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Educational Requirements

Apply With or Without a Bachelor's Degree

Many people are surprised to learn that a Bachelor’s Degree is NOT required by the State of California to apply for admission to law school.

Not everyone has the opportunity to complete a formal, four-year, undergraduate education. Recognizing this, the State of California created several admissions categories so individuals with various pre-legal academic backgrounds could still apply for admission to law school and later qualify for a license to practice law.

Admissions Categories

Degreed-Regular - Applicants holding a Bachelor's Degree or higher from a regionally accredited college satisfy pre-legal education requirements. The majority of law school applicants are in this category.

Non-Degreed Regular - Applicants without a Bachelor's Degree can satisfy pre-legal education requirements if they have earned: an academic AA or AS Degree, OR 60 semester/90 quarter units of bachelor degree-applicable coursework, at a regionally accredited college.

Special Student - Applicants with less than 60 semester units of bachelor degree-applicable coursework may satisfy pre-legal education requirements by taking CLEP exams, the LSAT, and by later passing the First Year Law Students Exam. This option is uncommonly pursued due to the additional testing requirements.

Evaluation of Transcripts

Occasionally, an applicant may be asked to submit transcripts to the State Bar of California for an Evaluation of Pre-Legal Education to assure pre-legal education requirements have been met. This process may take 4-6 weeks.

Evaluation of Foreign College Degrees

Applicants with foreign college degrees or units must obtain a credential evaluation from a list of State Bar approved credential evaluation services. The evaluation must be submitted to GUCL in a sealed envelope and contain a detailed evaluation of courses, units, grades, and an explanation of degree equivalency. Obtaining an evaluation may take 4-6 weeks. LSAC credential evaluations do not meet this requirement.

Prior Law Students

Please contact GUCL before applying.

Individuals with prior law school attendance may apply to GUCL. In addition to submitting a complete applicant file, an official transcript and a letter of standing from the law school previously attended are also required. Interim transcripts and/or letters of standing (final grades/standing not yet posted) may be submitted but are insufficient for rendering an admission decision.

If a prior law school applicant is admitted and granted transfer credit, enrollment typically occurs in the summer or fall quarters due to the structured program at GUCL.

If a prior law school applicant is admitted but no transfer credit is granted, enrollment as a first-year law student may occur in the Spring or Fall and a Permission to Start Law Studies Over request must be submitted to the State Bar.