-by-year G.P.A. trajectory. Substantial and continuing academic improvement will work to your advantage.

 

SCORE ON LAW SCHOOL ADMISSION TEST (LSAT)

Along with G.P.A., the LSAT score is the most crucial factor in determining admission. The LSAT assesses reading comprehension, logical and analytical reasoning, and writing skills. Therefore, your score on the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) and your academic record are the two most essential criteria law schools use to predict academic performance. In addition, the admissions committee will look at your extracurricular and community activities, work experience, background, letters of recommendation, and personal statement to further evaluate your potential. Law schools seek to admit students from various educational, cultural, economic, and social backgrounds.

Commonly recommended coursework

ENGL 1A College Composition

ENGL 5 Advanced Composition and Critical Thinking

COMM 3 Introduction to Argumentation

COMM 9 Critical Thinking and Argumentation

U.S. History 17.1 and 17.2 or POLS1

MATH 15 Elementary Statistics

Ethics (not offered at SRJC)

 

Resources:

https://www.americanbar.org/groups/legal_education/resources/pre_law/

Law School Admission Counsel: http://www.lsac.org

American Bar Association: http://www.abanet.org

CaliforniaLawInc.com Discover Law: http://www.discoverlaw.org/