Preparation for law school begins as soon as the freshman year. Students considering law school should meet with the pre-law mentor in order to learn about pathway, how it fits with many majors, elective course offerings, and extracurricular activities.
Upon declaring a major, faculty advisers will mentor students to discover the courses within and outside their major that will build and reinforce the skills that are crucial to success in applying for and also thriving at law school. In the sophomore year, students will meet with their faculty advisers and the pre-law faculty mentor to discuss a study schedule for the LSAT. In the junior year, students will be encouraged to consider potential law schools tailored to their interests and schedule their LSAT exam. In the senior year, students will prepare materials for law school applications with the assistance of their faculty advisor, the pre-law mentor, and other qualified faculty members.
Many majors can provide pre-law students with a well-rounded liberal arts education that emphasizes essential law school skills such as critical thinking, research, textual analysis, and written and oral communication.
Pre-law students may choose one of the following majors for their academic studies and are strongly encouraged to take the specified courses within their major.
In addition to a major, pre-law students can expand and supplement their skill set through elective courses. Electives are courses taken from disciplines outside of a student’s major and minor. The following courses should be considered by pre-law students eager to build an individualized course of study.
Additional information, including descriptions of specific courses and their corresponding credit hours, is available in the Academic Catalog.
As important as success in the classroom is to pursuing a legal career, pre-law students should seek opportunities outside the classroom to grow their leadership, public-speaking, and presentation skills. Law schools look for applicants who are multifaceted and dynamic individuals and extracurricular activities are a way for pre-law students to demonstrate their individuality.
Pre-law students should participate in the Pre-Law Society and other campus organizations such as:
Having small classes at GWU also made it a necessity to be comfortable participating in class discussions, which served me well in law school classes where you may be randomly called on."
It was important to me to be able to effectively research, analyze, write, and communicate on a variety of topics in a variety of situations. My studies accomplished this, in addition to challenging me on a daily basis to think about things in new ways.”
The analytical reading and writing proficiency I developed [here] as an English major was crucial to helping me get accepted into a top-tier law school, perform well in my classes, and be an effective advocate for my clients."