Pre-Law

Why Go Into Law?

Denison graduates are successful in gaining admission to law schools across the country. Students' performance on the Law School Admission Test and their academic records are the major determining factors in the admissions decision. The acceptance rate of Denison graduates is consistently well-above the national average.

Law school—and the legal profession—is for people who like debating, assembling and developing facts, expressing ideas clearly, probing issues and problems to basic premises or solutions, conducting interviews to obtain information, and the art of negotiating. If you enjoy reading and studying, analyzing logically and precisely, disputing and arguing, and both speaking and writing, then you will probably enjoy the rigorous study of law as well as a career in the practice of law.

Explore the field of law by completing a Denison Internship or spending a full summer working in a law firm or another legal environment. See if you like thinking and writing as a lawyer. Find out if you feel comfortable in a legal setting. Representatives from a number of schools regularly visit the campus. Attending career panels, programs and completing internships in legal settings helps students make informed career decisions.

Law School Timetable

Before launching into the law school application process, spend some time examining your motivation to develop a career in law. Self-assessment is an important first step. Ask yourself questions like:

  • What is it about the practice of law that attracts me?
  • What skills do I have that would make me a good attorney?
  • What are my values and ideals and how will they relate to a legal career?
  • What, in fact, do lawyers do?
  • Is that really what I want to spend my life doing?
  • Are there other careers which would be more appropriate for my skills, interests, attitudes, and values?
  • Talk with Denison alumni or attorneys in your community who are practicing law. Ask them what it is about the legal profession that they find satisfying and unsatisfying. Get in touch with J.D.'s who are using their legal degree outside the more traditional law firm environment. Talk with those who have left the practice of law for other career fields, and ask them why they have taken another direction. Read books and articles about careers in law. Find out about the job market and salary ranges of attorneys. Consider how you will finance your legal education.