So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

(Personal Statement Examples, Advice, Critique, . . . )
TOMaHULK
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So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby TOMaHULK » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:20 pm

It looks like once a lot of people feel they have a good PS, they simply go in and polish it up for each school.

Is this the case?

I haven't written a PS yet (waiting on the June LSAT score), so any advice would be helpful.

Also, do you send the PS's to LSAC for them to scan (such as with the LORs), and if so you have to do that for each school you critique your PS for?

eldizknee
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby eldizknee » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:23 pm

.
Last edited by eldizknee on Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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bk1
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby bk1 » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:24 pm

I get the feeling that a lot of people don't have a variable slot on their PS for a school. People feel it is obvious when you just plug "XYZ School of Law" and adcomms see through to the insincerity.

As for PS's, you attach them online when you submit your app. You do not need to send them to LSAC.

TOMaHULK
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby TOMaHULK » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:30 pm

Ok, so you actually apply to each individual law school on their website, and they they collect your info from the LSAC?

Always just thought that it was all done through the LSAC since it has an "apply" tab.

Also, should I avoid a PS that is kindda "I've had a hard life/feel bad for me/I'm over come so many obstacle?" Cause I get the feeling that everyone has had a hard life and law schools may tired of this.

Thanks for info guys.

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bk1
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby bk1 » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:33 pm

You can but the LSAC website makes it way easier. Once you choose a list of schools to apply on LSAC it opens up a digital app for each of them through LSAC's website. You can then attach documents to each of them as you see fit. Once you hit submit, LSAC sends a file that contains everything (the filled out digital form, your transcript, LSAT's, and any attached materials) to the school.

TOMaHULK
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby TOMaHULK » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:39 pm

bk1 wrote:You can but the LSAC website makes it way easier. Once you choose a list of schools to apply on LSAC it opens up a digital app for each of them through LSAC's website. You can then attach documents to each of them as you see fit. Once you hit submit, LSAC sends a file that contains everything (the filled out digital form, your transcript, LSAT's, and any attached materials) to the school.


Sounds good. So you just go on each school's website and see exactly what they require to apply and make sure it's all included on the file that you have LSAC send? Or is there a checklist send sending a file through LSAC for each school?

Obvioulsy I wouldn't know any of this since I've let to apply to any schools.

Also, I think you have given me advice on ED'ing in another one of my post. Here's another question, since you seem very knowledgeable:


When using the LS Predicator website (which I've been told uses the number from the numbers site), should you bother applying to what: weak consider/consider/strong consider? I mean where does one generally draw the line? At consider? Also, which would be good from a ED (i.e. only when it says consider at minimum)?


Sorry for all the questions, but greatly appreciated. :wink:

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billyez
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby billyez » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:43 pm

Be wary of the temptation to let the LSP be your guide through the law school admission process. If I had listened to it wholesale, then I wouldn't be going to a top ten school...apply where you want to go to school. That's all.

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bk1
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby bk1 » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:46 pm

TOMaHULK wrote:Sounds good. So you just go on each school's website and see exactly what they require to apply and make sure it's all included on the file that you have LSAC send? Or is there a checklist send sending a file through LSAC for each school?

Obvioulsy I wouldn't know any of this since I've let to apply to any schools.

Also, I think you have given me advice on ED'ing in another one of my post. Here's another question, since you seem very knowledgeable:


When using the LS Predicator website (which I've been told uses the number from the numbers site), should you bother applying to what: weak consider/consider/strong consider? I mean where does one generally draw the line? At consider? Also, which would be good from a ED (i.e. only when it says consider at minimum)?


Sorry for all the questions, but greatly appreciated. :wink:


The app has a "checklist" of sorts on LSAC. It doesn't always give a straightforward list (it varies from school to school), but it has all the app instructions which will include what you need to and what you can optionally submit with your app. Don't worry too much about filling at the apps, it is very clear when you are filling them out how things are supposed to be.

As for ED, I am not sure. Honestly, I would make a post in the "Chances" or "Choosing a School" subforums (with your numbers/stats, what your career goals are and in what geographic area, what schools you prefer) and ask people where they think you should ED.

TOMaHULK
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby TOMaHULK » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:54 pm

billyez wrote:Be wary of the temptation to let the LSP be your guide through the law school admission process. If I had listened to it wholesale, then I wouldn't be going to a top ten school...apply where you want to go to school. That's all.


Thanks for your advice.

PM me specific please? For possible confidence boost.

TOMaHULK
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby TOMaHULK » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:55 pm

bk1 wrote:
TOMaHULK wrote:Sounds good. So you just go on each school's website and see exactly what they require to apply and make sure it's all included on the file that you have LSAC send? Or is there a checklist send sending a file through LSAC for each school?

