Undergrads with dreams of eventually attending law school often wonder if there are certain majors that will better prepare you for law school (or that will make your application look better). I’ll go ahead and end the suspense now: There’s definitely no mandatory major if you plan to head to law school. With that said, you can definitely do some thinking and maneuvering to put you in the best position when it comes time for applications. Here’s some general tips and advice for when you’re deciding:
The most important thing is to do something that you know you’ll do well at. With law schools being a numbers-oriented business, that’s the most important piece of advice I can give. Now, that doesn’t necessarily equate to “find the easiest major,” in part because because law schools generally take into account your major’s relative difficulty, and in part because that’s just a dumb way to choose what to study for four years.
Really, when it comes to getting good grades, choosing a field you’re passionate about is probably about as helpful as choosing an easy major. That’s especially true when you consider what kind of extracurriculars you’ll be opening up for yourself. It’s generally true that law school admissions is largely a numbers game, but they’ll be giving your resume and campus involvement a look too.
Political science is the most common major for law school applicants. Makes sense, because many of the concepts carry over. Philosophy is a common one, and research suggests that philosophy majors perform better than others on the LSAT, perhaps because of the deductive logic emphasis in most departments. (Though as anyone who has studied correlation vs. causation knows, that doesn’t mean that majoring in philosophy will make your LSAT score higher!)
Economics can also be a great way to go, in part because it’s often found to be a bit more useful to you out of undergrad if you decide not to go the law school route (philosophy majors, by contrast, typically find themselves eventually having to decide between becoming lawyers or metaphysics-musing macchiato makers).
History, english — anything that’ll demand that you sharpen your writing and reading comprehension skills will give you a leg up both on the LSAT and in your first year. On the other hand, law schools often respect a more unique major if you can show how that’s impacted your experience thus far or else your goals as you head towards law school. Questions, comments, other ideas for majors? Invective over that rude philosophy major dig? Comment below!