The American Bar Association “does not recommend any undergraduate majors or group of courses to prepare for a legal education. You may choose to major in subjects that are considered to be traditional preparation for law school, such as history, English, philosophy, political science, economics, or business…” (American Bar Association).
Law schools agree that a variety of majors prepare students for law school and admission offices at law schools all over the U.S. agree that there is no single preferred course of study for prelaw students. Instead, they recommend a variety of majors students may pursue in order to prepare for law school. The U.S. Department of Labor (www.bls.gov/oco/Ocos053.htm) recommends that students who wish to attend law school should become proficient in writing and speaking, reading, researching, analyzing and thinking critically. The Department of Labor recommends “Courses in English, foreign languages, public speaking, government, philosophy, history, economics, mathematics and computer science, among others.” Students may also find useful any courses that acquaint students with legal vocabulary and “hypothetical” exam questions, a staple of law school exams.
Some of the MSSU majors that help prepare a student for law school include: Political Science, History, International Studies, Accounting, Criminal Justice, English, and Sociology. There is also a Legal Studies minor available to any student regardless of major.The Legal Studies minor is intended to help students prepare for law school.
There are a variety of courses which would be helpful to any student desiring to enter law school no matter what major he or she chooses. The curriculum for prelaw students should be jointly planned by the student and an adviser from one of the departments below. The student may major in almost any discipline emphasizing development of the academic skills necessary to prepare the student for performing well on the LSAT and for the rigorous study required in law school. The major may be determined by the student’s general area of academic interest and by the type of law the student plans to practice, such as government service, private practice, corporate law, criminal prosecution or criminal defense.
The LSAT (Law School Admission Test) is available on the MSSU campus. The LSAT is required by all ABA accredited schools of law in the United States. For more information about taking the LSAT contact MSSU Advising, Counseling, and Testing Services at 417-625-9324 or ACTS@mssu.edu
Dr. Theresa A. Agee
Professor Accounting - Management
PLASTR Rm 309B
Dr. Joanna L. Derfelt
Asst Prof of Political Science - Social Science
Dr. Trina J. Scott
Prof Criminal Justice - Criminal Justice
JUSTCE Rm 104