To aid you in finding out more about us we offer answers to frequently asked questions from first-year JD applicants, transfer applicants, foreign-trained lawyer applicants and waitlisted applicants.

General Applicant Questions

Application Materials & Requirements

Academics

Co-op

Public Interest

Financial Aid

Career Development

Student Life

Housing

First-Year JD Applicant Questions

Admissions

Application Materials & Requirements

Co-op

Financial Aid

Merit-based Tuition Scholarships

Information for High School and Community College Students

Foreign-Trained Lawyers Program Applicant Questions

Admissions

Academics

Financial Aid

Merit-based Tuition Scholarships

Transfer Applicant Questions

Admissions

Academics

Career Development

Co-op

Financial Aid

Westlaw & LEXIS Accounts

Waitlisted Applicant Questions

Waitlisted Applicants

General Applicant Questions 

Application Materials & Requirements

Is there a preferred format for application materials?

Yes, please adhere to the following formatting requirements:

Personal Statement
The personal statement should be two pages, double-spaced in 12-point font.

Résumé
Applicants are encouraged to limit their résumé to one page in 12-point font.

Optional Essay
Optional essay responses should be one page, double-spaced in 12-point font.

Addendum/a
Addenda should be no more than one page in length in 12-point font

What should I write about in my personal statement?

In short, anything! Our application instructions state that you must provide a personal statement on any topic. A hallmark of a Northeastern University School of Law education is the freedom to pursue the areas of law that interest you, both in and out of the classroom, and we are granting you the same freedom in deciding what topic(s) to cover in your personal statement. Our only requirements are that your essay should be no longer than two pages, double-spaced and in 12-point font. This is your chance to help us get to know you in a more personal way.

How many letters of recommendation are required? May I submit additional letters?

Northeastern University School of Law require two letters of recommendation submitted via LSAC's Credential Assembly Service (CAS). We will not accept more than two letters of recommendation.

What transcripts are required?

Please submit all undergraduate and graduate transcripts (if any) via LSAC's Credential Assembly Service (CAS).

Undergraduate Transcripts
Transcripts for all previously attended colleges and universities must be sent directly to CAS. If you receive additional grades, you should submit an updated transcript to the Credential Assembly Service, so they can send updated information to the law school. While an undergraduate transcript without a date of conferral can be submitted with your initial application, the transcript is not considered final without the date of conferral.

Graduate Transcripts
Transcripts for graduate work should be submitted to CAS.

What are the optional essay topics? Is there a page limit?

We encourage you to respond to one of our two optional essay questions. Your response must be in your own words, one page, double-spaced in 12-point font. The optional essays provide a space for you to showcase your writing abilities and share additional information with us. The essay prompts are as follows:

1. Over the past few years, most law schools have come to recognize the importance of hands-on legal experience. At Northeastern, we have been incorporating practice directly into the curriculum since 1968. Ranked #1 in Practical Training by the National Jurist, our signature Cooperative Legal Education Program (co-op) guarantees you nearly a year of full-time work experience in the areas of law that interest you, anywhere in the world. What field(s) of law would you like to pursue on co-op and why?

2. Northeastern is a nationally recognized leader in public interest law with a strong reputation for producing accomplished leaders in the field. Whether winning MacArthur Genius Fellowships, arguing critical cases before the United States Supreme Court, or running some of the nation's most powerful advocacy organizations, the success of our graduates in part reflects our social justice mission. What specific social justice issue are you most passionate about and how have your professional and/or personal experiences influenced your interests? Our Public Interest Law Scholarship program offers full-tuition scholarships to selected students, and all completed applications submitted by March 1 will be automatically considered for this program. Applications accepted after March 1 will be considered as time and space allow.

If I would like to provide additional explanation on a certain component of my application, may I submit an addendum?

Yes, you are welcome to submit an addendum to address anything in your application that might require further explanation, such as a gap in schooling or employment. Please be specific but brief. An addendum should be no more than one page in length.

May I submit additional, supplemental materials such as my senior thesis?

We kindly ask that you refrain from submitting additional, supplemental materials, including, but not limited to, senior theses, works of art, creative writing, publications, reports, videography, music or other materials. We encourage applicants to include information about such work in their applications if applicable — in résumés, personal statements or, if necessary, application addenda — but we strongly discourage applicants from sending extraneous material directly to our office. Thank you for your cooperation.

What are the character and fitness requirements?

Northeastern asks applicants to answer a series of character and fitness questions. These questions are required by the ABA. Because of the high ethical standards to which lawyers are held, the failure to disclose an act or event can lead to more serious consequences than the act or event itself. Failure to provide truthful answers, or failure to inform the School of Law of any changes to your answers in advance of matriculation or during school enrollment, may result in revocation of admission or disciplinary action, or denial of permission to practice law by the state in which you seek bar admission.

In addition to a bar examination, there are character, fitness and other qualifications for admission to the bar in every US jurisdiction. Applicants are encouraged to determine the requirements for any jurisdiction in which they intend to seek admission by contacting the jurisdiction directly. Addresses for all relevant agencies are available through the National Conference of Bar Examiners.

Is the application fee refundable?

No, the application fee is not refundable. If you have already paid your application fee, we will not be able to issue a refund. If you have any questions about the application fee, please contact the Office of Admissions at (617) 373-2395 or lawadmissions@northeastern.edu.

