Skip to main content

Preparing for Law School

From courses, internships, career goals, and finances, there are many factors to consider when deciding to pursue law school. Before you get to this stage in the process, be sure to have thoroughly explored and conducted research on what careers interest you in the legal field and why, as well as reflecting on your motivations for wanting to work in the legal field. There is not a formal Pre-Law track at Villanova in terms of required coursework or experiences, but there are still plenty of action items you can begin working on to set yourself up for success.

There is no preferred major for law school. You can choose any major, with any minor, and attend law school. When trying to decide on a major, choose one that interests you. When you take classes you enjoy, you're more likely to have a better GPA; that high GPA may help you get into the law schools you want.

If you are having trouble deciding on a major, please consider scheduling an appointment on Handshake with a career counselor to explore your options. You can also take the FOCUS2 assessment to start the process.

Villanova also does not have Pre-Law track, but it is advantageous to take classes that will help further develop your writing, researching, critical-thinking, problem-solving, communication and public speaking skills.

For many, the best way to know if a career path is right for is to gain experience related to that career path, and this is true of the legal profession. Remember: you’ll need an up-to-date resume and cover letter to apply to internships, in addition to a LinkedIn profile and refined interview skills

Types of Experiences:

  • Get involved on campus! There are four Pre-Law student organizations on campus that present great ways to gain more exposure to the field, but you can of course gain valuable skills through all the student organizations at Villanova. Request to join by visiting the Villanova student organization’s website or stopping by the student organizations’ tables at the Student Activities Fair, help each semester.
    • Black Pre-Law Student Association (BLSA)
    • Business Law Society
    • Pre-Law Society
    • Mock Trial
  • Sit in on a law school class; contact the law school’s admission to inquire about the process
  • Shadow someone who works in the legal field
    • Begin by asking people you know if they know anyone in the legal field, and politely ask for an introduction
    • Reach out to Villanova alumni on Nova Network and LinkedIn and inquire about arranging a shadowing experience, even for one day.  You can even filter alumni in Nova Network by “Help Topic” and select “Job Shadowing” to target alumni who are open to it.
  • Land a legal-related internship. There are several ways to approach looking for internships, with networking being the most effective and common way students find legal-related internships. However, here are some resources to use, and when searching for these opportunities, be mindful of the keywords you use in your search results: use keywords like law, legal, government, policy, advocacy

*Please note: It is not a requirement to have a legal internship in order to apply to law school or be a more competitive candidate for law school. Additionally, many legal internships you may find online are for current law students, so be sure to read the internship descriptions carefully.*

The Law School Admissions Test (LSAT), for some, is the most challenging and time-consuming aspect of applying to law school. This exam tests your ability to “think like a lawyer,” by assessing your critical reading, analytical thinking, and writing skills. The LSAT is comprised of six sections, each 35 minutes long with a 15-minute break after the third section. This totals to 210 minutes of LSAT test time—or 3 hours and 30 minutes, excluding the break.

The LSAT is the only test accepted for admission purposes by all ABA-accredited law schools and Canadian common-law law schools.

Note: the GRE has become accepted by more and more law schools but not all law schools, so it is still recommended to take the LSAT instead to maximize your chances of gaining admission to law school. Visit ETS.orgfor more information and to see what schools accept the GRE.


How to Prepare for the LSAT


Step 1: Learn more about the exam

You’ll want to familiarize yourself with the LSAT so you can get a better sense of how to study for it. The Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) is your go-to resource for learning more about LSAT. 

Step 2: Take multiple timed-practice tests

The best way to prepare for the LSAT is to take LSAT practice tests so you can determine a baseline score and then see how you improve over time. There are several ways to take a practice exam - has a free practice test you can take, and so does Khan Academy, which also has free LSAT prep content. Additionally, many LSAT prep course companies offer free practice LSATs when you sign up for their content/courses. Remember: don’t let a low LSAT score on a practice test discourage you; it’s practice! Use your practice test score as a baseline and as a motivator to keep improving.

Step 3: Create a study plan

It is recommended you begin studying the LSAT exam 4-6 months prior to your first test date, but due to the variations in learning style and LSAT preparation methods, how you study for the LSAT is up to you. Here are some considerations when you are weighing your options:

  • What are you able to afford when it comes to LSAT preparation? (review LSAT fees on LSAC’s website).
  • How much time can you devote on a weekly basis? (many prep companies suggest 15-20+ hours)
  • How did you prepare for the last standardized test you took? (SAT/ACT?) And did that preparation method work? Why/why not?

Types of Studying

  • Self-Study
  • One-on-One Tutoring
  • Prep Course (in-person or live online)

Villanova University does not endorse any specific LSAT preparation companies or methods, but here is a list of popular options that other Villanova students have used:

  • Khan Academy (free!)
  • Kaplan
  • Princeton Review
  • Powerscore
  • 7sage
  • StudyLark
  • Blueprint
  • LSATMax
  • TestMasters


LSAT Accommodations

The Law School Admissions Council is committed to assisting candidates with disabilities with requests for accommodations needed to take the LSAT. For the most up-to-date information on LSAC’s accommodation services and policies, please visit their website to learn how to request accommodations, provide documentation, contact information, and more.

Law school costs begin accumulating even before you attend due to fees that present themselves during the application process. The Law School Admissions Council outlines the process in this infographic.

Here are some key costs of which to be aware. It is highly recommended that you budget appropriately and track these costs throughout the law school application process:

  • LSAT costs – prep materials/courses/tutoring AND the exam fee
  • CAS (Credential Assembly Service)
  • Law school reports
  • Law school application fees
  • Law school visits (travel costs)

Use AccessLex’s law school calculator to figure out your law school costs.

  • Navigate to Handshake.
  • Select the Career Center option that aligns with your current student status.
  • Select one of the two Pre-Law Advising appointment options.
  • Find a date and time that works for you!