The American Bar Association requires you to have an undergraduate degree before you get into law school. Not only that, but the degree must be accredited by a known agency that is listed with schools Department of Education Database. This is the Database of Post-Secondary Institutions and Programs. If it’s linked there, consideration will be given to it.
The University of Idaho doesn’t lay out specific course for lawyers. There is high possibility with certain topics though. Courses in the following subject areas will do an aspiring lawyer well in their quest to their goal. That goal is getting into an American Bar Association law school. Those courses are:
- Political science.
- Any other major area of study.
How Do I Get to Law School?
The next stop to getting into an ABA accredited law school is to take the Law School Admission Test. Unfortunately, you need to wait at least three years and maybe longer for that. Most people take it after they’ve already graduated. It’s a six-hour test that has absolutely nothing at all to do with the practice of law. The test looks more at logic, problem solving and reading comprehension. You’ll be put through five 35-minute multiple choice questions and a writing sample. Here’s what they test for:
- A reading sample to see how well you read and understand certain valuable information.
- An analytical reasoning section to see how well you do with a relation or structure and answer questions about the structure.
- Logical reasoning where you must either find a statement true or false and support it. There are two sections of this.
- A variable section that won’t be counted, but you will not be told.
- A writing sample that will be sent to the schools that you apply to.
You can enroll in the LSAT and pay the $215 fee online. Pay it on time. These people are quite strict. Your test scores should be arriving about three weeks after the test. The lowest score on the test is a 120. The highest is a 180. At the University of Idaho, the medium score obtained is 153. A word of caution. There are five places across Idaho where you can take the test. You’re competing nationally. There are commercial test preparation companies out there. Use them. They’re only going to heighten your score rather than waiting for the next time and taking the test. Do it right!
Getting Your Application In
The Credential Assembly Service involved in your application is essential. The credential assembly service helps us to attend to getting transcripts, letters of recommendation and LSAT scores to all schools we’ve applied for. You can pay the CAS by paying $195 and $45 per school after that for up to three schools. If you want to apply to five or ten schools, just add another $45 per school.
Admission to Law School
Now that you’ve passed admission to law school, you are required to pass 83 semester hours in classes ranging from torts to wildlife law and policy, whatever your area of study is. Additionally, you’ll be must do a certain number of hours in pro bono, clinical or other studies. These programs will be evaluated and graded and count as part of your record.
The Bar Exam
Bar examiner have put together a list of what they think will help you pass the bar exam. There are also commercial businesses out there for this purpose. By all means, use one them. You’ll learn soon enough in your third year which course to take. You’ll take the actual bar exam in either Boise or Moscow. It’s a two-day exam. The parts of the exam are the following:
- First Day: Six 30-minute essay questions. Then the MEE is given and there is time for two multiple choice questions.
- Second Day: The MBE is given with 100 multiple choice questions in the morning and 100 in the afternoon.
The Application Process
All applications must be in by March 2, for the April exam and October 1, for the February exam. A check in the amount of $600 is due to the Idaho State Bar Application. Any checks received after April 16 or November 18, will be returned.
Multi-State Professional Responsibility Exam
Either before the exam or after taking it, you must pass the Multi-State Professional Exam. A scaled score if 85 or above is sufficient to pass.
You will be instructed as to when your admission ceremony is. Note that within 12 months of admission, you must also take the practical skills seminar.