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At A Glance

Harvard Law School

The Graduate Program attracts lawyers of demonstrated intellectual and academic excellence from all over the world. Each year, the LL.M. program enrolls some 150 outstanding students representing more than 60 countries and a broad variety of backgrounds, legal interests and career plans. The S.J.D. program, modeled on the very best Ph.D. programs in other disciplines, hosts some 70 students planning careers in teaching and scholarship. Both programs expose students to American modes of legal education (which emphasize critical thinking and self-inquiry) as well as to substantive law, and enhance our students' ability to do advanced scholarly work. The Graduate Program also hosts the Visiting Scholar and Visiting Researcher program, which accommodates a small number of legal scholars and researchers from around the world who are engaged in major research projects for which the Law School's outstanding library resources may be of assistance.

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Harvard Law School's Full Profile

Program At a Glance

Total Program Enrollment 1727
Incoming LSAT Scores (25th-75th Percentile) 170 - 175
Incoming GPA (25th-75th Percentile) 3.77 - 3.95
Bar Exam First Time Pass Rate 96.27%
Percent Employed (9 Months After Graduation) 96.27%
Tuition $50,880

Overview

Overview

About Harvard Law School

The Graduate Program attracts lawyers of demonstrated intellectual and academic excellence from all over the world. Each year, the LL.M. program enrolls some 150 outstanding students representing more than 60 countries and a broad variety of backgrounds, legal interests and career plans. The S.J.D. program, modeled on the very best Ph.D. programs in other disciplines, hosts some 70 students planning careers in teaching and scholarship. Both programs expose students to American modes of legal education (which emphasize critical thinking and self-inquiry) as well as to substantive law, and enhance our students' ability to do advanced scholarly work. The Graduate Program also hosts the Visiting Scholar and Visiting Researcher program, which accommodates a small number of legal scholars and researchers from around the world who are engaged in major research projects for which the Law School's outstanding library resources may be of assistance.

Reviews

Harvard Law School—perhaps you’ve heard of it?—is like the land of Oz for aspiring lawyers, where “anything you want exists.” Indeed, the school has plenty of funding for student scholarships, interests, and activities, and the opportunities for “public service, research and publication, faculty mentor relationships, editorial, moot court, or legal aid experience, and international study and service options are endless.” The “you name it, it’s on the menu” mentality is definitely present for most students, and humility can (understandably) be a bit short in supply. “Harvard is Harvard. This is…simply a rein­forcing circle of virtue, i.e., you get brilliant professors, amazing students, interesting courses, great opportunities, attracting brilliant professors and amazing students, etc.”The “abundance of resources” available here lends itself to excellent support for public interest law, including a formidable public interest advising group, who “do a lot to build the community.” “Though there’s a lot of pressure to take a firm job, the counselors at [the public interest office] do a heck of a job fighting back. They’ll chase you down in the hall and tell you it’s time to start applying for fellowships, clerkships, and jobs,” says a student. “When employers start cutting their recruiting classes, the last place they cut is HLS,” says another. Everyone agrees that the economy has taken its toll, though—the ice skating rink closed—and “While the Harvard name will open doors, students still have to put in work and make sure that they are putting their best foot forward.”Though each HLS class is hefty in size, it actually creates an “atmosphere of conversa­tion and collaboration.” “Because our class is so big, there is always a critical mass for any interest, activity, or cause students want to pursue,” says a 2L. “I was a little concerned entering this school that its size would be intimidating or overwhelming, but in fact I’ve found that its size is one of its greatest strengths,” agrees a 1L.As expected, the courses offered are top-notch, with “a lot of very random options” to diversify the curriculum, though many students wish there was “more emphasis on practical lawyering skills,” not to mention an alternative to the “arcane and mysterious” registration system. Though in recent years, a sizeable portion of the faculty has “fled to Washington, D.C., to work on Change,” students are “still terribly spoiled to have as many wonderful professors as we do.” According to a student, “O[bama] left us a couple of our best profs,” and plenty of “superstar” professors remain at Harvard, and “every­one is extremely accomplished and an expert in his/her field.” “Not everyone is a natural teacher,” but “Most of them are approachable and have interesting insights into the law (and many other areas).” There are also many research assistant and student writing opportunities offered.The administration is “very flexible and willing to work with students as circum­stances arise,” and the school “really strives to please students, even in tough economic times.” Classroom buildings are “often ugly, but all are nicely equipped and in good condition,” research facilities “could not be better,” and the library—the largest law library in the world, by the way—is “huge and lovely, with a staggering quantity of books.” In other words, don’t come to this corner of Boston if you’re looking for the entire package of “sunshine, butterflies and architectural triumphs”—”There are reasons to come here; aesthetic bliss is not one of them.”

- The Princeton Review

Academics

Academics

Degree Programs Offered

Graduates Last Year: 578

Description: A program that prepares individuals for the independent professional practice of law, for taking state and national bar examinations, and for advanced research in jurisprudence. Includes instruction in the theory and practice of the legal system, including the statutory, administrative, and judicial components of civil and criminal law.

