The American Bar Association does not recommend any particular group of undergraduate majors, or courses, that should be taken by those wishing to prepare for legal education; developing such a list is neither possible nor desirable. The law is too multifaceted, and the human mind too adaptable, to permit such a linear approach to preparing for law school or the practice of law. Nonetheless, there are important skills and values, and significant bodies of knowledge, that can be acquired prior to law school and that will provide a sound foundation for a sophisticated legal education. 1
Consider introductory courses in a variety of disciplines to initially explore and meet distribution requirements. Define areas of law, i.e., bankruptcy, civil, corporate, criminal, domestic, labor, litigation, public interest, tax, that appeal to you and elect classes that further develop your understanding. Watch for special topic courses or special sections of a regular course. You may do an advanced search in the LSA Course Guide using pre-law or pre-legal studies. Keep in mind, law schools do not like to see a large volume of "law classes"; in fact only one course that studies legal opinions is advisable. Invest in the courses that you elect in your undergraduate education, only you can decide how best to challenge yourself!
1 Preparation for Legal Education, Prepared by The Pre-Law Committee of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admission to the Bar, www.americanbar.org/groups/legal_education/resources/pre_law.html
Additional classes may be offered in specific terms. Please check the online LSA Course Guide and use the advance search feature with pre-law or legal studies as keywords.
The Michigan in Washington Program offers an opportunity for 20-25 University of Michigan undergraduates from all majors to spend a semester (Fall or Winter) in Washington, D.C. The program provides a chance for students to combine coursework with an internship that reflects each student's particular area of interest.
Classes relevant to students in Pre-Law Studies, for the Fall 2011 Academic Term.
Pre-Law Classes, Winter Academic Term, 2012 (available at beginning of November)
Classes relevant to students in Pre-Law Studies, for the Winter 2012 Academic Term.
- Why the Liberal Arts?
- Academic Calendar
- Courses & Registration
- Knowing the Expectations for Your Degree
- Choosing a Major
- Is law the right profession for me?
- What academic skills do I need to succeed?
- What else should I do to prepare?
- When and how do I apply?
- How do I pay for law school
- Pre-Law Advisors
- Workshops and Pre-Law Events
- Transferring Credit
- Cross-Campus Transfers