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Pepperdine | Caruso School of Law

JD Admissions FAQ

When is the law school application available?

The application becomes available every September through LSAC. The application deadlines are:

  • Accelerated Two-Year JD
    • Final Deadline: February 1
  • Traditional Three-Year JD
    • Priority Deadline: February 1
    • Final Deadline: April 1

When do I take the LSAT?  

Applicants are urged to take the LSAT no later than April of the year in which admission is sought.

How is my LSAT score evaluated?  

The Admissions Committee evaluates applicants based on their highest LSAT score and does not average multiple scores, though all scores are seen when reviewing the application.

How long are LSAT scores valid?  

LSAT scores are valid for up to five years.

Can I apply without a reportable score if I plan to take a future LSAT?

Yes, an applicant can apply to the law school without a reportable score; however, the application will remain incomplete until the LSAT score has been reported to the law school from the LSAC. We encourage applicants to apply once they have a reportable score to avoid delays. 

Does Pepperdine accept a GRE instead of the LSAT?

Yes. Pepperdine will accept a GRE score for admission. Please see a full list of GRE questions here.

How will Pepperdine Caruso Law evaluate GRE scores?

Pepperdine Caruso Law will average your "Percent Below" values from your Verbal Reasoning and Quantitative Reasoning sections, and compare that average to our median LSAT score percentile. For example, the current Pepperdine Caruso Law LSAT median is a 164, which is about the 87th percentile of all LSAT takers. Therefore, a comparable score on the GRE would be one that scored in the 87th percentile of that test.

How will Pepperdine Caruso Law evaluate applications that include both GRE and LSAT scores?

We will evaluate both scores if you submit a GRE and an LSAT score.

If I submit a GRE score only, will my application be evaluated the same way as someone who submitted an LSAT score only?

Yes. The Admissions Committee will accept either test score. We consider all applications holistically and will evaluate applications similarly regardless of test type.

Is there a required undergraduate cumulative GPA and LSAT score I must have to apply?

There is no minimum or maximum GPA or LSAT score an applicant must have; all eligible applicants are encouraged to apply.

What is your median GPA and LSAT?

The current median GPA is 3.85, and the median LSAT is 164. Median numbers are calculated from the current first-year class.

How is my undergraduate GPA evaluated?  

The Admissions Committee evaluates applicants based on their cumulative undergraduate GPA as calculated by the LSAC.

Will my graduate GPA be considered if I have earned a graduate degree?

Although the graduate GPA is not reflected in the cumulative GPA, a graduate degree can indicate the applicant’s increased focus and ability.

Are there specific majors or minors the Admissions Committee looks at from applicants?  

A specific major is not required for admissions, but the Admissions Committee will focus on college grades, major, and selection of courses. The Committee favors students who have selected intellectually challenging courses of study. Whatever the discipline, you are urged to develop strong writing and analytical skills. Courses that require active participation in a classroom dialogue will help prepare for law school.

Does Pepperdine Caruso Law conduct interviews as part of the application process?

No, interviews are not part of the application process. Those who serve on the Admissions Committee remain anonymous. We encourage applicants to visit campus during the admissions process if they can. The people you will meet and the community you will experience are truly unparalleled. 

When will my application be reviewed?

We admit students on a rolling basis, with most decisions made between December and June. You will be notified of your decision via email.  Applicants may be admitted, denied or placed on the waiting list. If you are placed on the waiting list, we encourage you to submit letters of continued interest periodically. You may also update your file with new information that may support an offer of admission. All correspondence once you have been placed on the waiting list should be directed to waitlistlaw@pepperdine.edu.

How long should the personal statement be?  

It is recommended that your personal statement is two to four, double-spaced pages with no less than 12-point font. The best personal statements are clear, concise, and compelling and free from spelling and grammatical errors.

How long should the Optional Statement(s) be?

The optional statement should be a one- to two-page, double-spaced statement with no less than 12-point font. 

How many letters of recommendation should I submit?

You are required to submit two letters of recommendation to LSAC, though you can submit up to four. The Admissions Committee recommends that at least one letter be an academic recommendation and one is a professional recommendation.

Can I submit an addendum?

Yes, if an applicant feels that they wish to share information with the Admissions Committee that is not included in the required documents, an addendum will be accepted. Addendums can be emailed to lawadmis@pepperdine.edu and will be uploaded to your application for the admissions committee to review.

Do you have an appeals process?

We have no appeals process. If you are denied admission, we welcome you to re-apply in a subsequent year or consider transfer options.