Preparing you for admission into any school of law

    About The Program

    As a lawyer, you’ll be an advocate for your clients, using the rule of law to see that justice prevails in every case. While pre-law is not a major itself, we’ll match you with a degree program and the necessary coursework required to prepare you for admission into law school.


    Honors Law Opportunity Program


    NSU offers the Honors Law Opportunity Program, which provides qualifying students a chance for guaranteed admission into the USD Knudson School of Law! HLOP aims to help grow the number of committed, talented lawyers in northeast South Dakota. To qualify, Northern students must:

    • Be admitted into the Honors Program.
    • Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.5 and ACT score in the 80th percentile (26 or above on the ACT or SAT equivalent).
    • Demonstrate strong academic achievement and a personal commitment to building South Dakota communities. 

    Read about the first students accepted to law school through HLOP.



    Wondering if this program is for you?

    Is Northern's pre-law program a good fit? The answer is yes if you:

    • Often think and reflect on issues
    • Have strong critical thinking and reading comprehension skills
    • Excel at analytical thought
    • Enjoy debate or argument
    • Pay attention to detail
    • Like to write and research
    • Are comfortable speaking in public
    • Enjoy helping people

    The pre-law program is designed to give you a basic education in preparation of law school. Students need to graduate with a bachelor's degree to apply for law school. With a law degree, you could work as a:

    • Paralegal
    • Lawyer
    • Law enforcement
    • Investigator

    At Northern, we believe getting you out of the classroom and into a real-world workplace setting is a critical part of your education. You'll have several opportunities for internships and other forms of experiential learning throughout your time at Northern. Learn more at Student Experiences!


    The NSU WolfPACT is the highest guaranteed, four-year scholarship in the region. But that isn't the only scholarship available at Northern. Visit Arts and Sciences Scholarships for other scholarship opportunities!

    Suggested Majors and Minors
    Study Abroad

    Experience the world while earning your degree through NSU Study Abroad! With hundreds of opportunities available around the globe, Northern can make your study abroad dream become a reality. Learn more at Study Abroad!

    Student Research

    At Northern, you'll have the chance to conduct cutting-edge research that can have real-world impacts - while still an undergraduate student. Now with our brand new, state-of-the-art Jewett Regional Science Education Center, the sky is truly the limit. Learn more at Student Research!

    Contact Information

    Ready to take the next step? Contact us today:

    Want to learn more about living and learning at Northern? Contact NSU Admissions or call 605-626-2544!

    Still unsure of a major? We can help! Contact NSU Career Services at 605-626-3007 or


    Ph.D., Southern Illinois University-Carbondale


    Dr. Brownfield joined the NSU faculty in 2015. Her current research looks at deviance and “bad behavior” in online forums devoted to support networks. She recently has published articles on depictions of prisons in film and rural policing on television.


    Courses Taught
    SOC 100  Introduction to Sociology
    OC 281  Socio-Cultural Theory
    CJUS/SOC 485  Capstone
    Other courses offered on a rotational basis


    Research Interests/Areas of Expertise

    Popular culture

    New media research methods

    Online phenomena


    Social psychology, identity, narrative, and deviance