By: Hannah Werner

Like undergrad, law schools are uniquely personal to each student that applies. Some may want to stay as close to home as possible, others may grasp the opportunity to leave their home state for somewhere more desirable. Either way, the factors that people use to determine the best law school for them can vary on the individual and what they value the most.

1. Rank

      Many will select their law school based on how high it is ranked in the country. Law students understand that the higher the ranking of a law school, the more desirable a product of that law school is after graduation. Attending Yale or Harvard may open more doors than a lower ranked school may afford students.

      2. Location

      Some students decide where they live before they narrow down their decision to a specific school. For example, when I began my law school journey, I knew I wanted to stay in my home state of Illinois. Therefore, I only applied to Chicago-local schools. While it was Chicago for me, other people may determine that Dallas or New York City are the areas for them and then narrow down the specific law schools in the area.

      3. Specialization

      Similar to undergraduate schools, law schools can be known for specific programs or specializations. If a student knows that they want to enter into Intellectual Property law after graduating from law school, they may decide that attending a school known for its intellectual property program is in their best interest. This opportunity allows the student to focus on their area of interest and come out of law school with the knowledge that they got the best education in their practice area possible.

      4. Scholarship

      Money (or lack thereof) is often a factor for law students. Should a law school offer a potential student more scholarship than other programs, it could be the deciding factor for determining which school to attend. If a student can attend a good law school with minimal debt, that can be very intriguing to those that do not want to be ruled by student debt for the rest of their life.

      5. Practice State

      Like law school location, law students may look primarily at schools in the state or region where they hope to practice after passing the bar. If a student knows that Midwest is best, they may narrow down the schools they are looking at to those in the Midwest. By narrowing a search down to a specific state or region, one is likely to learn about specific laws in the area and complexities that may exist in their future practice state.