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by Vault Education Editors | July 20, 2010


Many different factors go into choosing a law school. But even before you start visiting campuses, the first thing to do is to look at your undergraduate GPA and LSAT score (if you've taken it already). The reality is that these two numbers determine for which schools you're eligible. Comparing your scores to the average LSAT and GPA of law schools will quickly narrow down number of schools to which you can apply.

Now that you've figured out a range of schools for which you qualify, it's time to look at the individual schools. Location, academics, career services are a few of the important factors when deciding between schools. And after it's all said and done and your acceptance letters are in, there are even more programs, faculty and classes to investigate in order to decide exactly which school to attend. We asked almost 4,000 current law students and alumni how they made the big decision. The vast majority (84 percent) of respondents said that location was critical. Most other reasons for attending one law school over another fit into a few different categories. See what real students and alumni said were major deciding factors in choosing a law school.

What influenced your decision to attend your law school? Vault 2010 Law School Student Survey


The wonderful professors

Clinical experiences

Co-op program, liberal education

Study abroad

Environmental Law Certificate

Advocacy program

Commitment to intellectual engagement

Diversity, public interest commitment, international law opportunities

Focus on public interest and community service

The school's commitment to international law and international affairs

Professors and law and economics focus


Tuition remission for employees

Full scholarship

Post-graduation employment



The faculty is extremely connected to the students and the alumni are more engaged than any I've ever seen

Collegial atmosphere; reputation for producing well-rounded graduates

Welcoming atmosphere and sincerity of the students, faculty and staff

Higher average age of students

Active LGBT student group/accepting climate

Better life experience here than at Harvard or Columbia, without a doubt


Filed Under: Education|Grad School