Academics

I heard that Northeastern doesn't have grades. Is that true?

Yes. When the law school re-opened in the 1960s, the program was designed to replace the typical adversarial law school environment with a spirit of teamwork and collaboration. In order to do this successfully, student rankings and letter and number grades were replaced with written evaluations of students’ work in class and on co-op. This system:

  • Allows you to work with classmates without worrying that you are giving away the opportunity to be at the top of a grading curve.
  • Gives you a more thorough review of your work by professors, so you know where you are doing well and where you need to improve your performance.
  • Teaches you, before you go out on co-op and begin your career, how to work well on teams and get more out of your work because others depend on it.

How does the evaluation system at the law school work?

Rather than a number or letter grade, you will receive a narrative evaluation from your professor for each class you take throughout your law school career as well as from your supervisor for each of your four co-ops. Copies of all of these evaluations are included in your law school transcript. There are no class rankings or GPAs. Students may also receive Honors or High Honors designations for strong performance in academic courses. As discussed above, your narrative evaluations will provide you — and potential employers — with a much stronger understanding of your skills and abilities than a single number or letter.

Does Northeastern offer a part-time or evening program?

No. The law school offers a full-time program only, with all first year JD students enrolling in the fall. This is necessary in order for all students to complete their required four co-op positions.

I’m interested in working while I attend law school. Is that possible with the full-time program?

Due to the rigor of law school studies, especially in the first year, we strongly advise against working while attending school. Students frequently take on part-time employment after completing the first year.

What is a typical class size at Northeastern?

First-year class sections can range from 40-80 students for Property, Torts, Contracts, Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law and Criminal Justice. For our first-year Legal Skills in Social Context program, students work in teams of 12-15 students. The size of our upper-level classes varies; however, our professors taught over 100 courses with 25 or fewer students in 2016-2017. Small classes give our students more opportunities to engage with our world-class faculty, receiving personalized instruction to help them better understand challenging legal concepts.

Does the law school offer any academic support programs?

Yes. The Academic Success Program is here to support you with workshops, teaching assistants, study groups and more, particularly as you are making the transition into law school during your first year.

How long are the academic terms?

The law school’s first year classes follow a traditional academic calendar, with the first semester running from late August to December and the second semester running from January to May. Second- and third-year classes run on a quarter system with each term lasting about eleven weeks.

How much material is covered in an upper-level academic quarter?

Northeastern’s courses cover about the same amount of material as courses at other schools. Though the law school’s upper-level quarters are eleven weeks and semesters are usually fourteen or fifteen weeks, most semester schools run fifty-minute hours, while Northeastern uses sixty. Sixty-minute classes meeting three times a week for eleven weeks provide 1,980 minutes of classroom time. Fifty-minute classes meeting three time a week for fourteen weeks provide 2,100 minutes of classroom time. That is a difference of only about two hours. Northeastern's compressed schedule eliminates much of the "hello and goodbye" portions of the semester. Additionally, many professors have optional out-of-class reviews as a supplement to their courses.

How much time would I spend in class during the first year?

During the first year of law school, students typically spend 16-18 total hours in class per week. There are about 3-4 classes per day and they can range anywhere from 80 minutes to 2 hours long.

How many academic credits are required to graduate?

Northeastern's first year is 34 semester credit hours, so you will need to complete at least 53 quarter hours during your second and third years during four (4) upper-level academic quarters. For more information, please see Northeastern's degree requirements.

Do Northeastern professors use the Socratic Method in teaching their courses?

While teaching styles vary widely among the faculty, most professors use what could be termed a modified Socratic method. Some professors do "cold call" students but may allow the option to pass or get help from neighbors. Additionally, unlike in a traditional Socratic method, students typically aren't in the "hot seat" for the entire class but rather for a short period of time.

How many credits do upper-level Northeastern students usually take during a given academic quarter?

Usually between 12 and 16 credits. You can take between 10 and 16 credits per quarter and need to get permission if you plan to take less than 12 or more than 16. However, keep in mind that with the shorter terms (11 weeks), 15 or 16 credits is a heavy load, and you are advised not to take more than 16 credits. To meet the ABA Residency Requirement, you will have to enroll in at least 10 quarter hours and pass at least 9.

What clinical programs does the law school offer?

Northeastern offers students the opportunity to engage in advocacy on behalf of individuals and community organizations often unacknowledged or underrepresented by the justice system. Together, our clinics, institutes and special programs reflect and fulfill a commitment to social and economic justice that distinguishes Northeastern as one of the nation's foremost public interest law schools. Students can participate with faculty and staff in the work of the following outstanding research and service centers: the Center for Health Policy and Law, the Civil Rights and Restorative Justice Project, the Domestic Violence Institute, the Program on Human Rights and the Global Economy, the Program on the Corporation, Law and Global Society and the Public Health Advocacy Institute. Northeastern also offers eight clinics: Civil Rights and Restorative Justice, Community BusinessDomestic Violence, Immigrant JusticeIP CO-LAB, Poverty Law and Practice, Prisoners' Rights and Public Health Advocacy. The clinics differ from one another by substantive legal focus, advocacy experience and the primary skills each seeks to impart. Students engage in challenging legal practice with the support of clinical faculty who provide the requisite training, close supervision and opportunity for reflection.

