So you’re considering law school huh? Luckily for you, applying to law school is really straightforward. Here’s what you’ll need to apply:
- Undergraduate GPA
- LSAT score
- Personal statement
While the basic law school requirements for admissions are similar at all accredited schools, not all of them are created equal.
Undergraduate GPA and LSAT Score Matter the Most
The two most important requirements for every prospective law student are undergraduate GPA and LSAT score. If you don’t believe me, go here (it’s the official LSAC website). I quote, “If your qualifications more than fulfill a school’s admission standards, the admission committee will usually accept you during the first round of decisions.”
If you know you want to get into a top law school, and you’re still an underclassman, you have time to get your grades up. However, if you’re already almost done, and your grades are below a 3.0, you might want to consider a different path.
All the Other Requirements Help when your GPA and LSAT Score are Almost where they need to be.
If your GPA and LSAT score are a little lower than where they need to be, all the other things you submitted with your application will really come into play.
Your personal statement will, more than anything else, give law schools a reason to disqualify you. If there are a bunch of typos and grammatical errors, you can kiss your admission goodbye. You also want to avoid sounding cliche about why you want to attend law school.
In short, your personal statement, if you put some time into it, will keep you from getting disqualified, and could push you above some other potential applicants with similar test scores and GPAs.
Letters of Recommendation
Your letters of recommendation will really mean something if they come from someone connected to the law school you want to apply to.
Otherwise, the reality is that everyone who’s applying to the same law school you are applying to has letters from professors stating the same strengths you have in yours. The best way to overcome this, other than your GPA and test scores, is to have a very well known professor or attorney write one for you.
The Diversity Requirement
Every law school has some kind of diversity standard to uphold. That’s great news for all of you with diverse backgrounds. If you come from a minority background, or you fit into the LGBTQ column, that’s going to be considered a strength by most admissions committees. Don’t be afraid to emphasize what makes you different from every other applicant in the “maybe” pile.
It all comes down to your LSAT score and your GPA. Work on those two things and you’ll have better results than working on any other area.
Meanwhile, refining the other components of your application can give you the edge you need to turn a “maybe” into an acceptance to the school of your dreams.