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Information about Scalia Law

Overview of Antonin Scalia Law School

The George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School is a public law school, and a part of Virginia Commonwealth's University System. Located in Arlington, Virginia, just minutes from downtown Washington, D.C., Scalia Law offers tremendous opportunities to its students. We have an outstanding faculty, a state-of-the-art facility, and a student body whose diversity and talents are unrivaled.

Review basic statistics for Scalia Law, including J.D. enrollment, test scores, undergraduate GPAs, curriculum, faculty, fees and bar passage rates in the ABA/LSAC Official Guide to ABA-Approved Law Schools.

Law & Economics at Scalia Law

At Scalia Law, we have an interdisciplinary approach with a focus on law & economics. A number of our faculty members have PhDs in Economics in addition to law degrees. All students are required to take a class covering basic microeconomic concepts that are essential to understanding the economic implications of legal rules. No prior knowledge of economics is required or expected. In addition, many of our professors will bring economic theory into other substantive law courses such as Torts and Contracts.

Basic knowledge of economic theory is invaluable in gaining a sophisticated legal education and in developing as an attorney. Our students become versed in public choice theory, cost-benefit analysis and basic statistical methods. With these tools, our graduates are ready to take on complex analysis of legal problems and policies in the current economic and legal climate.

Rigorous Legal Research and Writing Program at Scalia Law

At Scalia Law, we have a strong and unique legal research and writing program. Students take four semesters of legal research and writing that trains them in the following: (1) basic legal research tools (books and electronic resources included); (2) legal memo writing; (3) trial level writing and oral argument of a motion; (4) brief writing and oral argument of an appeal; and (5) drafting other legal documents, such as contracts and other transactional documents.

In addition, as part of our Legal Research, Writing & Analysis Program, all students participate in two oral arguments before judges and practitioners from the community. Two additional scholarly writing classes are required after the first two years. Most law schools require only one or two semesters of legal research and writing classes. At Scalia Law, we ensure that our students gain practical experience with many of the actual types of legal documents they will see when they enter practice.

Opportunities for Specialization: Tracks & Concentrations

The first-year curriculum at most law schools is prescribed - students take required core courses in contracts, torts, property, criminal law and civil procedure. It is during the second year that students will begin to take electives and to focus their legal studies in areas of law that interest them. At Scalia Law, students have an opportunity to specialize in a particular area of law by choosing to pursue one of our tracks or concentrations after their first year of study.

Through our specialty tracks, students may acquire a sophisticated understanding of particular substantive areas of law usually gained only after years of practice or through advanced legal study. The three track programs focus on Litigation Law, Patent Law, and Regulatory Law. Students pursuing a track will take a number of courses in the particular area of specialization and write a thesis.

Alternatively, students may pursue one of the law school's concentrations. Students who choose to specialize will begin to take the electives that are required in each of the concentration programs during the second year.

Students are not required to choose a concentration or track while in law school. The majority of our students will not select a concentration in order to keep the freedom of picking and choosing electives as their interests develop.

Full-Time and Part-Time Programs

Scalia Law offers both a three-year full-time and a four-year part-time program. Students in the full-time program attend classes during the day (day classes are scheduled between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.). Students in the part-time program attend classes in the evenings (evening classes are scheduled between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m.).

Full-time students take 12-17 credit hours per semester; part-time students take 8-12 credit hours. During the first year, full-time students complete 30 credit hours (15 in the fall semester and 15 in the spring semester). Part-time students complete 23 credit hours (11 in the fall semester and 12 in the spring semester).

After the first year, students may transfer from the full-time to the part-time program, and vice versa, on a semester basis. Students frequently make such changes to accommodate employment opportunities and schedules.

Scalia Law’s Location

Scalia Law is located on George Mason University's Arlington campus, near Washington, D.C.. The law school is in Hazel Hall: 3301 Fairfax Drive in Arlington, Virginia. We are conveniently located off of the Orange and Silver Metro lines - one block from the Virginia Square Metro stop - making for easy access to the rest of Northern Virginia and Washington, DC.

General Admissions

What are the general application statistics for Scalia Law (application numbers, LSAT scores, GPAs, etc.)?

Each year, we usually receive between 2,000 and 3,000 applications for our JD program. We make offers of admission to approximately 25% of our applicant pool. You can find detailed statistical information about last year's incoming class on our ABA Standard 509 Information Report.

Is it easier to gain admission to the part-time program?

No. Our admission standards are the same for the full-time and part-time programs. However, there is typically a much greater demand for full-time seats.

Does Scalia Law have rolling admissions?

Yes. We will make decisions on a rolling basis beginning in late fall and we will continue until every applicant has a final decision.

Does Scalia Law have an early decision application option?