Tell me about the concurrent and dual-degree programs.

Northeastern offers eight dual-degree programs. Dual degrees are available from other schools and colleges at Northeastern University, including a JD/MBA, JD/MSA/MBA, JD/MS in Criminal Justice, JD/PHD in Criminology and Justice PolicyJD/MS-Law and Public Policy, JD/MA-Music Industry Leadership, and JD/MPH in Urban Health. Northeastern also has dual degree partnerships with several other schools in New England. In cooperation with Tufts University School of Medicine, students may pursue a JD/MPH program. Completion of this dual-degree program takes three and a half years, rather than the average five years if the degrees were obtained sequentially. The School of Law has also partnered with Brandeis University's Heller School of Social Policy and Management to offer a JD/MA in Sustainable International Development. This accelerated four-year program includes combined law/international development co-ops. For students interested in environmental law, the School of Law, in conjunction with Vermont Law School, offers its law students the opportunity to earn both a JD and a master's degree in Environmental Law and Policy (MELP) in the same three-year period it would take to earn just the JD.

Will I get a tuition discount if I participate in one of the dual-degree programs?

There is no tuition discount, but the dual-degree programs are designed to allow you to earn both degrees in less time than it would take to complete each program separately.

Co-op

What is co-op and how does it work?

Northeastern's unique approach to training law students for a career in the legal profession is known as Cooperative Legal Education. This program ensures that you will graduate with nearly a full year of practical legal experience gained through four different quarters of full-time work ("co-ops"). First, you will complete a traditional first year of academic study. Then, during your second and third years, you will alternate between full-time classes and full-time legal work every three months. You will work about 11 weeks during a cooperative quarter and usually take a short break before returning to full-time academic studies. The successful completion of four cooperative work quarters is a graduation requirement for all Northeastern law students.

How is co-op different from internship or externship programs at other schools?

There are several features that distinguish Northeastern’s co-op program from traditional internship or externship programs. First, many internships or externships are part-time; co-ops are full-time positions. Internship and externship programs may have limited space; you are guaranteed to complete four co-ops as a Northeastern law student and graduate with nearly a full year of legal work experience. Second, students may have to choose between participating in an internship program and taking classes; you will not miss out on any academic opportunities due to co-op. Third, only a small portion of the student body may participate in an internship or externship program; at Northeastern, you and all of your classmates will complete four co-ops. Finally, if a student chooses to continue working with a co-op employer while enrolled in school, the student may earn credit for that work as long as the work is performed in conjunction with an academic project under the supervision of a full-time faculty member. Such credit is earned and applied as an “Independent Study,” rather than internship or externship. The diverse, practical experience that everyone brings back to the classroom greatly enhances classroom discussions and learning.

Will it take longer to earn a JD because of the co-op program?

No. You will be able to complete Northeastern’s JD requirements in the same three years as your counterparts at other law schools. Not only will you complete your JD in three years, you’ll gain nearly a full year of legal work experience while you’re at it.

Will I get paid while I’m on co-op?

Students may be paid on co-op with salaries ranging from minimal compensation for public interest employers to approximately $3,000 per week for large private US law firms. Some students may be eligible for Federal Work Study; additionally, students may apply for stipends to support certain types of co-ops.

Can I travel outside of Boston for a co-op?

Absolutely! Students go on co-ops all over the country and around the world with the program’s more than 900 employers. The major co-op hubs outside of Boston are New York City, Washington DC, and San Francisco. The Center for Co-op and Career Development can assist you in setting up new co-ops throughout the world, provided that potential employers meet the program requirements. You will work with a co-op advisor who will guide you through the process of finding a co-op, taking into consideration your desired location and the type of work you wish to pursue.

If I take a co-op outside of Boston, how can I find housing?

After students complete a co-op, they fill out a questionnaire about their experience for the next student(s) who may be looking for the same position. If the co-op is outside of the Boston area, they are asked to provide some tips and information about finding housing in the area. In addition, students stay in touch with classmates while they are on co-op outside of Boston and learn about housing availability from them. There is also a Facebook group page where students can connect and post about available housing. Under Northeastern’s co-op rotation system, half of the second and third year class will be on co-op while the other half is in classes, so you may be able to arrange to sublease a schoolmate’s apartment in another city: as your schoolmate moves out in order to return to school, you can move in to begin a co-op in the same area. Students always find the housing they need and transition into their new living and work situations each quarter.

Public Interest

Why is Northeastern considered a premier public interest law school?

Nationally recognized for its commitment to public interest law, Northeastern University School of Law is a dynamic institution for service as well as learning. Whether they are representing indigent clients, combating discrimination, working with survivors of domestic violence, advocating for equal access to health care or ensuring fair treatment for immigrants, Northeastern students, graduates, staff and faculty are on the front lines, making the world a more humane and compassionate place.

How does the law school infuse public interest and social justice throughout its curriculum?