Obvioulsy I wouldn't know any of this since I've let to apply to any schools.

Also, I think you have given me advice on ED'ing in another one of my post. Here's another question, since you seem very knowledgeable:


When using the LS Predicator website (which I've been told uses the number from the numbers site), should you bother applying to what: weak consider/consider/strong consider? I mean where does one generally draw the line? At consider? Also, which would be good from a ED (i.e. only when it says consider at minimum)?


Sorry for all the questions, but greatly appreciated. :wink:


The app has a "checklist" of sorts on LSAC. It doesn't always give a straightforward list (it varies from school to school), but it has all the app instructions which will include what you need to and what you can optionally submit with your app. Don't worry too much about filling at the apps, it is very clear when you are filling them out how things are supposed to be.

As for ED, I am not sure. Honestly, I would make a post in the "Chances" or "Choosing a School" subforums (with your numbers/stats, what your career goals are and in what geographic area, what schools you prefer) and ask people where they think you should ED.


Thanks so much. Really appreciate the advice. Now, we wait for that score... :roll:

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bk1
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby bk1 » Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:58 pm

TOMaHULK wrote:Thanks for your advice.

PM me specific please? For possible confidence boost.


His profile has it. He's a 3.0/160/URM with good softs who got into UVA.

Despite him being an outlier, I agree with the sentiment that you only get one ED shot so it is often best to aim high. Also that you should apply to reaches because even if it is nigh impossible, it is worth the shot because the app fee is worth the chance no matter how small.

TOMaHULK
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby TOMaHULK » Thu Jun 10, 2010 4:10 pm

bk1 wrote:
TOMaHULK wrote:Thanks for your advice.

PM me specific please? For possible confidence boost.


His profile has it. He's a 3.0/160/URM with good softs who got into UVA.

Despite him being an outlier, I agree with the sentiment that you only get one ED shot so it is often best to aim high. Also that you should apply to reaches because even if it is nigh impossible, it is worth the shot because the app fee is worth the chance no matter how small.


Interesting.

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S de Garmeaux
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby S de Garmeaux » Thu Jun 10, 2010 4:14 pm

If you use the same basic "I want to study law because"..., adcoms will likely see through it. I had a couple different templates that I created and then manipulated to better fit each individual school. My cycle went pretty predictably based on my LSAT/GPA alone, so i can't say how much it mattered.

I'm reviewing cover letters and resumes right now for my replacement and my legal assistant gig, and its hilarious how little effort some people put in--and its pretty easy to see through.

TOMaHULK
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby TOMaHULK » Thu Jun 10, 2010 4:19 pm

S de Garmeaux wrote:If you use the same basic "I want to study law because"..., adcoms will likely see through it. I had a couple different templates that I created and then manipulated to better fit each individual school. My cycle went pretty predictably based on my LSAT/GPA alone, so i can't say how much it mattered.

I'm reviewing cover letters and resumes right now for my replacement and my legal assistant gig, and its hilarious how little effort some people put in--and its pretty easy to see through.


LOL, I understand.

I'm starting to wonder how many people copy PS's from the ones posted on here for examples. (srs)

GossipGirl2002
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby GossipGirl2002 » Tue Jun 15, 2010 1:55 am

No take the time to tailor it to each school (srs)

forty-two
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby forty-two » Tue Jun 15, 2010 2:22 am

GossipGirl2002 wrote:No take the time to tailor it to each school (srs)


I think it depends on what you write about. My PS had absolutely nothing to do with law school, so I didn't tailor it to individual schools (I did, however, have a long and a short version). A friend of mine also took this approach and we both out-performed our numbers, so PS tailoring isn't always necessary. You should obviously take the time to tailor your Why X essays though.

Good luck!

Edit: I was just trying to show why essay tailoring isn't always necessary to get a good result.
Last edited by forty-two on Tue Jun 15, 2010 12:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

GossipGirl2002
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby GossipGirl2002 » Tue Jun 15, 2010 2:29 am

forty-two wrote:I think it depends on what you write about.


Yes, very true. Thank you for your comment.

forty-two wrote:My PS had absolutely nothing to do with law school, so I didn't tailor it to individual schools


I'm sorry to hear that. Thank you for sharing.

forty-two wrote:A friend of mine also took this approach and we both out-performed our numbers


Congratulations. Tell your friend I said congrats too.

forty-two wrote:You should obviously take the time to tailor your Why X essays though.


No kidding. Thanks for the advice.

