10: School of Law

General Information | Admission Information | Financial Aid Information | Career Services
Degree Programs | Academic Regulations | Student Activities and Awards
Annual Law School Awards and Honors | Course Descriptions | Faculty

Regular Students | Special Students

Regular Students

Candidates for the degree of Juris Doctor must have attained the age of 18 years (counting to the nearest birthday) before entering the School of Law, must produce a certificate of good character from each school or college attended, or from another satisfactory source, and must conform to the general requirements set forth below. The Law School does not offer a summer session.

Applicants should inform themselves of the character and other qualifications for admission to the Bar of the state in which they intend to practice.

Academic Requirements   Each candidate must present evidence that he or she is a graduate of an accredited college.

Candidates for admission who have not completed the required entrance credits will not be admitted with the privilege of making up the deficiency.

Applications for Admission   Applications for admission must be submitted on forms obtainable from the Admissions Office. Students beginning their study of law are accepted only for the fall semester starting in late August of each year.

Applications may be filed after the completion of six semesters or the equivalent of undergraduate work. Application volume has been around 3,500 in recent years, and we therefore want to urge applicants to file and complete their applications as soon as possible in order to allow the Admissions Office sufficient time to process them efficiently. Because of the problems encountered during the past several years with processing the large volume of applications we have been receiving, the Committee on Admissions established January 15 as the deadline for receipt of applications for admission. All required materials, in addition to the application form itself, should be received at the Admissions Office prior to that date. The Committee on Admissions may, at its discretion, accept or reject applications received after that date. Whenever possible, we suggest that the application be filed and completed by January 1.

It is the policy of the Committee on Admissions to make every effort to accommodate all those who wish a personal interview. Interviews are granted between October 1 and January 15. Unfortunately, it has been our recent experience that the volume of requests outstrips our interviewing capacities. Last year, for example, it was not possible to meet the heavy demand. Therefore, the committee asks that the applicant call or write for an appointment as early as possible, and urges that those who seek interviews try to arrange visits prior to the first of the year.

All applicants will be notified, upon acceptance, that they will be required to pay a deposit to secure a place in the entering class. This deposit will be credited toward tuition.

Standards for Admission   In recent years, the admission process at the University of Virginia School of Law has been rigorously selective. Spatial restrictions have necessitated the denial of admission to hundreds of applicants who would otherwise have been routinely accepted.

The Committee on Admissions believes that an absolute standard based solely on a combination of LSAT score and undergraduate grade point average (GPA) is neither the most equitable nor the most effective way to select an entering class. Consequently, the committee considers a broad array of elements in addition to the essential factors of LSAT and GPA. The committee’s purpose is to assemble a diverse student body while at the same time arriving at a fair appraisal of each applicant based on many factors, both subjective and objective, quantitative and qualitative.

This broad array of data used in determining admissions decisions makes it difficult to predict what action may be taken on an individual application. The LSAT score and GPA surely are the primary determinants for the committee. However, the committee views these factors in the context of the maturing effect on an individual of some years spent away from formal education; continuing improvement in academic performance as opposed to steady but unexceptional work; financial pressure requiring employment while a full-time student; significant personal achievement in extracurricular work at college or in a work or military situation; and unusual prior training, background, or ethnicity that promises a significant contribution to the Law School community. In addition, economic, social, or educational obstacles that have been overcome successfully by an applicant have contributed to favorable consideration. Other similar factors are also considered.

Law School Admission Test   The School of Law cooperates with the Law School Admission Council in the preparation and development of the Law School Admission Test. All applicants for admission are required to take the test. Test scores are used to supplement college records and other criteria that determine admission.

For the convenience of applicants taking the Law School Admission Test, examination centers have been established in many colleges throughout the country, and the test is offered in October, December, February, and June. Applicants are urged to take the test in October. Applicants with outstanding academic records who score poorly on the first test and who have good reason to believe they can improve their performance significantly should seriously consider retaking the test. Application forms and further information concerning the test may be obtained from the Law School Admission Services, Box 2000, Newtown, PA 18940.

LSDAS   The applicant should register with Law School Data Assembly Service (LSDAS) by completing and mailing the registration form which may be obtained from LSDAS. A transcript from each college or university attended should then be sent not to the law school but directly to: Law School Admission Services, Box 2000, Newtown, PA 18940.

The LSDAS will analyze and duplicate the transcript. If you are accepted, you will be asked to submit a final transcript, showing the award of a bachelor’s degree, directly to the School of Law.

Admission From Other Law Schools   No person who has previously attended any law school in the United States shall be eligible for admission as a student in this School of Law unless he or she is eligible for re-admission to the law school previously attended. Applications of students contemplating transfer with advanced standing will not be acted upon until one full year of work has been completed.

Advanced Standing Credit   Credit toward the degree of Juris Doctor in this School of Law, in no event to exceed the equivalent of the work of three full quarters or two semesters, may, at the discretion of the dean or assistant dean, or upon vote of the law faculty, be given for courses satisfactorily passed in a law school in the United States which is either approved by the American Bar Association or is a member of the Association of American Law Schools. Similar credits may in like manner be given for work done in law schools outside the United States.

No credit shall be given for work in any single session during which the student failed in two or more courses, nor shall credit be given for any course in which the student did not receive a grade of D (or the equivalent) or better, and credits once given may be withdrawn for unsatisfactory work in this School. The dean and assistant dean are given power to make such rulings and adjustments as shall be necessary for the fair and equitable administration of this general provision.

Transfer students are eligible to participate in combined degree programs with other departments and schools of the University, and to receive academic credit for graduate-level courses taken in other departments and schools of the University on the same basis as regularly enrolled students. In considering the admission of a transfer student to a combined degree program or the authorization of non-Law School credit for a transfer student, the faculty advisor or the assistant dean, as the case may be, may take into account the transfer applicant’s academic record and the institution from which he or she has transferred.

Health   Students who have been admitted to the University must complete a personal medical history form. Appropriate forms are sent after admission is granted. All health requirements must be met prior to registration.

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