About HLS

harvard law school

Harvard Law School was founded in 1817 and is the nation’s oldest law school. It enrolls over 1,700 students. Approximately 60 percent of students choose to live off campus. The school offers popular student activities and events on the university campus with multiple restaurants, bars and shops.

Harvard Law School is respected for its difficult academic programs. The first-year students, or 1L group, are broken into seven groups. They participate in the Student Practice Organizations. Here, they can take advantage of opportunities to use their legal minds. Some experiences include advising musicians on copyright laws and representing state prison inmates at disciplinary hearings. Students in their second and third years can participate in legal clinics. Harvard offers the most clinics in the world. In order to graduate, students are required to complete at least 40 hours of pro bono work. There are no letter grades. Individuals can earn a distinction of Honors, Pass, Low Pass or Fail for each course.

harvard law school inside building

Harvard Law does a remarkable job preparing its students for graduation. Harvard graduates have won more than 500 judicial clerkships over the past several years including one quarter of all Supreme Court clerkships! Students also frequently obtain tenure-track law teaching positions after graduation. Harvard Law School graduates make an average public service starting salary of over $60,000 and a private sector starting salary of over $170,000. Individuals can also gain renown for being published in the “Harvard Law Review.” (It was first published in 1887.) The Harvard Law Review Association also publishes “The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation.” Harvard also has one of the longest-running law school newspapers called the “Harvard Law Record.”

With the largest academic library in the world and some of the most well-respected professors, Harvard Law School has much to offer law students. Notable alumni also form a supportive network for graduates. (The school boasts over 39,000 living alumni.) Students looking for an impressive law school should investigate all HLS has to offer.


Acceptance Rates

Median Student Scores

LSAT Range (25 to 75 Percentile)

harvard law school lsat range

GPA Range (25 to 75 Percentile)

Admissions Information

2020 acceptance rate: 13.00%

Number of 2020 applicants: 7,448

Number of 2020 matriculants: 445

LSAT (median): 173

GPA (median): 3.88

LSAT range (25 to 75 percentile): 170 to 175

GPA range (25 to 75 percentile): 3.78 to 3.96

Students with at least one year of work experience: 82%

Students with advanced degrees: 11%

Application Deadlines

The deadline was recently extended to March 1 but we still normally encourage applicants to apply earlier.

New HLS students must start in the fall.

Financial Aid

Total Cost and Total Expected Cost of Attendance

Median Grants for Students

Additional Information

Harvard Law School offers the LIPP (Low Income Protection Plan) which helps graduates who accept qualifying jobs in low-paying fields such as non profits.

Tuition (2020-2021): $65,874

Room, board, and other (2020-2021): $33,444

Total Estimated cost of attendance (2020-2021): $99,318

Students who receive grants: 49%

Median grant amount: $26,891

conditional law school scholarships Conditional Scholarships

Harvard does not award law school scholarships that may be reduced or eliminated based on academic performance other than failure to maintain good academic standing.

Score Card

Employment Statistics

Career Placement Results

Transfers Out

Average Bar Passage Differential

Class Size Analysis

Additional Information

Employment Statistics
Employed full-time, long-term, bar passage required: 87.5%
Employed full-time, long-term, JD advantage: 4.5%

Career Placement Results
BigLaw: 50.9%
Federal Clerkships: 17.2%

Net Transfers: +65
Transfers Out: -0-

Average Bar Passage Differential (first-time takers): 19.77%

Class Size Analysis
Under 25: 69%
25-49: 17%
50-74: 8%
75-99: 3%
100+: 3%


Harvard Law School

This page was last updated in December 2020.