Expanded Pre-Law Classes:

Our pre-law classes are 25-person, hands-on, seminar-style classes that expose students to legal writing (e.g. crafting memos), reasoning (e.g. synthesizing and digesting case law), and oral advocacy (e.g. mock arguments). These courses also integrate attorneys into the classroom as guest lecturers, coaches, and mentors.

Course Offerings:

  • Poli104J Introduction to Legal Reasoning: the building-blocks of legal writing and reasoning. Students learn basic legal analysis, making and supporting a position, as well as legal skills like crafting intra-office memos. For the final, students demonstrate the rudiments of legal research by presenting contemporary legal reasoning on key issues.
  • Poli 104K Legal Argument Formulation: students are given an appellate court case and taught the legal analysis skills necessary to succeed in court. Legal professionals and alumni coach students in the classroom, helping them write briefs and to prepare for their final: a simulated oral argument where they present in front of a panel of mock judges.
  • Poli 104P Science Technology and Law: Science and technology advance rapidly. The law is slow to catch-up. Retired judge, Michael Orfield ’72, presents various case studies (e.g. driverless cars) and students lead arguments in favor and against.
  • Poli 104A The Supreme Court and Constitution: An introduction to the study of the Supreme Court and constitutional doctrine. Topics will include the nature of judicial review, federalism, race, and equal protection. The relation of judicial and legislative power will also be examined.

Learn about the other pre-law courses at UC San Diego


Internships are among the best avenues for students to better understand the legal profession and foster the skills necessary for success.

USD School of Law and UC San Diego has established an internship program for undergraduate students considering pursuing a legal education upon graduation.  Undergraduates from both Universities are encouraged to participate in the internship. The internship program is intended to introduce these undergraduate students to the USD School of Law as well as public service through the legal profession.  Interns will work with center personnel and law students on a variety of research projects and assist with clerical and other tasks as assigned.  While in the Program, interns will be able to attend USD School of Law events, have the opportunity to observe at least one law school class, and interact with the school’s professors, students and administrators.


US Attorney’s Office: Alumna, Alana Robinson ’85, has opened her doors to undergraduate students to shadow US Attorneys, participate in open houses, and apply for the robust internship program.  Learn more about the internship here: US Attorney's Office Internship


Connections to Industry

Political Science partners with UC San Diego’s chapter of Phi Alpha Delta (pre-law fraternity) on a number of career building activities each year.  Learn more about the organization here.