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Academic Advising Center

Academic Preparation

Students are encouraged to pursue a broad, liberal, and diverse program of study by enrolling in demanding courses that challenge them to read, write, research, speak and think critically. Law schools are looking for applicants with academic excellence and the ability to perform at a high scholarly level.


Law schools encourage applicants to pursue a variety of majors without preference given to a specific area of study. Students should select majors in which they are most interested. Majors that emphasize critical thinking and writing can be helpful for students pursuing law but students can also gain these skills through elective coursework.

The only exception to the rule about majors is for students who would like to pursue Intellectual Property Law/Patent Law. It is necessary to have an undergraduate degree in science or engineering or at least take multiple courses in key science areas. For more information about Patent Law Exam requirements, please review the document provided by the United States Patent and Trademark Office


Minors and certificates are not required for law school but are a great way to demonstrate expertise and commitment to additional knowledge in a certain discipline. If you are interested in pursuing a minor, we strongly suggest choosing minors in which you desire to gain additional knowledge and possess a true interest in the subject. As minors are optional, they should be pursued based on desire and should be utilized to enrich your major course of studies. We do not recommend adding a minor or certificate with the sole purpose of making your law school application “more competitive”.


Although the American Bar Association does not specifically recommend undergraduate majors or courses, we do provide below a list of courses by department that may help you prepare for legal education.

Also, many interesting rotating topics courses can be found under the “Special Topics” heading offered by a variety of Humanities and Social & Behavioral Sciences departments. If you have a specific area of interest in an identified subject matter, these are great courses, usually with low enrollment, that enable you to utilize various academic traits law schools are evaluating.