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Law school questions.

JustinJaredJustinJared 0 replies1 threads New Member

I'm new here and I wanted to ask you guys some questions about law school.

I'm someone who currently doesn't have a college degree.

I entered college a long time ago, and then dropped out due to mental illness.

I've been thinking about really applying to school since then, and have been getting nervous about how to do it and what to study.

I have dreams of applying to law school after taking an LSAT, scoring as well as I can on it, completing college, and applying to as many and as many great law schools that I can after finishing college.

This all began after having an interest in public service and learning about politics, and then taking interest in learning about the law and maybe becoming an attorney after learning about the federal government, local government, state government, and elected officials casually.

I started to have a new found respect for how laws were made and how they are made, the work that legislative bodies do, and how executive officers in government implement and execute the law.

After having that interest I've been thinking I want to try the mentioned and become an attorney, but I am nervous about studying certain concentrations in college as the courses may be too hard to pass or pass well.

Many law students studied political science before entering law school and majored in it in college, but I think that subject may be too hard to major in for me and may have me achieving a low GPA if studied.

The political science major seemed interesting at first since it seemed to offer me a chance to learn about politics, government, and the history and functionality of law more -- but the way it's explained is way too difficult to understand for me and seems to over complicate things.

I viewed an online course about it, and got stumped when the course started to explain things in a way too difficult to understand for me and --associated the learning process with things found unnecessary to associate it with.

Those things would be something called "game theory" as an example in this particular course. It dealt with associating the course material with arithmetic, and confusing that material with graphs or something as well. I don't want to go off topic but if any of you care to look that up you'll see what I mentioned.

Political science my be too difficult for me to study in college and pass well or at all, so I've been thinking about studying psychology or another subject found to be more simple for me to understand well or at all and pass.

Law schools accept all forms of college degrees along with LSATS for admission, so if that's true that may be smart or fine to do.

I'm nervous about studying something other than political science though, since 25% or more students study that, and they must be doing it for a reason if that's the most popular major for law school students when they were in college. I'm afraid of being unprepared for law school if I don't, or under-prepared.

What should I do?

Is it true any college major in college is appropriate to study in college to get into law school? Are there no advantages to any in particular? Can I study other subjects and be just fine applying with a quality LSAT test score? Not fine?

Will any major other than political science under-prepare me? Leave me unprepared? Prepare me mediocre-ly or well enough? If I can, I rather major in something I believe I can pass more strongly to improve my chance of having a higher GPA upon graduation. That can improve my law school admission chances.

That's opposed to when applying to law school like most students, and studying political science and not doing as well for myself.

I want to get into as many law schools as possible and as many great ones, and a higher GPA upon graduating college and a quality LSAT test score can help me do that.
9 replies
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Replies to: Law school questions.

  • bluebayoubluebayou 28255 replies213 threads Senior Member
    Any traditional liberal arts major is excellent. (try to avoid vocational majors such as Criminal Justice...)

    GPA+LSAT is the name of the game. The higher the better. So major in something in which you can earn A's, and lots of 'em.

    If you've been out of school for a long time, consider starting at a Junior/Community college.

    Good luck.
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  • PublisherPublisher 12316 replies167 threads Senior Member
    The practice of law is stressful. If you still suffer from mental illness, you may want to pursue a different career.
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  • DustyfeathersDustyfeathers 3707 replies85 threads Senior Member
    edited October 2019
    - There's no need to study PolySci if you don't want to. Any major will be okay. Psychology is a hard major, though -- FYI. It's a science and involve statistics etc.
    - If you're more comfortable with language-based classes, you may want to consider majoring in English or History -- those are both difficult subjects too, but you might find them more suitable.
    - GPA + LSAT will get you into law school. Below is a link where you can discover more about the career prospects for various schools
    - Be careful which law school you decide to attend. If you're interested in public interest or government work, those jobs don't pay as much directly out of school compared with law jobs involving corporate deals, for example. You will want to carefully consider the costs of attending Law School compared with your expected salary. You do not want to end up with a lot of debt and no way to pay that off. The Internet can help you figure which sort of law jobs interest you and what they pay. Compare that to any tuition costs.
    - Not all law schools are able to guarantee that their graduates will find work in a job that requires a law degree. They might be underemployed -- in a retail job or the like rather than practicing law.

