Applying to Texas Law
The University of Texas School of Law encourages applications from prospective students who have a sense of mission. Our goal is to prepare our graduates for careers at the highest level of all parts of the legal profession: government, private practice, public interest, and business. Every student has ambitions that are unique in their details, but those who thrive at our school have this in common: they approach their studies with a sense of passion and purpose, and aspire to leadership in whatever careers they pursue.
Decisions are made about each candidate on a holistic basis without use of an index or formula. We look for evidence of outstanding potential in an applicant’s academic record and test scores. We look for evidence of a capacity for leadership and a commitment to collegiality in an applicant’s extracurricular achievements and other forms of community involvement.
We also look for contributions that applicants can make to our school by virtue of their life experiences. Those experiences may include time spent in the workforce, in the military, or in other forms of public service. They may include an applicant’s encounters with adversity or hardship, including discrimination or disability of any kind. They may include time an applicant has spent living in a geographic area that is not well-represented at the School of Law (particularly in underrepresented parts of Texas). Our aim is to assemble a class of talented, high-spirited, and diverse students who will be invested in each other’s success as well as their own.
We consider as well an applicant’s socioeconomic background, including any forms of disadvantage or limited opportunity that may shed light on the applicant’s record. We encourage you to discuss any such issues in your personal statements or in the optional statement on economic, social or personal disadvantage.
Binding Early Decision Admission
Texas Law offers an Early Decision program. Applicants who participate can receive a favorable admissions decision by the end of December. Nonresidents admitted by Early Decision receive resident tuition plus a $1,000 stipend for each of their three years of law school. Texas residents admitted by Early Decision receive a $10,000 stipend for each of their three years. By applying for Early Decision, an applicant promises to attend Texas Law, and to withdraw all applications elsewhere, if admitted.
To be considered for Early Decision admission, applicants must take the LSAT no later than September/October, register with the LSAC for the Credential Assembly Service (CAS) no later than early October, and submit their application no later than Nov. 1. Applications submitted after Nov. 1 will be considered for Regular Decision admission. All Early Decision applicants receive a decision by December 31. In lieu of an acceptance or denial, the Law School may hold over an applicant to be considered among the pool of Regular Decision applicants. Applicants held for review are no longer bound by the Early Decision requirements.
Both resident and nonresident students must remain in good academic standing to receive their Early Decision financial incentives. Early Decision students will not receive additional merit-scholarship consideration, but will remain eligible for need-based financial aid. Financial-aid awards are released during late spring.
Regular Decision Admission
To be considered for Regular Decision admission, applicants must take the LSAT no later than February’s test administration, register with CAS no later than early February of the year of desired entry, and submit their application no later than March 1. Final decisions for completed applications filed in a timely manner under Regular Decision admission, and those Early Decision applications held for review through the Regular Decision process, will be made by the end of April. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis.
The first-year class is admitted only in the fall semester, which begins during the last week of August.
Applicants are urged to register with CAS and take the LSAT as soon as possible. It normally takes four to six weeks for the LSAT score to be reported.
Please note that information and materials will not be retrieved from previous applications to be considered as part of the current year’s application.
Communicating with the Admissions Office
Given the number of applications Texas Law receives, we regret that we cannot verify receipt of materials or application status by telephone or email. Once the Admissions Office enters your application into our system, an email will be sent to verify receipt.
Admitted students will receive an official offer of admission by written letter from the Assistant Dean for Admissions. The offer may be accepted by following the instructions and conditions outlined in the admit letter.
A $70 nonrefundable application fee must be submitted along with the completed application by certified check, cashier’s check, or money order made payable to The University of Texas at Austin. The check or money order must be in U.S. dollars and personal checks or cash will not be accepted. The application fee may also be paid electronically when applying online.
Texas residents are eligible for waiver of the application fee. A waiver is also available on the basis of need, and to members and alumni of Teach for America. Please click here for details and requirements.
The completed Application for Fee Waiver must be submitted along with a completed application for admission no later than March 1. If a fee waiver is denied, the applicant will be given an opportunity to submit the required fee.
To be considered for admission, an applicant must have earned a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university with a minimum undergraduate grade point average of 2.2 as calculated by Law School Admission Council. If an applicant does not receive a baccalaureate degree prior to enrollment but is within six semester hours of completing all requirements for such a degree, the applicant may be eligible for admission on the condition that the degree be earned before starting the last year of law school.
All applicants must submit a detailed resumé not to exceed three typed pages. The applicant should take advantage of this opportunity to provide specific information about education, work history, military service, honors and awards, extracurricular or community activities, publications, etc. The applicant should also include details on any foreign language proficiencies, including the level of ability with regard to speaking, comprehension, reading, and writing.
Personal statements are required and limited to two, double-spaced, typed pages with a minimum 11 point font. A personal statement is an opportunity to describe important experiences and aspects of yourself not otherwise apparent in the application.
Applicants also can submit optional addenda to explain unusual circumstances, such as a period of poor academic performance, academic sanctions, history of problems with standardized tests, history of overcoming disadvantage, prior law school matriculation, criminal matters, etc.
Letters of Recommendation
Two letters of recommendation are required. Letters should be submitted to the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC) through their letter of recommendation service.
Experience has shown that letters of recommendation are most useful when they provide insights and information about the candidate that are not reflected in the application. The most useful letters are from professors and/or employers with whom the candidate has had a close working relationship. Letters from judges, politicians, and family friends tend not to be useful except in those instances where the letters are based on a working or supervisory relationship.
Applicants are urged to send letters of recommendation to LSAC as early as possible in the admissions process. Applications will not be held for optional materials not received with the completed application.