Pre-Law Advising

Application Addenda

Each law school enables you to submit brief addenda about anything you wish to add that may not be the best fit for your personal statement.

Addenda can be included for a variety of reasons. You may choose to complete an addendum that contextualizes an element of your application or background. You may want to use an addendum to provide an explanation for a semester of lower grades, a complicated transcript, a leave of absence, a large change in your LSAT score, a disciplinary action from your undergraduate institution, a legal infraction and/or a significant gap in your resume. 

Addendum Tips

  • Be factual and brief. For example, if you navigated difficulties during part of your studies, which affected your grades, providing some context about this is fitting for an addendum. 
  • Only use an addendum if the information you are discussing is not clear in the rest of your application. For example, if you talk about taking a personal leave in your personal statement, you do not need to add an addendum about this.
  • Avoid blaming or self-pity. If there is something negative you need to discuss, provide the facts and avoid recriminations or focusing on your own faults. 
  • Focus on your growth or positive outcomes. If you have a disciplinary action or low grades to explain, provide the information and focus on how you have learned from the experience and how it has potentially made you a better applicant or lawyer.

Frequently Asked Questions

We recommend no longer than a paragraph or two. 

No. A few lower grades scattered throughout your transcript are not something that requires explanation. Law schools understand that there are some courses that are more difficult for you than others. Noted changes in grades might merit an addendum. You might want to explain an event or circumstances that precipitated a noted change in your academic performance. Consider an addendum, for example, you have strong grades and then an illness or other exigency precipitates with a clear drop in grades, or if you experimented or struggled early on before settling into an academic groove. 

No. If you have a strong LSAT score, let it speak for itself. Unless there is a very specific reason that you know you could earn a higher score (i.e. you were ill that day) then there is no reason to write general statements that you feel you could do better.

This might be a good reason for an addendum, if the technical difficulties were significant enough to cause a true disruption to your exam. While some technical issues are system-wide and the schools might be aware of these, there are also issues that occur on a smaller scale that can impact your LSAT score. But a higher score next time around is better than any addendum.