You’ll find that social justice is a theme in your law school courses and discussions throughout your career at Northeastern. As a first-year student, you’ll complete Northeastern’s year-long Legal Skills in Social Context program, where you’ll develop legal research, writing and advocacy skills and put those new skills to use in a social justice project on behalf of a real-world nonprofit or community-based organization. Furthermore, you’ll fulfill a public interest requirement before you graduate by going on a public interest co-op, participating in a law school clinic, completing 30 hours of uncompensated legal work in a public interest setting or on a pro bono project at a firm, or doing a public interest independent study. Additionally, the School of Law has recently launched the Center for Law in the Public Interest to serve as the hub for all public interest related scholarships.

What support does Northeastern offer to students who work in the public interest sector?

Northeastern’s most generous and prestigious scholarship program is the Public Interest Law Scholars (PILS) Program. This program offers full tuition scholarships to students with strong social justice and public interest backgrounds and is renewable each year as long as the student remains in good academic standing. All applicants who submit their applications by March 1 are automatically considered for the PILS Scholarship, though interested candidates may also submit an optional essay.

If you go into public service after graduation, you may be able to have your student loans forgiven through Northeastern’s Loan Deferral and Forgiveness Program and/or through the federal College Cost Reduction and Access Act

Financial Aid

How do I apply for financial aid?

All students interested in being considered for financial aid must fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), available at fafsa.ed.gov. Northeastern's federal institution code is 002199. Important information regarding FAFSA changes for the 2017-2018 application cycle is available here.

FIRST YEAR JD APPLICANTS

When should I apply for financial aid?

Please refer to the Financial Aid section of our website for important information about applying for aid.  The priority filing window for the FAFSA is October 1 through February 15. You should submit the FAFSA before February 15 even if you have not received an admissions decision yet.

If I have prior federal student loans, how do I make sure that they remain in an "in-school deferment"?

Once you arrive on campus, you can have the University Registrar’s Office complete a deferment form for you. They will forward the form directly to your loan servicer. It is important, however, that you confirm with your loan servicer that the document was received.

When will I receive my financial aid package?

The financial aid office typically sends out award letters in mid-March to admitted students who submitted their FAFSA by the priority deadline. This year, due to the filing window opening on October 1, award letters may be sent out earlier. If you are admitted after mid-March, you will receive your financial aid award letter about a week to a week and a half after you receive your acceptance letter, provided that you have filed your FAFSA before the priority deadline.

FOREIGN TRAINED LAWYERS AND INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

Are international students eligible for loans?

International students may apply for loans from private student loan lenders; however, these loans typically require a creditworthy co-signer who is a US citizen or permanent resident. US federal student loans are not available to international students.

Career Development

Is Northeastern the right place for me if I am not interested in a career in public interest law?

Certainly! While the law school is committed to the belief that all attorneys have a duty to serve society in some capacity, not all Northeastern students intend to practice traditional public interest law upon graduation. Northeastern’s mission is to provide students with a clear understanding of the immense power they have as lawyers in our society and the ethical and social implications of the decisions they will make in this role. On average, graduates of Northeastern enter public interest careers at a rate that is two times the national average. However, the majority of our students work in settings other than public interest after graduation, such as judicial clerkships, government agencies, and law firms (including large firms).

How does Northeastern prepare students to get jobs?

Our graduates obtain significant practical legal experience and make many professional connections through our Cooperative Legal Education Program. Through co-op, every student completes nearly a year of full-time work experience in the legal field and/or practice setting of their choosing before graduation. This allows our students to discover their true professional passions and gain the practical skills necessary to excel in today's legal job market. Northeastern's Center for Co-op and Career Development also provides substantial career planning assistance to students and graduates. 

How are students supported through the job search process?

All Northeastern law students receive extensive support during their post-graduate job search. Our attorney advisors in the Center for Co-op and Career Development work closely with students through individual advising appointments; match students with mentors; provide a wide array of programs featuring attorney presenters; host guest-attorney advisors from a myriad of practice areas, settings and locations; and conduct employer outreach around the globe. The advisors coach students on the nuts and bolts of entering the legal profession as well as strategize with students about how to best use the four invaluable co-op experiences to land their dream post-graduate jobs. Whether you plan to pursue your career in a Boston law firm or in an international human rights organization, co-op advisors provide ongoing support as you move through each stage of your job search.

What is the starting salary for Northeastern University School of Law graduates?

There is a wide range of salaries paid to entry-level lawyers. While there is some geographic variation in salary, the biggest variation is in the type of legal work that people do (corporate, public interest, policy work) and the setting in which they do this work (small, medium or large firm, government, corporation, judiciary). For instance, on the low-end of entry-level salaries are generally lawyers who work for public interest organizations or in the criminal justice system as prosecutors or public defenders. The starting salaries can be in the low-to-mid $30,000 range. The high-end of entry-level salaries are lawyers who work for large corporate law firms in major cities. These starting salaries can be anywhere from $125,000 to $160,000.

Student Life

What student groups and activities can I join as a law student?

There are many student organizations within the law school community that bring together students with common interests or backgrounds. Student organizations include the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association, the Black Law Students Association, the Business Law Society, the Cooperative Income Sharing Program, the Entertainment and Sports Law Society, the Federalist Society, the Health Law Society, the Intellectual Property Society, the International Law Society, the Jewish Law Students Association, the Latin American Law Students Association, the Multicultural Law Students Association, the Queer Caucus, the South Asian Law Students Association and the Women’s Law Caucus, to name just a few.

