Information for Applicants

This material has been prepared to acquaint you with the application procedures and admission process for the Texas Tech University School of Law.

Before preparing your application, please read this material carefully, and if you have unanswered questions, contact our Admissions Office (806) 742-3985.

Prelegal Education

The Law School does not prescribe a specific prelegal curriculum for its applicants. The wide range of lawyers' tasks and the difference in offerings from college to college preclude such an approach. However, there are certain goals that prelaw students should keep in mind when planning their college programs. They should strive to acquire the ability to read, write, and speak the English language well, to gain a critical understanding of human values and institutionspolitical, economic, and social, and to develop in themselves the power to think creatively. The Official Guide to U.S. Law Schools: Prelaw Handbook published by the Law School Admission Council and Law School Admission Services contains a good discussion of the undergraduate background students should seek to acquire before entering law school. A copy of this handbook may be ordered from Law Services, P. O. Box 2400, Newtown, PA 18940-0977.

Application Procedure

The following materials must be received by the Texas Tech Law School Admissions Office before an application file will be reviewed.

1.A COMPLETED APPLICATION FORM.

Send to:

Admissions Office
School of Law
Texas Tech University
Box 40004
Lubbock, Texas 79409-0004

2.LAW SCHOOL ADMISSION TEST SCORE.

The LSAT/LSDAS Information Book contains a registration form for the LSAT and can be obtained from Law Services, Box 2400, Newtown, PA 18940-0977, or from most college counseling and placement offices. Arrangements should be made to take the test in June, October, or December of the year before the fall semester the applicant wishes to be admitted. However, February tests will be accepted.

3.LAW SCHOOL DATA ASSEMBLY SERVICE REPORT (LSDAS REPORT). This service may be ordered using the subscription form contained in the LSAT/LSDAS Information Book. This can be obtained from any high school or four-year college in the applicant's area. After registering for this service, the applicant should request each college or university at which credit was earned toward the undergraduate degree to send transcripts to Law School Admission Service (LSAS). LSAS analyzes the undergraduate grade record and sends the analysis to the Law School. LSDAS policies allow renewal for up to two years following the end of the original subscription year. LSDAS reports will be updated to include first-year law school matriculation. Cost of renewal is $54 and should be paid to LSDAS. For additional information, contact Law Services, Box 2002, 661 Penn Station, Newtown, PA 18940-0998, (215) 968-1001 (8:30 a.m.-8:00 p.m. EST).

4.APPLICATION FEE. A nonrefundable application fee of $50 must be enclosed with your application. Checks should be made payable to Texas Tech University.

5.RESIDENCY OATH. All applicants must complete the Residency Oath and return it with their application.

6.PERSONAL STATEMENT AND RÉSUMÉ.

7.APPLICANT'S FILE CARD AND REPLY CARDS. Please complete these four cards and return them with your application. Be sure that your address is written or typed on the cards before returning them. No postage is required.

The following materials may be sent to support your application but are not required.

1.Transcripts of graduate study. Graduate grades are not included in the LSDAS analysis. Graduate transcripts should be sent directly to the Admissions Office.

2.Letters of recommendation. These are not required, but if letters are submitted, they should be sent by individuals who are in a position to comment upon an applicant's potential for studying law based on personal knowledge. The Admissions Committee asks that applicants send no more than three recommendation letters. They are not influenced by the number of letters but by the quality of the letters.

When to Apply

Application may be made after the applicant has earned 90 hours of undergraduate credit but all work toward the baccalaureate degree must be completed before enrolling in the School of Law. Candidates should not delay filing an application in order to include later grades. An updated transcript may be submitted to LSDAS at any time and the cumulative grade-point average will be recomputed to reflect the additional grades.

For consideration for fall, applicants are advised to complete application by February. Four to six weeks are normally required for processing the LSAT score and the LSDAS grade analysis.

Applicants should be alert to the system of acknowledgments used by the Texas Tech School of Law and by the Law School Admission Services to inform them of receipt of application materials. LSAS sends an acknowledgment to the applicant upon receipt of the applicant's college transcripts. Since the LSDAS reports cannot be completed and sent to the law school until all transcripts requested have been received and evaluated, inquiries should be made to LSAS (215/968-1001) if acknowledgments are not received within a reasonable time. The admissions staff of the Law School acknowledges receipt of the application and again informs the applicant when the application is completed with an LSDAS report.

Applications are considered for the current year fall enrollment only.

