BEST MAJORS FOR LAW SCHOOL

The 10 Best Majors for Law School

Introduction

Starting a career in law requires preparation well before enrolling in law school. The first milestone is obtaining a bachelor’s degree. But, with so many alternatives, picking the correct major might be difficult, especially if you want to go to law school.

In this guide, we’ll discuss some of the best majors to consider if you plan to become a lawyer. We’ll also examine what it means for your law school admission chances if you pick a major outside these recommendations. This information aims to help you make a choice that’s not only good for law school but also for your future career in law.

A person behind a stack of books.

Overview of the Law School Admission Process

Starting the path to law school requires a good grasp of the admission process, which includes important steps and criteria. First, candidates need a bachelor’s degree in any subject, but choosing one of the top majors for law school can lay a strong groundwork for legal education. The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is vital as it assesses analytical and logical reasoning abilities. 

Furthermore, law schools consider other requirements like applicants’ undergraduate GPA, law school letters of recommendation, and personal statements when making their evaluations. Exploring law school scholarships also offers financial support to deserving candidates. Each step in this process is integral to building a strong application, setting the stage for a successful entry into law education.

What Majors are Best for the LSAT?

The Law School Admission Test plays a pivotal role in the law school admissions process, with high scores often being a key factor for entry into top law schools. This standardized test is designed to assess critical thinking, analytical abilities, and other skills vital for success in legal studies. Research by the Law School Admission Council reveals that students from certain academic backgrounds, notably in economics, philosophy, or history, tend to perform better on the LSAT. This trend suggests that these majors for law school develop the exact skills needed not only for excelling in the LSAT but also for thriving in a legal career.

When exploring the best majors for law school, it’s important to understand the American Bar Association (ABA) perspective. The ABA doesn’t endorse any specific undergraduate major for students aspiring to become lawyers. Their advice is straightforward: choose a major that captivates and intellectually challenges you.

Selecting the right major for law school involves finding a discipline that enhances your research, critical reading, and writing abilities. A major that offers a comprehensive education encompassing a variety of subjects is often seen as advantageous. This approach prepares you for the law school curriculum and encourages you to deepen your knowledge in areas that genuinely interest you.

Law schools take into account your chosen major, but they also place significant emphasis on your undergraduate GPA. A high GPA is a testament to your dedication and ability to thrive in a challenging academic environment like a Juris Doctor (JD) program. It’s advisable to pick a major where you will likely excel, as this can favorably impact your law school application.

10 Best Majors for Law School

When considering the path to law school, there’s a lot of debate about the best majors for law school. While no major guarantees success, some fields of study provide a stronger foundation for future legal studies. This list ranks the top ten majors for law students based on their law school admission rates and average LSAT scores.

Major Percentage of Students Admitted Average LSAT Score
1. History 79.1% 158.95
2. Economics 78.2% 161.71
3. English 76.3% 157.30
4. Philosophy 75.5% 159.47
5. Political Science 74.0% 156.03
6. Finance 73.2% 157.22
7. Arts & Humanities 72.8% 156.64
8. Psychology 71.8% 155.07
9. Communications 70.6% 154.17
10. Sociology 67.1% 153.91

1. History

History is a standout choice for aspiring lawyers. Its emphasis on precedent and understanding the evolution of legal systems is invaluable. As a history major, you’ll dive into the intricacies of past rulings, governments, and laws. This major helps in understanding why laws succeed or fail and nurtures cultural awareness, which is crucial for becoming a fair and informed lawyer. For those moved by historical injustices, history can be a powerful motivator and guide in your legal career.

2. Economics

Economics combines quantitative analysis and an in-depth understanding of monetary systems. It is an ideal major for law students, especially those interested in tax law and federal regulations. This major hones your ability to navigate complex financial landscapes, an essential skill for lawyers dealing with economic policies and fiscal matters.

3. English

English is a popular major among pre-law students because it focuses on extensive reading and writing. Mastery in synthesizing complex materials and precise language usage is a cornerstone for success in law. The major’s emphasis on critical thinking and analytical skills prepares students well for the rigors of law school and legal practice. English majors are also adept at handling multiple complex texts, which is beneficial in managing law school coursework.

4. Philosophy

Philosophy has long been considered a prime major for law school students. It challenges students with deep logical and ethical reasoning, directly translating to the skills needed in law. Philosophy students engage in debates and discussions, refining their public speaking, deductive reasoning, and critical thinking skills. The focus on ethics and legal theories in philosophy aligns closely with law school requirements, preparing students to navigate the moral complexities they will face as lawyers.

5. Political Science

Political Science is a prominent choice for law school aspirants, and it’s no surprise why. Despite not having the highest admission percentages or LSAT scores, it draws the most applicants. In 2022 alone, over 13,000 Political Science majors applied to law schools. This major provides a deep dive into politics, governance, and law-making mechanics, all of which are fundamental to legal studies. It introduces students to key legal concepts and terminology, laying a solid groundwork for law school. Additionally, the emphasis on critical analysis and writing in Political Science mirrors the skills needed to excel in law school.

