6 Ways to Nail Your Law School Admissions Interview
Originally published as an expert guest post on Manhattan Prep
You’ve just scored a law school admissions interview with that one law school that sits on top of your list! Congratulations! Now, how do you nail that interview? Here are six tips:
1. Be Prepared
What you’re facing is nothing short of a job interview.
- Find common law school admissions interview questions (many message boards have relevant discussions) and start thinking about possible answers.
- Keeping common questions in mind, consider the experiences and qualities you want to bring up and how to weave them into the discussion. However, do not come into the interview with a canned response—it’s painfully obvious when an answer is scripted. Instead, just have a good idea of where you’re going with an answer.
2. Know the Law School
Aside from knowing you as a person and as a student, interviewers want to gauge your genuine interest in their law school.
- Answering questions with generic answers will not provide the interviewer with a strong sense of your interest in their particular school.
- Do your research and mention a few points that are unique to that school—a famous professor or a class unique to the school. It takes 10 minutes to research a school, and it will separate you from the pack.
3. Avoid Clichés and Unwarranted Flattery
If you state that your biggest weakness is that you care too much or that your biggest regret is that you didn’t volunteer even more in college, prepare for an eye roll.
- Interviewers have heard it all before. Don’t mask strengths as weaknesses or avoid a question in order to mention another one of your excellent qualities. Otherwise, you risk the interviewer ignoring your response, thinking that you have an unrealistic perception of yourself, or both.
- Be realistic. Telling a school ranked 100 in the country that they provide the best legal education available will come off as disingenuous or detached from reality.
4. Draw on Your Experiences
Provide concrete examples from your life.
- Go beyond simply stating that you pride yourself on being a leader. Back that statement up with a specific instance, for example, of how you spearheaded the creation of a new student organization in college.
- Consider drawing on a unique or funny anecdote that will stick with the interviewer after the interview is over. You could leave your interviewer thinking, “Hey, remember that person who won Jeopardy a couple of times? That certainly showed her quick thinking and intelligence!”
5. Have Questions Ready
Almost invariably, an interviewer will invite you to ask questions about them and the law school during the law school admissions interview.
- Prepare your questions ahead of time (premade answers are fine for this—and only this—portion of the interview) and make sure that they are insightful and school-specific.
- Know Who You’re Interviewing With
Not all interviews are created equal, so understand ahead of time which type of interview you are headed into, and prepare accordingly.
- Some are in person, some are via Skype, and others are recorded.
- Interviews could be conducted one-on-one or with a group of interviewers, with admissions committee members or with alumni.
Getting the law school admissions interview is good news, and it means you have one more hoop to jump through. Follow the above guidelines to help nail your law school admissions interview. If you need help navigating the application and interview process – we’re here for you!
Stratus Admissions Counseling is a full service admissions counseling firm distinguished by its team based, multi-step process ensuring each application is crafted for optimum impact. Each law admissions team member has graduated from a top-14 law school and our collaborative team provides the depth and breadth of legal experience to maximize your chances of admission to your top choice law school.
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