People interested in a career as a lawyer must acquire the legal knowledge and pass the appropriate testing to enter this profession. A law student will take seven years of academic study: four years to earn a bachelor's degree and three years of law school training. The person must then pass the written bar examination through the American Bar Association to practice law in most states.
Before enrolling into the four-year undergraduate course, the law student should have developed basic skills that can be useful for the student to excel in legal courses. Basic knowledge in English, public speaking and history will give the student necessary skills to draft legal documents, conduct himself in a professional manner during court trials and research past trial information and legal codes to build court cases.
Core Program Classes
A law student will study core courses during the first year of entering law school. These classes are required for the student to understand law aspects such as property law, constitutional law and civil procedures. The law student also gains the knowledge in drafting legal contracts, and should have a proficiency in writing to pass this study course.
Specialized Career Knowledge
Once learning the basic knowledge of law, the student can take courses to specialize in certain lawyer-related fields. For a student wishing to have a career as a patent lawyer, he must acquire knowledge in engineering or science. A student who wishes to become a tax lawyer would need additional education in accounting and finance, and a student interested in becoming a criminal lawyer must gain an understanding of criminology and forensic science.
Clinical programs give law students the hands-on knowledge of becoming a lawyer. The project is supervised by certified lawyers and law school faculty as it allows the student to work in a variety of legal aid offices, law firms and corporate legal departments. The clinical programs help the students to see firsthand how their acquired knowledge of law procedures works in an actual legal environment.
Based in southwestern Pennsylvania, Michelle Hickman has written since 2006 on an array of topics including lifestyle, writing instruction and financial services. Her first articles appeared in "The Pittsburgh Tribune Review: Focus Magazine." She holds a certification in computer and information science from Central Westmoreland Career and Technology Center.