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Top Law Schools in Pennsylvania

January 3, 2024
8 min read


Reviewed by:

David Merson

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

Reviewed: 1/3/24

Ready to explore law schools in Pennsylvania? Join us as we delve into the world of law schools in this historically rich state.

Pennsylvania, often nicknamed the Keystone State, has a significant place in American legal history. It's home to six law schools that provide diverse educational opportunities. These institutions are instrumental in shaping the legal landscape and equipping students for legal careers, not only within Pennsylvania but also across the nation.

Whether you're intrigued by the lively legal scene in Philadelphia, the state's capital in Harrisburg, or any other part of Pennsylvania, you'll discover an enriching environment for your legal studies.

Top Law Schools In Pennsylvania

In this section, we're diving into the top Pennsylvania law schools. We'll be sharing some essential data that can guide your choices as you embark on your legal education path.

Law School U.S. News Ranking Acceptance Rate Median LSAT Median GPA
University of Pennsylvania (Carey) #4 9.7% 172 3.9

Villanova University (Widger)
#43 16.5% 163 3.76
Temple University (Beasley) #54 36.5% 163 3.63
Drexel University (Kline) #80 31% 159 3.72
Pennsylvania State University--University Park #80 30.9% 162 3.72
Duquesne University (Kline) #89 56.3% 155 3.5
Pennsylvania State University Dickinson Law #89 36.8% 161 3.61
University of Pittsburgh
School of Law
#89 33.2% 161 3.55
Widener University--Pennsylvania (Commonwealth) #159 60.2% 148 3.3

Pennsylvania, famous for its rich history and diverse scenery, hosts quite a few law schools worth mentioning. 

There are a total of eight law schools scattered around the state, including well-known ones like the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School and Temple University Beasley School of Law. Pennsylvania provides a wide variety of options for those looking to study law. 

University of Pennsylvania (Carey)

Source: University of Pennsylvania (Carey)

Law School U.S. News Ranking Acceptance Rate Median LSAT Median GPA Bar Passage Rate
University of Pennsylvania (Carey) #4 9.7% 172 3.9 90.24%

The University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School, established in 1790, is known for offering a well-rounded legal education. Being part of the University of Pennsylvania means students can explore exciting opportunities like graduate-level courses, joint degrees, and certificates in fields such as business, technology, and health. 

They value diversity and inclusivity, which means students from different backgrounds join in. Some choose Master in Law (ML) and LLM degrees, which bring diverse perspectives to classroom discussions. The school's aim is to prepare students for success in today's dynamic legal profession.

Villanova University (Widger)

Source: Villanova University (Widger)

Law School U.S. News Ranking Acceptance Rate Median LSAT Median GPA Bar Passage Rate
Villanova University (Widger) #43 16.5% 163 3.76 86.61%

At Villanova Law, which was founded in 1953, students can expect a well-rounded legal education that combines academic excellence with practical training. Whether you're interested in international law, corporate law, intellectual property law, or public interest law, Villanova has programs tailored to prepare you for a successful legal career.

Their 'Where Law Meets Business' approach means you'll learn essential business principles, professional skills, and ethics and gain practical experience during your education. With innovative coursework, diverse clinics, and numerous externship opportunities, Villanova ensures students graduate ready for today's competitive job market.

Temple University (Beasley)

Source: Temple University (Beasley)

Law School U.S. News Ranking Acceptance Rate Median LSAT Median GPA Bar Passage Rate
Temple University (Beasley) #54 36.5% 163 3.63 83.8%

Temple University Beasley School of Law, founded back in 1895, is all about delivering top-notch legal education. Their faculty is dedicated to getting students ready for the legal world, teaching them crucial legal skills, professional ethics, and the importance of community service.

At Temple Law, they believe in accessibility for all. They're committed to making its programs open to talented individuals from all walks of life, no matter their background, whether it's race, gender, or disability. The school actively cultivates a diverse and inclusive law school community that's all about equal justice under the law.

Drexel University (Kline)

Source: Drexel University (Kline)

Law School U.S. News Ranking Acceptance Rate Median LSAT Median GPA Bar Passage Rate
Drexel University (Kline) #80 31% 159 3.72 71.9%

Drexel University's Kline School of Law, founded in 2006, provides a unique legal education that blends academic excellence with real-world experience. Their faculty, made up of accomplished scholars and practitioners, puts a strong emphasis on mentoring students and fostering a sense of community.

One standout feature of Kline School of Law is its dedication to hands-on learning. Students gain significant professional practice hours before graduation. 

They offer a range of program options, including a fast-track two-year JD, a Global JD and LLM designed for international students, and a Master of Legal Studies program tailored for those pursuing careers in compliance and related fields.

Pennsylvania State University--University Park 

Source: Pennsylvania State University--University Park 

Law School U.S. News Ranking Acceptance Rate Median LSAT Median GPA Bar Passage Rate
Penn State Law #80 30.9% 162 3.72 89.47%

Pennsylvania State University--University Park is where you'll find Penn State Law, a unique institution established in 2014. It offers a mix of top-notch research resources and a dynamic legal education. 

The faculty at Penn State Law is dedicated to providing students with a comprehensive learning experience that covers classroom studies, practical skills, and real-world applications. Thanks to small class sizes, students get personalized attention from experienced legal scholars and practitioners. 