    Here is a good website to help you understand the job market for people trained in law: https://data.lawschooltransparency.com/jobs/legal-jobs/?scope=schools

    Before deciding to enter law as a profession, I recommend getting a job in a law firm as a paralegal, or volunteering for your local court system, or shadowing a law professional for a day--that sort of thing so that you can figure out whether you like to do the work of lawyers. You also may learn about public interest work as a lawyer, advocating for some issues that may interest you, such as healthcare for poor people, or prisoners' legal services or immigration rights. Use the internet to look up groups that may welcome volunteers on their legal team.
    edited October 2019
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  • BKSquaredBKSquared 1828 replies9 threads Senior Member
    Agree with @Dustyfeathers. Law school is a major investment in time and money, with pretty big risks that you will even be employed in the field, let alone one which will provide enough income to pay for the investment made.

    Law school is a real grind. It involves a lot of reading and critical analysis and you cannot fall behind or you will get lost in class. As much of a grind it is in law school, it is worse as a junior associate. I was pretty fortunate in law school that I rarely had to pull all-nighters because I manage time well and can read very fast. Not so the case when I started work because of hard deadlines and the fact that you are subject to the work habits (and bad time management) of others on your team. The term "crap (or another more colorful term) flows downhill" is a perfect description of the practice of law. So before you embark on this, work for a year as a paralegal somewhere and see what it is really about. It is far from how it is portrayed in popular culture (TV, movies, etc...).
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  • crankyoldmancrankyoldman 700 replies59 threads Member
    Take a breath, and give yourself a break, if only because you've got to have a college degree to get accepted into law school.
    So forget about law school for now, and focus on getting your degree. You can major in virtually anything, and there's no question that GPA and LSAT rule.
    But again, forget all about that. Start college in as welcoming an environment for you as possible. Starting at a community college is fine. Start with general education studies-as in, take a smattering of classes in different disciplines to see where your interests lie. Who knows? You may discover that math or education for CS is the route for you.
    It's a long journey-but even the longest journey begins with the first step. So take that step-find a college that works for you. Since you've been out of HS for a while, it may take a little time to find the right one for you.
    Best of luck; this is very doable-so get started!
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  • StoneMagicStoneMagic 452 replies15 threads Member
    edited December 2019
    Go your own path - not all the advice in here is on point. All I can tell you from real experience is that my D got into a top 30 LS and she was a Criminal Justice/Psychology double-major. Her GPA was decent but not great, and she applied late as in March. She got into several but was waitlisted at her top choice and considered deferring to her second choice who did offer, but in the end decided she would reapply earlier next year to get scholarship opportunities.

    She also studied like crazy and retook the LSAT in June. Her top choice called the day after scores came out, not only to offer her a spot but also a 100% tuition scholarship for 3 years. I should add she visited the campus and wrote emails noting she would accept if offered. She was told by some of the others she could get $$ if she had applied earlier, and also get more $$ if she boosted her score which totally motivated her.

    I'm not recommending you apply late by any means, and yes GPA matters somewhat, but it really is about your LSAT. Criminal Justice was just fine, and she was told Psychology was considered STEM by her second choice.

    Do your thing, follow your passion...
    edited December 2019
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  • itsgettingreal17itsgettingreal17 4110 replies28 threads Senior Member
    While you can major in anything and attend law school, I question whether law is the right field for you based on your explanation of how hard political science is for you. Law school will be much harder than any political science major.
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  • bluebayoubluebayou 28255 replies213 threads Senior Member
    Go your own path - not all the advice in here is on point. All I can tell you from real experience is that my D got into a top 30 LS and she was a Criminal Justice/Psychology double-major.

    Do you not see the possibility that the Psych major is a traditional liberal arts degree, and all it takes for LS? The classes in Crim are just as good as any other electives.

    But any value of of a more rigorous major declines with the ranking of law schools. Yale LS would turn up their noses at a Crim major, but a lower-ranked law school probably doesn't care as much, if at all.
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  • StoneMagicStoneMagic 452 replies15 threads Member
    1) I don't think this applicant is looking at Yale or those ranked near the top, nor should they be given the question being asked.
    2) As noted, choice #2 stated directly in our conversation that they view Psych as a STEM major, so the interpretation of a traditional liberal arts degree is not universal. That said, liberal arts majors are just fine per the discussion on majoring in English on these boards.
    3) I agree with the last statement - as noted, LSAT is about 80% of the decision for 95% of schools we spoke with, which was my point in the first place.

    So unless you're focused on attending a Yale or Harvard, and if so I missed that part, I wouldn't major in something you have zero passion for. Same with your career.
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