admiss-instructions

Application Instructions

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Michigan State University College of Law's (MSU Law) selective admissions process is designed to identify individuals who have the potential to excel in their legal studies and the practice of law. The review process is holistic, giving attention to a number of factors beyond the applicant's undergraduate academic record and the highest score on the Law School Admission Test.

The Admissions Committee encourages applicants to apply for admission at the earliest possible date prior to March 1 in order to be in the best possible position for a timely admission decision and scholarship consideration. However, the Office of Admissions will continue to accept applications until April 30. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis beginning in early November. Please note that MSU Law only enrolls applicants on a full-time basis during their first year of studies.  

Along with submitting the completed application, the following are requirements for applying to MSU Law:

  • LSAT: You must register for and take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), unless you meet the requirements of our pilot program for Michigan State University students, and register with the Credential Assembly Service (CAS) through the Law School Admission Council (LSAC).
  • Transcripts: As part of the CAS, you must provide an official copy of all undergraduate transcript(s) to LSAC. You must possess a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university prior to enrollment.
  • Letters of Recommendation: You must arrange for MSU Law to receive two letters of recommendation written by individuals who are able to offer insightful comments regarding your potential for success in law school and/or your suitability for the practice of law. Letters of recommendation should be submitted through LSAC's Letter of Recommendation Service.
  • Résumé: You must provide a professional résumé.
  • Personal Statement: You must provide a personal statement of no more than three pages in length. The personal statement may address any topic; however, the following questions may be helpful when preparing your personal statement.
    • What motivates you to pursue a legal education?
    • What personal or professional goals have you established for yourself?
    • In what ways have your life experiences prepared you to succeed in law school?
    • In what ways have you encountered and overcome instances of adversity, and how might such experiences contribute to your effectiveness as an attorney?
    • In what ways might you contribute to diversity within the MSU Law student body and the legal profession?  
    • Are there particular reasons you have for applying to Michigan State University College of Law?
  • Optional Diversity Statement: MSU Law seeks to have a diverse and inclusive environment. You are invited to submit an optional two-page diversity statement on how your experiences, personal attributes, or character will add to the inclusive culture at MSU Law. This statement should speak to something different beyond what was discussed in the personal statement. 
  • Supplemental Addenda: Though not required, the Admissions Committee allows applicants to submit supplemental statement(s) that address extenuating circumstances affecting college performance, weak performance on standardized exams, or other contextual information that might relate to an applicant's potential for success in law school.
  • International Applicants: If your first language is not English and you have not earned a baccalaureate or graduate degree from a U.S. educational institution, the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is required. Additionally, if your postsecondary work was completed outside of the U.S. or Canada, you are required to use the LSAC JD Credential Assembly Service for evaluation of your university transcript.
  • Application Fee: You must submit the required application fee of $60. If you are unable to provide this fee, a fee waiver request may be directed to the MSU Law Office of Admissions at to admiss@law.msu.edu prior to submission of your application through LSAC.

Your application file will not be reviewed until all required materials are received by the Office of Admissions. You are encouraged to monitor the status of your application.

Pilot Program for Michigan State University Students

As part of a pilot program, MSU Law will allow select applicants without a Law School Admissions Test (LSAT) score to apply for Fall 2019 admission to the Juris Doctor (J.D.) program. Applicants eligible to apply without an LSAT score fall into two groups: Michigan State University (MSU) undergraduate students, and admitted or current MSU graduate students.

The LSAT remains the single biggest predictor of success in law school and on a bar examination. Therefore, MSU Law strongly recommends that all applicants take the LSAT so that they remain competitive at all schools to which they apply. However, if you are an MSU student and meet the eligibility requirements below, but have a valid LSAT score on file, you will not be able to apply via this pilot program.

MSU Undergraduate Students

Undergraduate students in MSU’s Honors College, College of Engineering, and James Madison College who:

  1. Have an SAT or ACT score that is less than five (5) years old that places them in the 85th percentile or above on either test; AND
  2. Achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.6 or higher through six (6) semesters of academic work towards their baccalaureate degree program as determined by LSAC’s Credential Assembly Service

Current or Admitted MSU Graduate Students

Applicants already enrolled in another graduate program at MSU, OR who are admitted to (and planning to attend) an MSU graduate program with the goal of a dual degree who:

  1. Have a GRE or GMAT score that is less than five (5) years old that places them in the 85th percentile or above on either test; AND
  2. Achieved a 3.6 GPA or higher in their baccalaureate degree program as determined by LSAC’s Credential Assembly Service

Applicants with Disabilities

It is the policy and practice of Michigan State University College of Law to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and state and local requirements regarding students and applicants with disabilities. Under these laws, no qualified individual with a disability will be denied access to or participation in services, programs and activities of Michigan State University College of Law. Students requesting accommodation should contact the Associate Dean for Student Affairs.