What Majors Are Best for Law School?
- Sep 23, 2015
- Admissions, Law School Advice
Undergrads with dreams of eventually attending law school often wonder if there are certain undergraduate majors that will better prepare you for law school (or that will make your application look better). I’ll go ahead and end the suspense now: There’s definitely no mandatory major if you plan on attending law school. With that said, you can definitely do some thinking and maneuvering to put you in the best position when it comes time for applying to law school. Here’s some general tips and advice for when you’re deciding on a degree program:
How to Decide What Undergraduate Degree to Get
The most important thing is to do something that you know you’ll do well at. With law schools being a numbers-oriented business, that’s the most important piece of advice I can give. Now, that doesn’t necessarily equate to “find the easiest major,” in part because because law schools generally take into account your bachelor degree’s relative difficulty, and in part because that’s just a dumb way to choose what to study for four years.
Really, when it comes to getting a high GPA, choosing a field you’re passionate about is probably about as helpful as choosing an easy major. That’s especially true when you consider what kind of extracurriculars opportunities you’ll be opening up for yourself. It’s generally true that law school admissions is largely a numbers game, but they’ll be giving your resume and campus involvement a look too.
What are the Best Majors for Law School?
While law schools don’t require a certain degree, there are several majors that tend to get accepted at higher rates.
Political science is the most common major for law school applicants. Makes sense, because many of the critical thinking skills and concepts carry over. Philosophy is a common one, and research suggests that philosophy majors perform better than others on the LSAT, perhaps because of the deductive logic emphasis in most departments. (Though as anyone who has studied correlation vs. causation knows, that doesn’t mean that majoring in philosophy will make your LSAT score higher!)
Economics can also be a great way to go, in part because it’s often found to be a bit more useful to you out of undergrad if you decide not have a law career (philosophy majors, by contrast, typically find themselves eventually having to decide between becoming lawyers or metaphysics-musing macchiato makers).
History majors and those with English degrees — anything that’ll demand that you sharpen your writing and reading comprehension skills will give you a leg up both on the LSAT and your first year as a law student. On the other hand, law schools often respect a more unique major if you can show how that’s impacted your experience thus far or else your goals as you head towards law school.
What are the Worst Majors for Law School?
Now that you’ve had an overview of the best majors for law school, let’s dive into the worst. Believe it or not, law school applicants with criminal justice and pre-law degrees reported the worst LSAT scores, according to recent data from the Law School Admission Council (LSAC).
Criminal justice majors came in at 145.87, while pre-law students came in at 148.09. Students with majors in mathematics, policy studies, economics and international relations had the highest LSAT scores. This shouldn’t come as a big surprise as these majors require superior problem-solving skills, writing skills, and analytical skills.
If you are thinking about attending law school, let us help you prepare with our online or in classroom LSAT prep courses.
Questions, comments, other ideas for majors? Invective over that rude philosophy major dig? Comment below!
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