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Best Law Schools in Massachusetts: What You Need to Know

September 5, 2023
7 min read


Reviewed by:

Former Head of Pre-Law Office, Northeastern University, & Admissions Officer, Brown University

Reviewed: 03/03/23

Massachusetts is home to several excellent law schools. To learn more about these schools and how to join them, read on.

Every aspiring law student is familiar with the name Harvard. It’s one of the most prestigious schools in the nation and is typically at the top of every aspiring law student's list! Located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, this school also offers students unparalleled externships and clinical opportunities.

But Harvard isn’t the only law school in Massachusetts. In fact, there are eight ABA-accredited law schools in the state! To narrow down your search, this guide will go over the six best law schools in Massachusetts.

Top 6 Law Schools in Massachusetts

Top law schools in Massachusetts

There are several factors to consider as you decide which law school in Massachusetts is right for you. For instance, knowing the unique resources each school offers and how you compare to successful applicants can ensure you build the most realistic and targeted list of choices!

These factors will be discussed in detail for each of the top six law schools in Massachusetts:

1. Harvard University

As a school that needs little introduction, it should come as no surprise that Harvard University is the number one law school in Massachusetts. This school ranks fourth in the nation and is one of the revered T14 law schools

While eight of Harvard’s programs rank within the top 10 in the nation, its corporate and constitutional law programs are the best in the country! If you’re interested in specializing in either of these legal areas, Harvard can provide you with extensive coursework and clinical experience to master your skills and enhance your expertise!

Harvard’s admission standards reflect its prestige. Students are expected to have near perfect GPAs of 3.92 and LSAT scores of 174. Less than 7% of applicants are able to meet these rigorous standards and get into Harvard! 

The few that do make it past the admissions cycle benefit from comprehensive preparation for the legal field, which is evident through Harvard’s 98.9% bar passage rate

2. Boston University

Another one of the finest law schools in Massachusetts is Boston University, the 17th best in the country. Its faculty is consistently recognized for its preeminent scholarship, excellent mentorship, and exceptional teaching. 

Boston University doesn’t shy away from providing students with realistic expectations of their curriculums; they claim the coursework will be undoubtedly demanding! However, this demanding work results in impactful rewards, which its 95% bar passage rate can confirm!

BU has an acceptance rate of 18.3%, a median LSAT score of 169, and a median GPA of 3.77.

3. Boston College

While it has a similar name as the previous school discussed, Boston College ranks 37th in the nation and offers unique clinics that you’ll be hard-pressed to find anywhere else:

  • The Amicus Brief Clinic: to weigh in on the development of policy and law in courts
  • The Civil Litigation Clinic: to represent low-income residents on various cases
  • The Civil Rights Clinic: to address civil rights issues affecting low-income individuals
  • The Community Enterprise Clinic: to represent small businesses, entrepreneurs, and nonprofits
  • Compassionate Release and Parole Clinic: to help prepare petitions for compassionate and medical parole for suffering prisoners
  • Criminal Justice Clinic: to experience the preparation and presentation of criminal cases
  • Entrepreneurship and Innovation Clinic: to mainly represent innovators with intellectual property issues
  • Immigration Clinic: to represent non-citizens applying for legal status
  • Innocence Program: to study and try to solve erroneous convictions
  • International Human Rights Practicum: to advocate for the protection of international human rights
  • MA AG Civil Litigation Program: to work with Bureau attorneys in the representation of state agencies and officials
  • Project Entrepreneur: to use entrepreneurship to assist in the reentry of individuals with criminal records 

To gain access to these extraordinary experiences, students should aim to maintain a GPA of 3.7 and receive an LSAT score of 3.69. Boston College accepts less than 24% of its applicants, of which over 93% successfully pass the bar exam on their first try.

4. Northeastern University

Northeastern University is the 73rd best law school in the nation. For students hoping to combine their passion for medicine with law, this school offers one of the best health care law programs in the country.

With a selective acceptance rate of 24.4%, Northeastern places all of its students to high standards. Previous successful candidates had LSAT scores of 161-162 and GPAs of 3.66-3.7

Northeastern aims to admit students at the top of their classes, so they’re able to thrive in their robust programs and pass the bar exam with flying colors, which around 85% of students do!

5. Suffolk University

Located in the heart of Boston, Suffolk University offers students a world of opportunity through its interdisciplinary approach to law. Alumni are able to thrive in not only the legal sector, but in business, education, and finance as well! In an increasingly complex world, having these cross-disciplinary skills will put you ahead of the game!

This school ranks 122nd overall but 26th for its part-time law program, making it an excellent option for busy students! With an acceptance rate of almost 57%, applicants have a high chance of getting into Suffolk University. 

To ensure you’re part of this majority, set your target LSAT score as 154 and GPA as 3.48. Suffolk has a first-time bar exam passage rate of 78.8%, which is slightly lower than the national average but still impressive!

6. New England Law Boston

The last law school in Massachusetts to discuss is New England Law Boston. This school ranks as the 147th-192nd law school in the states. New England Law ensures its students are practice-ready by offering them access to ample real-world legal experience starting their very first year!

This practice, combined with their thorough curriculums, ensures over 78% of their grads pass the bar exam on their first try. Fortunately, with an acceptance rate of 66%, the majority of applicants can reap all of the benefits this school offers!

If you have an LSAT score of 154 and GPA of 3.28, you’ll be within the competitive range to get into New England!

FAQs: Massachusetts Law Schools

For any remaining questions about the law schools in Massachusetts, read on to find your answers.

1. How Many Law Schools Are in Massachusetts?

There are eight accredited law schools in Massachusetts. 

2. What Is the Cheapest Law School in Massachusetts?

The cheapest law school in Massachusetts on this list is New England Boston. Its tuition costs $52,518 a year.

3. How Long Is Law School in Massachusetts?

A JD in Massachusetts will take as long to complete as it would in any other state—three years, unless you complete a part-time program which will take four years.

4. What Is the Easiest Massachusetts Law School to Get Into?

Typically, students consider law schools with low LSAT scores to be the easiest to get into. By this standard alone, Suffolk University and New England Law Boston are the easiest Massachusetts law schools to get into. Both of these schools have a median LSAT score of 154.

These two schools also have the highest acceptance rates and lowest GPA medians.

5. What Is the Hardest Massachusetts Law School to Get Into?

Harvard University has the most rigorous admission expectations and lowest acceptance rate on this list. Students must have GPAs of 3.92 and LSAT scores of 174 to be considered competitive applicants at this Ivy League school!

6. What Is the Best Law School in Massachusetts?

Harvard University is the best law school in Massachusetts.

7. Should I Study Law in Massachusetts?

Yes, Massachusetts is an excellent place to study law because it offers students access to some of the nation’s largest law firms. In fact, the National Jurist dubbed Boston the third-best city for young lawyers

There are over 2,000 law firms in Boston alone and hundreds of corporate and federal organizations. Accordingly, this state can offer you countless opportunities that can be best accessed through the nearby law schools that are connected to them!

Final Thoughts

While Harvard might be your dream law school, it can be reassuring to know it isn’t your only option in Massachusetts. This state offers several other top-ranking law schools that can offer you a high-quality education taught by world-class faculty and supplemented by unparalleled clinics and externships!

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