Aspiring to be a lawyer is a noble goal to have, but before you can even begin the specialized education and training you need to qualify as a legal professional, you need to get into law school.
This is easier said than done, but exactly how difficult is it to be accepted, and what can you do to maximize your chances of success?
Appreciating the challenges ahead
There’s no question that getting into law school is tough, and of course, that’s by design, because the top institutions in this field want the best of the best to join their ranks while filtering out those who just aren’t equipped for a career in law.
There are two main hurdles to overcome in most cases; a formal interview with an admissions representative for your school of choice, and the Law School Admission Test (LSAT). As such, your preparations should focus on these two areas. So what can you do to prepare?
Taking a high-quality LSAT prep course online
The good news is that you can implement a rigorous and regimented approach to gearing up for the all-important admissions exam by participating in LSAT prep courses.
With a whole host of brilliant programs available entirely online, you can harness a wealth of resources and expertise in your efforts to pass the LSAT the first time.
The purpose of this exam is to create a standardized approach to law school admissions that applies across North America and is also being adopted in other countries as well. So there’s really no way around the LSAT, which makes taking a prep course all the wiser.
A good course will include the ability to plot out your studies and track your progress over time. And of course, the more digital features included, the more efficient and effective a course will be.
Be aware that you’ll need to pay for a prep course, but this will be a worthwhile investment, as it should lessen the likelihood of failure in the actual exam, which will save you time and money in the long run. Also, follow general exam prep best practices to steady your nerves.
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Steeling yourself for the interview
Law school candidates can still expect to go through an interview as part of the admissions process, although this is not necessarily a universally used measure of an applicant’s suitability in every instance. Even so, being prepared for an in-person or virtually hosted meeting with a member of the admissions team is advised.
While the LSAT may be about testing your skills of reasoning, an admissions interview is more about getting to grips with you as an individual, picking your brain on relevant topics, and seeing whether your on-paper performance stacks up to your in-the-moment abilities.
Every law school will have its own approach to managing admissions interviews, and there will even be differences in style and expectations between different members of the faculty who are responsible for running them.
Because of this, it is useful to talk to current students to find out the types of questions you’ll be asked and the particular format that the interview might take so that you are forearmed with the information you need to prepare properly, and to avoid any surprises on the day. In short, treat it like a job interview and you’ll be on the right track.
There are a few common questions that you will probably have to field, such as explaining why you want to study at the school in question, outlining your motivations for becoming a lawyer, discussing aspects of the law that appeal to you, and also talking more generally about your interests and extracurricular activities.
With all this taken into account, you should be ready to start preparing to get into law school. Just don’t expect an easy ride, or else your complacency could hurt your chances.