On average, the cost of law school tuition for 2019-2020 landed around $40,244, according to US News.
Price and value are key determining factors when looking at what law school to attend. Crush the LSAT, a law school prep resource, recently examined economic factors applicants should consider when selecting a law school and how to manage common expenses.
COSTS TO CONSIDER
The total cost of law school includes much more than just tuition.
The cost of attendance also includes fees that can add to the total out-of-pocket expense.
“You may be charged fees associated with maintaining the college or university, such as transportation, athletic events, and technology,” Valerie Keene, of Crush the LSAT, writes. “These fees often add several thousand dollars onto the price tag for attending law school.”
Additionally, applicants should take into consideration the cost for things such as books, technology, and room and board.
HOW TO REDUCE COSTS
There are a number of ways students can reduce costs when it comes to earning a law degree.
For one, attending a public law school can help save on tuition costs. The average tuition and fees cost of private law schools in 2019-2020 was $49,548, according to US News. That’s nearly $7,800 higher than the average annual out-of-state tuition and fees of a public law school.
Additionally, financial aid can help to alleviate the cost of tuition. Experts highlight that financial aid for a graduate degree is not the same as a bachelor’s degree.
“It is important to understand that a decent amount of the financial aid that’s available when you’re seeking your bachelor’s degree won’t be available on the graduate level,” Keene writes. “This includes need-based federal grants or work-study programs. Consequently, the primary forms of aid at this level will be student loans (that nobody really wants) and scholarships.”
Keene suggests applicants seek out merit-based scholarships for the most value.
“Many schools don’t have separate applications for financial aid and will simply offer awards based on strong applications,” Keene writes. “However, don’t underestimate the importance of a good law school essay; this can often put you ahead of others or make up for a deficiency in your application.”
Check out more ways to reduce law school costs here.