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How to Apply

Standards for Admission

The admissions process at the Penn Carey Law School is highly selective. Last year, we received over 6,000 applications for the approximately 250 places in the first-year class. Students who apply to Penn Carey Law come from every state in the nation, from many countries around the world, from more than 200 undergraduate institutions, and from a broad range of academic, ethnic, cultural, professional, and economic backgrounds.

There is no pre-law educational requirement or even a specific recommended course of study for admission to Penn Carey Law. Strength of character, breadth of knowledge, and intellectual maturity constitute the base upon which our legal education builds. As such, Penn Carey Law seeks to enroll individuals who have demonstrated outstanding academic success, who are intellectually curious, and who possess superior writing, oral communication, and analytical skills. Importantly, we also seek individuals who will positively contribute to the Penn Carey Law community, and ultimately, to the legal profession, based on their diverse personal and professional experiences and any challenges or obstacles that they may have overcome.

The Admissions Committee considers numerous factors in the admissions process, including the student’s academic record, course selection and grade trends, standardized test score, letters of recommendation, leadership, community service, extracurricular activities, professional and life experiences, and the applicant’s examples of written expression (standardized test writing sample, personal statement, and optional essays). Importantly, the Admissions Committee bases its decision on all material submitted on behalf of each candidate. Though an applicant’s academic record and standardized test score are significant factors in the review process, they are not the sole factors. We do not have numerical “cut-offs” in the application process nor do we employ the use of an admissions index.

Application Resources

Please carefully review the information below, as well as the FAQs and Application Instructions, as you navigate the application process.  View a copy of our Penn Carey Law Viewbook.

Still need an answer? Contact us.

Application Status Checker

Important Deadlines

Application Process

Connect With Us

The Penn Carey Law Admissions team looks forward to connecting with you! Most recruiting events for the 2024 - 2025 application cycle will be virtual. Connect With Us through a variety of events to speak with members of the JD Admissions Office and/or current law students (dates for fall 2024 will be posted in early August). Student-led tours are offered during the fall 2024 semester only (no tours offered during spring 2025). Please view our visit page for hours and additional information.