By: Robert Allan
Some of our younger readers might be wondering: how do you get into law school?
While it seems that I graduated from law school not that long ago, a few things have changed in almost three decades. I spoke with our two articling students for more up to date information with respect to their experiences applying to law school.
Most law schools ask you to write a short essay explaining who you are, why you are a good candidate and, most importantly, why you want to go to law school. The best approach is with honesty, thoughtfulness and with no grammatical errors or spelling mistakes! This essay is a great opportunity for those of you with experience outside of academic pursuits to showcase what you have learned and have to offer.
Law School Admission Test (LSAT)
The LSAT is a multiple choice test that takes place over the course of a day. There are five parts to the test, with three different types of questions. Reading comprehension, analytical reasoning and logical reasoning questions are asked under time pressure. Law schools will look at your score to help determine if you should be admitted to their program. The articling students at our firm highly recommend that you take as many practice exams as you can. That way you can get used to pacing yourself under time pressure and develop strategies for tackling tough questions.
Law schools generally require that you obtain an undergraduate degree and have achieved academic success. Working hard during your undergraduate degree ensures that you have lots of options, whether or not you decide to apply to law school. Be sure to get to know your professors as well, because letters of recommendation can come in handy in many law school applications. There is no prerequisite degree to admission to law school. The best advice is to pursue undergraduate degree in a field that interests you, as you are more likely to achieve academic success, and should your plans for a career in law change, your efforts as an undergraduate will not have been wasted.
It is difficult to assess how each law school will value these three different aspects of your application. Each law school has their own criteria. Try your best to meet their criteria, and hopefully the rest will take care of itself.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This publication is the sixteenth installment of our firm’s Legal Matters series, which answers a reader’s question every week. If you have a general legal question that you would like to have addressed please send it via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.