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What are suitable bachelor degrees to be a litigation lawyer?

I want to be a trial attorney in the future and was exploring either psychology or political science or even both. What are other suggestions that could help in my career as a possible trial attorney? #career #future #triallawyer #bachelorsdegree #college


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Randolph’s Answer

Hi Rach,

I love your career choice! I think one thing is certain: you are going to have an exciting life. In my career in family law, I don’t get trials too often. But when I do, it’s a thrill to prepare and then get into court to present my case. There’s something about being in that courtroom in the heat of battle trying to get all of your evidence presented to the court that gets the juices flowing.
As for what major you should take before law school, both sound like good options. One recommendation I have is for you to watch the movie “My Cousin Vinny”. Not only is it hilarious, but I think it demonstrates what it takes to be a litigation attorney. You can see how Vinny turns a case around via clever use of cross-examination and his presentation of evidence. That is essentially what being a litigation attorney is all about. If that’s exciting to you, then you are going in the right direction.
Good luck to you!!!

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Ro’s Answer

As a law school graduate and former litigation attorney, I found that my undergraduate major in political science was useful, but not necessary. I've met many attorneys that majored in various subjects. One thing you may want to consider is what kind of trial attorney are you considering? (ex: criminal or civil?) This could assist you in deciding on your major. Here is an example: if you would like to be a civil litigation attorney for a technology company that wants to protect it's patents (Google, Apple), then a background in technology may be beneficial. If you want to practice criminal law, then a psychology or forensics background would be helpful. Your major will not determine the area of law you practice, however since you are being forward thinking and attempting to prepare yourself for your career, I do recommend you consider the area of litigation you are specifically interested in, and think about majors that would give you a firm foundation. Good luck and I hope to address you as Esquire soon!

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Alexandra’s Answer

Hi! I am not currently a litigation attorney but I did work as a paralegal in a litigation firm. I have a political science degree. A lot of my co-workers came from social science backgrounds. However, if you had a science degree (biology, chemistry), it would not hurt your chances of going into law schools and later into litigation. Individuals with science backgrounds can go into intellectual property law which is sought after and rewarding specialty as well.

One thing I would recommend is working on both your writing and public speaking skills (regardless of your choice of major). Consider trying a debate or toastmasters club out and also look for ways to improve your writing. Colleges offer writing tutoring services and workshops and some of the literature and social science classes where you have to do research and write papers will also be helpful.

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Krishna’s Answer

I have a good amount of friends who are applying to law school/already in law school right now. Majors ranged from psychology to health science to business to communications. If you want to be a litigation lawyer, I think having a background in political science, international relations, or business can be quite useful. Also, keep in mind that you do not need to be a certain major to apply to law school. Any major can apply and those majors that are out of norm actually are advantageous as you will stick out. Major in what you truly are passionate about, not what you think you need to major in. Either way, you will be able to apply to law school and become a litigation lawyer.


Hope this helps! Good luck!

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Grace’s Answer

I am a lawyer and can assure you that your classmates in law school will come from all different backgrounds - various majors, different ages, some will have worked before going to law school. There is no specific major that will ensure you are better prepared for law school or for a career in law, since you will learn what you need to know in school. That being said, law school involves a ton of reading, writing, and analytical thinking, so experience or skills in those areas will be helpful. If your goal is to become a trial lawyer, you will also benefit from experience with public speaking and debate. The only time where there is an exception to this rule is it you are interested in pursuing patent law, which will require a degree in a related science (biology, chemistry, engineering...). You will not be eligible for patent law jobs without this background, as it is necessary to understand the very technical patent applications you would be working on. But otherwise, enjoy college as a time to explore what interests you and know that it will never be a waste! I majored in musical theatre in college and found the benefit of that when presenting and participating in mock trials!

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