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Major in Pre-Law at Top Christian Universites

Article by Rachelle Wiggins

“A lawyer is called by God to do legal services as spiritual service to the glory of God and the good of man [and] functions to promote justice and, seek to restrain evil. A godly attorney desires not only to do well at his or her profession, but also to do good for society.”

 ~ M. B. Tozer,

Those who set out on the path of a pre-law major often have a specific goal in mind, whether that be a career as a lawyer, a judge or another law-related calling. To become a lawyer or judge, a master’s degree is needed. And though a pre-law major is not necessary for getting into law school, it is certainly one route to consider if you know your desired career outcome. Getting into a top-ranked law school can be tough, and a pre-law major is one way to lay a strong interdisciplinary, liberal arts foundation. Often, what fuels men and women to pursue a career in law is a passion to help those who are weak, in trouble or facing injustice. Whether you end up practicing general law or specializing in cooperate, family, labor, criminal, real estate, personal injury, estate planning or tax law, a pre-law major gives you a jump on your education and the chance to be someone’s hero as you fight for what is lawful on their behalf.

In order to succeed as a pre-law major and in the field of law itself, it is important to develop a handful of much-needed traits and skills. First, is a strong work ethic. Pre-law is a challenging major that only becomes more competitive as you approach law school. Strong study habits and research skills are imperative. Being able to think critically, analyze information accurately, zero in on important details efficiently and solve problems creatively is of the essence. Administrative abilities are necessary, and it is helpful to have an investigative mind, able to wisely process and evaluate large quantities of information. Finally, it is vital to possess strong people and communication skills since so much in the major (and future career) rides on your ability to speak and write persuasively and work well with others.

So what classes can you expect to take as a pre-law major? Once you complete a broad spectrum of core classes including psychology and sociology classes, you may take classes like:

  • Intro to Logic/Critical Reasoning
  • Philosophy of Law
  • Civil Rights and Civil Liberties
  • Criminal Justice
  • American Constitutional Law
  • Political Methodology

The world of law continues to evolve and expand with the needs of our culture. Members of society need defensive protection in a growing number of areas which is giving birth to new specializations of law like immigration law, digital/media/internet law, and lawyers who specialize in “intellectual property” (think copyright, patent and trademark rights).  The area of specialty you land in and arena where you find future employment--whether in a law firm, a governmental branch, a corporation or on a self-employed basis—is far-ranging! But the majority of those who complete a pre-law major end up as lawyers of some sort. However, there are other law-related careers to consider as well:  

  • Arbitrator/mediator
  • Court reporter
  • Law librarian
  • Legal secretary
  • Title examiner/abstractor

If you have a desire to work towards a sense of social justice to serve those in our society in a practical way, then maybe the next right step for y

A future in Pre-Law

By Jennifer Bailey

Is it your dream to become a lawyer? If so, you need to graduate from a 4-year college and then go to law school if you want to practice law.

The term “pre-law” refers to any course of study by an undergraduate college student to prepare for law school. Some colleges have a specific pre-law major for those students who intend to go to law school. It is worth noting that you are able to major in any subject and still enter law school, as long as you successfully get a bachelor’s degree.

There are no specific courses you have to take to be admitted to law school. However, you will have to take the Legal Studies Aptitude Test-LSAT, which is the law school entrance exam.

A good pre-law program should give you an advantage when you enter law school. For example, law schools generally teach by using the Socratic Method, a style of teaching in which the professor asks questions and you learn through classroom discussion. If you become accustomed to this style of teaching during your undergraduate years, you should find yourself more prepared for law school itself. You may have a leg up on other graduates when you finish law school if you are more knowledgeable about the legal system and how to analyze legal cases prior to law school from getting a specific pre-law degree.

The important thing law schools look for are students that have shown a genuine interest in the justice system, because these students are more likely to have a positive impact in the field of law in the future. By majoring in pre-law, you’re demonstrating that you’ve been motivated and committed to becoming a lawyer for years.

Perhaps the biggest advantage to getting your bachelors in pre-law specifically is that most of those programs will help you to do better on the LSAT. Your score will undoubtedly increase he likelihood that you’ll gain admission to the law school of your choice. While you may think you should definitely pick a legal major if you want to go to law school, there can be drawbacks of majoring in pre-law for the aspiring lawyer. It is very important to keep in mind that law schools want to admit students who have been able to excel in challenging courses and difficult subjects.

In addition to doing well on the LSAT and in order to secure your place in a good law school, you will want to get to know your professors as law schools will also require recommendations from them. Also, be sure to participate in extracurricular activities such as an internship position, a job in the field, learning all you can, be a part of a student organization related to your interests, do a noteworthy amount of community service, serve on your school's student government or work for the student publication. Law schools like to see you’ve demonstrated commitment to your extracurricular activities. You will have to indicate on your application when you began your extracurricular activities and how many hours per week you spent on each activity. Keep in mind it is always better to do fewer activities and commit more to them than to spread yourself too thin.

The bottom line is, if you want to go to law school and you like the benefits a pre-law undergraduate degree offers, then it is important to get good grades in a variety of challenging subjects. Law schools would rather you take challenging courses that will help you improve your analytical skills and reading comprehension along with the exposure to a well-rounded class schedule that prepares you well for the rigors of law school.