So You Want to Go to Law School...

 

If you’re an undergraduate student at Georgia Tech, and you’re interested in possibly going to law school, this page is for you. Maybe you’ve always wanted to be a lawyer, or maybe you’ve discovered your interest in law recently. Either way, check out the tips and timeline below for how to get from here to law school, and also be sure to sign up for our newsletter.

Please note that the timeline below assumes you will graduate from GT and go straight to law school. For questions about taking Gap years, see the FAQ, and for special circumstances of various kinds, or any other questions at any point in this process, don’t hesitate to seek out pre-law advising.


Your First and Second Years at Tech

  • RELAX. Enjoy your time as a college student!
  • Focus on your coursework; your undergraduate GPA is very important to your law school applications.
  • Get involved with extracurricular activities that are a passion for you and exciting to you. Don’t worry too much about whether they are law-related, but that you engage with ideas and people that motivate you!
  • Choose courses and programs of study that are interesting and challenging to you. You will do better in courses you enjoy! Law schools do not prefer any major over any other. (If you know you want to be a patent attorney, however, a science or engineering major is needed, so plan accordingly).
  • Prepping for the LSAT this far out from the test honestly isn’t going to do much good. Know that the LSAT is coming, but stay focused on doing well at Tech at this point.
  • Begin to talk with attorneys about their jobs so you can get a better idea of whether law school is the right choice for you.
  • Talk with current law students to see if you could envision yourself doing what they’re doing.
  • Schedule an initial pre-law advising appointment, and/or attend events hosted by the Law, Science, and Technology Program

Your Third Year at Tech

  • Continue to focus on coursework and your GPA.
  • Take on leadership roles in extracurricular activities – this may be running for office for a student organization, or it may be leading a project or initiative for an organization. Lawyers are by definition leaders, and law schools look for leadership aptitude in successful candidates.
  • Establish a free account with the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC). The LSAC both administers the LSAT and serves as the clearinghouse for many of your application materials when you apply to law school (under a service called the Credential Assembly Service (CAS)).
  • Start thinking about which of your professors, and possibly work/internship supervisors, you might ask to write your letters of recommendation for law school. Cultivate and nurture these relationships so that you could ask these recommenders to write a recommendation for you during the summer after your third year.
  • Research and consider law schools that are interesting and realistic for you.
  • Take a timed practice LSAT test under test conditions during the holiday break without any prep work at all. This will give you a baseline for your performance on the LSAT, and it will inform your focus for your LSAT prep.
  • Brainstorm topics for your personal statement – a two page document that will help law school admissions officers get to know you as a person.
  • Register for the LSAT and map out your study strategy. The LSAC offers a free, online self-study course through the Khan Academy. Beyond this free resource, there are many other options for LSAT prep. Regardless of the materials you choose, consider obtaining practice tests from the LSAC that are actual past LSATs, to supplement your LSAT prep with practice under timed, test conditions.
  • Schedule an appointment for pre-law advising to discuss your plan for the admissions process.

Summer Between Your Third and Fourth Years at Tech

  • Keep your coursework/workload fairly light this summer, so you can put in some intensive final prep leading up to the LSAT, and so you can devote time to preparing other materials for your law school applications.
  • Take the LSAT
  • Draft your personal statement
  • Submit your recommenders’ names and contact information to the LSAC (it helps to give professors a chance to write these letters over the summer when they have more time to devote to them)
  • Request transcripts from GT and every post-secondary institution you have attended be sent to the LSAC’s CAS. *NOTE – Georgia Tech does not participate in electronic transfer of transcripts to the LSAC. You will need to download a transcript request form from the LSAC while signed in to your account, sign it, and submit it as an attachment to your transcript request to the GT registrar’s office. This allows the GT registrar to mail your transcript to the LSAC.

Fall of Your Fourth Year at Tech

  • Finalize your list of law schools to which you will apply. The number can vary, but be realistic about your GPA and LSAT scores, and select a variety of schools, including a safety school or two, a reach school or two, and a handful of schools where your chances are pretty good, but it’s not necessarily a given you’ll be admitted.
  • Finalize your personal statement.
  • Verify all letters of recommendation have been submitted to the LSAC by your recommenders.
  • Submit your law school applications! Be sure to let the LSAC’s CAS know to which schools they need to send your reports. Also, do this as early in the admissions process as is possible for you. Law school admissions are on a rolling basis. Applications are accepted typically beginning in September, and law schools will begin admitting students immediately. Law schools receive large batches of applications around Thanksgiving, and again during the Winter holidays. Do your best to have your applications submitted prior to Thanksgiving. I personally advise students to shoot for late October in an ideal world.
  • File the FAFSA anytime beginning on October 1 so law schools can consider you for any need-based financial aid for which you are eligible. Do this as soon as possible after October 1.

Spring of Your Fourth Year at Tech

Choose your law school and pay your seat deposit to secure your place in the class! Seek out pre-law advising if you need help considering wait-lists, weighing financial aid offers, etc