The road to law school starts here.

UNI’s strong academic programs will prepare you to succeed in the law school of your choice. Our faculty pre-law advisors will assist you through all stages of preparation including course selection, Pre-Law Club involvement, LSAT preparation and application assistance. 

UNI has developed 3+3 program partnerships with the University of Iowa College of Law and Drake University Law School to make the process of earning a law degree more efficient. These accelerated programs allow you to complete a bachelor’s degree at UNI and a Juris Doctorate at Iowa or Drake in six years rather than the normal seven.

university of northern iowa law student in boardroom
university building icon

3+3 Partnerships

Earn your Juris Doctorate in six years rather than seven at the University of Iowa College of Law or Drake University Law School

graduation cap icon

Personal Advisors

Pre-law advisors are here to assist you through all stages of law school preparation

handshake icon

Pre-Law
Club

UNI Pre-law Club will connect you with working lawyers and introduce you to law school representatives to help with the application process

Preparing for Law School

Although we often refer to “pre-law” students, there is no such thing as a standard pre-law curriculum, and at UNI there is no particular pre-law major. There are, however, certain standards that law schools expect students’ undergraduate work to live up to. Law school is extremely demanding, and admissions committees are looking for students who have the skills that are likely to lead to success in law school and in their subsequent careers. These skills are fostered through supplementing UNI’s core curriculum with challenging courses throughout a broad range of majors.

According to the American Bar Association, there is a list of skills, values, knowledge and experience that will provide a sound foundation for a legal education. They include:

  • Problem Solving
  • Critical Reading
  • Writing and Editing
  • Oral Communication and Listening
  • Research
  • Organization and Management
  • Public Service and Promotion of Justice
  • Relationship-building and Collaboration
  • Background Knowledge
  • Exposure to the Law

Common Pre-Law Majors

Economics Major

Economics often involves topics like wealth, finance, recessions and banking, leading to the misconception that it is all about money. Actually, an economics education helps you understand historical trends, interpret today’s headlines and make predictions for the coming years.

Political Science Major

As a political science major, you'll learn how to to take on and talk about important and complex issues related to government, power and social change. Political science graduates often go on to law school or graduate programs that focus on international diplomacy, political science, public administration and public policy. 

Philosophy Major

Philosophy examines such fundamental human questions as the nature of knowledge, rational thought, ethics, beauty, justice, language, scientific inquiry and the human self. Students of philosophy develop a mastery of analytical thinking skills and effective written and oral communication, giving them a competitive edge as they seek careers in a global marketplace.

3+3 Partnerships

Partnerships with Drake University Law School and the University of Iowa College of Law are designed for you to complete both a bachelor’s degree at UNI and Juris Doctorate in six years, rather than the traditional seven years.

You may choose any major to complete the 3+3 program, but it must be one that will allow you to complete its requirements before the end of your junior year. This will require careful planning and coordination with your academic and pre-law advisors.

University of Iowa College of Law 3+3 Program

Drake University Law School 3+3 Program

 The Old Capitol located on the University of Iowa campus. (Photo courtesy of the University of Iowa)
 The Old Capitol located on the University of Iowa campus. (Photo courtesy of the University of Iowa)

Pre-Law FAQs

Pursuing your law degree can be timely, costly and confusing process. Below are some answers to the most frequently asked questions by students and parents. 

First and Second Years of Your Undergraduate

  • Take interesting and challenging Liberal Arts Core classes. Make sure you’re taking classes that help you improve problem solving, logical thinking, reading and writing skills.
  • Talk to your academic advisor about your goals, your possible interest in law school, and how your course of study relates. Plan out course of study to permit light course-load during semester preparing for LSAT.
  • Meet with pre-law advisor periodically to discuss interest and goals
  • Once choose a major, discuss with academic advisor and pre-law advisor whether any additional courses would be useful to help prepare for law school
  • Write a draft of your personal statement at least once each year and get feedback from pre-law advisor
  • Attend UNI Pre-law Club events to learn about the legal profession and law school
     

Junior Year of Your Undergraduate

  • Take Elementary Logic (PHIL 1030)
  • If possible, plan to take a light course load during semester studying for LSAT
  • Visit with pre-law advisor to discuss preparing for LSAT
  • Devote at least 200 hours to LSAT preparation
  • If you haven’t already, consider internship, job shadow, and/or volunteer opportunities that will help you explore your interests in legal careers
  • Attend UNI Pre-law Club events to learn about the legal profession and law school
  • Before school dismisses, ask professors to write letters of rec for you.
  • Over summer, start on resume and personal statement
  • Narrow down list of schools considering applying to
     

Senior Year of Your Undergraduate

  • Take the LSAT no later than September/October.
  • By early September, ask professors for letter of rec and provide with any information they request to help them write it
  • Write and edit resume and personal statements. Be sure to get input from pre-law advisor on drafts
  • Visit with pre-law advisor to finalize list of schools to apply for, in light of LSAT scores
  • Submit applications no later than Thanksgiving
  • Visit with pre-law advisor as you make final decision about where to attend.
  • Notify school that you’re accepting offer and pay seat deposit