Best college and major choices for law school.

<p>Hello everyone.</p>

<pre><code> I Have a couple of questions concerning what college and major I should choose. I am 20 years old and I am planning on graduating from a two year college in May of 2012 with an associate of arts degree. I am going to transfer to a four year University in the fall of 2012. I have a 3.64 GPA right now which I know I need to improve on. My GPA gets higher every semester, so hopefully it will continue to go up. After I get done with college I want to go to law school. I live in Arkansas and I am looking into two schools: The University of Arkansas in Fayettville and Hendrix College. University of Arkansas is ranked higher, but Hendrix is private.

My first question is, which is better between Higher ranked or private? I believe the University of Arkansas is ranked number 1 in Arkansas and Hendrix is maybe number 8. U of A has a law school, but if I can get my GPA up a little higher and keep it up I hope to go to a higher ranked law school out of state. Which college would be my best bet?
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<p>My second question is what should I major in? I have read that English is good for law school applicants and I am good at English as far as writing, but literature doesn’t interest me very much. I have also heard philosophy is good and I think I would do well in that. I love anything to do with logical thinking. I also heard philosophy helped one prepare for the LSAT. I have taken a few practice LSAT tests and I need some improvement. I was scoring in the low 150’s, which, that was with no prep whatsoever, so I am confident I can improve significantly between now and time to apply for law school. What about pre-law? Would it be better? </p>

<pre><code> So, my questions are which of the two schools above would look the best on my application to law school? And what major would you suggest? I also have been invited to join the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society. Would being an honor student help me enough to worry about joining?
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<p>Thanks in advance.
Larry.</p>

<p>Law schools are said to generally care mostly about the LSAT, then about your GPA. Major and school are likely to be less relevant in a direct sense, although different majors seem to have different performances on the LSAT, which may indicate an indirect effect (or merely a selection bias in the students who choose each major).</p>

<p>Physics</a>, Math Majors Get Top LSAT Scores; Poli Sci Majors Are Average - News - ABA Journal</p>

<p>From what I've heard, schools matter more than major, but as ucbalumnus said, LSAT matters the most. </p>

<p>From the law students I've talked to, it goes something like this:
LSAT
School (Target or non-target)
GPA
Major(s)</p>

<p>I've heard philosophy tends to be popular for pre-law. Helps enhance your critical thinking abilities</p>

<p>Also post your question on the Law School subforum, since it is more about law than transferring.</p>

<p>Haha, I'm just waiting for floridadad55 to pop in and advise against going to law school... We all know it's gonna' happen. </p>

<p>Anyway, law schools look at LSAT + GPA. Legally Blonde is accurate. But hmm, my grandfather (who graduated from Emory Law) said that most of his fellow students in law school had been math majors. Most likely because a math major teaches you to follow a logical thought process. But philosophy's a common major for those with the intention of law school, as it teaches critical thinking ability. Just pick something that interests you enough so that you can keep your GPA up, and study hard for the LSAT.</p>

<p>Undergrad school and major matter VERY LITTLE, basically not at all as long as you're not coming from ITT Tech. ALL that matters is LSAT and GPA, check out lawschoolnumbers.com for stats on this. The University of Arkansas would probably be better since it would be cheaper, higher ranked, and would have more opportunities. Take whatever major you find the most interesting and that you know you would be able to do well in. Please note however that if you're not likely to be accepted at one of the T14 law schools, it is strongly advised not to go into law because of the extremely slim job prospects and the debt that law school incurs.</p>

<p>^ If you look at T-14 schools a large percentage of the law schools are dominated by top schools. For example, Yale has 89 of it's own students for all 3 years, and 80 from Harvard, 35 from Princeton, 22 from Brown, 18 from Dartmouth, 17 from Columbia, 16 from Penn, and 11 from Cornell. So, it's hard to argue that undergraduate school doesn't matter. </p>

<p>So, out of the 697 students at Yale Law, 41% are from Ivy League schools. (And, if you just use the USNWR top 25 schools, they make up 60.4% of YLS)
<a href="http://www.yale.edu/printer/bulletin/pdffiles/law.pdf%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.yale.edu/printer/bulletin/pdffiles/law.pdf&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Oh you're right because correlation = causation, right? As it turns out, students who do well enough to get accepted to Ivy League undergrad schools also tend to do well enough in college to get accepted to Ivy League graduate schools. This does NOT however mean that the reason they are getting in is because of which school they went to. I would suggest checking out the different schools represented at Harvard last year: Undergraduate</a> Colleges</p>

<p>Also lurk moar around the law board because this has been confirmed numerous times.</p>

<p>Yep, lurk on the law board more. Better schools prepare you better for the LSAT, as far as thinking process goes. Smaller classes encourage more critical thinking. Better schools have smaller classes. Better schools have grade inflation. Law schools like high GPAs. Students who worked so hard to get into a prestigious university for their UG degree are also going to study harder for the LSAT, too. Heck, one could argue that since there is a higher concentration of wealth in prestigious schools, more students can afford to pay to take LSAT prep courses. There could be, and undoubtedly are, many reasons for this CORRELATION.</p>

<p>Thanks for all of the information. I am new to this site. I will go over to the law board and read up on those forums. </p>

<p>I have also thought that if a conflict arose that I could not go to a top law school, I might try to go to med school here in Arkansas. Like a few of you said, the demand for lawyers aren't as high as other things. </p>

<p>If I did want to keep med school as my back up plan, I would need to major in biology right? However, I am afraid I might not get as good of a GPA if I did major in biology. Is biology really as challenging as everyone says? I have taken biology and I do enjoy it. I am thinking if I major in biology and it dose interfere with my GPA, then that will heart my chances of getting into a good law school, so I think I need to just decide how confident I am that I will get it a top law school and set my goal and stick to it.</p>

<p>You need a good GPA to get into a good medical school also, so just plan on busting your ass either way. You don't have to major in biology, you just have to fulfill certain pre-med requirements which are 2 semesters of general bio, general chem, orgo, physics, and some calc. Also, obviously, the MCAT is required. If you're really ambivalent about where you want to go with this, it would be best to go pre-med because then you can switch to law school late in your undergrad, while the reverse is not true, or at least would be very difficult.</p>

<p>I know that correlation =/= causation, but if you look closely at Harvard's list, you'd notice that there are 261 schools represented for its whole JD program (which is roughly 1500 students). I can guarantee that most of those schools only sent one student to Harvard (hence Harvard doesn't even put the numbers in).</p>

<p>So what? The guy asked if what school you went to undergrad affected law school admission decisions and the answer is: no. Besides what's been said before, just googling "undergrad matter for law" will show you the results. Or you could just look at the data yourself (lawschoolnumbers), and its quite apparent that Harvard just takes certain combinations of LSATs and GPAs at different levels (so for example, applicants with a 3.9/173 and above get in and applicants with 3.8/175 and above get in...).</p>

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<p>No. You just need to include the pre-med courses in your schedule.</p>

<p>Okay. So, I have about three electives left to take at the college I'm at now. If I took General chem and maybe physics would there be a chance that would count towards the pre-med courses or would it have to be at a four year university?</p>