J.D. Program: FAQ

Have any questions?

Picking the right law school is a big decision, and we want you to be well informed. Here are top questions from other prospective students, with answers. You can always contact us at lawadmissions@uoregon.edu, or 541-346-3846 for more information.

How do I apply for financial aid?

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is available beginning October 1 of each year and must be submitted to the University of Oregon Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships by March 1 to meet the work/study priority deadline. Ensure that you designate the University of Oregon as a recipient of your FAFSA report. Please note that you can still submit the FAFSA after March 1 and be considered for financial aid.

What kind of need-based aid is available?

Filing a FAFSA will help determine your eligibility for need-based financial aid. As a law student, you are considered “independent” rather than “dependent’ for financial aid purposes. Please visit our Financial Aid page for more information. About 90% of our students qualify for need-based financial aid.

What scholarships are available to first-year students?

If you are interested in being considered for a merit-based scholarship, no additional form is required. You are automatically considered for an Oregon Law Merit Scholarship when you are admitted to the first-year J.D. program. There are several scholarships available to entering J.D. students:

For the Oregon Law Merit Scholarship, amounts vary each year. Every 1L received a merit-based scholarship in the Class of 2018.  Other scholarships offered by the University of Oregon require an application. There are two scholarships available to law students through the University: the General University Scholarship and the Diversity Excellence Scholarship. The deadline to be considered for these scholarships is January 15. For more information on University-based scholarships, please visit the Student Financial Aid web page.

The Oregon Law 1L Fellowship program provides an early and unique opportunity for a small group of entering Oregon Law first-year students to be introduced to a specific area of the law. You assist with project development, coordinate special lectures and events, and perform research. As a 1L Fellow, you play a role in impacting real-world problems as you work closely with dynamic professors and program directors.

Do you grant application fee waivers to applicants?

The first-year JD application fee for the Fall 2019 entering class has been waived for applicants who apply by our priority deadline of March 1, 2019.

How much does it cost to attend Oregon Law?

Please see our tuition and fees page for more details. The cost of living in Eugene, Oregon, is quite favorable when compared to most other West Coast cities where law schools are located. Tuition and fees are subject to revision each summer by the Oregon State Board of Higher Education.

Must letters of recommendation come from faculty members?

Generally, letters of recommendation from professors are preferable because faculty members are best equipped to address the academic preparedness of an applicant for law school. However, if it has been some time since you earned your degree, a recommendation from an employer is acceptable. The employer’s recommendation should speak to attributes that would be relevant to your suitability for the rigors of legal education, rather than be a character reference. Letters from family members are discouraged. Letters should be submitted through the Law School Admissions Council (LSAC).

How do I qualify for state residency?

Applicants seeking admission as Oregon residents must complete the residency questions that are included in the application for admission. Residency information may be found on the Admissions Residency FAQ.

When should I take the LSAT?

Take the LSAT after you have fully prepared for the examination.  The LSAT is offered six times per year: June, July, September, November, January, and March. If you're planning to start law school in August you should plan to sit for the LSAT in the preceding year, although we do accept some scores from same year you plan to attend. For more information about the LSAT and the required Law School Data Assembly Service, consult the Law School Admission Council website.

Do you average the LSAT if students take it more than once?

No, the scores are not averaged. The American Bar Association asks that we report only the highest score, but all scores are reviewed.

If I took the LSAT in the past, can I submit an older score?

If you are applying for admission, your LSAT score must be no older than five years. This means that you must have taken the LSAT no earlier than June 2014. If your score is from a test administered before June 2014, you must retake the LSAT.

Does Oregon Law look at my graduate or undergraduate GPA?

The admissions committee undertakes a holistic review of each individual application. This means it takes into account all of the information provided. Nonetheless, the possession of an advanced degree (such as a master’s or Ph.D., or an international law degree) does not ensure admission. (Please note that the grade point averages reported for the profile of the first-year class use undergraduate grade point averages.)

Does Oregon Law offer Concurrent degree programs?

The University of Oregon offers several concurrent degree programs in the areas of business administration, environmental studies, international studies, journalism, community & regional planning, nonprofit management, public administration, and conflict and dispute resolution. In addition, Oregon State University offers a Master’s degree in water resources concurrently with the School of Law J.D. program. Each graduate program has application processes and requirements that are separate from the School of Law.

If I applied in a prior year, do I need to submit a new application?

The admissions committee prefers that you submit new application materials. Please see How to Apply for instructions for first-year applicants.

What kind of housing is available?

Graduate student housing, owned by the University of Oregon, is open to law students. Please contact University Housing for more information. Most law students live off-campus within a short walk or ride to the university. Information about housing is sent to you shortly after you receive your letter of admission from the law school.

Are there special incentives for Teach for America participants?

The University of Oregon School of Law is a partner with Teach for America recognizing a joint commitment to public service. In addition, TFA corps members who are admitted to the law school but wish to begin their two years of service prior to entering law school are guaranteed a two-year deferral. Please submit the appropriate Teach for America documentation with your application to the University of Oregon School of Law to have your fee waiver granted. Please visit Teach for America for more information. TFA corps members can apply for admission without paying the application fee.