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Penn Law School

University of Pennsylvania Law School


Located in the heart of Philadelphia, the University of Pennsylvania Law School also known as Penn Law is part of the University of Pennsylvania and one of five Ivy League law schools. It is currently ranked the #7 law school in the country by U.S. News and World Report, tied with Berkeley Law , and is quite selective with a 2007 acceptance rate of 16.3%.

Penn Law School's 3-year full-time Juris Doctor (J.D.) program operates from mid-August to mid-May; no part-time or evening programs are available. Housing information is available through the website's Living in Philadelphia page.

Contact Information

3400 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6204
(215) 898-7400

Email: admissions@law.upenn.edu
Website: http://www.law.upenn.edu
Blog: http://www.law.upenn.edu/blogs/news/

Fast Facts (Class of 2011)

  • Enrollment Information

    Applicants: 5,828
    Enrolled: 250

    Women: 46%
    Minorities: 33%

    Student to Faculty Ratio: 1: 12

  • GPA/LSAT Scores

    LSAT Median: 169
    LSAT 25/75 Percentile: 166/171

    UGPA Median: 3.69
    UGPA 25/75 Percentile: 3.46/3.88

  • Costs and Fees (2008-2009)

    Tuition (including university and technology fees): $44,330
    Room, board, and other expenses: $18,320

Application Procedures

Application fee: $70
Application deadline: February 15, 2009 for Fall 2009 admission

Penn Law School accepts applications only through the Law School Admission Council (LSAC), but you can request information from the school's website.

In addition to the application form and fee, applicants must submit:

  • Undergraduate transcripts from all schools attended
  • Graduate transcripts from all schools attended
  • LSAT/LSDAS report
  • Two Letters of Recommendation (Must be submitted through the LSAC Letter of Recommendation Service)
  • Resume
  • Personal statement
You can find more information on Penn Law School's application requirements here.

Transfer Procedures

Transfer applicants must have completed one year at an ABA-accredited law school as a full-time student, and must apply before the second year of law school.

To apply, transfer applicants must complete the online application; applications must be submitted between May 1 and July 15 (and completed by August 1) of the year in which you're seeking admission.

For more information on transferring to Penn Law School, see Apply as a J.D. Transfer Student.

Degrees and Curriculum

In order to earn a Juris Doctor from Penn Law School, a student must complete 55 hours of coursework beyond the first year curriculum, fulfill the senior writing requirement, complete a course in professional responsibility, and do 70 hours of pro bono work through the Public Service Program. For a fuller explanation of requirements, see Law Degree Requirements.

The first-year curriculum includes Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Contracts, Criminal Law, Legal Writing, Property and Torts as well as two electives. Students choose all courses during the second and third years of study.

Penn offers several joint degree programs in which students can earn a J.D. along with another professional degree from one of Penn's graduate or professional schools; applications to the programs must be filed separately.

Penn Law School also offers degree programs for Master of Laws (LL.M.), Master of Comparative Law (L.L.C.M.), and Doctor of the Science of Law (S.J.D.).

Study Abroad

Penn Law has six formal study abroad programs including those to Japan, Germany, China, Israel, Spain, and France, as well as a JD/MA program with the Wharton School's Lauder Institute.

Law Journals and Other Activities

Penn Law School has five official student journals, including University of Pennsylvania Law Review, University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law, and University of Pennsylvania Journal of Law and Social Change, as well as two independent journals, East Asia Law Review and Journal of Animal Law & Ethics.

Along with many student organizations, the law school has specialized institutes and programs for specific legal interests including the Institute for Law & Economics, the Center for Tax Law & Policy, and the Criminal Law Research Group.

Bar Exam Passage Rate

A majority of Penn Law students take the New York State Bar Exam and, in 2007, achieved a 94.4% pass rate. The overall pass rate for the NY Bar Exam was 77%.

Post-Graduation Employment

From the 2006 graduating class, 95.3% were employed at graduation and 98.2% were employed nine months after graduation. Starting salaries in the private sector averaged $145,000, and $50,000 in the public sector.

Sixty-five to eight-two percent of recent graduates went into private practice, 15% to 22% accepted judicial clerkships, 4% to 8% went to public interest or government positions, 2% to 4% entered the business field, and 1% to 2% percent entered academia.

Penn Law in the News

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