What University amenities can I use as a law student?

As a law student, you’ll be able to work out at the University’s state of the art facilities at the Marino Center, Cabot Center, Matthews Arena or Squashbusters Center, grab something to eat, relax or browse the University bookstore in the Curry Student Center, or use the additional research materials and space in the recently renovated Snell Library.

Is the law school diverse?

Northeastern seeks a student body with a broad set of interests, backgrounds, life experiences and perspectives. Our students represent various political ideologies as well as religious, cultural and social backgrounds, including a large number of LGBT+ students. Students of color represent over a third of our students. Our faculty is also diverse: 65 percent are women and 19 percent are people of color.

Such diversity is important in a law school, which must train its graduates not only to analyze and interpret the law but also to reflect on competing viewpoints, advance arguments persuasively in a variety of forums and develop policies affecting a broad range of people. Historically, the School of Law's diverse student body has produced graduates who have served all segments of society and who have become leaders in many fields of law. Exposure to a wide array of ideas, outlooks and experiences is an important part of law students' educational and professional development. To find out more about diversity in the legal profession, visit DiscoverLaw, an initiative sponsored by LSAC.org.

Is the law school faculty accessible to students?

Absolutely! Most professors have open door policies, meaning that if they are in the building, students are free to come by to say hello, ask questions or get help with difficult course material. Professors also have designated office hours and are widely available via email. Finally, professors are very involved on the campus through student organizations, social events and other activities that allow students to get to know them on a personal and professional level.  Generally, students rave about the accessibility and openness that the faculty maintains.

Housing

Is on-campus housing available?

Yes. On-campus housing is available each year to a limited number of law students. The demand for these housing spots varies year to year, but it is a good idea to contact the Housing and Residential Life at (617) 373-2814 early, so you are in the best position to obtain on-campus housing for the coming year.

I do not currently live in the Boston area. How can I find an apartment off-campus?

You may prefer to live in an apartment off-campus while attending law school. There are many apartments available near the school, and even more apartments in surrounding areas close to public transportation. Northeastern is accessible via two lines of the MBTA subway system, the Orange Line and Green E-Line, as well as multiple bus lines. The Office of Admissions invites admitted students to join a Facebook Group exclusively for incoming NUSL students; you will be able to discuss housing options with classmates and perhaps “meet” some roommates through this network. Students are also encouraged to utilize the resources provided by Off Campus Student Services, which include access to apartment listings and information about the various neighborhoods near campus.

When looking for housing, on which neighborhoods should I concentrate my search?

Northeastern University School of Law students live in a variety of areas throughout Boston and Massachusetts. Students have been known to live as far away as Worcester (a 1.5 hour train commute), to as close as a five minute walk from the school here in the heart of Boston. The most popular places for students to live are Jamaica Plain (a 15-20 minute commute on the Orange Line or bus), Cambridge (especially Central Square - a short commute on the #1 Bus or Red/Orange Lines), and the Fenway area (a 10-15 minute walk).

First-Year JD Applicant Questions

Admissions

When should I submit my JD application? 

The School of Law begins to receive applications in August for the next year’s class (about a year prior to enrollment).

If you apply by November 15, and take the LSAT by December, you will receive a decision by mid-January.

If you submit your application by March 1, and take the LSAT no later than February, you will receive a decision by mid-April. Applications submitted after March 1 will continue to be reviewed on a space-available basis.

When will I receive an admissions decision?

Apply by November 15, receive a decision by mid-to-late January.

If you submit your JD application by November 15, your decision will be posted on your application status checker by January 15. You will be notified via email when your decision is available. At this point in the process, the file reviewers may decide to admit, deny, waitlist or defer you to the regular application pool. A deferral is not an indication of any particular decision later in the process. If you are deferred, you will be notified via email when your final decision — admit, deny, or waitlist — is updated on your application status checker by April 15.

Apply by March 1, receive a decision by mid-to-late April.

You will be notified via email when your decision is posted on your application status checker by April 15 (assuming you met the priority deadline of March 1). You may be admitted, denied or placed on the waitlist. JD Applications received after our March 1 deadline will not be given priority, and we cannot guarantee a decision date.

If you are admitted and wish to enroll at the School of Law, you must pay the deposit fee by May 1, unless otherwise indicated on your acceptance letter.

How will I receive my admissions decision?

JD Applicants will receive an email notification when their admissions decision has become available on the application status checker. Applicants who require a paper (hard) copy of their admissions decision should contact the Office of Admissions at (617) 373-2395 for assistance.

What are the median LSAT score and GPA for enrolled students?

For the Class of 2020, the median LSAT score was 161, and the median GPA was 3.60 as of September 15, 2017.

I applied before and was waitlisted/denied. How do I reapply?

The School of Law welcomes applications from candidates who have previously applied. If you applied to Northeastern in a previous year, you are encouraged to include an updated résumé, personal statement, letter(s) of recommendation and/or an optional essay, though these are not required. Your LSAT score must be no more than five years old as of the date of your new application. You do not need to pay an additional application fee if you are submitting your new application the year following your original application. Please contact the Office of Admissions to request a fee waiver.

How do I apply for the Public Interest Law Scholars (PILS) Program?