Yes. We have two early decision programs: the Scalia Law Scholars Program and the Early Decision Program. Applications for either program are due by January 15 (LSAT or GRE must be completed by November). You can learn more about these programs on our How to Apply page.  

Does Scalia Law require seat deposits?

Yes. Scalia Law requires non-refundable seat deposits after you are admitted to the school. If admitted, you will receive instructions on how and when to submit the seat deposits.

If I am admitted to Scalia Law, what resources are available to help me decide whether Scalia Law is the right fit for me?

The Admissions Office is here to help each admitted applicant learn as much as possible about our law school and to feel good about his or her decision to join our community. We host a number of admitted student events in the spring to provide you with the opportunity to visit our campus and meet members of our faculty and student body. If the dates for the official events do not work for you, please feel free to sign up for a tour and class visit via our website. Once you are admitted, you will receive multiple emails from us letting you know about events and answering frequently asked questions.

We also encourage students to keep in touch with the Admissions Office. We want to make sure that all of your questions are answered and that you have complete information before you make the important decision of which law school you will attend. Call or e-mail us as often as you wish. Our job is to serve our applicants and students, and to help you start your law school journey!

Can I visit the law school and sit in on a class?

Applicants are welcome to visit our law school for a tour and class visit. Please check our website for the tour schedule.

Application Process

When will Scalia Law begin accepting fall applications to the JD program?

Our application for the following fall becomes available on the Law School Admissions Counsel (LSAC) website on September 1st.

What is Scalia Law’s application deadline?

For the JD program, our priority application deadline is March 1 and our regular application deadline is April 30.

I would like to begin working on my application to Scalia Law. Where should I start?

On our First Year JD Admissions: How to Apply page you can find detailed information about application requirements and procedure. To apply you must create an account with LSAC.

If you have questions about the admissions process, please feel free to contact the Admissions Office at lawadmit@gmu.edu or (703) 993-8010.

I am graduating from undergrad in the spring and would like to start law school the following fall. Can I apply to Scalia Law even though I have not graduated yet?

Yes. Many of our applicants are still completing their Bachelor's degree when they are applying to law school. If you apply and are admitted during your final year of college, your admission is contingent upon you completing your Bachelor's degree prior to the start of fall semester law classes.

What am I required to submit with my application to Scalia Law?

There are a number of requirements that you must satisfy to be considered for admission to our JD program. For the full explanation of application requirements, please visit our First Year JD Admissions: How to Apply page.

Do you consider difficulty of major when reviewing applications?

Scalia Law is not looking for one specific undergraduate major or experience. We accept students with a wide variety of backgrounds. We are looking for intelligent, committed students who are ready for the academic challenge of law school. Your overall undergraduate GPA is an important part of your application, but we also take the time to look at your major and whether or not you challenged yourself prior to applying to law school.

Who should write my letter(s) of recommendation?

We like to see letters from undergraduate or graduate professors, or instructors; however, the letter can come from a work supervisor or colleague. What is most important is that whoever writes your letter(s) can speak to your abilities, work ethic, character, and the skills that will allow you to succeed in law school.

Is there a preferred topic for the personal statement?

Your personal statement can be on any topic. The personal statement gives you the opportunity to tell the Admissions Committee about yourself outside of the academic and professional accomplishments listed in your application. Use the personal statement to help the Admissions Committee get to know you.

Remember that, in addition to learning more about you, the Admissions Committee looks to the personal statement to evaluate your writing ability. Be sure you use proper grammar, good paragraph construction, and convey your message in a clear and concise manner. Most importantly, be yourself in your personal statement.

I am an applicant to the law school and was invited to a conversation with an admissions counselor, what does this mean for my application?

The Admissions Committee invites some students to participate in a conversation with an admissions officer. These conversations are not mandatory but are a chance for the Admissions Committee to get to know you outside of your application. It is also a chance for you to learn more about Scalia Law. The conversations are designed to be a casual, helpful chat and not a formal interview. Whether or not you are invited to a conversation is not an indication of your likelihood to be admitted to the program.

How does the Admissions Committee evaluate undergraduate (and graduate) GPAs?

In the admissions process, we consider your cumulative undergraduate GPA - for all semesters of your undergraduate studies. We will also review your transcripts and take note of trends and improvements.

The Admissions Committee will use the cumulative undergraduate GPA from your first bachelor's degree for statistical admissions purposes. However, we like to see applicants with impressive graduate level work and will take your experiences in graduate school into account.

How does the Admissions Committee evaluate LSAT scores?

The LSAT is an important part of the law school application.

The Admissions Committee sees every score an applicant has received on the LSAT in the last 5 years. For statistical purposes, we use an applicant's highest LSAT score, however, we will take into account score changes/improvement. We do not have a minimum LSAT score requirement and will review every applicant carefully; however, the LSAT score is an essential piece of the application.