Job Opportunities:

Lawyers
Represent clients in criminal and civil litigation and other legal proceedings, draw up legal documents, or manage or advise clients on legal transactions. May specialize in a single area or may practice broadly in many areas of law.
Judicial Law Clerks
Assist judges in court or by conducting research or preparing legal documents.
Administrative Law Judges, Adjudicators, and Hearing Officers
Conduct hearings to recommend or make decisions on claims concerning government programs or other government-related matters. Determine liability, sanctions, or penalties, or recommend the acceptance or rejection of claims or settlements.
Arbitrators, Mediators, and Conciliators
Facilitate negotiation and conflict resolution through dialogue. Resolve conflicts outside of the court system by mutual consent of parties involved.
Judges, Magistrate Judges, and Magistrates
Arbitrate, advise, adjudicate, or administer justice in a court of law. May sentence defendant in criminal cases according to government statutes or sentencing guidelines. May determine liability of defendant in civil cases. May perform wedding ceremonies.
Law Teachers, Postsecondary
Teach courses in law. Includes both teachers primarily engaged in teaching and those who do a combination of teaching and research.

Joint Degree Programs Offered

JD/MBA, JD/MPP, JD/MPA-ID, JD/Ph.D., JD/MPH, JD/MUP, JD/MALD, JD/LL.M. (with Cambridge University)

Specialty Law Programs

  • Civil Procedure
  • Commercial
  • Constitutional
  • Corporation Securities
  • Criminal
  • Environmental
  • Government Services
  • Human Rights
  • International
  • Labor
  • Legal History
  • Legal Philosophy
  • Property
  • Taxation
  • Intellectual Property

Faculty Information

Total Faculty 191
Full-Time Faculty 153
Deans, Librarians, and Others Who Teach 8
Part-Time Faculty 30
Faculty Gender 71% Male
28% Female
Student Teacher Ratio 11 : 1

Accreditation

Accredited by American Bar Association

Student Body

Student Body
Gender Breakdown 53% Male
47% Female
Student Diversity
Percentage
White 53%
Multi-racial 2%
International 7%
Hispanic/Latino 9%
Ethnicity Unknown 8%
Black or African American 9%
Asian 11%
American Indian or Alaska Native 0%

Finance

Finance

Sticker Price

On-Campus Off-Campus
Stated Tuition $50,880 Same as On-Campus
Housing $19,502 N/A
Books N/A N/A
Total (before financial aid) $70,382 $50,880

Financial Aid

83% Graduate students receiving financial aid (loans and grants)

$57,842 Average financial aid amount

Admissions

Admissions

Application Information

Deadline for Regular Decision: February 1

Average Age Admitted: 24

Application Fee: $85

Incoming Class

Harvard Law School's entering class of 2012 enrolled having these exam grades:

Exam Enrollment Type 25th - 75th Percentile
LSAT Full-Time 170 - 175
LSAT Total 170 - 175

Harvard Law School's entering class of 2012 enrolled having these college GPA's:

Enrollment Type 25th - 75th Percentile
Full-Time 3.77 - 3.95
Total 3.77 - 3.95

Admission Requirements

Required: Standardized Test Scores, Personal Essay, Recommendations, Resume

Optional: Academic GPA, Extracurricular Activities, Interview, Undergraduate GPA, Work Experience

Rankings

Rankings

The Princeton Review

#2 Toughest To Get Into
#4 Best Career Prospects

Outcomes

Outcomes

Bar Exam Results

Percent Reporting 83%
First Time Pass Rate 96%
Avg. Pass Rate In This State 83%

Campus Recruitment

Number of Employers Recruiting on Campus 500
First Year Recruitment Time Summer
Second Year Recruitment Time Summer

Employment

Percent Employed (9 Months After Graduation) 96%
Average Starting Salary $160,000
Job Sector Number of Graduates Percent of Graduates
Firm Sized 2-10 6 1%
Firm Sized 11-25 2 0%
Firm Sized 26-50 2 0%
Firm Sized 51-100 1 0%
Firm Sized 101-250 20 4%
Firm Sized 251-500 35 6%
Firm Sized 501+ 261 46%
Business Industry 28 5%
Government 25 4%
Public Interest 44 8%
Federal Clerkship 105 18%
State Clerkship 25 4%
Other Clerkship 1 0%
Academia 11 2%
Unknown Employer Type 1 0%
Unemployed Number of Graduates Percent of Graduates
Unemployed, Not Seeking 1 0%
Unemployed, Seeking 14 2%
Pursuing Graduate Degree 6 1%

Top Employment Locations

State Percent Employed
MA 12%
DC 16%
NY 27%
International 3%

Famous Alumni

Well known alumni of Harvard Law School include:

  • Barack H. Obama - President of the United States

Associations & Memberships

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