Harvard University Law School

By | January 5, 2023

Harvard University Law School is located in the state of Massachusetts. As one of the leading law programs, Harvard University Law School has a high average LSAT score of 171-176 when recruiting new students. As a return, the median starting salary for law graduates reaches $160,000 per year. See the following table for detailed admissions information and career profiles of Harvard University Law School.

Harvard Law School (HLS) is one of the professional graduate schools of Harvard University. It is a highly prestigious and respected American law school with about 1,800 students in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Fourteen of the school’s graduates have served on the U.S. Supreme Court, more than any other law school, and another four justices attended the school. Six of the current nine members of the court attended HLS: Roberts, Scalia, Kennedy, Souter, Ginsburg and Breyer. (Ginsburg transferred to Columbia Law School and did not graduate from Harvard.) HLS routinely places first or second in various law school rankings and usually receives the highest reputation scores from judges, academics and practitioners. According to US News and World Report, its entering class boasts the highest LSAT scores in the nation and its graduates have a higher bar passage rate and average salary upon graduation than do graduates of its closest rivals Columbia, Stanford and Yale.

The school was established in 1817 and has operated continuously since then, affording Harvard bragging rights as the third oldest law school in the nation [The law schools at William and Mary (1779) and the University of Pennsylvania (1790) are older.]. The current dean of Harvard Law school is Elena Kagan, who took over for Robert Clark in 2003.

Harvard Law School is abbreviated for HLS: https://www.abbreviationfinder.org/acronyms/hls_harvard-law-school.html

Admissions: Harvard University

Fall 2019 Admissions and Enrollment Statistics
Total number of full- and part-time applicants 7,391
Total number of full- and part-time acceptances 833
Overall acceptance rate 11.3%
Total number of full- and part-time first-year students enrolled 559
Number of full-time program applicants 7,391
Number of full-time program acceptances 833
Full-time acceptance rate 11.3%
Number of first-year full-time students enrolled 559
Number of part-time program applicants N/A
Number of part-time program acceptances N/A
Part-time acceptance rate N/A
Number of first-year part-time students enrolled N/A
Fall 2019 GPA and LSAT Scores
25th-75th percentile GPA scores for all students 3.76-3.96
25th-75th percentile LSAT scores for all students 171-176
25th-75th percentile undergraduate GPA for full-time students 3.76-3.96
25th-75th percentile LSAT scores for full-time students 171-176
25th-75th percentile undergraduate GPA for part-time students N/A
25th-75th percentile LSAT scores for part-time students N/A

Careers: Harvard University

Bar Statistics (Winter and Summer 2018 administrations)
State where the greatest number of first-time test takers took the bar NY
School’s bar passage rate for first-time test takers 98.2%
Statewide bar passage rate for first-time test takers 80.7%
Class of 2018 Graduates
Total graduates 590
Graduates employed at graduation 97.1%
Graduates known to be employed nine months after graduation 99.3%
Starting Salaries of 2018 Graduates Employed Full-time
25th percentile private sector starting salary $160,000
Median private sector starting salary $160,000
75th percentile private sector starting salary $160,000
Percent in the private sector who reported salary information N/A
Median public service starting salary $55,000
Areas of Legal Practice (Class of 2018)
Percent employed in academia 1.0%
Percent employed in business and industry 4.4%
Percent employed in government 3.7%
Percent employed in all judicial clerkships 19.0%
Percent employed in law firms 65.9%
Percent employed in public interest 6.1%
Percent employed in an unknown field 0.0%
Percent employed in a judicial clerkship by an Article III federal judge 15.5%
2018 Graduates Employment Location
Graduates employed in-state 11%
Graduates employed in foreign countries 4%
Number of states where graduates are employed 35
New England (CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT) 12.0%
Middle Atlantic (NY, NJ, PA) 32.9%
East North Central (IL, IN, MI, OH, WI) 7.3%
West North Central (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD) 0.9%
South Atlantic (DE, DC, FL, GA, MD, NC, SC, VA, WV) 17.6%
East South Central (AL, KY, MS, TN) 0.9%
West South Central (AR, LA, OK, TX) 4.4%
Pacific (AK, CA, HI, OR, WA) 17.4%
Mountain (AZ, CO, ID, MT, NV, NM, UT, WY) 2.4%
Employment location unknown 0.4%
Career Services
(Data appear as originally submitted by this school)
Career services operations HLS offers comprehensive career services for students seeking employment in settings ranging from law firms to law teaching to government to non-profits. The Office of Career Services operates the nation’s largest on-campus interviewing program. The Office of Public Interest Advising assists those seeking public service positions and helps students land highly sought-after public interest jobs.
Job Type
Bar admission required or anticipated (e.g., attorney and corporate counsel positions, law clerks, judicial clerks) 93.6%
J.D. preferred, law degree enhances position (e.g., corporate contracts administrator, alternative dispute resolution specialist, government regulatory analyst, FBI special agent) 5.2%
Professional/other (jobs that require professional skills or training but for which a J.D. is neither preferred nor particularly applicable; e.g., accountant, teacher, business manager, nurse) 0.7%
Nonprofessional/other (job that does not require any professional skills or training or is taken on a temporary basis and not viewed as part of a career path) N/A