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How to Get Into Duke Law School

May 29, 2024


Reviewed by:

David Merson

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

Reviewed: 01/16/23

If you’re interested in joining an ambitious, forward-thinking, and innovative law school, read on to find out how to get into Duke Law School.

What do you want to be when you grow up? It’s an age-old question adults always ask children, and it’s almost always met with fantastical aspirations, like becoming a princess, or bold aspirations, like becoming the next president.

Well, with Duke Law School, this childhood aspiration of becoming the next president can become a reality (no word on the princess aspiration as of yet). In fact, Richard Nixon was a Duke Law graduate, and so was Richard Lagos, the 2000-2006 president of Chile.

Whether you want to be the next president or a top-tier attorney, Duke Law is one of the best law schools to attend and can help kickstart the career of your dreams.

Duke University School of Law Requirements

Applying to any law school takes time and effort. There are many steps involved and it’s important to ensure that you’ve gathered the correct documents to apply on time.

Here is an application checklist of everything you must complete or submit to apply to Duke Law:

Duke Law School Requirements

A Bachelor’s Degree

You must complete a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university prior to enrolment. Your major doesn’t matter, but your GPA does. Ensure you choose a major you’re interested in, as you’re more likely to maintain high grades that way.


Unlike your typical resume, Duke Law’s resumes don’t have page or length limitations. However, your resume should only include significant work experience, education, honors, and awards. This ensures that your resume highlights your greatest accomplishments and experiences! 

Personal Statement

A personal statement is a short essay that allows you to introduce yourself to the committee, draw on your significant experiences, and explain your passions and ambitions. 

Personal statements can help you stand out but are often the most challenging  part of your law school application. To help you get started, it’s best to take a look at previous successful examples to find inspiration.

First Optional Essay

The personal statement might not be the only essay you’ll have to write to get into Duke Law School. This first optional essay asks you to provide more information on why you want to apply to law school in general and Duke Law in particular.

While this essay is optional, you should consider writing it as it can help you stand out. Ensure you write concisely and clearly express your genuine interest in a legal career and in Duke Law to advance your career.

Second Optional Essay

The second essay is a diversity statement. You should write this statement if you’ve had any unconventional experiences in your life that have given you unique insights and perceptions. Duke Law lists the following as reasons to write a diversity statement:

  • An experience of prejudice or bias
  • Economic disadvantage
  • Personal adversity
  • Social hardships relating to race, gender, sexual orientation, religious affiliation, disability, ethnicity, or national origin
  • Being a first-generation college student
  • Being an immigrant or refugee

While Duke provides this list of acceptable forms of diversity to write about, these are not the only reasons you can write a diversity statement! If there is anything at all that makes you unique and allows you to bring a different perspective to your legal education, you can write about it!


To get into Duke Law School, you have to either write the LSAT or GRE, but not both.

Recommendation Letters

You must submit two recommendation letters with your application. At least one should be from an academic instructor who can attest to your knowledge and academic potential. 

The second should come from someone who can attest to your interpersonal skills, leadership, and involvement. Most students ask a supervisor to write their second letter.

Duke Law School Admission Statistics

To gain a better understanding of how to get into Duke Law School, it’s crucial to go over their admission statistics and expectations.

Duke University School of Law Acceptance Rate

Despite Duke being a prestigious school, it has a relatively high acceptance rate of 14.4%. In comparison, Yale Law’s acceptance rate is around only 4.0%!

Duke LSAT Score

Duke’s LSAT score matches the school’s prestige. The median LSAT score for the 2024 JD class was 170!

To ensure you’re able to meet Duke’s LSAT requirements, build a comprehensive study schedule and seek the help of Juris experts who are dedicated to getting you the highest LSAT score possible. These experts can identify and rectify any weaknesses holding you back from reaching your target score!

Duke Law School GPA

Continuing Duke’s theme of having high standards, the median GPA for the 2024 JD class was 3.82. If your GPA is much lower than this median, you can still get into Duke Law by writing an addendum explaining your low grades!

Take our interactive quiz below to find out how likely you are to get into Duke Law School.

Duke University School of Law Application Timeline

As you begin applying to Duke Law, it’s important to keep the following important dates in mind:

Duke law important dates
Source: Duke Law School

Refer to this timeline to ensure you submit all parts of your application on time.

Duke University School of Law Tuition

Most graduate schools cost an arm and leg to attend. Duke Law School is no exception; tuition alone costs $71,000 a year. Luckily, lawyers from prestigious schools such as Duke generally make enough money to offset the enormous amounts of debt they accumulate in law school.

Graduate law school students generally have a median salary of $80,000 working in the private sector and $60,000 in the public sector. Top-ranking graduates make even more than this: 55 top-ranking schools reported a median salary of $100,000 or above, and 22 reported a median salary of $190,000.

So, while law school is definitely an investment, joining a top-ranking school like Duke can increase your chances of landing a job that will pay off the debt in no time!

FAQs: How to Get Into Duke Law School

If you still have questions about how to get into Duke Law School, read on to find out the answers to the most frequently asked question about Duke Law.

1. What GPA Do I Need to Get Into Duke Law School?

The median GPA of the 2024 JD class was 3.82. You should aim to maintain a GPA around this median or higher.

2. Is Duke a Good Law School For Lawyers?

Aside from its ranking as the 11 best law school in the nation, Duke Law School has proved itself as a prestigious university by producing great leaders and lawyers. They provide a rigorous, collaborative, and diverse curriculum that is guaranteed to kickstart your career as a great attorney.

3.  Is Duke Law School Competitive?

Like any other high-ranking law school, Duke Law is competitive and only accepts 14.4% of all its applicants.

4. Does Duke Require the LSAT?

Interested students can write either the LSAT or GRE. Duke has no preference and suggests you take whichever test you feel better represents your skills and knowledge.

5. Does Duke Law Do Interviews?

Duke Law only interviews candidates they want additional information on to make a final decision. However, even these interviews are optional. Like many other law schools, Duke Law uses personal statements as forms of interviews to learn more about their candidates.

6. Should I Write the Optional Essays?

You don't necessarily have to write the optional essays if you have an otherwise strong application, with high scores, a strong resume, and a well-written personal statement. Duke accepts many applicants that don't write these essays.

However, these essays give the admissions committee a good sense of who you are, which can boost your application if it’s otherwise lacking. If you believe you can write these essays well and offer meaningful insight or perspective, you should definitely write them!

Getting Into Duke Law School With Juris

Now that you know how to get into Duke Law School, you can take the first step toward fulfilling your childhood dreams of becoming a president!

Juris can get you even closer to this dream by providing one-on-one tutoring and support throughout the application process! Juris can help limit your stress, increase your chances of getting into your dream law school, and help you secure your dream job.

Schedule A Free Consultation

Plan Smart. Execute Strong. Get Into Your Dream School.

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