How Hard is it to get into Columbia Law School?

The Columbia Law School should come first in your line of thoughts if you want to attend one of the best law schools in the world. Although it has a low admission rate and accepts the smartest candidates to be part of the institution, it has frequently ranked among the top five law schools in the world.

In this article, we’ll find out why it is so hard to get into Columbia Law School, its programs, and the law school’s history.

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About Columbia Law School

Columbia Law School is a prestigious law school in New York City, affiliated with Columbia University. Established in 1858, this institution is one of the oldest and most respected law schools in the United States. It offers a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree, as well as LL.M. (Master of Laws) and J.S.D. (Doctor of Juridical Science) degrees for post-graduate students.

This Law School is popular because of its rigorous academic program and its distinguished faculty, which includes some of the most respected legal scholars in the world.

The school is also home to many legal clinics and centers, including the Human Rights Clinic, the Law and Economics Program, and the Center for Constitutional Governance.

Employers highly sought after graduates of Columbia Law School in various fields, including law firms, government agencies, corporations, and non-profit organizations. Many graduates also become judges, politicians, and other influential community leaders.

Overall, Columbia Law School is a highly respected institution that provides a rigorous legal education and prepares its graduates for successful careers in various fields.

How to get into Columbia Law School

Getting into Columbia Law School requires a combination of academic excellence, strong extracurricular activities, impressive personal statements, and compelling letters of recommendation.

Here are some steps you can take to increase your chances of getting accepted:

Academic Preparation

Columbia Law School is a highly selective institution, so it is essential to have a strong academic record. This includes getting high grades in challenging courses and taking the most rigorous course load.

You should take courses in subjects such as economics, political science, and philosophy, which are related to law.

LSAT Preparation

The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is a standardized test required for admission to Columbia Law School. It measures your critical reading and analytical reasoning skills and your ability to write persuasively.

At Columbia Law School, the LSAT score is a crucial component of the application. While there is no minimum score required for admission, the median LSAT score for the most recent class was 172 (out of a possible 180), which is in the 99th percentile. This means that the vast majority of admitted students scored in the top 1% of all LSAT takers.

It is administered by the law School Admission Council (LSAC) and is required for admission to most law schools in the United States.

Prepare for the LSAT well in advance, using study guides, practice tests, and tutoring services as needed.

Extracurricular Activities

Columbia Law School looks for well-rounded candidates who have shown leadership and initiative outside of the classroom. This can include activities such as volunteering, internships, research projects, and involvement in student organizations.

Personal Statement

Your personal statement is your opportunity to explain why you want to attend Columbia Law School and what unique qualities and experiences you bring to the table. Be sure to highlight your strengths and accomplishments while also showing your passion for the law.

Letters of Recommendation

Columbia Law School requires at least two letters of recommendation from individuals who can speak to your academic abilities, character, and potential for success in law school. Choose recommenders who know you well and can provide specific examples of your skills and achievements.

Apply Early

Early Decision is a program offered by Columbia Law School that can increase your chances of being accepted.

Ensure your application is strong before applying early because early-decision applicants face greater competition than regular decision applicants.

Columbia Law School Academic Curriculum

There is a reason the JD program at the law school is popular. The JD program is structured to provide students with a solid foundation during their first year and then build on it throughout their time at Columbia Law School, more like the undergraduate curriculum.

The goal is to guarantee that graduates from the law school possess the requisite knowledge to practice law in today’s fast-paced, international society successfully.

Moreso, it is a three-year, full-time program that allows its students to collaborate with elite academics and professionals to solve real-world problems with the innovative use of data science, litigation, and advocacy.

To understand how the law functions in real-world situations, students are obliged to participate in a wide range of clinics, externships, simulations, policy labs, moot courts, and other public service activities.

They are also instructed to think critically about the law and how it affects people’s lives, judicial systems, and global politics.

Columbia Law School Acceptance Rate

It is important to note that Columbia Law School consistently ranks among the top law schools in the US and as a prominent, highly competitive law school, the application process is quite rigorous, and candidates are often assessed based on a range of criteria including:

  • Undergraduate academic record
  • Standardized test scores
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Personal statements
  • Professional experience

The J.D program at Columbia law school had an acceptance rate of 16.6% for the 2021-2022 academic year. This is according to the US News & World Report.

It is crucial to remember that acceptance rates can change yearly and depend on many things, including the candidate pool and the number of program spaces available. However, it ranges from 14% to 18%.

While the acceptance rate for Columbia Law School is relatively low, it’s important for prospective applicants to focus on putting forth their best possible application and highlighting their strengths and unique qualities.

Columbia Law School Ranking

Columbia Law School’s high rankings in domestic and international statistics is one reason for its low acceptance rate. Aside from its many national rankings, it is one of the greatest legal schools in the entire world.

