School of Law to accept GRE

As part of continuing efforts to expand access and opportunities for students interested in pursuing a legal education, the Washington University in St. Louis School of Law will begin accepting the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) in addition to the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT).

Applicants to the Juris Doctorate (JD) program for Fall 2018 are permitted to submit an application with either or both the GRE and the LSAT as part of the application process.

“WashULaw wants to appeal to the best students in the country and the world, regardless of their academic, professional or personal background,” said Nancy Staudt, dean and the Howard & Caroline Cayne Professor of Law. “The class beginning this fall was one of the most accomplished and diverse in the history of WashULaw. The decision to accept the GRE will continue to build on these efforts, making the admissions process even more accessible to highly qualified and motivated students of all backgrounds interested in pursuing a legal education.”

While test scores comprise an important part of any law school application process, the School of Law uses a holistic approach by taking into consideration a number of relevant factors that could go into the making of a successful law student and future lawyer.

For one, by accepting the GRE, the school will expand the pool of potentially highly qualified students by making the path to admission easier for candidates from fields that traditionally might not apply, such as engineering, math or science. Moreover, the GRE also is administered more frequently and in more locations than the LSAT, thereby offering a less expensive and more convenient option to applicants.

“The GRE complements the interdisciplinary approach we have adopted in preparing students for the real-world challenges they will face in a job market that values candidates with a variety of skill sets,” Staudt said.

The decision to accept the GRE was adopted after careful consideration. Washington University joins a small group of elite law schools that recently announced acceptance of the GRE, including Harvard University and Northwestern University. The announcement also comes as the American Bar Association has launched the Commission on the Future of Legal Education, formed to examine critical issues involving access to legal education and legal careers, including admission test scores, bar passage rates and job placement.

“I am extremely excited about adding the GRE as an option to the application process,” said Katherine Scannell, associate dean for admissions and placement. “We are committed to attracting the best and brightest applicants to WashULaw, and we strongly encourage anyone considering law school as an option to reach out to us and learn more about our community.”

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