The John Marshall Law School in Chicago is a private school that has a low faculty-to-student ratio in order to provide students more individual attention. Specialties include Intellectual Property Law and Legal Writing, and it is one of the few law schools that offer a part-time program. The school is not ranked, but it is accredited by the American Bar Association. Though the school is not one of the top law schools in the country, students with the best academic records are those who have the best chance of being admitted. The school evaluates students based on criteria like grades, test scores, and letters of recommendation.
Applicants must submit official copies of their transcripts from all undergraduate institutions that they have attended. Though no specific curriculum or grade-point average is required, students who demonstrate academic excellence through rigorous course selection and good grades have the best chance of being admitted. For the Fall 2013 entering class, the school received approximately 2,300 applications, and the top applicants had an average GPA of 3.52. Applicants in the 50th percentile had a GPA of 3.23.
The Law School Admissions Test is considered a measurement of how well a student can be expected to perform in law school. Scores range from a low of 120 to a maximum of 180. Students who score well on the exam are believed to have the best chance of success in law school. Like grades, there is no minimum LSAT score that applicants are required to have to get in to the John Marshall Law School. The top applicants in the Fall 2013 entering class had an average score of 156, while the applicants in the 50th percentile had a score of 152. Students who do not perform well on the LSAT can take it again in an effort to improve their score.
Letters of Recommendation
Applicants typically submit two to three letters of recommendation. However, the John Marshall Law School will allow students to send up to five. Since these letters can really speak to students' capabilities and the strengths that make them unique, it is advisable for students to take advantage of this opportunity and send all five, if they can. Students should ask professors, work supervisors or research mentors who have worked with them directly and who can speak to their professional or academic abilities.
Most schools require that students submit a personal statement. Unlike most schools, the John Marshall Law School does not provide a specific topic on which students should write. With the topic left open, students have the opportunity to really show off who they are, what they have accomplished, and what is important to them -- all of which can help to distinguish them in the eyes of the admissions committee. The John Marshall Law School says that the statement should be two to four pages in length, and it suggests that students include information such as examples of leadership, community service and other achievements.
Maria Magher has been working as a professional writer since 2001. She has worked as an ESL teacher, a freshman composition teacher and an education reporter, writing for regional newspapers and online publications. She has written about parenting for Pampers and other websites. She has a Master's degree in English and creative writing.