UL-Lafayette Pre-Law Advising

Introduction and Overview

Deciding to pursue a law degree, and then working toward that goal, requires a great deal of careful planning and sustained effort. To help you make a more informed decision, the following links provide helpful information and resources for individuals thinking about going to law school. Perhaps the best place to start your information gathering and decision-making process is the "Pre-Law Mini-Guide" below, which offers concise information to help you answer two basic, initial questions: (1) "Do I want to go to law school?" and, if so, then (2) "How do I get into law school?"

Pre-Law Mini Guide By UL Pre-Law Advisor Dr. Rick Swanson. A basic summary of information to help you decide whether you want to go to law school, and if so, then how to maximize your chances of getting into law school. Besides the information contained in this handout and in the links on this webpage, for further information and advice about law school and possible careers in law, contact Dr. Swanson at or at 337-482-6164 or stop by his office in Mouton Hall room 231 on the UL-Lafayette campus.

Deciding Whether to Go To Law School

  • Read the Pre-Law Mini Guide by UL Pre-Law Advisor Dr. Rick Swanson for things to do to help you decide whether law school or a legal career is for you.
  • Lawyers Detailed description of the practice of law, from the Occupational Outlook Handbook, by the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • Find Satisfaction in the Law from Findlaw.com
  • National Association of Legal Professionals Data on legal careers, placements, and salaries.
  • Legal Career Info from LawCareersNow.com
  • Read the book "What Can You Do With a Law Degree? (5th Edition) by Deborah Arron (Seattle, WA: Niche Press, 2004)
  • Read the book "The Official Guide to Legal Specialties" by Lisa Abrama (Chicago, IL: Harcourt Legal, 2000)

Preparing and Applying for Law School

  • Read the Pre-Law Mini Guide by UL Pre-Law Advisor Dr. Rick Swanson for things to do to prepare you to apply to, and succeed in, law school.
  • Preparing for the LSAT By UL Pre-Law Advisor Dr. Rick Swanson. Information on how to maximize your performance on the Law School Admission Test.
  • Writing a Personal Statement by UL Pre-Law Advisor Dr. Rick Swanson. Information on writing a high-quality personal statement.

    Note: The above handouts by Dr. Swanson are also available in printed form in the Political Science Department Office in room 112 Mouton, or from Dr. Swanson in his office in room 231 Mouton Hall.

  • Preparing for Law School from the American Bar Association (ABA).

  • The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) is the official one-stop location for everything related to applying to law school. The LSAC no longer distributes printed information booklets; all their information is now located entirely on-line on their website at www.lsac.org which contains official information and materials, including:

    • Information and advice on choosing a legal career, choosing a law school, and preparing for law school.
    • Law School Admission Test (LSAT) registration, information, and practice.
    • American Bar Assocation--Law School Admission Council (ABA-LSAC) Official Guide to U.S. Accredited Law Schools
    • Credential Assembly Service (CAS) information and registration, required by most law schools in applying to them.
    • Financial aid information for law school.

  • Law School preparation materials are on permanent reserve at the circulation desk of UL's Dupre Libary, under the course listing "POLS 382." These materials are available for in-libary use for a four-hour time limit per use. These materials include LSAT information, advice, and previous LSAT exams (some with answers and explanations). Also available are a guide to law schools, and advice for writing personal statements (including numerous example essays).

  • Law School Admission Test (LSAT) preparation courses and on-line LSAT advice, help, or practice questions:

Regional Law Schools (Louisiana, Mississippi, Southern Arkansas, Eastern Texas)

Again, if you have any other questions, please contact UL Pre-Law Advisor Dr. Rick Swanson via e-mail at or at 337-482-6164, or stop by his office in Mouton Hall room 231 on the UL campus.

Department of Political Science, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Mouton Hall Room 112, P.O. Box 1652, Lafayette, LA 70504-1652
Tel. 337-482-6171; E-mail: pols@louisiana.edu