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J.D. Program

2020-2021 Important Dates and Deadlines

The August 29, 2020 LSAT/LSAT Flex is the last exam considered for early decision.

Learn more about the Early Decision Program

The February 20, 2021 LSAT/LSAT Flex is the last exam considered for the application completion deadline.

*The early decision application is binding; thus, if you apply, and you are subsequently admitted, you commit to enroll at and attend the University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law. If you submit your completed early decision application by October 20, you will be notified of your application status by November 10.

**Application files received after the final deadline will be reviewed if seats remain available.

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J.D. Application Requirements


1Baccalaureate degree from an accredited university recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (or foreign equivalent)

You may apply before you receive your undergraduate degree. However, before you matriculate, you must provide official transcripts showing that you have been awarded a baccalaureate degree from a college or university whose accreditation is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education or be the foreign equivalent of a U.S. baccalaureate degree.

All candidates must take the LSAT. LSAT scores that are older than five years will not be accepted for candidates seeking admission. For example, applicants submitting and application during the 2020-2021 application cycle must have a score no older than the September 2015.

LSAT Exemption
The College of Law, under ABA Standard 503, may admit a limited number of students who have not taken the LSAT. Those applicants must meet certain conditions to be eligible to apply.  Information on the College of Law's LSAT exemption policy can be found on the Admissions FAQs page.

Applicants must register for the Credential Assembly Service (CAS). It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that transcripts from each U.S. college or university ever attended are sent to the CAS, regardless of credits being transferred or applied toward degree requirements. If an applicant is seeking readmission, they must submit a new CAS report. Once the CAS file is complete, applicants should allow four to six weeks for the S.J. Quinney College of Law to receive and process the CAS report.

You are required to have one, but may have up to three letters of recommendation submitted on your behalf. Letters of recommendation should come from people who know you well and have had the opportunity to observe you performing the skills listed on our Letter of Recommendation Form. Letters may be submitted in two ways: (1) they may be sent directly to the S.J. Quinney College of Law from the recommender, accompanied by a completed Letter of Recommendation Form; or (2) they may be sent through the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service that is included with your CAS registration subscription. The S.J. Quinney College of Law Letter of Recommendation Form is not required when using the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service.

Candidates are required to submit a personal statement. The personal statement is also viewed as a document demonstrating your writing ability; therefore, the personal statement must be written by you. The Admission Committee’s goal is to assemble an intellectually stimulating community of students composed of individuals who have diverse backgrounds and perspectives.

In addition to outstanding academic ability, we seek students whose life experiences, backgrounds and interests will enhance our educational community. This includes, but is not limited qualities such as leadership, maturity, organization, knowledge of other languages and cultures, sincere commitment to community service, a history of overcoming disadvantage, extraordinary accomplishment, or success in a previous career. The subject matter of your personal statement is up to you, and although there are no length requirements, most statements average two to three typed, double-spaced pages. The personal statement should let the Admission Committee know more about you as a person, and should address the above qualities if that information is not presented in other areas of your application. Issues addressed in your personal statement may include what background, experiences, and events (positive or negative) have affected you. You may address what perspectives and experiences you will bring to classroom discussions and the law school community or what your motivations are for seeking a legal education.

The S.J. Quinney College of Law requires that your foreign transcripts be submitted through the Credential Assembly Service. If you completed any postsecondary academic work outside the U.S. (including its territories) or Canada, you must use this service for the evaluation of your foreign transcripts. The one exception to this requirement is if you completed the foreign work through a study-abroad, consortium, or exchange program sponsored by a U.S. or Canadian institution, and the work is clearly indicated as such on the home campus transcript. This service is included in the Credential Assembly Service registration fee. An International Credential Evaluation will be completed by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO), and will be incorporated into your Credential Assembly Service Law School Report. To use the Credential Assembly Service for your international documents, follow the online instructions for registering for the service. Be sure to print out a Transcript Request Form for each institution and send it promptly to them. More time is usually required to receive foreign transcripts. Questions about foreign transcripts and the Credential Assembly Service can be directed to LSAC at 215.968.1001 or LSACinfo@LSAC.org.

Applicants whose native language is not English must submit official results from the TOEFL test and the test needs to have been administered in the last 12 months from application. You must contact the Educational Testing Service (ETS) and request that your TOEFL score be sent to LSAC to be incorporated into your Credential Assembly Service Law School Report. Your score will be included in the International Credential Evaluation Document. LSAC’s TOEFL code for the Credential Assembly Service is 8395. You are not required to submit a TOEFL score if you have received a baccalaureate or graduate degree from an accredited U.S. college or university.

  • Addendum
  • Diversity Statement

*Files will be processed if a valid LSAT score and LSAT writing sample are on file unless the candidate requests a hold on review.

Admissions Criteria


When we assess applicants for admissions, academic aptitude is not the only factor considered. Below is a list of criteria to keep in mind:

Academic Factors

  • LSAT score(s)
  • Undergraduate GPA
  • Advanced work, other degrees
  • Major
  • Difficulty of college course work
  • Grade trends
  • Dominant language or other language skills
  • Quality of high school and prior academic experience
  • Family education history
  • Other test scores
  • Hours worked and other responsibilities during school

Demographic and Diversity Factors

  • Age (Life experience)
  • Gender
  • Sexual orientation
  • Race/ethnicity
  • Geographic residence
  • Socioeconomic status, family size
  • Multicultural experiences
  • Growing up in a low-income community
  • Law related experience or knowledge
  • Military status
  • Work experience
  • Position
  • Level of responsibility achieved
  • Full time, part time
  • Number of years worked
  • Type of industry or business
  • Follow-through ability

Leadership and Extracurricular Factors

  • Undergraduate or graduate leadership activities
  • Community leadership/accomplishments
  • Volunteer activities
  • Academic leadership and organizations
  • Civic engagement
  • Athletic activities
  • Travel, foreign living
  • Service activities

Accomplishments

  • Special skills and talents
  • Music, drama, writing, artistic

After You Apply


Track your application status here.