Penn State Law is committed to making sure its programs keep up with the changing legal landscape, ensuring students are well-prepared for a profession influenced by technology and globalization. They also provide one-on-one mentoring and strong career support, setting students up for success in their legal careers.

Duquesne University (Kline)

Source: Duquesne University (Kline) 

Law School U.S. News Ranking Acceptance Rate Median LSAT Median GPA Bar Passage Rate
Duquesne University (Kline) #89 56.3% 155 3.5 92.31%

At the Duquesne Kline School of Law, their mission is simple: to prepare students to become successful lawyers, responsible leaders, and global citizens. They're guided by the values of the Spiritan Congregation, emphasizing dignity, justice, respect for all, and a commitment to diversity and inclusion.

With a history spanning 144 years, Duquesne University was founded by the Congregation of the Holy Spirit and is the sole Spiritan institution of higher education in the United States. They are dedicated to delivering quality education, instilling moral and spiritual values, and creating an inclusive and diverse atmosphere.

Students from across the United States and around the world choose Duquesne University for their education. The faculty's enthusiasm and commitment to teaching make learning enjoyable. With a faculty-student ratio of 14:1, students have excellent access to renowned scholar-teachers, enriching their educational experience.

Pennsylvania State University Dickinson Law

Source: Pennsylvania State University Dickinson Law 

Law School U.S. News Ranking Acceptance Rate Median LSAT Median GPA Bar Passage Rate
Pennsylvania State University Dickinson Law #89 36.8% 161 3.61 88.3%

for various legal career paths. Whether you're eyeing a career in corporate law, public interest law, or any other field, they've got the programs, resources, and support to help you thrive.

One standout feature is their experienced faculty, who bring real-world legal expertise to the classroom. This means students learn from professionals who know the ins and outs of the legal field. They focus on mentorship, peer support, and a strong alumni network to ensure students have the support they need to succeed. 

And when it comes to history, Dickinson Law has a long one. It was founded by Judge John Reed in 1834, showing their enduring commitment to offering top-notch legal education.

University of Pittsburgh School of Law 

Source: University of Pittsburgh School of Law

Law School U.S. News Ranking Acceptance Rate Median LSAT Median GPA Bar Passage Rate
University of Pittsburgh School of Law #89 33.2% 161 3.55 76.5%

The University of Pittsburgh School of Law, known as Pitt Law, is all about providing a top-notch legal education. Their JD program covers the basics while offering specialized knowledge to tackle contemporary legal issues.

Since way back in 1895, Pitt Law has been shaping students into exceptional attorneys and leaders. They've earned global recognition for their scholarship, offering high-quality academics, a renowned faculty, hands-on learning opportunities, and excellent career preparation and placement.

Their curriculum doesn't just stick to the basics; it dives into innovative topics like technology commercialization, conflict resolution, and cybersecurity. This way, graduates are well-equipped to navigate the ever-changing legal landscape.

Widener University--Pennsylvania (Commonwealth) 

Source: Widener University--Pennsylvania (Commonwealth) 

Law School U.S. News Ranking Acceptance Rate Median LSAT Median GPA Bar Passage Rate
Widener Law Commonwealth #159 60.2% 148 3.3 47.9%

Widener Law Commonwealth has a lot to offer its students. With unique programs that help students fine-tune their courtroom skills and think on their feet, graduates often feel well-prepared for their chosen legal paths.

One of the standout features of Widener Law Commonwealth is its range of academic programs. Students have the flexibility to shape their legal education to match their specific interests, needs, and career goals.

The institution's roots date back to 1821 when Bullock School, initially a Quaker school for boys, was established in Wilmington. This long history underscores Widener's commitment to providing a high-quality education and fostering academic excellence for its students.

How to Find More Law Schools Near Pennsylvania

Finding your ideal law school near Pennsylvania is a snap with our free tool. Simply filter your options by region across the United States, and you're on your way to discovering the perfect fit for your legal education journey.


Got questions about law schools in Pennsylvania? Look no further! In this FAQs section, we've gathered answers to some of the most common queries. 

1. Can I Practice Law in Other States if I Graduate From a Pennsylvania Law School?

Yes, graduates of Pennsylvania law schools can generally practice law in other states, but they may need to meet additional requirements, such as passing the bar exam in the state where they intend to practice. Each state has its own rules and regulations.

2. Are There Part-Time or Evening Law Programs Available in Pennsylvania for Working Professionals?

Yes, some law schools in Pennsylvania offer part-time or evening programs designed to accommodate the schedules of working professionals who want to pursue a law degree.

3. What Types of Financial Aid and Scholarships Are Available for Law School in Pennsylvania?

Most law schools offer financial aid options, including scholarships, grants, and loans. It's essential to research each school's financial aid offerings and deadlines. Additionally, consider external scholarship opportunities.

Final Thoughts

Law schools in Pennsylvania offer a solid foundation for aspiring lawyers. With their rich legal history and commitment to excellence, these institutions play a pivotal role in shaping the legal landscape, not just in the state but across the nation. 

When making your decision, take a moment to consider your personal goals and values. This thoughtful approach will ensure you're well-prepared to contribute meaningfully to the ever-evolving legal field and society as a whole.

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