Can I apply with a GRE score instead of the LSAT?

Yes, you may apply with your GRE score. Applicants who take the GRE instead of the LSAT must have the Educational Testing Service (ETS) send Scalia Law the GRE score. The ETS school code for Scalia Law is 2737. All applicants who apply with the GRE must subscribe and utilize the LSAC Credential Assembly Service (CAS). If applicants have both an LSAT score and a GRE score, the LSAT score will be used in our admissions process.

I did some stupid things in high school and college – alcohol violations, fraternity pranks, etc. Will these past indiscretions prevent me from being admitted to law school?

First and foremost: Disclose everything about events that resulted in criminal or disciplinary actions. Failure to disclose indiscretions can have an adverse impact on your admission to a Bar Association after you graduate from law school.

Second: The fact that you were a teenager or college student who did not use perfect judgment at all times will not necessarily bar you from admission to law school. We will consider everything in your application. Your character and fitness disclosures will be taken into account but often do not preclude students from being admitted.

Admission to Scalia Law is not an indication of whether or not we believe you will be admitted to a state bar. Students concerned about Character & Fitness as it relates to bar admission should speak directly with the state bar association.

I earned my undergraduate degree from a non-US country. Is there anything I must do with respect to my foreign degree?

If you earned your degree overseas, you must have your foreign transcripts evaluated by LSAC’s Credential Assembly Service Authentication and Evaluation (CAS A&E) to show the U.S. equivalency of your foreign course of study. You must have earned the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor's degree to be considered for admission to our law school. For more information, please visit LSAC's website.

Financing Law School

What is the cost of attendance at Scalia Law?

For estimated costs of attending Scalia Law you should look at our Tuition and Costs website.

We also like to note that Scalia Law considers all admitted students for merit-based scholarships. Students who are awarded these scholarships have lower tuition costs!

Does Scalia Law offer in-state tuition rates for Virginians?

Yes. Scalia Law offers lower tuition rates for individuals domiciled in Virginia. To see the tuition costs for Virginia residents, visit our Tuition and Costs website.

If I am an out-of-state student for my first year at Scalia Law, is it possible for me to qualify for in-state tuition by my second year?

It is extremely difficult to qualify for in-state tuition if you are an out-of-state student at the time of your application and matriculation into the law school. If you establish your domicile in Virginia during your first year of study, you may petition for reclassification of your status. However, living in Virginia for the purpose of attending law school is insufficient to establish domicile. For more information about switching to in-state tuition, visit our Domicile Appeals page.

How do seat deposits work at Scalia Law?

The seat deposits are credited towards your first semester tuition bill. The deposits are non-refundable, thus, if you pay a seat deposit but ultimately decide to attend a different law school your seat deposit will be forfeited.

When is tuition due?

Tuition is due on a per semester basis, on the first day of each semester.

Are scholarships or federal student loans available at Scalia Law?

Yes. All admitted applicants are automatically considered for merit scholarships based on the strength of their applications for admission – no separate application is required. However, there are a few named scholarships that may have additional requirements. For a discussion of these additional scholarships, please look at our Scholarships webpage.

George Mason University students may also qualify for federal student loans. For more information about loans, visit our financial aid page or email our Financial Aid Office at glfinaid@gmu.edu.

How does the financial aid process (aka federal loans) work at George Mason University?

The financial aid process is managed by George Mason University's Financial Aid Office. Please contact them with any questions you have about your student loans. You can visit their website or email them at glfinaid@gmu.edu.

I received a scholarship from an outside source. Should I report it to the Financial Aid Office?

Yes. If you are receiving any kind of financial aid from any source, you must report the amount to the Office of Student Financial Aid. Scholarship funds received will impact the amounts you are eligible to borrow in federal student loans and impact your loan debt.

Admissions Office Staff — Contact Information

NAMETITLEPHONERoomE-MAIL
Stanford, Jennifer Assistant Dean for Admissions and Enrollment Management 703-993-8010 155 lawadmit@gmu.edu
Aromas-Janosik, Justin Director of Recruiting & Marketing 703-993-8095 156 jaromasj@gmu.edu
Friend, Megan Admissions Coordinator 703-993-8010 150 mfriend2@gmu.edu
Hall, Erin Assistant Director of JD & Online LLM Admissions 703-993-8105 157 eseavoy@gmu.edu
Huffman, Sabrina Director of Admissions 703-993-8010 154 lawadmit@gmu.edu
Khan, Fozia Office Manager 703-993-8043 150 fkhan1@gmu.edu
Sartorius, Jessica Director of Juris Master (JM) Degree Program 703-993-8418 251 Library jsartor@gmu.edu