Applying Without a Bachelor's Degree

Please note: Some state bars require a bachelor's degree; however, the State Bar of Michigan does not. Please check the educational requirements of the bar in the state in which you plan to practice law.

Most Cooley students have a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university. Yet, under court rules adopted by the Michigan Supreme Court, an applicant may also attend if the student has completed at least 60 semester hours or 90 quarter hours either toward an undergraduate degree from an accredited school or from an accredited junior or community college.

Cooley Law School welcomes inquiries from individuals with associate's degrees or 60 to 90 credits at a four-year institution.

Students who have completed from one-half to three-quarters of the work necessary for a bachelor's degree must meet the admission requirements outlined in the next two sections to qualify for admission. Please call the Admissions Office at (517) 371-5140, ext. 2244 if you have any questions about your particular circumstance.

3/4 Rule

At Cooley, to be admitted without a bachelor’s degree, but with three-quarters of the work completed necessary for the degree, Cooley will need a statement from a four-year institution confirming that you have completed 90 semester hours applicable toward a bachelor’s degree.

You must register with the Credential Assembly Service for the transcript evaluation of all your undergraduate work. We will use three-fourths of the cumulative undergraduate GPA, (UGPA determined by Law Services), in calculating your Cooley index. You must meet the minimum LSAT score and index for Regular Admission. Ninety (90) semester hours must be completed and applicable towards a bachelor's degree.

The formula is:

UGPA x .75 x 15 = Product
Product + LSAT Score = Cooley Admission Index

Two-year Rule

At Cooley, to be admitted without a bachelor’s degree, but with 60 semester hours, Cooley will need a statement from a four-year institution confirming that you have completed 60 semester hours applicable toward the bachelor’s degree or proof of completion of an associate’s degree with 60 hours applicable towards a bachelor's degree. If you have completed two years of college but not three-quarters of your courses, you must still register with the Credential Assembly Service for transcript evaluation of all of your undergraduate work. We will use one-half of the cumulative undergraduate GPA (UGPA determined by Law Services) in calculating your Cooley index. You must meet the minimum LSAT score and index required for Regular Admission. Sixty (60) semester hours must be completed and applicable towards a bachelor's degree.

The formula is:

UGPA x .50 x 15 = Product
Product + LSAT Score = Cooley Admission Index

If you are applying to Cooley Law School under the two-year rule and you meet the index requirement for Regular Admission, your file will be reviewed by the Faculty Admissions Committee. The Committee will determine whether you have the maturity level sufficient for the study of law and for beginning law practice. You will be required to write a statement (1) explaining why you want to start law school without a bachelor’s degree and (2) convincing the Committee to accept your application.


- Visit the campus
- Be a "Law Student For A Day"
- Sit side-by-side with a current student
- Meet with Enrollment and Student Services



Contact Us

Admissions Office
Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School
300 S. Capitol Ave.
Lansing, MI 48933
Phone: (517) 371-5140, ext. 2244
Fax: (517) 334-5718
Email: admissions@cooley.edu

Monday - Friday: 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Admissions