Application Procedure for Foreign Students

In addition to completing the application for admission, each applicant must also register for and take the Law School Admissions Test. The Texas Tech School of Law must receive official copies of the applicant's transcript(s) from the undergraduate school. Each transcript must have a notation on it showing that a degree was awarded. Upon receipt of the transcript, we will send a copy of it to an official of our university who will determine whether the degree received from the foreign university is the equivalent of an undergraduate degree from an accredited university in the U.S. As soon as this determination is made, the applicant will be notified. An official Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score report showing proficiency in English must also be submitted prior to admission. The applicant must score at least 550 on the TOEFL.

Admissions Process

Texas Tech Law School operates an early action admissions policy. Applications meeting the early action admissions criteria and received after the September 1 starting date are reviewed when complete and acceptance decisions are made within 3 weeks. Other application decisions are deferred until after February 2. During February, March, and April the committee reviews these files and makes acceptance decisions. Applicants are notified as these decisions are made by the committee.

When the committee believes sufficient acceptances have been received to complete the entering class, those applicants not selected will be notified. A small group of applicants may be asked if they wish to be placed on a waiting list if openings occur.

Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible to insure their files are complete and ready for consideration by the committee early in the decision-making process.

Applicants applying after February 2 will be considered for admission but should understand that their chances of selection are somewhat diminished. Late files will be fully considered after the regular applicant pool is reviewed.

While considerable weight is placed on the applicant's LSAT score and grade-point average, in making its admissions decisions, the committee looks beyond the quantitative data to such factors as background, experience, extracurricular activities and interests, and evidence of leadership qualities.

Deposit

Each accepted applicant is required to pay a $200 deposit to hold a place in the entering class. This acceptance deposit will be refunded to the applicant upon matriculation at the Law School. One-half of the deposit is refundable upon timely written notice of a change in plans. Such notice is due May 1 for fall admission. Applicants who fail to submit the $200 acceptance deposit by the date specified in the acceptance letter will forfeit their place in the entering class.

Application Evaluation

The Law School Admission Test score and the cumulative grade-point average are equally important in determining admission. However, the Admissions Committee also considers several other factors when evaluating the LSAT score, the GPA, and the qualitative elements bearing on admissions decisions.

Undergraduate Grades

While the cumulative GPA is used to categorize the application on review, the progression (or regression) of grades over the four years is considered in weighing the GPA. Thus, the student whose junior and senior level performance evidences high quality may compete favorably with other applicants. Also, the difficulty of the undergraduate academic program is noted.

Graduate Work

Graduate transcripts submitted with the

application are reviewed and, depending upon the quality of the work, may enhance the application. It is recognized that applicants may have several reasons for deciding to attend graduate school prior to applying for law school. If by taking a graduate degree the applicant is attempting to show that a mediocre undergraduate record is not truly representative of his or her academic ability, it is essential that the graduate record demonstrate outstanding performance. Graduate work is only one of the factors considered in evaluating an application. Consequently, attending graduate school for the sole purpose of securing entrance to law school is not recommended. In any event, if graduate work is being contemplated, the applicant should pursue a graduate course of study which will enhance other career opportunities as well as his or her law school application.

Repeat LSAT Scores

The LSAT may be retaken. In deciding whether to retake the LSAT, the applicant should consider whether some element such as illness reduced his or her ability to perform up to potential on the test and whether the score is reasonably comparable to past performances on other standardized tests. The second test score is averaged with the first score. It should be noted that while it is common for the applicant to improve the LSAT score on retake, a lesser score on the second test is not rare. Consequently, there is some risk in the retake.

Work and Military Experience

Employment or military assignments, particularly those experiences evidencing maturity or providing a background which could be helpful to a lawyer, are considered in the application review.

Writing Sample

The LSAT writing sample is considered by the Admissions Committee.

Other Factors

In addition, the Admissions Committee will consider the following factors: the socioeconomic background of the applicant, including the percentage by which the applicant's family is above or below any recognized measure of poverty, the appli-cant's household income, and the applicant's parents' level of education; whether the applicant would be the first generation of the applicant's family to attend or graduate from an institution; whether the applicant has bilingual proficiency; the applicant's responsibilities while previously attending school, including whether the applicant has been employed, whether the applicant has helped to raise children, or similar factors; the applicant's region of residence; whether the applicant is a resident of a rural or urban area or a resident of a central city or suburban area in the state; the applicant's performance on the LSAT in comparison with that of other students from similar socioeconomic backgrounds; the applicant's involvement in community activities; the applicant's extracurricular activities; the applicant's admission to a comparable accredited out-of-state institution; and any other consideration the School of Law deems necessary to accomplish its stated mission.