Northeastern’s most generous and prestigious scholarship program is the Public Interest Law Scholars (PILS) Program. This program offers full tuition to students with strong social justice and public interest backgrounds and is renewable each year so long as the student remains in good standing. All applicants to the law school, whose applications are received by March 1, are automatically considered for this scholarship.

Students who wish to bolster their candidacy for the PILS Program may also submit an optional one-page essay with their application materials. The public interest essay prompt is as follows:

Northeastern is a nationally recognized leader in public interest law with a strong reputation for producing accomplished leaders in the field. Whether winning MacArthur Genius Fellowships, arguing critical cases before the United States Supreme Court, or running some of the nation's most powerful advocacy organizations, the success of our graduates in part reflects our social justice mission. What specific social justice issue are you most passionate about and how have your professional and/or personal experiences influenced your interests? Our Public Interest Law Scholarship program offers full-tuition scholarships to selected students, and all completed applications submitted by March 1 will be automatically considered for this program. Applications accepted after March 1 may be considered as time and space allow.

For more information on the selection process for the PILS Scholarship, and how to submit additional optional materials, check out the PILS webpage.

Application Materials and Requirements

What do I need to submit to make my JD application complete?

You must submit a completed application form, résumé, personal statement and $75 application fee. You may also choose to provide a response to one of our optional essay topics. Once the law school receives your application, we will contact the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) in order to obtain copies of your transcript(s), LSAT score(s), letter(s) of recommendation and any other information you have sent to LSAC. After we have received these materials, your application will be reviewed. The Office of Admissions does its best to inform you if your application is incomplete but cannot guarantee that all applicants will be notified. Please keep track of your application and contact the Admissions Office if you are concerned about your status.

Co-op

How does the application process for co-ops work?

The co-op application process begins early. In the fall of your first year, you will have an information session with the Center for Co-op and Career Development to introduce the co-op program. Students who will be going out on their first co-op in the summer will have subsequent trainings through the fall covering the co-op application process, policies and procedures, résumés, cover letters and other topics. Students who will be going out for their first co-op in the fall will participate in these same sessions the following spring.

When it comes time to apply for co-op positions, you may choose to apply to one of the over 600 ‘collecting’ co-op employers through the Center for Co-op and Career Development, to reach out to one of more than 700 additional ‘apply direct’ employers, or to create your own co-op with any other legal employer who can meet the requirements of co-op. Typically about 75% of co-ops are with collecting employers, 15-20% are student-developed and 5-10% are with ‘apply direct’ employers.

For collecting employers, the application process follows a regular schedule and is conducted through the co-op office with job postings, applications, interviews and offers being posted through the co-op office’s Symplicity system. These include a main collection early in the quarter prior to your co-op quarter, as well as several supplemental collections in subsequent weeks. (The exception being summer, for which there are actually three main collections at different points during the year, as many employers have a different approach for hiring summer interns). Students receive a weekly newsletter from the Center for Co-op and Career Development listing all new co-op positions and will receive regular reminders for all deadlines for the quarters during which they will be going on co-op. Co-op advisors are available to meet with you to review résumés, cover letters, and other application materials; to help you choose the right co-ops to apply to; to discuss or practice for interviews; to help you weigh offers and choose how to respond; and to work with you on any other professional development goals.

Financial Aid

When should I apply for financial aid?

Please refer to the Financial Aid section of our website for important information about applying for aid.  The priority filing window for the FAFSA is October 1st through February 15th. You should submit the FAFSA before February 15th even if you have not received an admissions decision yet.

If I have prior federal student loans, how do I make sure that they remain in an "in-school deferment"?

Once you arrive on campus, you can have the University Registrar’s Office complete a deferment form for you. They will forward the form directly to your loan servicer. It is important, however, that you confirm with your loan servicer that the document was received.

When will I receive my financial aid package?

The financial aid office typically sends out award letters in mid-March to admitted students who submitted their FAFSA by the priority deadline. This year, due to the filing window opening on October 1st, award letters may be sent out earlier. If you are admitted after mid-March, you will receive your financial aid award letter about a week to a week and a half after you receive your acceptance letter, provided that you have filed your FAFSA before the priority deadline.

Merit-based Tuition Scholarships

As a first year JD Applicant, when will I find out if I have been awarded a merit-based tuition scholarship?

Generally speaking, if you are awarded a merit-based tuition scholarship (other than the Public Interest Law Scholarship, which has a separate selection procedure), this information is included in your admission letter. Merit-based scholarships can only be applied to tuition.

What are the conditions for renewing my merit-based tuition scholarship? Are there any GPA or class rank requirements?

Our merit-based tuition scholarships are guaranteed for three years; a student automatically keeps their merit-based tuition scholarship as long as they remain in good standing at the law school. There are no GPA or class rank requirements. Northeastern University School of Law firmly believes that students work best, and learn best, in a cooperative and collaborative community environment. As such, we neither rank our students nor calculate a GPA for them.

My scholarship requires I remain in good academic standing. What does this mean?

As long as a student is enrolled and has not been dismissed for academic or disciplinary reasons, s/he is in good standing. However, no student may receive institutional aid (merit or need-based) for more than six academic terms. Should a student require additional academic semesters or quarters beyond the standard six terms necessary to complete the JD degree, institutional aid will not be available.

