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What Law School Prerequisites Should You Consider?
To gain admission into law school, even the best law schools, all you need is a bachelor’s degree and an entrance exam score. Schools are even becoming more flexible in this area: while the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) has long been the standard law-school entrance exam, more schools are also beginning to accept the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).
While pre-med tracks often include a formal academic curriculum plan, there is no equivalent for students planning to apply to law school. Experts and admissions professionals are in near-universal agreement that there is no ideal pre-law major or curriculum. Because GPA is weighed so heavily in law school admissions, it’s most important that you choose a major you’ll enjoy so that you can most easily maximize your GPA.
Many students believe that majoring in something like political science or criminal justice is the best way to prepare for law school. However, what you’ll be learning in law school will be unlike anything you learn in your undergraduate courses. While political science might be tangentially related to some aspects of law school–such as constitutional law–the actual material you will be studying will be dramatically different. Similarly, criminal justice courses might acquaint you with some basic terminology that you’ll learn in a criminal law class, but taking such a major might even backfire by giving you a false sense of confidence. No matter your major, you’ll be starting from scratch in law school. If anything, see if you might be able to sit in on a law school class (or perhaps even take an introductory law school class for credit) as an undergraduate. This will give you the best opportunity to truly understand what goes on in law school.
There have been a number of reports about which college majors score the highest on the LSAT. The majors that tend to perform best are those that require deep critical and analytical thinking: philosophy, physics, engineering, and mathematics majors tend to perform above average on the LSAT. This makes sense, as one of the primary goals of the LSAT is to test the examinee’s ability to reason and think logically.
Our advice? Enjoy your undergraduate studies as much as possible. Focus on achieving the best grades you can by studying hard and taking classes that you actually like. When the time comes to prepare for the LSAT (or GRE), take a prep course and give yourself ample time to study. Instead of worrying about taking a pre-law curriculum, watch My Cousin Vinny. Not only will you laugh, you’ll be better prepared for law school than if you spent all your time worrying about taking the ideal classes.
Regardless of how you prepare for law school, it will be one of the most intellectually rigorous challenges of your life. No matter your background, you’ll need to work harder than you ever have in order to perform well. Quimbee has been helping law students for over a decade by providing a wide range of law school study aids geared towards helping them succeed in law school. Be sure to get a leg up by checking out Quimbee as early in your law school career as possible.