Planning to Attend Law School?

Are you thinking about a career in law? Start by checking out this UM Pre-Law Handbook, which contains information about what you can study as an undergraduate in addition to information about the LSAT and law school admission process.

Additionally, one of your first steps during the planning process is to learn more about the law school application timeline by stopping in the Toppel Career Center for assistance. Our staff can provide you with an overview and your next steps in the process. Additionally, as you begin preparing for your law school applications during your Junior and Senior years, the recommendation is to meet with one of Toppel's coaches to receive the guidance needed. Our coaches at Toppel can assist you with all aspects of the application process, from reviewing the various phases of the application process, sharing what law school admission officers are seeking in candidates, helping you to identify law programs, and providing resources to aid in researching law school programs.

Join the Pre-Law Community: Register here to stay in the know of upcoming pre-law events and opportunities.

Pre-Law Student's Plan to Applying to Law School

Freshman/Sophomore Years Junior Year Senior Year

Continuous throughout Fr. and So. years

  • Meet with your pre-law coach to develop an academic plan
  • Review available cognates and courses to expose you to law related themes and topics
  • Consider joining a pre-law affiliated organization or other student organizations and activities of interest
  • Begin to establish relationships with professors, faculty, and campus staff
  • Take on internships or a paid job of interest to gain valuable practical experience (Positions do not have to be law related)

Recommended completion is August – December

  • Meet with your pre-law coach to review plan and ensure you are positioning yourself to be a competitive candidate
  • Begin researching law programs and organize deadlines, application requirements, and familiarize yourself with the program’s offerings and applicant profile
  • Attend LSAC Law School Forums
  • Create an account on the Law School Admission Council website – org
  • Begin researching LSAT prep courses and materials

 Recommended completion is Jan. – July

  • Start preparing for the LSAT
  • Identify and contact recommenders for letters of recommendation
  • Take LSAT for first time in June or July (Sept. is also an option)
  • Review your resume and personal statement draft with your pre-law coach
  • If needed, you can apply for LSAT held in September or October


  • Organize application deadlines for list of schools you plan to apply
  • Meet with your pre-law coach to ensure your resume and personal statement are finalized
  • Sign-up and pay for Credential Assembly Service on to manage your transcripts, letters of recommendation, and other key components of your application
  • Request application fee waivers by attending LSAC Law School Forums

September – October

  • Begin submitting applications – A majority of schools open their process in September and October
  • If needed, take the October LSAT 

November – December

  • Recommend contacting programs where you submitted applications to confirm applications are complete
  • If needed, take the November LSAT

January – February

  • Submit financial aid paper work

March – April

  • Begin to evaluate acceptance offers and financial aid packages

Available Resources

Social Sciences & Pre-law Career Circle

The Social Sciences & Pre-law career circle is for anyone pursuing a degree in the social sciences and interested in a career in law. 

Applying to Law School Infographic

An overview of navigating the law school application process.

Miami Law Pre-Law Headquarters

This page provides helpful resources as you decide if attending law school is in your future.

LSAT Prep Courses and Instructors

This list provides a variety of options as you identify preparation courses that can teach you strategies that will help increase your LSAT scores.

Toppel Personal Statement Guide

Our personal statement guide will help get you started in creating this important piece of your application.

509 American Bar Association Reports

Utilize these reports when researching and comparing law programs, bar passage rates, and employment outcomes for each program graduating class.

Recommended Cognates for Pre-Law Students

A cognate is a group of at least three courses, for at least nine credit hours, that share a theme or focus determined by the faculty. Below is a list of cognates that will provide an overview of the law discipline. The Cognate Search Engine can help you shape a program of learning that is broad, coherent, exciting, substantive, and uniquely your own. This PDF document contains a list of cognates that may be of particular interest to pre-law students.

Above the Law

Pre-law students can use this site to stay on top of trends, news, and insights of the law industry. Additionally, provided articles share tips and strategies in creating your application documents and the law school application process.

UM Pre-Law Organizations

Above the Bar

Above the Bar is a multicultural organization for University of Miami pre-law students to ensure their matriculation into law school. The mission is specifically to educate, elevate, and demonstrate ways to thrive utilizing tools, forums, and platforms. 

Debate Team

It is the mission of the debate program at UM to provide participating students a valuable educational activity with a primary emphasis on intercollegiate debate competition. Public debate experience and community service to middle school, high school and developing college programs are important secondary components of the mission of the UM debate team. 

Ethics Society

The UM Ethics Society endeavors to spread understanding of ethics and critical thinking throughout society – in law, medicine, politics, business, and all other aspects of life. We will delve into these issues mainly through competitive debate, but also through special programs, panel discussions and collaborations with student orgs. 

Model United Nations

The purpose of the Model United Nations Team is to provide opportunities for students at the University of Miami who are interested in developing leadership, diplomacy, research, and debate skills. The students focus on global issues by actively participating in various activities and attending collegiate conferences throughout the nation.

Phi Alpha Delta Pre-Law Fraternity

The purpose of Phi Alpha Delta is to provide undergraduate students with opportunities to learn about the law school admissions process, legal institutions, and careers involving law. The goal of Phi Alpha Delta is to present students with sufficient information for them to make informed decisions about applying to law schools and eventually becoming professionals in the field of law.

Sociology and Criminology Club

We offer a positive learning environment for students with an interest in the fields of sociology and criminology. We regularly have guest speakers and are involved in events such as Relay for Life and Walk a Mile in Her Shoes.

 UM Mock Trial

UM Mock Trial is a competitive team in the American Mock Trial Association national circuit that works towards fostering interest and growth in the fields of litigation and trial advocacy, as well as provide a unique, learning-through-doing experience.

Summer Experience Programs & Institutes for Pre-law Students  

University of Miami Summer Legal Academy for Undergraduate Students

University of California Davis School of Law 

Cornell University Pre-Law Summer Program

Duke Law D.C. Summer Institute on Law and Policy

Yale Law School LaunchPad Scholars

Please visit this site for additional programs and information.

Recommended Courses to Consider

  • Intro to sociology SOC 101
  • Social problems SOC 103
  • Criminal justice
  • Social inequalities SOC 303
  • Criminology
  • Intro to psychology
  • Abnormal psychology
  • Industrial & organizational psychology
  • Critical reasoning
  • Logic and law
  • Ethics
  • Intro to American Gov POL 201
  • Constitutional law 1&2 POL 373/4
  • Administrative law
  • Intro to International politics POL 203
  • Comparative politics POL 202
  • Politics of Civil rights
  • English composition ENG 105/6
  • US history
  • Public speaking COS 211
  • Advanced Oral Advocacy COS 311
  • Argumentation COS 377
  • Intro to economics
  • Business law BSL
  • Corporate law
  • Negotiations
  • Art of government in Greece & Rome

For additional information about pre-law events, email Toppel at