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Florida Gulf Coast University

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Political Science (B.A.)

Political Science and Preparing for Law School

 
 

Undergraduate students interested in legal careers sometimes ask “.....what should I major in if I want to go to law school? Is Political Science a good major?”

Neither the American Bar Association (ABA), the Law School Admission Council (LSAC), nor any of the nation’s top law schools recommends a specific undergraduate major, pointing out that the nation’s top law schools admit students from almost every academic field.  What they recommend instead is that pre-law students select a major that best inspires and sustains their academic interest, as well as develops key skills. These include skills in analysis and problem-solving, critical reading, writing, oral communication, general research, and task organization and management. The ABA and LSAC also recommend acquiring the following types of knowledge: a broad understanding of history; a fundamental understanding of political thought and of the contemporary American political system; basic mathematical and financial skills; an understanding of human behavior and social interaction; and an understanding of diverse cultures, institutions, and issues both within the United States and internationally. Because of the breadth of these recommended skills and knowledge areas, LSAC cautions that a narrowly based or vocationally oriented major may not be the best preparation for law school.

FGCU’s Political Science major is well suited for developing these diverse skills and areas of knowledge. So if you intend to someday apply to law school and you have a strong interest in politics, international relations, and political thought, Political Science is an excellent major for you.

You can obtain additional information on how to select an undergraduate major and to prepare for law school by visiting the American Bar Association’s and Law School Admission Council’s pre-law webpages at http://www.abanet.org/legaled/prelaw/prep.html and www.lsac.org/pdfs/2006-2007/ThinkAboutLawSchool2006.pdf

For detailed information about preparing for a career in law, the general timeline for law school preparations and applications, the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) and Law School Data Assembly Service (LSDAS), and choosing a law school and financing your law school education, the following online resources developed by the University of Florida and University of Miami law schools will be helpful:

 

LAW SCHOOL APPLICATIONS AND ADMISSIONS - 2006

THE NATION’S TWENTY MOST POPULAR PRE-LAW MAJORS*

 

Undergraduate
Major

 #  of Majors
Applying to
Law School

Average
LSAT Score

# of Majors
Admitted to
Law School

% of Majors
Admitted to
Law School

% of Total
Law School
Admissions

1.

Political Science

15,361

153

10,334

67.3%

18.4%

2.

English

5,494

155

3,852

70.1%

6.9%

3.

History

4,460

156

3,269

73.3%

5.8%

4.

Psychology

4,601

153

3,057

66.4%

5.5%

5.

Economics

3,586

157

2,693

75.1%

4.8%

6.

Finance

2,670

153

1,799

67.4%

3.2%

7.

Philosophy

2,329

158

1,766

75.8%

3.2%

8.

Other Arts & Humanities

2,363

154

1,623

68.7%

2.9%

9.

Communications

2,405

151

1,433

59.6%

2.6%

10.

Criminal Justice

3,286

145

1,390

42.3%

2.5%

11.

Sociology

2,125

151

1,282

60.3%

2.3%

12

International Relations

1,604

157

1,179

73.5%

2.1%

13.

Business Administration

2,148

149

1,131

52.7%

2.0%

14.

Accounting

1,659

152

1,097

66.1%

2.0%

15.

Liberal Arts

1,790

151

1,070

59.8%

1.9%

16.

Marketing

1,551

150

942

60.7%

1.7%

17.

Business Management

1,747

150

917

52.5%

1.6%

18.

Journalism

1,184

153

806

68.1%

1.4%

19.

Biology

1,130

154

788

69.7%

1.4%

20.

Pre-Law

1,003

148

532

53.0%

0.9%

 

National Totals

88,662

153

56,034

63.2%

-

 

*LSAC Fall 2006 Data