After I receive my scholarship offer, can I negotiate for additional assistance?

The School of Law reviews every application in detail, and merit-based scholarships are awarded to students based on their individual applications. It is our policy to be fully upfront with our merit scholarship offers. With such a deep and talented applicant pool, we are required to make some very difficult decisions about the limited merit aid we are able to award, and, unfortunately, not every admitted student receives a merit scholarship due to the competitive nature of our pool. We are therefore unable to provide additional merit scholarships after admission. All students are strongly encouraged to visit our Financial Aid webpage to learn more about need-based aid, loans and grants. Additionally, all admitted students are invited to make an appointment to speak with our Office of Financial Aid to discuss funding their legal education.

Are international students, applying as first year JD applicants, eligible for merit-based scholarships?

Yes, international students who apply as first year JD applicants are eligible for merit-based tuition scholarships. These scholarships can only be applied to tuition.

Information for High School and Community College Students

Where can I find more information about applying to law school?

There are a number of great resources available online as you begin to think about attending law school or a legal career. Specifically, we encourage you to visit the DiscoverLaw.org website for information, advice and support. 

Foreign-Trained Lawyers Program Applicant Questions

Admissions

What materials do I need to submit to apply for admission to the Foreign Trained Lawyer Program?

You must submit a completed application form, résumé, transcript, personal statement and $75 application fee (or application fee waiver). You may also choose to provide a response to one of our optional essay topics. Once the law school receives your application, we will contact the Law School Admission Council (LSAC) in order to obtain copies of your transcript(s), letter(s) of recommendation and any other information you have sent to LSAC. Additionally, applicants whose foreign degree program was not taught in English need to submit a TOEFL score report directly to Northeastern University School of Law (institution code 3658). Alternately, Northeastern University School of Law will accept an official IELTS score report.

Is there an application deadline for the Foreign Trained Lawyer Program?

There is no formal application deadline. However, for the best consideration, your application and supporting documents should be received by the Office of Admissions by March 1 of the year you would like to enter. The later you apply, the fewer seats will be available in our class. If you will require a visa to study in the United States, please submit your application before July 1 to ensure enough time to secure your visa.

How will my credits be evaluated for advanced standing?

Once you have been granted admission to the JD program, the Office of Academic and Student Affairs will review your transcript and evaluate you for advanced standing.

Do I need an LSAT score?

You are not required to submit an LSAT score if you hold a law degree from a non-US law school. If you have an LSAT score, it will appear on your CAS report and be considered as part of your application.

Do I need a TOEFL? 

If your foreign degree program was not taught in English, you will need to submit a TOEFL score report directly to Northeastern University School of Law (institution code 3658). Alternately, Northeastern University School of Law will accept an official IELTS score report.

Academics

How will the rotation between academics and co-ops look for students with Advanced Standing?

The first year will consist of the standard first year law school classes. The following year, depending on the number of credits granted from your foreign law degree, you will rotate between full-time upper level courses and full-time legal work (co-ops) every three months. Advanced standing students may be permitted to complete three co-ops rather than four. This allows you to gain substantial hands-on experience while still graduating in less than three years.

Once I am an advanced standing student, what will the length of my program be?

Students admitted with advanced standing typically complete the JD program in two years. Although situations may vary, students with advanced standing usually enter in late August with the incoming first year JD class and graduate in August two years later. 

What does the curriculum for advanced standing JD students look like?

Students with advanced standing begin with the two semesters of required first year courses in year one followed by two quarters of specialized electives alternating with three or four quarters of co-op. Once you have been admitted, please contact the Office of Academic and Student Affairs to determine how many credits will be accepted. This may impact the number of quarters of upper-level coursework required. A maximum of 29 credits is permitted.

Financial Aid

Are international students eligible for loans?

International students may apply for loans from private student loan lenders; however, these loans typically require a creditworthy co-signer who is a US citizen or permanent resident. US federal student loans are not available to international students.

Merit-based Tuition Scholarships

Are international students applying as Foreign Trained Lawyers eligible for Merit based scholarships?

No, international students who apply under the Foreign-Trained Lawyer Program are not eligible for merit-based tuition scholarships. 

Transfer Applicant Questions

Admissions

What does Northeastern University School of Law look for in a transfer applicant?

We will focus primarily on your performance in your first year of law school, but we will also consider your undergraduate work, LSAT score, outside activities and connection to the mission of Northeastern University School of Law. You should have enrolled in the following classes in your first year in order to be eligible for admission as a transfer student.

Civil Procedure
Constitutional Law
Contracts
Criminal Justice/Criminal Law
Property
Legal Writing
Torts

If you have not or will not complete these courses in your first year, please contact the Office of Academic and Student Affairs at lawstudentaffairs@northeastern.edu or (617) 373-5147.

I am attending a law school that is not ABA-accredited. Can I transfer to Northeastern?

Unfortunately not. In order to transfer to Northeastern, you must have completed your first year at another ABA-accredited law school.

How many transfer students enroll in a given year?

It varies from year to year; we typically enroll a small class of transfer students.

If I am not in the top 10% of my class at my current law school, should I even bother applying as a transfer?

Absolutely! Do not let your class ranking deter you from applying. We consider many factors when reviewing applications.

