Four Year Law School Admissions Check List
Shared by: zvn50778
Thinking about Law School? A Check List Material developed from Law School Admissions’ Officers & ABA/LSAC Official Guide to ABA Approved Law Schools 2005 Freshman and Sophomore Years Evaluate your strengths, interests and goals. Use this information to carefully analyze what field of study (major) is of interest to you. Attention to this early will allow you to find something that engages your desire to learn and perform well. If you find that your interests’ change seek the guidance of an academic adviser. Begin filling a folder now with information to develop your personal statement. As you progress through your undergraduate degree look for factors that would be a part of your personal statement. Goals for college, events of your life that were meaningful, people, places, travel, volunteer work, or other events that have had an influence on your development as a well-rounded human being. Choose a course of study, in your academic plan, that is balanced, diversified, and progressively more complex (e.g. 100-200 level as a freshmen and sophomore, then 300-400 later). Include classes that encourage logical and analytical reasoning, reading comprehension and good writing skills. Look for two or more faculty members, whose interests are similar to yours, with whom to develop a long-term supportive relationship. These are the faculty who may be willing to write letters of recommendation when these are needed for law or graduate school. Read broadly, including some law-related materials and talk to lawyers about the nature of the profession. Work hard to build a strong undergraduate record and grade point average. Try to develop yourself academically Take immediate corrective steps to remedy any weaknesses. Actively look for areas in which to become involved now. Deliberately search for purposeful involvement. This can be in community service work whose focus is the well being of others, or other activities that relate to your interests. These commitments can be related to a particular area of law (e.g., Guardian Ad Litem, Immigration areas, the Court system, internships, volunteer work, etc.) a campus organization within your department, the Pre-Law Students’ Association, or other related activities. Use available resources to research your interests Pre Law Website: http://www.ncsu.edu/project/prelaw at N.C. State for internships (http://www.ncsu.edu/career ), D.H. Hill Library, look for website from Pre Law area above . Obtain an LSAT book and start to informally familiarize yourself with questions types (during sophomore year). Junior Year Continue to focus on becoming as academically successful and well rounded. As law schools develop the in-coming class they will look for a variety of the best candidates from diverse areas of study, background, and experience. This evaluation takes into account many factors that always include your grade point average and your LSAT score. Attend law school forums, pre-law association meetings and/or Law School fairs and talk to law school representatives. Clarify any questions with the Pre-Law Adviser or directly with the law schools to whom you are applying. Continue filling your folder with information to be a part of your personal statement now. As you progress through your undergraduate career look for factors that would be a part of your personal statement. Goals for college, events of your life that were meaningful, people, places or events that have had an astonishing influence on your development as a well-rounded human being. Continue to choose a balanced, diversified, and progressively more complex course of study, including classes that encourage analytical and logical reasoning, reading comprehension and good writing skills. Use elective courses that emphasize thinking, reasoning and communication skills. Be cautious to choose those that are progressively more complex (e.g. 300 and 400 level). To determine which schools interest you and evaluate whose admission profiles you meet use the on-line www.lsac.org; “The Official Guide to ABA Approved Law Schools”, or visit the Boston College Matrix site, on Pre Law website, which gives grade point averages and LSAT scores for most ABA approved Law Schools. If you have taken the LSAT test and have your total grade point average then D:\Docstoc\Working\pdf\de976ab6-bbae-4aa4-a3f4-e87131272dce.rtf August 2005 revised over Material developed by M.A.Tetro from Law School Admissions’ Officers and “LSAT Official Guide to Law Schools” 2005. go to the Law Services Website and find this option. (You must have both scores to use the information provided by this site) http://www.ncsu.edu/project/prelaw Attend law school forums, pre-law association meetings and/or Law School fairs and talk to law school representatives. Discuss law school admission and letter/s of recommendation with the faculty member(s) that you know personally. Acquire , if you have not already done so, a copy of the LSAT/LSDAS Information Book, from your Pre-law adviser, or go directly to the Law School Admission Council homepage. Study the materials and register to take the LSAT in June, before your senior year, or early that fall. Some students have chosen to take the test in the winter of their junior year, or the February test. If this is an idea you may have, being prepared to take the test is critical to this decision. If you have not found a faculty member with whom to develop a personal/professional relationship look for one within your classes, work closely with your academic adviser or the coordinator of advising for your department. Many law schools require an academic or faculty recommendation. Prepare well for the LSAT. A suggested preparation time has been 200 or more hours. Being comfortable, understanding the test format, and feeling confident are critical to successful completion of this test. Take the LSAT during June offering, if at all possible. make preparations for at the end of your junior year. Alternative date, for meeting application deadlines, will be the October test date. Timing of the test, must be determined first by your confidence and readiness to take the instrument, in conjunction with the application timeline and deadlines for each school. Contact Law Services to set up your LSDAS file. All official transcripts must go form one office to the LSDAS services directly. Be sure to request this transcript in a timely manner. Personal statements may vary based on each application. As you develop this statement you can work with the Writing and Speaking specialist at NC State. Look for this support on through University Tutorial Services http://www.ncsu.edu/tutorial_center/writespeak/index.htm Timing. Be proactive in all your work. Plan for delays. Give yourself and others enough time to complete this work well. Senior Year Gather material for LSDAS. Law Services Data Assembly Service) the fall prior to your planned entrance date to law school. Allow adequate time for all materials to meet required deadlines. Important: Complete your evaluation of which schools match your interest and plans for law school. Maximize your chances to be accepted by applying to a range of schools. Average applicant applies to 4 schools. Create a folder for every school and pay careful attention to the requirements of each school individually. Verify application deadline dates. Complete and send all applications by mid-October or as early as school will accept. Talk to faculty and other references and provide them with specific references, a resume, requirements, forms, and any helpful information to enable them to write a strong recommendation. Contact your Financial Aid Office during the fall of your senior but not later than the spring of that year. Prepare and submit all loan or other applications, for financial support, according to the required deadlines. Individual law schools may also have funding available for grants or scholarship, each should be contacted separately. For schools requiring a “Dean’s Certification”, submit your request to the Department of Registration and Records. This department will complete the appropriate portions and contact other offices if needed. Timing. Be proactive in all your work. Plan for delays. Give yourself and others enough time to complete this work well. Coordinate each part of the process in order to not put yourself at risk of missing any deadlines. The Ability to Think - “Law is more art than a science. The reality is that lawyers seek in analyzing a case is not always well defined. Legal study, therefore requires an attentive mind and a tolerance for ambiguity” ABA LSAC Official Guide to ABA Approved Law Schools, Chap. 2, page 7. Rev. 17 August 2004. Mary A. Tetro, University Coordinator of Pre-Law Services, NC State University, 515.5830 firstname.lastname@example.org , when sending email please put “law” in the subject. D:\Docstoc\Working\pdf\de976ab6-bbae-4aa4-a3f4-e87131272dce.rtf August 2005 revised over Material developed by M.A.Tetro from Law School Admissions’ Officers and “LSAT Official Guide to Law Schools” 2005.