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Tips for STEM Applicants

Applicants with a STEM background may have a leg up in law school admissions.

“Law is becoming enmeshed with science and technology, and not just in the burgeoning areas of health law, tech law, patent law and environmental law,” Gabriel Kuris, founder of Top Law Coach and contributor at US News, says. From forensic evidence to financial instruments, lawyers must increasingly draw upon scientific knowledge and quantitative skills. Artificial intelligence technologies are transforming the legal field altogether.”

Kuris recently offered a few tips on how STEM applicants should approach law school admissions to maximize their chances of getting admitted.


GPA can be a challenge for many STEM applicants as STEM majors tend to have lower grade averages than humanities and social science majors. If you’re worried about a low GPA, consider including a transcript addendum to give more context around your academic performance.

“Your addendum should typically be no longer than a couple of paragraphs and it should provide a concise, objective explanation about the circumstances that led to the anomaly on your application and offer an explanation as to why that particular issue will not affect your candidacy or ability to perform well in law school,” Mehran Ebadolahi, a consultant at LSATMax, says.


Law schools like to see applicants with strong work experience, but admissions officers care more about your achievements and less about the technical jargon of your job. Kuris recommends highlighting your experiences in a manner that is easily understandable.

“To adapt your resume for law school applications, replace technical terms with plain English,” Kuris says. “Weed out irrelevant specialized skills and qualifications. And consider using your personal statement or optional essays to explain your expertise and achievements. Major research papers are a great thing to highlight, even if they are technical in nature. Even readers who can’t fully appreciate the significance of your work will see that you have research and communication skills that are essential to legal practice.”


STEM applicants should be sure to emphasize their commitment to a legal career without coming across negatively about their previous experiences. Balancing your STEM experiences with your new career goals is key, Kuris says.

“Aim between those two extremes by acknowledging your career pivot but connecting your past pursuits to new career goals,” Kuris says. “For example, a former premedical student might explain how she realized she was not a good fit for laboratory work or patient care but gained a passion for addressing systemic issues of health care inequality through legal reforms.”

Sources: US News, LSATMax

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