In order to excel on a U.S. law school application, you will need to familiarize yourself with the application process, as the U.S. process may be different to what you have previously experienced. Once you have an understanding of the process, you can write an application that will stand out by researching the school(s) to which you are applying, and by writing an exemplary personal statement.
Before applying, it is extremely useful to research the school(s) that you are interested in: tailored applications are more successful than generic applications. Using this research, you can use your application to tell the admissions team why that particular school appeals to you. It might be that your school is a specialist in the subject you are hoping to study, but there are many other things you can consider. For example, are there any particular extra-curricular activities or organizations in which you hope to become involved? If you’re going alone, you may be concerned about making friends -- does the school have its own housing that would enable you to meet new people? Use examples of how you can see yourself at that school, and show your enthusiasm.
Typically, applications to U.S. law schools require a personal statement or other similar personal essay. This is your opportunity to let the school get to know you. A good starting point is to think about what it is that the school does not know about you from reading the rest of your application documents. The personal statement is your chance to explain what makes you who you are and why you would be a desirable addition to the law school’s student body. The most effective way to convey who you are is by telling a story. It may be something that happened in your childhood, or related to a role you held in an organization or with a job you performed. Have you done something out of the ordinary? You can use activities and work, and life experiences to show skills like time management, teamwork, organization, problem solving, public speaking and leadership – qualities that law schools want students to bring to their campus. You could also demonstrate maturity, courage and perseverance.
A stand-out application also requires proofreading. This step is often overlooked, but it is so important to ensure that your application is free of spelling and grammatical errors. One way to do this is to have a family member or friend double check it. They might be able to find little mistakes that you may have missed. Another tip is to read over your application at the start of the day. It is very easy to overlook things when you have been reading the same document over and over again.
With all of this in mind, when you are finally happy with your application, go ahead and submit. You are on your way!
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