Vanderbilt Law School
Vanderbilt University

4.6 of 5 stars Average Student Rating (of 117 Student Reviews)

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5.0 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

The Branstetter program in litigation, especially that program's capstone seminar, allows third year students to sort of "major" in litigation during their third year. I found this program to be invaluable to my later practice as a litigator.


Quality of Life

A student body that is happier, and has more fun, that most law students.


Admissions

Unlike most schools, VLS interviews potential applicants (a process in which I take part now as interviewer).


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5.0 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

I have been very impressed with the faculty and their command of the material. At least half of my classes have been taught by an author of our textbook. The classes were taught from a practical standpoint, but with enough theory to explore alternatives and help me understand the reasons behind the concepts. I appreciated that the teachers were neutral on the material and for the most part discussed each topic from many angles. The teachers were accessible each day after class, in their office hours, and many even made a point beyond that to meet with smaller groups of 5-10 students at a time outside of class (meeting at coffeehouses, for lunch, or an informal talk in the law school) to talk about topics outside of classroom discussion.


Quality of Life

Nashville is a great place to be and was ultimately the reason I came to Vanderbilt. It is a great sized city with lots of things to do and very down to earth, genuine people. Housing prices vary significantly based on how close you want to be the school, so the options are numerous depending on your budget. It's basically Mayberry with big city perks.


Level

1L


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5.0 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

Staple classes, including most 1L classes, are generally about 80 students. Specialized classes, including legal writing, are much smaller, anywhere from 10 to 50 students. All of the professors, whether full-time tenured faculty or local practicioners teaching about their specialty, are very accessible and approchable. They not only answer questions about the callses they teach, they also help students find opportunities in their areas of interest.
The Vanderbilt in Venice program is a great opportunity for some extra summer courses in a small setting. Externships are easy to set-up through the school, both for local Nashville positions and abroad.
The student body is generally known for its friendliness. Students encourage each other to do better, rather than trying to beat each other in a comptetive manner. Study groups are common and effective.


Quality of Life

Cost of living in Nashville is decent. You can find very cheap or very expensive, all within an easy distance of the law school. Vanderbilt University has several great library facilities and they are all open to all University students. The main library is particularly nice.
The on-campus dining is fabulous, especially at The Commons, a healty, environment-focused dining hall. Law students can purchase meal plans to be able to eat on campus. There's also a number of restaurants within walking distance of the law school, some of which will accept Vandy cash (held on your student id with a meal plan) for payment.
The campus is generally upbeat and never has a stressed-out feel. It's beautiful, and the squirrels are super cute.
The law school building itself is very nice, lots of natural light, including in the classrooms. Furniture is comfortable and there are plenty of power outlets.


Admissions

Vanderbilt used the LSAC system so that everything could be submitted together, LSAT score, essay and application. I believe letters of recommendation were sent in separately by the recommenders, though I may not be remembering that correctly.


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4.8 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

Great - I think a bit more emphasis on practical would have been nice, but from what I hear that's the case at all law schools. There is a wide range of classes offered, the students are all very bright and dedicated; faculty is very good about being accessible to students - Vanderbilt in Venice program was awesome


Quality of Life

cost of living was lower than where I was from; very safe area, great campus and facilities; campus is gorgeous; nice weather; students all very friendly; Nashville has a very unique culture which was a lot of fun


Admissions

Difficult to remember - essay question, LSAT scores and GPA taken into account, other involvement; many scholarships offered


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5.0 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

Classes were very good on the whole. Typical socratic method applied for first-year courses, though some professors would give advance notice to students who were "on-call" for the week. Practical study opportunities were increasing at the time I was there (addition of transactional drafting class stands out). International curriculum and opportunities were particularly excellent (classes at Vandy, study abroad, externship opportunities, and transnational journal). Only real weakness was the legal writing program. My legal writing professor was one-track minded and was a poor teacher and communicator.


Quality of Life

Excellent on all counts. Great city, great neighborhood for the school, great school, great facilities, great cost of living. Amazing experience.


Admissions

Comparable to other good schools' processes. Interviews have recently been added (I did not conduct one).


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4.8 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

Academics at Vanderbilt are awesome. Due to a small class size, the school is able to reduce our class sizes down, and even in our largest classes, some professors have memorized all of our names. The first year has been great and all of our faculty is extremely accessible. Grading is fair and done on a bell curve system. Teachers use the Socratic method in various ways but are usually very gentle if a student does not have the answer correct.


Quality of Life

The facilities at Vanderbilt were one major factor in my decision to attend. The classrooms are great and the library has plenty of seating as well as extremely helpful staff. The cost of living is slightly more than my undergraduate city, but it is still much more affordable than a big city would be. Campus is a natural arboretum and is beautiful to walk around during the day.


Admissions

I took the LSAT during my finals week at the end of my junior year. I took the LSAT only one time and then submitted my information to Vanderbilt and other schools. Vanderbilt required 3 specialized essays for the potential to earn a full scholarship. I was offered some scholarship money later in the process, 2-3 months after being accepted. There were no unique questions asked of me during my application process that I do not remember. I also had an interview with the admissions staff prior to submitting my application


Level

2L


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5.0 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

Good mix of clinic and classroom studies. Class sizes were always small after 1L year, and even during 1L year, class sizes were never too large. I had the opportunity to do research with two separate professors, and I also did clinical work for a year. Workload was not overbearing, and I felt like I learned what needed to know for practice.


Quality of Life

Nashville is a fantastic town. It is safe, affordable, and a great place to live. The law school facilities are very solid, and I have no complaints about the law school facilities or the overall university facilities.


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4.8 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Admissions

Vanderbilt has a rigorous admissions process, but also takes time to ensure the individuals that it accepts have the skills to succeed in the legal industry, whether that means legal academia, public interest work or private practice. Vanderbilt takes the time to make sure that virtually all applicants who request an interview can be interviewed by an alumnus/a in his/her respective location.


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5.0 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

The student body gets along so well that class is one of the most enjoyable parts of my day. The Professors are top notch, and we're always learning here.


Quality of Life

Nashville feels like a Northern California town more than a city in the Mid-South. Its pedestrian friendly, eclectic, vibrant, and just plain fun! The admissions office is very careful in selecting a student body that understands the importance of interpersonal relationships and interaction. Everyone just loves it here.


Admissions

The admissions office is filled with the nicest people on earth, but they take admission to Vanderbilt very seriously. You will have a great time on your visit, but your application has to be very strong.


Level

3L


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5.0 of 5 stars

2011 | VERIFIED STUDENT


Academics

The academics at the school were first rate across the board. I thought that the first year was not nearly as intimidating as advertised and the class sizes were appropriate. I never felt the cut-throat competitiveness that everyone associates with law school and could not imagine a more welcome environment to learn.


Quality of Life

The reason why I chose Vanderbilt is because of its reputation for quality of life. I can honestly say that it did not disappoint. From the facilities to the surrounding area, I can't imagine a better place to attend law school. If you can't be happy attending law school at Vanderbilt, then you will not be happy attending at any law school.


Admissions

The admissions process is standard for any selective law school and financial aid was available and fair.


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