  • According to the QS World University Rankings 2020, Columbia law school holds the eighth position in the world.
  • According to US News Global University Rankings 2021, Columbia University ranks sixth.

Tips For A Strong Columbia Law School Application

Did you know with a GPA of 3.8, you might not be admitted to Columbia Law School because of your weak application and essay. Fortunately, we have compiled a list of tips to help raise your chances of being accepted to study law at the Columbia Law School.

Request Letters of Recommendation from your Professors

The Columbia Law School requires applicants to submit two recommendation letters, but many don’t even try to secure one. When the deadline for admission approaches, students who did not ask their professors for the letters find themselves where they have nothing to their name.

So, if you are confident that you want to attend Columbia Law School, start requesting recommendations from your instructors.

Write your Essay Honestly

Due to the fake essays they prepare for their applications, Columbia Law School turns most college graduates with strong academic records down.

Interestingly, the essays that win students admission to Columbia are written casually, discussing your hobbies and a few sincere yet compelling reasons Columbia is the right school for you.

Get Experience Working

Experts claim that Columbia Law School favors applicants who list some prior employment or co-curricular activities on their application.

You can get experience by participating in university student organizations or working as an intern with a legal group.

Programs at Columbia Law School

In Columbia, there are several programs from which you can pick as a law student. The four-year J.D (Juris Doctor) degree is the most popular, although Columbia Law offers the LLM (Masters of Law), a one-year program.

Additionally, there is the J.S.D (Doctor of Science of Law), a law degree similar to a Ph.D. You can also study in various fields, including corporate, business, constitutional, international, litigation, conflict resolution, social justice, etc.

You can select any study field depending on your interests and educational background.


There are 350 students in typical Columbia law class, representing various ages and educational levels. Normally, there are roughly equal numbers of boys and females, but 45% of the students are people of color, and 20% of the student body are immigrants from various nations and countries.

Every year, the new session begins around September 1 and ends on February 15. Details on applying to Columbia Law are available on the school’s website where all the programs and areas are covered in great detail.

Your application process begins with registration at the Law School Credential Assembly Service (LSAC or CAS), following which you must complete several stages before submitting it.

There are two different admissions pathways available in the application section: Regular admission and Early Decision.

The application requirements include:

  • LSAT score
  • Undergraduate transcripts
  • Personal statement
  • Resume
  • Letters of recommendation (typically two or three)
  • Optional essay
  • In addition, international students must submit TOEFL or IELTS scores to demonstrate proficiency in English.

Why is it Hard to get into Columbia Law School?

The high admission rate at Columbia Law School is a testament to its students’ excellent job options and legal education. There are not enough highly competent faculty members for the law schools to deliver top-notch legal education.

Reputable institutions like Columbia law school can only accept a certain number of applicants due to the restricted staff and seats.

Experts assert that another reason for the law school’s acceptance rate is the overwhelming number of applications which creates intense competition. The average GPA and LSAT scores of the applicants have a significant impact on the Columbia Law School acceptance rate.

For instance, the average GPA is 3.7 which isn’t as high as yale or Harvard. However, they have high average LSAT scores, which are used to choose the applicants for admission.

How Hard is it to get into Columbia Law School?

Columbia Law School is one of the most selective law schools in the United States. According to U.S. News & World Report, Columbia Law School had an acceptance rate of 14.0% for the class of 2023. This means that out of the 6,397 applicants, only 895 were admitted.

While the acceptance rate is undoubtedly low, it is important to note that admissions decisions at Columbia Law School are based on a holistic review of each applicant’s application.

Therefore, even if an applicant’s LSAT score is below the median, they may still have a chance of getting accepted if the rest of their application is strong.

Similarly, even if an applicant’s GPA is below the median, they may still have a chance of getting accepted if they have other strengths, such as work experience or extracurricular activities.

Ultimately, the difficulty of getting into Columbia Law School depends on the strength of each applicant’s individual application. While the acceptance rate is low, it is not impossible to get accepted if an applicant has a strong application that stands out from the rest.


What LSAT score do I need to get into Columbia Law School?

There is no specific LSAT score that guarantees admission to Columbia Law School. The median LSAT score for the class of 2023 was 171, which is in the 98th percentile. However, many admitted students had LSAT scores below the median but had other strengths in their application that made them stand out.

What GPA do I need to get into Columbia Law School?

The median GPA for the class of 2023 was 3.8, which is a high GPA. However, as with the LSAT score, many admitted students had GPAs below the median but had other strengths in their application that made them stand out.

What is the acceptance rate for Columbia Law School?

The acceptance rate for Columbia Law School varies from year to year, but it typically ranges from 14% to 18%. This makes it one of the most competitive law schools in the country.


Overall, Columbia Law School admissions is a highly selective process, and applicants should focus on developing a strong application that highlights their academic achievements, leadership potential, and passion for the law. It is also important to carefully research Columbia Law School’s program and values to ensure a good fit.



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