Transfer Application Process

The transfer application for the Columbia Law Review consists of two elements: the writing component and the personal statement. This year, the transfer response period will take place from June 28 at 12:00 pm EDT until July 10 at 12:00 pm EDT. Offers to accepted transfer students will be given, by phone, no later than July 16. Successful applicants will be expected to be present at Staffer Orientation on Monday, July 22.

Writing Component

The writing component consists of (1) a prompt that asks you to analyze a legal question and fact pattern presented in the packet, and (2) a Bluebook exercise. Writing exercise topics vary from year to year—in the past students have been asked to write an essay justifying a position on a cutting-edge legal issue, write a bench memo, or complete a classic law-school issue spotter.

All the information you will need to complete the writing component (including relevant Bluebook rules) will be included in the packet. You will not be permitted to consult with anyone else or to use any outside sources. The Bluebook exercise will be weighted far less heavily than the rest of the exercise.

The time allotted to complete the writing component affords an opportunity to produce a well-organized and sophisticated piece, taking into account that transfer students will likely be working during the same period. As such, the component is not designed to take the entire eight day period, but rather to accommodate the varied obligations of students during that time.

Personal Statement

In addition to the Writing Component, the Review requires each transfer applicant to submit a personal statement. This statement is intended to offer applicants an opportunity to share information about their background, work experiences, areas of legal interest, and other relevant information that will help them contribute to the work and the community of the Review. More information about the personal statement will be available in the application packet.


To apply, please follow the steps below:

  • Email the Columbia Law Review Business Office (, prior to July 5 with your name, law school, graduation year, and telephone number. You will then receive an anonymous registration number during regular business hours that day or the following day. Note that applicants who register after June 28 will have less time to complete the application.
  • On June 28 at 12:00 pm EDT (or at a reasonable time if you registered after the application process started), you will receive the transfer application packet.
  • Complete your application by following the instructions in the transfer application packet. Those instructions include only using your anonymous registration number, and not your name, on all documents.
  • Email your completed application to the Business Office ( prior to July 10 at 12:00 pm EDT.

Any questions about the transfer application process or general law review questions should be directed to Mary Marshall at Questions about the Writing Component should be directed to Daniel Fahrenthold at