How do law schools decide who they will admit?
Simply put, there are five main factors:
- Law School Admission Test (LSAT). The higher your score, the better. Currently, the
LSAT consists of three kinds of questions:
- reading comprehension, which assesses one’s ability to read perceptively and with understanding;
- analytical reasoning, which measures a candidates ability to comprehend the structure of a set of relationships and to draw conclusions about that structure;
- logical reasoning, which is the type that stumps the many of those who sit for the LSAT. It assesses one’s ability to complete, understand, analyze, and criticize a variety of arguments/scenarios.
- As much as half of the admission decision is based upon the applicant’s LSAT score.
Exactly how much weight is given that test depends on the law school to which someone
is applying. For that reason, taking key courses that prepare the mind for such an
exam are crucial some of those courses include:
- Logic I
- Foreign languages
- Literary analysis courses
- Upper-level history and political science courses that have heavy reading and writing components
- Grade-point average: Obviously, the higher one’s grades, the better off one’s chances for law school admission will be. Law schools tend to weigh GPAs as being 30-50 of the admission decision. The major completed (and, in some instances, university attended) will be a factor as well in the law school admission’s process as a means of assessing the academic rigor of the applicant’s undergraduate academic experience. Whether or not the applicant was in an honors program may also be a deciding factor.
- Law school admissions essay/personal statement: These essays are an opportunity to make an applicant stand out and to better highlight skills and experiences that the rest of the application materials may not afford sufficient attention.
- Recommendation Letters: Normally, two or three are requested to be uploaded to LSAC. Establishing solid, professional relationships with professors, employers or both is highly recommended so that the prospective law school student can ask for letters that provided law school admissions officers the best, detailed picture of what the given applicant has to offer.
- Work experience and activities: Active leadership roles through work and volunteer experience play a role in the admission process. Best is concentrating energies one or two activities and excelling and leading than to have list of several organizations on one’s resume with which the student was only tacitly involved. Demonstrated responsibility can be a real benefit, and this is especially the case for volunteer or paid community or legal work performed.