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agentdedalus
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby agentdedalus » Tue Jun 15, 2010 2:44 am

GossipGirl2002 wrote:No take the time to tailor it to each school (srs)


Certainly adcomms don't want to see a generic "School X" paste job in a PS, but there are efficient ways to tailor statements without having to pen vastly different drafts. simply dedicate a paragraph or a few specific sentences that address why the school in question fits in with your goals/what you have addressed in the rest of your PS. it requires some research on your part (but this should already be occurring at this stage, yes?), but it's not overly time consuming to find, then mention courses, professors, or school-specific programs by name, so long as they mesh with the rest of your PS, and the paragraph itself doesn't feel like it's simply plopped in--that is, it matches the tone and flow of the rest of your PS.

GossipGirl2002
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby GossipGirl2002 » Tue Jun 15, 2010 2:49 am

agentdedalus wrote:
GossipGirl2002 wrote:No take the time to tailor it to each school (srs)


Certainly adcomms don't want to see a generic "School X" paste job in a PS, but there are efficient ways to tailor statements without having to pen vastly different drafts. simply dedicate a paragraph or a few specific sentences that address why the school in question fits in with your goals/what you have addressed in the rest of your PS. it requires some research on your part (but this should already be occurring at this stage, yes?), but it's not overly time consuming to find, then mention courses, professors, or school-specific programs by name, so long as they mesh with the rest of your PS, and the paragraph itself doesn't feel like it's simply plopped in--that is, it matches the tone and flow of the rest of your PS.


Yes very true. But if all you are doing is replacing the school name in the PS for each application then youre doing it wrong.

Mirrored
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby Mirrored » Tue Jun 15, 2010 2:59 am

I divided schools into safety good, better, and best.

Applying to 1 safety (t100), 2 good (t50), 3 better (t15), 3 best. (t6).

The safety and good schools are getting a nice standard one with a paragraph explaining specific interests.

The Better schools are getting a custom tailored personal statement.

The Best are getting a custom tailored personal statement and letters of rec from alumni that I know. I have two letters from Stanford grads and two letters from Harvard grads, working on UChicago.

I recommend taking this approach because you are investing time where it is going to have the biggest impact-- especially if you are a reach for some of these schools. If the soft factors are going to be determinate, max them.

For the safety and good, you are basically going for scholarships. If they do not offer you money, you pass on them. The better and best trump any scholarships from lower ranks, if you are admitted, you go to the best you get into, or determine based on your soft factors (cash offered, geographic preference, school affiliation desired).

So, no, if you are preparing now in June like I am, it is ridiculous to only write one personal statement. Applications are in 5 months.

TOMaHULK
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby TOMaHULK » Tue Jun 15, 2010 9:22 am

Mirrored wrote:I divided schools into safety good, better, and best.

Applying to 1 safety (t100), 2 good (t50), 3 better (t15), 3 best. (t6).

The safety and good schools are getting a nice standard one with a paragraph explaining specific interests.

The Better schools are getting a custom tailored personal statement.

The Best are getting a custom tailored personal statement and letters of rec from alumni that I know. I have two letters from Stanford grads and two letters from Harvard grads, working on UChicago.

I recommend taking this approach because you are investing time where it is going to have the biggest impact-- especially if you are a reach for some of these schools. If the soft factors are going to be determinate, max them.

For the safety and good, you are basically going for scholarships. If they do not offer you money, you pass on them. The better and best trump any scholarships from lower ranks, if you are admitted, you go to the best you get into, or determine based on your soft factors (cash offered, geographic preference, school affiliation desired).

So, no, if you are preparing now in June like I am, it is ridiculous to only write one personal statement. Applications are in 5 months.


Interesting. Do you think LOR from alumni really have any more pull than regular LORs? (srs question, no debate attempt)

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Bildungsroman
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby Bildungsroman » Tue Jun 15, 2010 10:06 am

I'm writing a standard PS that will go to my safeties with a little customization depending on the school, while my reaches are each getting a totally unique PS.

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HazelEyes
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby HazelEyes » Tue Jun 15, 2010 10:15 am

I did 1 PS customized mostly to the school I wanted to go to (which was not a reach, but has a excellent health law program), and then switched it a little for each additional school.

Oddly enough, though I specifically tailored it to the school I wanted, they didn't even give me the time of day, while some of my reaches did.

You just never know.

JOThompson
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby JOThompson » Tue Jun 15, 2010 10:22 am

I reworked each paragraph of my essay for Baylor. Otherwise, I only added one unique paragraph for each school.

TOMaHULK
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Re: So, are most of you writing 1 PS and changing school names?

Postby TOMaHULK » Tue Jun 15, 2010 10:24 am

Do you save these PS's on LSAC.org, or do you save on your computer and then upload during the application process.

Sorry, no experience with PS's yet... :cry:




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