Certificate in Pre-Law

The Certificate in Pre-Law, in combination with a baccalaureate degree in any major, provides valuable preparation for law school. Students completing the certificate acquire knowledge about major court cases and the laws surrounding them, and they enhance their skills related to oral and written communication, critical thinking, analytical analysis, and problem solving. The certificate concludes with a capstone experience in which students apply this knowledge and these skills to other legal challenges.

Admission Criteria

  • Matriculated undergraduate students, in any major or undeclared, with a GPA of 2.0 or higher
  • Matriculated graduate students with a GPA of 3.0
  • Non-matriculated students with a bachelor’s or graduate degree
  • Non-matriculated students who have not completed a bachelor’s degree must have completed courses equivalent to GE A2 (written composition) and the GWAR to be fully admitted. Students without one or both of these courses may be conditionally admitted and complete needed courses while taking certificate courses upon advisement.
  • Non-matriculated students may take courses through open university as long as there is space in the classes and the instructor approves.

Admission Criteria

Any matriculated student, in any major or undeclared, with a GPA of 2.0 or higher who requests admission to the certificate will be admitted. Non-matriculated students may take the courses in the certificate through Open University as long as there is space in the classes and the instructor approves.

Award of the Certificate

The Division of Graduate Studies processes the award of both graduate and undergraduate certificates.  The Certificate Approved Program form and instructions can be found on the Division of Graduate Studies website.  Students fill out the form once the coursework is completed and have the form signed by the advisor and department chair.

For undergraduate certificates:  All courses for the certificate must be completed with a minimum GPA of 2.0.

Certificate in Pre-Law – 15 units minimum

Pre-Law Foundation (3-4 units)

Choose one of the following:

PHIL 335Law and Society3
PLSI 478Judicial Process4

Court Cases (3-4 units)

Choose one of the following:

BECA 324Media Law3
COMM 564Issues in Free Speech4
JOUR 307News Media Law3
PHIL 378Philosophy of Criminal Law3
PLSI 481Race and Public Law4
PLSI 552Individual Rights and the Constitution4
PLSI 554Separation of Powers and Federalism4

Legal Writing (3-4 units)

Choose one of the following:

C J 335Legal Writing and Research4
PHIL 380Philosophy of Law3
PLSI 308Research and Writing for Public Law4

Pre-Law Capstone (3-4 units)

Choose one of the following:

PHIL 680Field Project in Philosophy1-3
PLSI 555Moot Court4
PLSI 610
PLSI 611
Judicial and Legal Internship
and Judicial and Legal Internship Seminar

Pre-Law Elective (3-4 units)

Choose one from those listed above not already taken, from the list below, or one approved by an advisor.

AA S 213Asian Americans and American Ideals and Institutions3
AA S 595Asian American Communities and Public Policy3
AFRS 375Law and the Black Community3
AIS 205American Indians and U.S. Laws3
AIS 330American Indian Law3
C J 435/LTNS 430Race, Crime, and Justice3
ENVS 450GWEnvironmental Law and Policy - GWAR3
ENVS 470Climate Politics and Policy3
GEOG 668/PLSI 513/USP 513Politics, Law, and the Urban Environment4
GPS/PHIL 375Peace Law and Human Rights in the U.S.3
HIST/JS 318The Holocaust and Law: Complicity, Dissent, and Correction3
HIST 470The U.S. Constitution to 18963
HIST 471The U.S. Constitution Since 18963
HIST 472The Supreme Court and Social Change in U.S. History3
I R 330World Law4
I R/PLSI 422Law and Courts in Comparative Perspective4
I R 436/PHIL 435Human Rights in Global Perspective3
LABR 251Know Your Work Rights3
LABR/SOC 555Labor Rights in the Global Economy3
LS 402Introduction to Human Rights Education for Teachers and Local Communities3
PHIL 455/SXS 569Sex and the Law3
PLSI 422Law and Courts in Comparative Perspective4
PLSI 553Legal Issues4
SOC 452Juvenile Justice4
WGS 536Gender, Globalization, and Women's Human Rights3