New Information

Any time an applicant provides the law school with new information regarding questions 11-15 on the application, the application review process will be withdrawn and the file will go through the review process again.

Interviews

Many applicants request interviews because they wish to discuss or explain academic records or background experiences. Because of the large number of applicants and time limitations, interviews must be limited. Interviews are encouraged for that group of applicants who depend upon the "other factors" listed above for admission. Applicants are encouraged to supplement their applications with new or revised material as needed at any time before the admissions decision. Staff in the Admissions Office are pleased to answer questions regarding the application process and to address any special problems encountered by individual applicants. Information can also be secured from prelaw advisors on undergraduate campuses or members of the law faculty of Texas Tech during their visits to the campuses of Texas colleges and universities.

Reapplication

An applicant whose file was completed and who wishes to reapply for admission the following year need only secure a new application form and Oath of Residency. Submit them to the Admissions Office with the $50 application fee after September 15 prior to the year admission is sought. Materials from the previous file will be transferred to the new file. Unless more than three years have elapsed since the last application, there is no need to reconstruct the materials in the file.

If an applicant withdraws after being accepted and wishes to reapply for a subsequent year, only a new application form and $50 application fee need be filed to complete reapplication. The new application will be reviewed in comparison with other applications of that admission year. On review, the prior withdrawal acts neither as a detriment nor as an assistance to acceptance.

Admission as a Transfer Student

An applicant for admission as a transfer student must submit a completed application form and all supporting materials required of an applicant for an entering class. In addition, the candidate for transfer must provide (1) an official transcript from each law school attended showing grades for all law courses attempted and (2) a letter to the Texas Tech School of Law from the dean of each law school attended concerning the present academic status and rank in class. (If the school or schools no longer rank their students, we must also be advised in which percentile of the first year class the applicant stands.) The transcript and dean's letter must be provided after all first year grades have been received. The applicant must have completed at least one year (approximately 28-30 hours) of law study and be in good standing at an accredited law school to be considered for transfer. Transfer students must complete a minimum of four semesters in residence to be eligible for a degree from Texas Tech.

Because most applicants are attending the spring semesters in their respective schools and grades are not available until June, most transfer decisions are made in mid-summer. Factors such as availability of space, the number of first year courses needed, and the grade record are considered in making these decisions. Transfer applications are usually not approved unless the applicant is in the top quarter of the class. Credit is transferred for courses in which the grade received is equal to the grade average required for graduation from the law school at which the course was taken.

Visiting Students

Students who are in good standing at another law school may be considered for admission on a visiting basis. An application for admission must be completed, an official copy of the law school transcript must be submitted, and a letter must be furnished from the dean of the law school the student is currently attending stating that the student is in good standing and that credit for courses taken at Texas Tech will be accepted for transfer.

Good Character

The Law School may deny admission to any applicant who, in the judgment of the faculty, may appear to be unfit in character to engage in the study or practice of law.

Declaration of Intention to Study Law

The State Board of Law Examiners of Texas has established the following requirement:

. . . every person intending to apply for admission to the Bar examination in this State shall file with the Board a Declaration of Intention to Study Law. The filing deadline for such Declarations shall be as follows: Fall entrants, December 1; Spring entrants, May 1; Summer entrants, September 15; ... Such Declaration shall be made in duplicate on forms prescribed by the Board and shall show such facts as to the history, experience, and educational qualifications of the declarant as the Board may require . . .

All students filing the Intent to Study Law form must furnish a complete set of fingerprints. Fingerprint cards are attached to the declaration form. Students should take these cards to University Police Services for processing.

The forms may be obtained from the Board of Law Examiners, Box 13486, Capitol Station, Austin, TX 78711, or in person from the Law School and should be filed after classes start by the deadlines shown above.

The fee required for filing the Declaration of Intention to Study Law form is $125.

Students who expect to practice in other states should investigate possible similar requirements in such states.

You will be required to submit, along with your Intention to Study Law declaration, a copy of your law school application. Please make a copy of the application and keep it to submit with your declaration.

Profile of the 1997 Entering Class

From an applicant pool of 1,165 there were 205 students admitted as members of the entering class in 1997. Of these, 101 were women. Minority students comprised 12 percent of the class.

For the fall entering students the average LSAT score was at approximately the 68th percentile, and the average GPA was 3.38 on a 4.0 scale.


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LAST UPDATE: 7-1-98