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Before the Bar Blog guidelines

Before the Bar Blog guidelines


Bringing together a diversity of opinions, experiences and voices from people associated with the law anywhere in the world (but primarily, the 50 states). The content will be targeted to law students, current, past and future.

Size of blog posts

Roughly 1,000 words. Give or take 200. What this means is if a writer has a thought that can be done in 500, then that’s fine. If it deserves a slightly longer treatment, it can go longer. I don’t want anyone to feel limited by length or obligated to stretch a piece out unnecessarily.


Conversational. Not academic. Write as though you’re talking to a student directly. No footnotes, we can link out if we want to refer to source information.


Our audience is law students and not the consumer audience or potential clients for your organization. For example, we are looking for “how to be a DUI lawyer” – not “how to beat a DUI conviction.” (Not that we get repeat pitches on one particular topic or anything.)

Supplemental content

Photos are great to share along with the posts if you have photos that relate to you or your subject. We also encourage you to suggest an image from Shutterstock to go along with your post.

Charts, graphs or other visuals can be included. We also can post webinars, slideshares, Google Hangouts, videos and more. For events that we add to the calendar, we’d love for an organizer or panelist to tell students why they should go, not just the description of the event.

Author information

Each piece will run with a bio of the author (50 words) and a call to action (linking to their site, a cause, etc.) if they choose. We will also need a headshot.


Up to the author. They can write once, monthly, occasionally. I’d like to keep things to those classifications to spread things out among authors. But if someone really wants more than once a month, we can work with that. I just don’t want the blog dominated by one author.


Text of articles published in Student Lawyer magazine may be reprinted with permission and provided the following attribution is given to the magazine.

“©[Year] Published in [Publication Title], [MM/YY of Publication] [direct link to full article on], by the American Bar Association. Reproduced with permission. All rights reserved. This information or any portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association or the copyright holder.”

You may not use graphics and images that run with the articles. Blog posts may not be reprinted without permission of both the ABA Law Student Division and the author of the post.


Also up to the author. We have a veritably unlimited set of interests, as long as whatever it is pertains to law or students or life as a lawyer. We will not assign topics, but I may occasionally suggest one based on initiatives, calendar holidays or a particular focus of the blog. Examples would be Pro Bono Week, graduation, mental health awareness, etc. See the list below for more ideas

Content Checklist:
• Blog post (700-1,000 words, roughly)
• Bio (50 words)
• Head shot
• Social media links (Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, personal site)

For more information and scheduling details, contact web editor Adam Music.

Suggested Topics

Basics of Law School
Applying for Law School
Picking a School
The Summer Before 1L
Understanding Law School Scholarships
Campus Visits

In-School Milestones
Starting Law School
Legal Writing Brief
1st Semester Exams
1st Semester Grades
1st Year Grades
Starting 2L
Starting 3L

Law School Basics
Socratic Method
Law School Scholarships
Part-time programs
Choosing a specialty
Resume Help
Career Planning
Informational Interviews

Exam/Study Tips
Typical Law School Essay Exams
Multiple Choice Exams
Take Home Exams
Open Book vs. Closed Book Exams
Choosing Classes in Law School
Briefing a Case
Study aids

Extra Curriculars
Running for SBA
Moot Court
Joining Law School Groups/Clubs
Bar Associations
Law Review
Activities outside of school

Work Experience During Law School
Summer Associates
Pro Bono/Public Service Work
School Clinics
OCI Overview
What if you don’t qualify for OCI?
Working (non-legal) during school
Being a parent during law school

1L Subjects
Civil Procedure
Constitutional Law
Criminal Law
Legal Writing/Research

2L/3L Subjects
Administrative Law
Animal Law
Aviation Law
Business Organizations Associations
Commercial Transactions
Conflict Resolution And Negotiation
Criminal Procedure
Employment Discrimination
Entertainment Law
Environmental Law
Family Law
Health Law
Intellectual Property
International Law
Interviewing and Counseling
Negotiable Instruments / Payment Systems
Patent Law
Professional Responsibility
Real Estate Transactions
Tax Law
Trial Advocacy
Wills and Trusts

Debt and Student Loans
Minimizing Debt While in School
Private loans

Bar Exam
Passing the Bar Exam
Failing the Bar Exam
Taking the Bar out of State
How does the Uniform Bar Exam work?

After the Bar
LL.M. and other post-JD programs
Careers in…
Judicial Clerks
Graduating Without a Job

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