Preparation for Legal Education

In accordance with the Law School Admissions Council and the pre-law committee of the American Bar Association, Xavier takes the following position regarding preparation for law school:

  • There is no particular major curriculum or course of study for a pre-law student. According to the pre-law committee of the American Bar Association (ABA), students who are successful in law school and who become accomplished lawyers come to their legal education from widely differing educational and experiential backgrounds. As undergraduate students, some have majored in subjects that are traditionally considered paths to law school such as history, English, philosophy, political science, economics or business. Other successful law students, however, have focused their undergraduate studies in areas as diverse as art, music, theory, computer science, engineering, nursing or education. Likewise, students have graduated from Xavier and have entered law school with majors in biology, business administration, English, history, mass communications, pharmacy, philosophy, political science, psychology and sociology. Moreover, law school recruiters indicate an interest in students from other disciplines like chemistry and engineering.
  • Students should pursue a broadly based program emphasizing skills in analytical reasoning and problem solving, critical reading abilities, writing, oral communication and listening, general research, task organization and management, and the values of serving others and promoting justice.
  • Additionally, there are some basic areas of knowledge that the ABA considers important to a legal education and to the development of a competent lawyer. According to the ABA, some of the following types of knowledge may be useful and might affect one’s ability to derive the maximum benefit from legal education:
    • A broad understanding of history, particularly American history, and the various factors (social, political, economic, and culture) that have influenced the development of the pluralist society that presently exists in the United States;
    • A fundamental understanding of political thought and theory, and of the contemporary American political system;
    • A basic understanding of ethical theory and the theories of justice;
    • A grounding in economics, particularly elementary micro-economic theory, and an understanding of the interaction between economic theory and public policy;
    • Some basic mathematical and financial skills, such as an understanding of basic pre-calculus, mathematics and an ability to analyze financial data;
    • A basic understanding of human behavior and social interaction; and
    • An understanding of diverse cultures within and beyond the United States, of international institutions and issues, and of the increasing interdependence of the nations and communities within our world.
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EST 1925