An Undergraduate Option for Legal Education

51 Pages Posted: 10 May 2013 Last revised: 22 Oct 2013

Date Written: May 8, 2013


Prospective lawyers should have the option of taking the bar exam upon completing an undergraduate major in law and serving a year's apprenticeship. This undergraduate option would substantially decrease the cost of legal education and thus in the long run reduce the costs of legal services, particularly to poor and middle class. It would also decrease the deadweight loss from unnecessarily prolonged education and reduce the number of lawyers made unhappy by debt. Experience abroad suggests that this option would not unduly diminish the quality of lawyers. The undergraduate option would also provide other substantial benefits. For instance, it would increase the diversity in the legal profession and offer a greater variety of career choices for lawyers.

Keywords: Legal Education, Graduate education, Undegraduate Education, Legal Services

JEL Classification: K10, K19, K30, K39

Suggested Citation

McGinnis, John and Mangas, Russell, An Undergraduate Option for Legal Education (May 8, 2013). International Review of Law and Economics, Forthcoming, Northwestern Public Law Research Paper No. 13-14, Northwestern Law & Econ Research Paper No. 13-17, Available at SSRN:

John McGinnis (Contact Author)

Northwestern University - Pritzker School of Law ( email )

375 E. Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
United States
312-503-3235 (Phone)

Russell Mangas

Independent ( email )

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