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What are the Best Majors for Law School? (10 Top Picks in 2024)

Are you an aspiring lawyer and wondering what undergraduate major is best? 

You’re not alone. Many prospective law students wonder if a certain major will help boost their chances of getting into a top law school. So today, we’re going to talk about whether law schools prefer certain undergraduate majors and the most common majors of successful law students. 

So, what are the best majors for law school? Read on. 

Do law schools prefer certain majors? 

Unlike many other graduate programs, like medical school, there are no prerequisite courses to apply to law school. Your LSAT, GPA, and application materials are the key determining factors in law school admissions 

Many prospective law students assume that they should major in something seemingly law related, like criminal justice or pre-law (if their school even offers it). But this is a wrong assumption, and is a very narrow view of what law entails. The law is a part of everything, so even subjects like math, music, nursing, engineering, or computer science can be “law related.”

In fact, pursuing a more uncommon major can be an asset to your application, and help you stand out from the thousands of other political science, history, or economic majors. 

What is the best major for law school? 

There is no single best major for law school. Any major, framed the right way, can be compelling for law schools. Whatever your major, the key is to show that you have the skills of a successful lawyer. 

The American Bar Association lists the following as the “Core Skills, Values, Knowledge, and Experience” for law school: 

  • Problem solving
  • Critical reading 
  • Writing and editing
  • Oral communication and listening 
  • Research 
  • Organization and management
  • Public service and promotion of justice 
  • Relationship-building and collaboration 

Many majors will allow you to show off those skills. Some hard sciences majors (like biology or chemistry) may not have as many opportunities to highlight skills such as persuasive writing or oral communication, so if you choose one of those majors, consider taking a humanities course or pursuing some extracurricular (like mock trial, debate, or research opportunities) where you can highlight those skills.   

One thing that must be considered when choosing a major (and when choosing specific courses) is how difficult it will be to maintain a good GPA. Unfortunately, law schools care more about your GPA than the rigor of your courses. 

So while you shouldn’t base your entire college experience on grades, the reality of the law school admissions game is that the higher your GPA, the more competitive of an applicant you are. 

That being said, if you pursue a more “difficult” major, law schools will be sympathetic to a lower GPA if you use your application materials to show how your background will make you a unique and stand out applicant. 

That’s what I helped my client Lindsey do. She had been pre-med in college and had a lower GPA than most other law school applicants. But by putting together a powerful application that framed her science background as a critical component of her future legal career in health law, she became the applicant law schools wanted…even over those with higher GPAs. 

“The Dean of the Law School told me that my application was one of the strongest he’d read in a really really long time.” -Lindsey L. (received significant scholarships at multiple law schools where her GPA was well below the school’s median)

The most common majors for law school

According to the most recent report by the Law School Admission Council, the following are the most common majors for law school applicants, in order of popularity: 

Political Science 

By far the most popular major among law school applicants is political science. Political science courses can include political theory, government relations, or judicial processes, making it a great major to make you law school ready. 

Median LSAT: 156

Median GPA: 3.56


Psychology is one of the top five most popular majors in general, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, so it’s no surprise that it is a popular major for law school applicants. Psychology teaches critical thinking and analytical reasoning, skills critical to successful lawyering. 

Median LSAT: 155

Median GPA: 3.52

Criminal Justice 

Criminal justice is another popular major choice for future law students, especially those who are interested in pursuing a career in criminal law. While not every school offers this as a major, for those that do, students learn about the criminal justice system, court proceedings, philosophy of punishment, and other issues related to the legal system. 

Median LSAT: 149

Median GPA: 3.42


Economics can be highly useful for prospective law students, especially those who want to pursue areas of law that intersect with financial regulations, such as tax law or antitrust law. Economics is a major that is a unique blend of quantitative and qualitative, which allows you to show law schools that you have a mix of highly valuable skills. Students majoring in Economics also have the highest median LSAT score, and one of the highest median GPAs. 

