New York University School of Law is widely considered one of the very best law schools in the country. US News typically ranks it among the top six law programs, placing it alongside the other elite law schools at Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Columbia, and the University of Chicago. Unsurprisingly, admission to NYU law is an incredibly competitive process. To form this year’s incoming class, 6534 applicants vied for just 427 seats. So what LSAT and GPA do you typically need to get in? The numbers for the 2017 entering class will give prospective students an idea of what it takes to gain admission to NYU law:
- 25th percentile LSAT score: 166
- Median LSAT score: 169
- 75th percentile LSAT score: 170
- 25th percentile GPA: 3.66
- Median GPA: 3.83
- 75th percentile GPA: 3.90
Having numbers within these ranges or above makes you a competitive applicant for NYU Law.
These numbers, while very high, have slid some in the last couple of years. This does not reflect solely on NYU and rather is the product of larger trends in legal education whereby fewer and fewer people are applying to law school. However, it does mean that admission to NYU may be slightly more obtainable than it was when students were flocking to law school at the height of the recession.
One thing for those who are considering a retake to boost their LSAT score: NYU claims that they still average multiple scores. That said, when you view self-reported data of applicants there is little or no indication that retakers are being considered
Compared with its peer schools, Chicago and Columbia, NYU is actually considered slightly less selective, with an acceptance rate of 24% compared to Chicago’s 17% and Columbia’s 15%. It’s commonly thought that NYU’s admissions process is slightly more numbers-driven than its peers. Numbers alone do predict a successful application the overwhelming majority of the time. That said, NYU takes a holistic view of applicants.
From their admissions page:
“The Committee on Admissions makes decisions after considering all the information in an application. It reviews the undergraduate transcript closely, with attention to such factors as trends in the applicant’s grades, class rank, the ratio of pass/fail to graded courses, the diversity and depth of course work, and the length of time since graduation. Factors other than undergraduate grades and LSAT scores may be particularly significant for applicants who have experienced educational or socio-economic disadvantage.” [source]
Like other top law schools, NYU Law places a high value on forming a diverse student body, saying “the Committee aims to enroll an entering class of students with diverse experience, backgrounds, and points of view.” The unique factors that set you apart as a candidate will certainly be considered in the application process.
The result is that no applicant will be barred from consideration solely based on numbers. As such, do not be discouraged from applying if your LSAT or GPA isn’t quite up to par. Craft a good application and make the case why you belong in the NYU Law Class of 2018. NYU is also known to attract many students who go on to practice in public interest positions. If your experience demonstrates a dedication to public service, make sure that is apparent on your application.
Applicants should not feel prejudiced by having been out of undergrad for a while. Although most admitted students are recent grads, NYU points out that this is because the vast majority of applicants come straight out of undergrad, not because there is any particular preference for them.
If NYU is your dream school, you’ll want to keep your GPA high and max out your potential on the LSAT. We’re here to help, so feel free to ask us anything about LSAT prep or admissions in the comments & click here to check out my post on what I did to get a 99.8th percentile score on the LSAT. Best of luck!