Philosophy Pre-Law - Certificate

The Department of Philosophy offers a Pre-law Certificate that is primarily guided by the published recommendations of the American Bar Association (A.B.A.).1 The A.B.A. encourages prospective law students to pursue classes that cultivate a set of skills that will enhance the study of law. To this end, Philosophy’s Pre-law Certification requires that students take classes that typically cultivate the A.B.A’s recommended skill set:

  1. Problem Solving involves “courses and other experiences that will engage [students] in critical thinking about important issues, challenge ...  beliefs and improve ... tolerance for uncertainty and criticism.”1
  2. Critical Reading involves “close reading and critical analysis of complex textual material.”1
  3. Writing and Editing involves “preparing original pieces of substantial length and revising written work in response to constructive criticism.  [...] Language is the most important tool of a lawyer, and lawyers must learn how to express themselves clearly and concisely.”1
  4. Oral Communication and Listening involves “the ability to speak clearly and persuasively... and excellent listening skills.”1
  5. Research involves “undertaking a project that requires significant library research and the analysis of large amounts of information obtained from that research.”1

The Certification requires students to take 12 hours of classes, including courses in communication, logic, and political and legal philosophy. Students pursuing the certificate must enroll through an advisor before completing 105 credit hours. As they complete the certificate, students must enroll in 0 credit hours of PHIL 491. The only requirement for this section of PHIL 491 is the submission of a philosophical writing sample, which may be a piece of writing previously submitted for PHIL 332 or PHIL 334. 

COMM 203Public Speaking 13
or COMM 243   or Argumentation and Debate 
PHIL 240Introduction to Logic 13
PHIL 332Social and Political Philosophy 13
PHIL 334Philosophy of Law 13
PHIL 491Research 2,30
Total Semester Credit Hours12