Career Development Office - Pre-Law Advising
The Application Process
LSAC: The Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) is the umbrella organization
that will be featured in your law school application process. You will
create a personal account, and use it to register for two fee-based programs:
the LSAT, and the Credential Assembly Service (CAS), a service that houses
your transcripts, letters of recommendation, and allows electronic application
processing for all ABA-approved law schools. www.lsac.org
It is in your best interest to apply to law school early, even though you will see rolling admissions with deadlines in the Spring. As a general rule of thumb, apply in the Fall: October 1 is not too early to push send on your applications. Early applicants also have an advantage for being considered for scholarship or grant monies. When you start the process, give yourself a personal deadline to have submitted your applications.
FlexApp™ Information from LSAC:
FlexApp is a new standardized electronic application format that is part of LSAC’s
Credential Assembly Service (CAS). It will flow more information from
one electronic application to the next, saving the applicant from filling
in the same questions on each application. Schools will display their
names and logos on each form so that the applicant is clear about the
information required by that school. A completion bar is offered so that
an applicant will know which application sections have been completed
and which remain to be completed. FlexApp is straightforward once applicants
begin the application process. If you are having any difficulty, please
contact LSAC’s candidate service representatives by phone (215.968.1001)
or e-mail (LSACinfo@LSAC.org
Timeline adapted from the NAPLA Pre-Law Handbook
Freshman and Sophomore Years
- Select a major in a field that both interests you and allows you to excel academically.
- Begin to form relationships with professors, lecturers, and TAs so that they will know your work well enough to serve as recommenders in the future.
- Expand your education by seeking summer jobs or internships in fields of interest.
- Meet with a pre-law advisor to assess your academic, extracurricular, and work experiences and to discuss the application process.
- Begin preparing for the LSAT; if you are ready, register for the June administration.
- Secure a summer job or internship, if possible, in a law-related field.
- Research law schools and compile a list of tentative schools.
Senior Year (or Year Before Entering Law School)
- Make an application timeline, including when you plan to take the LSAT. Start with when you would like to submit applications (example, by Oct. 15) and work backwards.
- Register for LSAC's Credential Assembly Service (CAS). Have transcripts from all undergraduate institutions you have attended sent to the CAS after verifying their accuracy.
- Make sure your CAS report is correct.
- Ask potential recommendation writers if they would be willing to write letters on your behalf. Provide them with the CAS recommendation forms or the school's forms along with sufficient information to write detailed letters.
- Make arrangements to have dean's certifications sent to schools that require them.
- Attend law school fairs and programs offered by your college or university on the application process.
- Take the September/October LSAT if you did not take the test in June or earlier.
- Begin drafting and revising your personal statement.
- Meet with a pre-law advisor, who will help you assess the strength of your application in relation to schools you are considering. Request a critique of your personal statement draft.
- Complete applications by early to mid-November.
- Take the LSAT on December 1 if you did not take it previously or are retaking the test.
- Check with schools to make sure your files are complete.
- Complete the FAFSA and other need analysis forms such as Need Access as well as any institutional financial aid applications as soon after January 1 as possible.
- Meet with a pre-law advisor in the spring to assess your options as schools respond to you.
- Take appropriate action on acceptances, wait-list status, and financial aid packages.
- Before leaving campus, have a final transcript sent to any schools still considering your application.