Median LSAT: 160

Median GPA: 3.62


English is an excellent choice for pre-law students, as you’ll learn how to read, write, and think critically. English majors conduct research, read long and often tedious text, craft arguments, write persuasively – all of which are critical skills for future lawyers. Students majoring in English tend to have some of the highest GPAs, compared to students in other majors. 

Median LSAT: 157

Median GPA: 3.6


Majoring in history will help develop skills that will be essential for law school and lawyering as history majors have to conduct research, write papers, and read and comprehend difficult and lengthy texts. Students majoring in history also tend to have some of the highest LSAT scores and GPAs. 

Median LSAT: 159 

Median GPA: 3.62


Philosophy can be a very useful major for pre-law students as you will develop skills that you’ll readily use as a law student and lawyer: analyzing complex situations, drawing distinctions, formulating definitions, interpreting and understanding abstract concepts and texts, and writing and speaking persuasively and using argumentation. Philosophy students are also exposed to the fields of study that serve as the foundations of law: ethics, political and social philosophy, logic, justice, human rights, and epistemology. Philosophy students also tend to have some of the highest LSAT scores, likely because they learn skills critical to the test, such as logic and analytical reasoning. 

Median LSAT: 160

Median GPA: 3.6


While sociology is a less popular degree for pre-law students, it is still highly valuable. A degree in sociology will help you develop the ability to understand diverse perspectives and analyze the impact and import of social systems. Coursework for sociology majors often includes studying race and gender relations, social theory, research methodologies, criminal justice, social policy, family structures, cultural diversity, human behavior, and religion. 

Median LSAT: 154

Median GPA: 3.5


Communications will help you develop the very skill that is the backbone of being a lawyer: oral and written advocacy. As a communications major, you might take courses on public speaking, journalism, writing, public relations, and rhetoric. 

Median LSAT: 154

Median GPA:  3.5


Finance is a popular major choice for pre-law students who want to work at the intersection of finance and law–such as in corporate law or tax law. Finance majors have a keen understanding of how a business operates, and will be able to apply this knowledge as legal counsel to businesses-big and small. Finance majors often take courses such as business economics, accounting, business law, statistics, and management. 

Median LSAT: 157

Median GPA: 3.5 

Why having an uncommon major can be an advantage 

Now you are not confined to the above listed most popular pre-law majors. In fact, pursuing a more uncommon major can be an advantage to your application. The key is how you frame your academic background, and use it to show that you have a unique and valuable perspective – one that will be valuable both to your professional path and the legal profession as a whole.

For instance, one of my clients, Jordan, had a background in Space Studies, a very rare major and one not offered at most schools. So we made sure to show how having his background gave him skills, knowledge, and most importantly a perspective that no other applicant would have, so that law schools wanted him

“Being more of a ‘non-traditional’ student I really had to rely on telling my story and highlighting my strengths rather than simply being able to rely on my GPA and LSAT. Your assistance with combining my Military service, Space Studies Degree, and other aspects of my background led to a much better final product than I would have achieved on my own. Getting into Boston College 6 points under their LSAT median and .14 below GPA Median was certainly a win for my application cycle!”

Another client I worked with had majored in music, specifically voice performance – another very unique and rare major for a law school applicant. This client wanted to pursue a legal field that had nothing to do with his music background, and was struggling to understand how his major could still be an asset to his application. 

But together, we highlighted the parallels between his love of music and his desire to pursue a legal career, and showed how his experience as a musician and singer would make him a uniquely qualified law school applicant. 

And law schools took note (pun intended!), with this client getting admitted to multiple law schools with significant scholarships even though he had a below median gpa. So don’t be afraid to study something out-of-the-box in undergrad. 

What to do in undergrad to be a top law school applicant 

What you do in college can make the difference between acceptance/rejection at your dream school.

