What Is A Good Law School GPA?

What is a good GPA for law school? For law schools with the highest rankings, admissions are usually made to students with excellent college grades. The median GPA for all top ten law school is at least 3.0, with Yale Law School being that school with the highest requirement.

Why is a good GPA required for law school?

Simply put, law schools consider your GPA a sign or indicator that you are able to put in the necessary effort to succeed in law school. A high GPA is associated with exceptional performance in law school.

Law schools only admit those students who display the potential of working hard and succeeding in law school, partly because these same candidates are also likely to succeed in the real world, improving the school’s overall reputation and image, as well as bringing money back to the school.

Another reason law schools admit only students with high GPAs to their programs is that they are ranked partly on the strength and cumulative GPA of each student. The USNWR (US News and World Report), ranking is currently the most prominent in the world of law school rankings. These rankings are important for law schools as prospective students use them to decide which law schools to apply to. The USNWR currently uses the median undergraduate GPA to determine 10 percent of a school’s ranking. This is a significant factor.

GPA required for the Top 100 Law Schools

Your GPA scores will be lower if you have a low GPA. You will want your LSAT scores higher to make up for the difference. However, law school applicants tend to have more applicants with impressively high GPAs than students with high LSAT scores. Because of the high number potential law students with high GPA scores there is a smaller drop in GPAs as you move down the rankings than the LSATs. In fact, no top 100 law school has a median GPA  of less Than 3.0, and just two law schools have a 25thPercentile GPA less than 3.0

Below is a list of the 100 top law schools at the highest generality levels. The chart lists the 25 lowest-ranking law schools.Th percentile GPA found in schools within that tier, and so you would want to attain a GPA that’s higher than this number for a good chance of admission.

Law School TierLowest 25Th Percentile in Tier
Top 3 (Harvard, Yale, Stanford)3.76
Top 6 3.54
Top 10 3.53
Top 14 3.53
Top 25 3.31
Top 50 3.29
Top 75 3.09
Top 100 2.95

A good rule of thumb is to have a GPA of 25 or more.Th percentile value for a particular law school, Then your LSAT scores should be above that school’s 75thPercentile High LSAT scores may be able to compensate for a low GPA. Low GPA/ high LSAT candidates, often referred to as ‘soft splitters’ tend to have quite strong results in their law school admissions.

The chart shows that the top 100 law schools have a majority of their students attaining a 3.0 GPA or a B average. A B average is considered possible at most American universities due to the rising cost of education. As long as you attend classes and do your homework, a B average is not difficult to maintain. Law schools require students who are willing to work hard and will not fail.

Keep that in mind when you consider applying to law school. Your impressive GPA shows law schools that you are a hard worker.

Top 6 law schools with high GPAs: Harvard, Yale Stanford, Columbia and Chicago, as well as NYU

A strong GPA is essential to increase your chances of being admitted to one of the top law schools in the country. Harvard, Yale and Stanford are the best law schools, with their lowest 25.Th percentile being 3.76. This means that 75 per cent of these universities’ students have at least this GPA. Below is a chart listing the top six universities in the USNWR 2019 rankings.

Law SchoolGPA 25Th/75ThLSAT 25Th/75Th
Yale 3.83-3.97 170-175
Harvard 3.76-3.96 170-175
Stanford 3.79-3.95 168-173
U Chicago 3.73-3.95 166-172
Columbia 3.56-3.80 169-173
NYU 3.66-3.90 166-170


Yale Law School stands out clearly from the rest. It is not easy to maintain a 3.83 GPA at any school, but it is especially difficult at Yale Law School where most of its students are from strong schools. The chart shows that Chicago seems to be going for a higher 25ThA percentile is better than a 25th-place scoreThLSAT percentile

In general, you’ll need a GPA of 3.7 or higher for confidence at the top four law schools, For NYU, you need to be aiming for the 3.6 GPA range while for Columbia, you need to attain a 3.5 GPA or higher. The dramatic drop in GPAs shows that not many students have these high grades and law schools are fiercely pursuing the few. Columbia seems to value LSAT score more than GPA.

A 3.8 GPA or better will make you a highly-sought-after candidate and increase your chances of receiving scholarships from these law schools.

Other top 14 law schools have a high GPA: U Penn, Virginia Beach, Berkeley, Michigan and Duke. Cornell, Northwestern, Cornell, Georgetown, and Northwestern are all good examples.

Below is a chart showing what is considered a good GPA for each of the top 14 law school, which includes U Penn, Virginia Beach, Berkeley, Michigan and Duke, Northwestern, Cornell and Cornell. This chart is based on the USNWR 2019 rankings.

Law SchoolGPA 25Th/75ThLSAT 25Th/75Th
U Penn 3.54-3.94 163-170
Michigan 3.57-3.89 164-170
Berkeley 3.66-3.88 164-168
Virginia 3.56-3.94163-170
Duke 3.57-3.84 166-170
Northwestern 3.56-3.89 163-170
Cornell 3.68-3.87 163-168
Georgetown 3.52-3.89 161-168


There is not much difference in grade point average values between Penn, Virginia and Berkeley. They all fall within the 3.5 to 3.9 range. Significantly more prospective candidates are available in the 3.5 – 3.7 range, so you need to be aware that in these particular law schools you considerably raise your chances of acceptance and scholarship money if you are above that range.

Most forums consider Northwestern the most friendly option for high LSAT/low GPA splitters. Berkeley, on the contrary, prefers to keep its 25ThPercentile on the high compared to having a high of 75ThIf you have a high percentage of LSAT/GPA splitter, this is something to consider. Berkeley is considered an exception among the top 14 law school because of the high emphasis they place upon GPA. They seem to still be practicing this as they have 25ThPercentile GPA is noticeably higher than its peer law school.

Berkeley is also notable because of the large number of applicants who applied to the school with low LSAT scores. This is despite the fact that the school has a high GPA. If there’s any law school in the top 14 that considers the ‘whole’ applicant and not just the numbers, Berkeley is the university to mention.

To get scholarship money based on your GPA’s strength from these law schools (Penn, Virginia, Berkeley, and Michigan), you have to attain a 3.85 GPA. A 3.8 GPA or better will increase your chances of receiving scholarship money from Duke, Northwesterner, Cornell, Georgetown, and Cornell. It is usually enough to obtain just a single number above a particular school’s 75ThScholarship money can be awarded to students who are in the lowest percentile This is because students with higher numbers than you can help you get scholarship money.

A GPA of around 3.5 is required to be considered for admission to any of the top 14 law school.

Final words

A high school grade point average of at least B will increase your chances of getting into a top law school. However, your options for law school are greatly expanded if you earn more than the 3.5 GPA. The 3.7 to 3.75 GPA range is a great place to start, and the 3.8 to 385 GPA range will give you a huge boost.

If you are serious about pursuing law, you should do your best in high school. This will greatly impact your chances of getting into law school. GPA is a significant factor in whether you are admitted to any law school.

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