Happy October! We are pleased to launch a new blog series, Launching to 1L, to offer applicants advice on how to navigate the application process from beginning to end. To kick off this series, we will discuss how applicants may approach deciding where to apply. See below for things to consider when building your law school list.

Admissions Officer, Mark Richter

Be sure to treat each law school as its own entity when seeking out information.

“In many ways, Harvard Law School is reflective of larger trends among law schools, including admissions practices. In many ways, it is not. When building a law school list, you can glean lots of information from each school, but not all of it will be applicable across other schools. When it comes to actually building your list, my best advice is to find ways to imagine yourself on a particular campus. Many campuses are offering in-person events once again, but all law schools will have an array of helpful resources, links, and stories about what students and faculty are doing. From there, you can start to gauge your fit for a particular institution.”

Associate Director of Admissions, Lucas Harty

Think about where you will be happy.

“Keep in mind that applying to law school will require hard choices about where to spend your time, energy, and resources. Be thoughtful and deliberate in choosing schools that offer you the best chance for success. The students who often find success in law school are also, broadly speaking, happy students. Are there communities you can join that will celebrate your identity or allow you to explore your interests? Many student groups have an active web and social media presence, which can be a great starting point for getting to know the study body, and deciding whether the school has the type of students you can envision as your peers and classmates.”

Admissions Officer, Pamela Toscano

 Know the application requirements before you begin diving deep into the application.

“Make sure you are ready and eligible to apply to the law schools on your list before creating your application! For example, the GRE and LSAT both meet the standardized test requirement for HLS. However, some law schools only accept the LSAT. If those LSAT-only schools are on your list, the GRE won’t be the best choice for you. To start, closely examine a law school’s application instructions and timeline requirements. Notice any clearly defined instructions or suggestions and note them as you begin creating your application.”

Filed in: Inside the Black Box

Contact the J.D. Admissions Office

Website: hls.harvard.edu/jdadmissions

Email: jdadmiss@law.harvard.edu