Here are my best tips: 

  1. Get good grades. Law schools care about your grades a lot, and maintaining a high gpa is the bare minimum these days for law schools. 
  2. Make connections with professors. You will need to get at least two (but I suggest three) letters of recommendation. Don’t wait until the last minute to start developing a relationship. The best recommendations come from professors who have known you and your work for years. 
  3. Choose the right extracurricular to make you stand out. Pursue extracurriculars and internships that will show you have (1) a consistent and substantive passion for something, and (2) the skills and traits of a successful lawyer (such as leadership, critical thinking, innovation, initiative, advocacy skills). The opportunities you pursue don’t have to be specifically law related, and in fact, often doing non-legal activities will help you stand out more. 

So for instance, if you are interested in going into environmental law, it would benefit your law school application more to pursue environmental related activities (such as sustainability clubs at school or an internship at a climate change non-profit), over law related ones. 

I worked with a pre-law mentee just like this. Together, we figured out what extracurriculars would actually move the needle for her law school applications, which for her, meant dropping pre-law society and mock trial, and focusing on getting a hands-on externship in an organization doing awesome sustainability work and had her doing tangible on-the-ground work on the very issues she wanted to one day advocate for as an attorney. 

These experiences helped her not only show she had passion for environmental justice, but also gave her skills and knowledge that would be directly applicable in her future legal career (yet that she might not gain in her legal career since she worked in areas not law related). Think about how much more she had to talk about in her application by pursuing these kinds of substantive experiences than if she had only mock trial or pre-law society talk about? 

Even if you don’t know what kind of law you want to pursue, you still can use your extracurriculars to stand out. I worked with a pretty typical pre-law applicant who knew he wanted to go to law school, but wasn’t sure what he wanted to do as a lawyer. 

In undergrad, he was very active in mock trials, and president of the pre-law society (as only a sophomore). These extracurriculars were doing great in showing off his leadership and advocacy skills, but were, candidly, not going to do much to help him stand out. 

So we brainstormed some ways to show his more innovative side, and I helped him get funding for and start a mock venture capital group at his school (which was great material for his law school application he could then relate to his desire to potentially go into corporate law). This is just one idea of how you want to strategize and complement your ECs with the application in mind.

Now that all being said, you are a human, not just a future law school applicant. You should genuinely choose extracurriculars that interest and excite you. But too many applicants end up spending time on things they’re not that interested in, and that won’t really move the needle that much for their law school application. So if you need permission to skip the weekly pre-law society general body meeting, I’m giving that and an hour of your time to you!

Frequently asked questions about the best majors for law school

Which major does best on the LSAT?

Economics majors tend to perform the best on the LSAT. According to the most recent report by the Law School Admission Council, Economics majors had a median LSAT score of 162, with = Philosophy and History majors following closely behind with a median LSAT score 160 and 159 respectively. 

What are the worst majors for law school? 

You know what the best majors for law school are. But there are no worst majors for law schools. As long as you can show that your major helped contribute to your path towards law school, any major can be an asset to your law school application. 

How long is law school? 

Law school is three years if you’re enrolled in a full-time program. Some schools offer four year part-time programs, such as Georgetown Law

Want to get accepted to a top law school? 

There you have it! Those are the best majors for law school.

But choosing your major is in no way the most important part of your application. While you can get into law school with almost any type of major, you do need a strong application to stand out and get accepted to top law schools.

I help law school applicants just like you create applications that get you accepted into one of your top 10 law schools. I’ve also helped students get millions in funding – and helped them plan ahead for a career after law school.

Want to learn more? 

Read more about my consulting here!

Read more: 

Is Law School Worth It?

The Best Law Schools in the US 


Hope you enjoy this blog post! Want to know how to use the power of your personal statement to get into your dream law school, even if you aren’t the “perfect” applicant?

Mara has helped countless law school applicants get into their dream law schools, even without a perfect GPA, the highest LSAT score, or most unique story. Mara used to be a litigator at one of the top law firms in the world and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania Law School as a prestigious Toll Public Interest Scholar.

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