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what subjects do you must have to become a lawyer

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Wayne’s Answer

Hi Jessica. Here are a few suggestions:

Social Studies Courses. The law keeps the world running in order. If you want to work in law, you’ll need to understand why we have the laws we do. Social studies courses covering social issues, world history, government, and criminal law are all recommended for future legal workers.

English Courses. Critical thinking is the cornerstone of law. You need to know how to interpret the intent and letter of the law if you want to have a successful legal career. Learning how to read effectively can make life easier when you’re stuck reviewing an old legal document used to establish precedent. We also have AP classes which go over classic and modern literature.

World Language Courses. Knowing multiple languages can expand your job opportunities in the legal field. Being bilingual or even trilingual can open the door for countless job offers all over the world.

Business Education Courses. Business education classes are a smart choice for high school students interested in working as a business lawyer. Business lawyers can work at law firms or be employed as in-house counsel in a wide variety of business types.

These are just a few. You should meet with your school counselor for more suggestions.

Good luck!
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Desiree’s Answer

First, let me say that I'm in the US and I can only answer from a US prospective, it may be different in other countries. In the U.S. you need to have an undergraduate degree (4-year bachelor's degree), and good law school admission test (LSAT) scores to get into law school. Law school is 3 more years after you graduate from university.

In the U.S. there is no particular required major - or minor - for that bachelor's degree. It's pretty common for people heading to law school to major in History, Political Science, Business, or English. However, you should major in something of interest to you and in which you'll get stellar grades. Having good grades is key to being admitted to law school. So if Math or Chemistry is your passion, do that! (I am a lawyer, my undergraduate majors were Biology and Marine Science.)

To do well in law school - and the practice of the law! - you need to have strong analytical, reasoning and writing skills. Any courses that help develop those "muscles" will prepare you. Depending on what type of lawyer you want to be, you need my need additional skills. You may consider classes in that focus on the Constitution of the country where you hope to practice law, public speaking, logic, debate, writing composition, etc. which will be helpful to any lawyer anywhere. If you are interested in say, criminal law, then you might consider classes about criminal justice, forensics, criminal science. If you are interested in say, environmental law, the a basic understanding of statistics, biology and chemistry will serve you well. Corporate law? Consider math, accounting, business classes. I imagine you can see a pattern forming: the law has many focus areas and you can select classes that align with the area of your interest.

Part of being a good attorney is being well-rounded and having the ability to synthesize a lot of different information. Some of my courses work may not have a straight line to law, but in terms of honing analytical or people skills, they must have been helpful. Don't be so laser focused on being a lawyer that you skip courses that are of interest to you. You'll be amazed what unforeseen issues come into your practice of law!

Desiree recommends the following next steps:

Research your local law school admission requirements
In both High School and University, take elective classes or participate in extracurricular activities involving the field of law or key legal skills (public speaking, debate, model UN, etc.)
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Lené’s Answer

Hi Jessica,

You can see the subject and other admission requirements on each of your choice university's websites.

The general requirements that I remember were that you have to have reasonable marks in both your languages (first and second additional language) and a high overall average. Please note that this average is calculated considering only subjects that count towards university admission. I.e. Visual Arts would count towards your average and Design Art would not as the latter is not an university admission subject. The exact mark and overall average requirements depend greatly on the university but you can assume that higher marks will result in a greater chance of being accepted by the university.

Please note that these are the general requirements for the bachelors of law degree. Degrees such as BcomLaw would have additional requirements such as math.

Lené recommends the following next steps:

Decide which universities you would most want to study at and consider their particular requirements for the LLB or other law course that you are interested in.