Undergraduate Courses That Are Recommended for Law School

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Law school applicants should have a variety of courses on their transcripts, including studies in the areas of business, logic, and social studies, among others. While most colleges do not ask students to complete a set of required courses for law school, there are certain classes and majors that can best prepare students for the rigors of this field of study.

English Literature and Composition

A legal education will build on writing and analytical thinking, so courses that showcase a candidate's ability to excel in these areas will look good on an undergraduate transcript. Students must show a strong command of the English language through writing, reading, and speaking. While most students will find that their writing styles will definitely change in law school, they still must work to strengthen their skills during the undergraduate years. English courses might include literature studies, logic and reasoning, philosophy, public policy, and writing.


Students who are hoping to practice law in business-related areas, such as corporate law, real estate law, and tax law, will greatly benefit from early exposure to business studies. Business courses provide students with a strong command of business-related topics such as contracts, negotiations, and corporate structure. These courses require that students think critically and come up with solutions to intricate problems.

This coursework can also be useful for students who expect to practice law in the areas of government regulation, business litigation, and aspects of representing nonprofits. A business major, in particular, covers many subjects that a student will encounter in law school. Courses within this major include reading, writing, speaking, and learning about contracts, all skills that will provide a solid foundation for students ultimately seeking a law degree. Many business courses also cover basic analytics skills. Relevant courses include accounting, finance, and negotiation.

History, Government, and Politics 

The legal profession requires basic knowledge of the government, as well as its history and processes. Courses in these subjects are advised so that students have some understanding of the topics before beginning law school. Courses covering world history, government, jurisprudence, law, and taxation are usually reading-intensive, which is also great preparation for law school.


Students who study economics will be required to apply logical thinking to their studies, as well as to interpret and analyze complex data. Students might consider taking courses that cover the fundamentals of economics, the history of economics, and those that tackle the intersections of law and economics directly.

Political Science

This is one of the more popular degrees for pre-law students. Political science degrees are designed to expose students to the intricate nature of a complex judicial system. Politics and law go hand in hand, and these courses teach students about how our laws are both structured and carried out.

As a political science major, the pre-law student will learn how to speak in public. Students will learn about how different courts operate and about the Constitution and how it developed the foundations for our legal system. Along with developing an understanding of politics and law, students will also have the opportunity to write comparative papers on a variety of political issues. These courses might include public policy, international politics, leadership studies, and even courses related to current events.

Public Speaking

Students who are not political science majors need to seek out courses that emphasize public speaking skills. While students can enroll in public speaking classes, they should also practice speaking in public or to large groups of people—there's a lot of that in law school. This includes both giving in-class presentations as well as other public speaking endeavors. Writing for speech is also a skill that needs to be honed, not just speaking. Students should consider classes in debate, public speaking, and speech writing.

Additional Courses

Disciplines that study human behavior can also be useful, including both psychology and sociology. They involve critical thinking and analysis, two valuable legal skills. Many students will also benefit from exploring courses in criminology, anthropology, and even religion.

The bottom line is that students who want to prepare for law school should take courses that emphasize reading, writing, and critical thinking skills. Admissions officers look favorably on transcripts that show that a student has both practiced these skills and has done well in courses that require them. 

Two of the most important components of the law school application are the GPA and LSAT score. A competitive candidate should have scores and grades that are either at or above the school’s averages. Students can often distinguish themselves from a pack of applicants with similar testing scores by showing that they have taken a range of high-quality classes.

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Fabio, Michelle. "Undergraduate Courses That Are Recommended for Law School." ThoughtCo, Apr. 5, 2023, thoughtco.com/undergrad-courses-for-law-school-2154956. Fabio, Michelle. (2023, April 5). Undergraduate Courses That Are Recommended for Law School. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/undergrad-courses-for-law-school-2154956 Fabio, Michelle. "Undergraduate Courses That Are Recommended for Law School." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/undergrad-courses-for-law-school-2154956 (accessed June 6, 2023).