Pre-Law: Getting In—Their Part

Pre-Law Handbook
Getting into Law School: Their Part

The trend in applications to law school has been upward for the past five years, there are record numbers of applicants. Many schools can afford to be quite selective. And the easiest way to compare students from different schools, or even different majors at the same school, is with cold statistics. Others really do consider all the factors. Most fall somewhere in between.

Many law schools have developed a formula that will predict first year success. Factors in the formula vary but include such items as GPA, LSAT score, and the average LSAT scores of students at your school for the past two years. Schools employing such a formula will receive not only your LSDAS report but also your predicted index number. These numbers will not be released to you.

Admission Procedures

Admissions work is generally carried out by an admissions committee, composed of faculty members, clerical staff, and administration officers. Often, there are cut-off levels at which certain applicants are either accepted or rejected. Applicants between these cutoffs then go to the committee for consideration. That’s when factors like activities and recommendations might weigh more heavily.

The Wait

Many schools have rolling admissions, and if you are a particularly attractive candidate to that school, you may get an admit as early as September. Honest. So apply early. But it is more likely that you will not get a decision from all of your schools before March.

If you are on a waiting list, you may not get an admit decision until deep into the summer months. By then, you have likely decided to attend a school to which you were offered admission. Now, change schools, and forfeit a deposit? Or stick with your initial choice? Surely that will depend on how highly you valued attending the late-admit school. Good Luck.

If you are on a wait list, contact the school to try to find out just what your chances are for admission. Some schools have such long waiting lists that your chances may be negligible. Don’t be shy; in some situations, bugging admissions officers with calls and visits will help. Of course, if you become a pest, it might also hurt. Often they will ask if there is anything else you would like to add to your folder. If you want an —, take them up on their offer and try to add something favorable: an additional letter of recommendation, an update of your transcript or application.