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B.A. in Political Science, Pre-Law Track

JusticeIUP’s Pre-Law Program

Consists of an interdisciplinary Pre-Law minor as well as a variety of services and extracurricular activities designed to provide students with a liberal arts background which helps prepare them for admission and success in law school, as well as entrance into a variety of law-related fields.

Housed within the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, seven departments participate in the Pre-Law Program. Students choose a major in one of the seven departments listed below, plus a total of 21 semester hours selected from the remaining departments.

For example, if the student selects History as his/her major field, he or she then chooses, with the help of his or her advisor, a total of 21 hours from the six other departments, excluding History. Each department offers three courses in the Pre-Law Program, and at least one course must be selected from each field. The remaining three hours are chosen from any of these six departments.

An advantage of this program is that, whether or not the student is accepted at a law school, he or she has completed a major in a substantive discipline. Indeed, the breadth and depth of this liberal studies minor makes the Pre-Law minor an excellent choice even for those who have no intention of attending law school.

Pre-Law Program Requirements

The departments and courses that comprise the Pre-Law minor are:


  • ACCT 201 Accounting Principles I
  • ACCT 202 Accounting Principles II
  • BLAW 235 Introduction to Business Law


  • CRIM 210 Criminal Law
  • CRIM 215 Survey of Courts and Criminal Justice System
  • CRIM 255 Law, Social Control, and Society


  • ECON 121 Principles of Economics I
  • ECON 122 Principles of Economics II
  • ECON 332 Government and Business


  • ENGL 212 American Literature: Beginnings to 1900
  • ENGL 220 Advanced Composition I
  • ENGL 310 Public Speaking


  • HIST 320 History of England to 1688
  • HIST 321 History of England, 1688 to Present
  • HIST 346 Recent U.S. History


  • PHIL 101 Informal Logic: Methods of Critical Thinking
  • PHIL 222 Ethics
  • PHIL 450 Philosophy of Law

Political Science

  • PLSC 358 Judicial Process
  • PLSC 359 Constitutional Law and Civil Liberties
  • PLSC 361 Modern Political Thought

How Pre-Law Can Help You

Careful Advising

Every department in the program has designated one or more Pre-Law advisors. Pre-Law advisors assist students with course selection, provide information about Pre-Law Program activities, and offer guidance about law school or law-related careers.

Law School Career Day

Each Fall, admissions officers from more than a dozen law schools come to IUP to meet with students and answer questions about their respective programs and about what law schools are looking for in prospective students.

Critical Thinking Skills

The Pre-Law Program is structured to provide students with the kind of critical thinking, writing, and verbal communication skills cited as necessary by law schools. These skills are also essential for success in almost all professions and jobs.

Help with Law School Applications

Special workshops providing detailed information and advice about the application process are offered every semester.

Information on Law Schools

The Pre-Law Program has a large collection of informational packets about law schools from all over the United States. Additionally, books that describe and rank law schools are available for students to borrow.

Pre-Law Society

Closely affiliated with the Pre-Law Program, the Pre-Law Society is a student-run organization that allows students to come together with other students who have an interest in law and legal careers. The group sponsors such events as guest lecturers, a mock trial competition, movie nights, debates, and social events.

Phi Alpha Delta

IUP has a Pre-Law chapter of Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity International, a professional service organization composed of pre-law students, law students, legal educators, attorneys, judges, and government officials. Phi Alpha Delta was founded in 1902 for the purpose of promoting professional competency and achievement within the legal profession.

Black Law Students Association

IUP has a Pre-Law chapter of the Black Law Students Association. Established in 2007, the BLSA promotes the entrance of black students into the field of law by providing internship opportunities, mentorships, LSAT prep, and other pertinent resources and information. The BLSA is a nondiscriminatory organization. Although the BLSA primarily caters to IUP’s black student community who have an interest in law, the organization is open to all members of the IUP community without regard to race, lifestyle, color, religious creed, disability, national origin, gender, and sexual orientation.

Additional information regarding the Pre-Law Program may be obtained from:

Dr. Gwen Torges
Director, Pre-Law Program
Asst. Professor, Political Science Department
Keith Annex, 103-E
Indiana University of Pennsylvania
Indiana, PA 15705
(724) 357-2290

For additional information, please see the Undergraduate Catalog.

  • Political Science Department
  • Humanities and Social Sciences Building
    Suite 405
    981 Grant Street
    Indiana, PA 15705
  • Phone: 724-357-2290
  • Fax: 724-357-3810
  • Office Hours
  • Monday through Friday
  • 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
  • 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.