6. Finance

While similar to Economics, finance offers a distinct perspective focusing on financial systems, banking, and investment management. It’s especially relevant for those interested in tax, corporate, or securities law. The quantitative aspects of this major prepare students for the analytical demands of these legal specialties.

7. Arts & Humanities

For those drawn to art and literature, Arts & Humanities majors provide a perfect blend of passion and preparation for law. These majors are typically writing-intensive, honing the reading and analytical skills crucial for legal studies.

8. Psychology

Psychology, another popular social science major, combines history, writing, and quantitative analysis elements. It’s an excellent choice for understanding human behavior—a key aspect of legal practice. Psychology majors learn to anticipate and interpret human actions, skills that are vital for lawyers, especially in trial settings. This major’s research and writing intensity also align well with the demands of law school.

9. Communications

Communication is vital for law, equipping students with excellent verbal and written skills, critical thinking, and an understanding of how people express ideas. These competencies are essential for effective argumentation, advocacy, and negotiation in legal settings. Students in Communications learn persuasive speaking and writing, skills that are invaluable in law school, especially during mock trials.

10. Sociology

Sociology is ideal for those intrigued by social dynamics and group behaviors. It requires comfort with data analysis and extensive writing, both transferable skills for law school. The major’s focus on quantitative and qualitative reasoning makes it a well-rounded choice for prospective law students.

These best majors for law school prepare students academically for law school and provide diverse perspectives that are invaluable in legal education and practice. Whether considering traditional law schools or alternatives like law schools that don’t require the LSAT or even law school online, these majors offer a solid foundation for a legal career.

Lawyers discussing paperwork and law books

Essential Skills Valued by Law School Admission Committees

Choosing a strong major for law school throughout your undergraduate years is critical. But, regardless of your degree, there are essential qualities you should develop. These abilities will help you succeed in law school and strengthen your application. Here are the key skills that law school admission committees value highly:

  • Analytical Thinking: The capacity to critically assess and interpret information.
  • Critical Thinking: The ability to engage in complex problem-solving with a logical approach.
  • Written Communication: Proficiency in expressing ideas and arguments clearly in writing.
  • Oral Communication: Effectiveness in verbal expression of thoughts and arguments.
  • Reading Comprehension: The skill to understand and interpret written material accurately.
  • Deductive Reasoning: The ability to draw logical conclusions from facts or premises.
  • Organization: Competency in arranging and managing tasks and information systematically.
  • Research Ability: The skill to efficiently gather and analyze information.
  • Interpretation of Various Materials: The capability to understand and explain different types of documents and data.
  • Creativity: The capacity for innovative thinking and problem-solving.

Focusing on courses that enhance these skills can significantly improve your preparedness for law school. Use Law School Predictor to help you analyze your prospects of admission to law school. This tool assesses your admission chances based on your GPA and LSAT score, offering useful insights into your academic status.

Tips for Excelling in Your Chosen Major and Preparing for Law School

In law school, thriving in your undergraduate degree is just as important as selecting one of the best majors for law school. Success in your chosen subject of study provides a good basis for future legal studies. Here are some helpful hints to help you flourish in your degree and efficiently prepare for law school:

Develop Strong Writing Skills

Strong writing skills are crucial in any field, especially in legal studies, where they ensure clarity and precision in complex arguments. Good writing enhances persuasion, a key aspect in legal cases, where effectively communicating your point can influence outcomes. Professionally, well-written documents reflect your competence and attention to detail, boosting your credibility. 

Participate in Extracurricular Activities

Engage in activities outside your coursework that enhance your leadership, teamwork, and public speaking skills. Such experiences enrich your undergraduate education and make your law school application more compelling.

Utilize LSAT Prep Courses

Open the best law school opportunities with high LSAT scores. Preparing for the LSAT is critical since it is widely recognized as the best predictor of future success in law school. Odyssey provides a thorough LSAT Prep Course covering each exam section. It includes detailed study materials, practice tests that mimic the real LSAT, and interactive teaching sessions focused on mastering key strategies for each test section.

Seek LSAT Tutoring

Unlock your full potential with the guidance of our expert LSAT tutors. With Odyssey’s LSAT Tutoring, students receive personalized guidance from experienced tutors. These one-on-one sessions are tailored to each student’s strengths and weaknesses, offering targeted practice and feedback to improve LSAT scores significantly.

Network and Seek Mentorship

Connect with professionals in the legal field, alumni from your chosen major, and current law students. Networking and mentorship can provide invaluable insights and advice as you prepare for law school.

Utilize Law School Admission Consulting

Turn your aspirations into reality with personalized guidance and strategic support from Odyssey Test Prep. Our Law School Admission Consulting service provides guidance on every step of the law school application process. From crafting a compelling personal statement to preparing for interviews, our consultants guide students through creating an application that stands out to admission committees.

Final Thoughts: What Should You Major in If You Want to Go to Law School?

While there’s no single best major for law school, some fields of study can provide a stronger foundation for your legal education. Therefore, the best major for you is one that you are passionate about and will excel in, as a strong law school GPA is also a key component of a law school application.

Your choice should align with your interests and strengths, preparing you for the challenges and opportunities of a legal education.