Congratulations! You’ve just scored an interview with a law school at the top of your list! Now, how do you nail that interview? We at Stratus offer the following tips to help you:
1. Be prepared.
What you’re facing is akin to a job interview and should be treated as such. Find common law school admissions interview questions (many message boards have relevant discussions) and start thinking about possible answers.
Keeping those common questions in mind, consider the experiences and qualities you want to highlight as well as how to weave them into the discussion. However, don’t come to the interview with a canned response—it’s painfully obvious when an answer is scripted. Instead, just have a good idea of where you’re going with an answer.
2. Know the law school.
Aside from knowing you as a person and as a potential student, interviewers want to gauge your genuine interest in their law school. Providing generic answers will not give the interviewer a strong sense of your interest in their particular school.
Do your research and mention a few intriguing points about the school, such as a famous professor or a unique class. It only takes ten minutes to do that research, but it will help separate you from the pack of applicants.
3. Avoid clichés and unwarranted flattery.
If you state that your biggest weakness is that you care too much or that your biggest regret is that you didn’t volunteer even more in college, prepare for an eye roll.
Interviewers have heard it all before. Don’t mask strengths as weaknesses or avoid a question in order to mention another one of your excellent qualities. Otherwise, you risk the interviewer ignoring your response, thinking that you have an unrealistic perception of yourself, or both.
In addition, try to be realistic. Telling a school ranked #100 in the country that it provides the best legal education available will come off as disingenuous or detached from reality.
4. Draw on your experiences.
Provide concrete examples from your life, and go beyond simply stating that you pride yourself on being a leader. Instead, back up that statement with a specific experience—for example, how you spearheaded the creation of a new student organization in college.
Consider sharing a unique or funny anecdote that will stick with the interviewer after the interview is over. You could leave your interviewer thinking, “Hey, remember that person who won Jeopardy a couple of times? That certainly showed her quick thinking and intelligence!”
5. Have questions ready.
Almost invariably, an interviewer will invite you to ask questions about themselves and the law school during the law school admissions interview.
Prepare your questions ahead of time (premade answers are fine for this—and only this—portion of the interview), and make sure that they are insightful and school specific.
6. Know your interview type.
Some interviews are conducted in person, while some are held via Skype/Zoom, and sometimes interviews are recorded. They could be conducted one-on-one or with a group of interviewers, with admissions committee members, or with alumni. Not all interviews are created equal, so understand ahead of time which type of interview you are headed into and prepare accordingly.
Landing a law school admissions interview is good news, but it means you have one more hoop to jump through. Follow the above guidelines to help nail your interview—and if you need additional guidance in navigating the application and interview process, we’re here for you! Sign up for a free consultation with one of our law school experts!