Academics

Assuming that I am accepted, will all of the credits from my first year at my current law school transfer?

The Office of Academic and Student Affairs determines which credits transfer on a case-by-case basis. First-year students at Northeastern take seven courses (Civil Procedure, Property, Torts, Criminal Justice, Constitutional Law, Contracts and Legal Skills in Social Context). Transfer students are not required to take Legal Skills in Social Context, but must complete a first-year legal writing course. If you have any questions as to which courses will transfer, please contact the Office of Academic and Student Affairs at lawstudentaffairs@northeastern.edu or (617) 373-5147.

Career Development

Can I participate in Northeastern's On Campus Interview Program (OCI) as a transfer student?

Yes, but you should apply to transfer early in order to take full advantage of our offerings. Large law firms and some government/public interest organizations begin accepting résumés for OCI as early as July. Indeed, the first deadline for applying to employers who participate in Northeastern's OCI and several other recruitment programs in which our school participates will be in July. If you are interested in participating in these programs, you should contact the Center for Co-op and Career Development at (617) 373-3002 or lawcoop@northeastern.edu as soon as possible.

Co-op

How does the co-op process work for transfer students?

Upon matriculating at Northeastern, you’ll meet with representatives in the Center for Co-op and Career Development to learn about co-op policies and procedures and the processes for applications, interviews, offers, etc.

When it comes time to apply for co-op positions, you may choose to apply to one of the over 600 ‘collecting’ co-op employers through the Center for Co-op and Career Development, to reach out to one of more than 700 additional ‘apply direct’ employers, or to create your own co-op with any other legal employer who can meet the requirements of co-op. Typically about 75% of co-ops are with collecting employers, 15-20% are student-developed, and 5-10% are with ‘apply direct’ employers.

For collecting employers, the application process follows a regular schedule and is conducted through the co-op office with job postings, applications, interviews, and offers being posted through the Center’s Symplicity system. These include a main collection early in the quarter prior to your co-op quarter, as well as several supplemental collections in subsequent weeks. (The exception being summer, for which there are actually three main collections at different points during the year, as many employers have a different approach for hiring summer interns). Students receive a weekly newsletter from the Center for Co-op and Career Development listing all new co-op positions and will receive regular reminders for all deadlines for the quarters during which they will be going on co-op. Co-op advisors are available to meet with you to review résumés, cover letters and other application materials; to help you choose the right co-ops to apply to; to discuss or practice for interviews; to help you weigh offers and choose how to respond; and to work with you on any other professional development goals.

Financial Aid 

How does my transfer student status affect my eligibility for Northeastern grants?

You may be eligible for modest need-based grants, which are based on the FAFSA form; however, because you did not enter Northeastern as a first-year student, you are not eligible for institutional merit-based tuition scholarships. Additionally, there are some endowed scholarships for which you may qualify. You may apply for these endowed scholarships in September. If you have any questions regarding financial aid, please contact the Office of Financial Aid.

If I have prior federal student loans, how do I make sure that they remain in an "in-school deferment"?

Once you arrive on campus, you can have the University's Registrars’ Office complete a deferment form for you. They will forward the form directly to your loan servicer. It is important, however, that you confirm with your loan servicer that the document was received.

Westlaw & LEXIS Accounts

If I transfer to Northeastern, how do I transfer my Westlaw and Lexis accounts?

You will need to go to the law library in person to get new Westlaw and LEXIS passwords. Please bring your Northeastern University ID, aka "Husky Card". Otherwise, if you try to print anything, the print jobs will be sent to your first law school!

Waitlisted Applicant Questions

Waitlisted Applicants

When are decisions made regarding waitlisted students?

The  waitlist is monitored throughout the summer. When we are able to extend offers to waitlisted students, they are usually done between early May and orientation, which occurs in late August.

How will I be contacted if I am selected off of the waitlist?

If and when we are able to extend an offer of admission to a waitlisted candidate, an admissions staff member contacts the student directly (via phone or email). Those who are admitted from the waitlist have a limited window of time to respond to an offer of admission.

Will I be eligible for scholarship funding?

Unfortunately, we are typically unable to offer institutional scholarship grant money to students admitted from the waitlist. You may be eligible for modest need-based grants and you are encouraged to submit a FAFSA form. If you have any questions regarding financial aid, please contact the Office of Financial Aid.

If I'm selected from the waitlist, can I defer?

No, we do not allow students admitted from the waitlist to defer entrance to the law school. 

Is the waitlist ranked? 

No, we do not rank our waitlist. Should we activate the waitlist, we will give every file consideration. If you are interested in attending Northeastern, we encourage you to submit a letter of continued interest and keep us updated on your status throughout the summer.

I'm a waitlisted student, can I set up an interview to meet with an admissions representative?

Unfortunately, we do not interview or formally meet with applicants, but we have plenty of staff on hand to answer any questions you may have. We can be reached at (617) 373-2395 or lawadmissions@northeastern.edu.

Can I submit updated documentation?

Yes, you may submit additional materials to your application, including an updated resume, letter of continued interest, or any other relevant update to lawadmissions@northeastern.edu. We ask that you refrain from submitting materials such as theses, works of art, creative writing, publications, reports, videography, music, or other similar materials.