## Medians

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corporatelaw87

Posts: 245
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2009 7:26 pm

### Medians

This is something i have always wondered. Obviously schools want to raise their median LSAT and GPA because this is a big determinant of their rank. Hypothetically is their are 5 admitted students all with 170 LSAT and 3.5 GPA, then the Medians would be 170 and 3.5. If there are 5 students 4 of them have a 170 LSAT and 3.5 GPA and one has a 155 and 2.5 their medians are still 170 and 3.5. So when everyone says its all a numbers game, why do softs not come into play more when admitting students. A lot of people are rejected when they are below median in LSAT and GPA, but are they really bringing down the median if they were admitted? If it was average, yes, they would be, but if your not near the middle your not bringing down the median. Another example 5 numbers 1,5,6,6,7. Median is 6, but that 1 has NO impact on the median. If there 4 numbers lie 1,2,7,8 then yes because the 2 is a low number its bringing down the median. But, that's because its near the middle in ordering (2nd number out of 4). I guess this rant is just about why can't school admit diverse (non URM) students with lower number if they'll have no impact on there medians.

p.s. I know some of you will you it brings down there 25th percentile but is that really the important number the schools care about. People apply to schools based on where they are into relation of medians. The 25/75 percentile are there just to show auto rejects/admits (if your above both auto admit, under both auto reject unless URM)

tallboone

Posts: 298
Joined: Thu May 21, 2009 12:27 am

### Re: Medians

BenJ

Posts: 1336
Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 12:58 pm

### Re: Medians

All true. However, schools are still leery of admitting more than a handful of people with very low numbers (relative to the rest of the class) because they also want to matriculate students who will be able to keep up with coursework and be strong students. Harvard, for example, may dip down to the both-numbers-sub-25th range for maybe 5 or 6 non-URMs each year, people with such extraordinary things going for them that Harvard is convinced that they will be successful despite low numbers. But if Harvard took every sub-25th applicant who was a military veteran and Peace Corps volunteer, they'd probably end up taking on a lot of students who just weren't up to the workload or couldn't keep up with their classmates. So Harvard is very, very picky among the 169/3.74s who apply and only takes the tiny number who can seriously demonstrate that they will outperform their numbers substantially.

Same goes for medians, of course. 171/3.81s do get into Harvard. Just not very many of them.

corporatelaw87

Posts: 245
Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2009 7:26 pm

### Re: Medians

BenJ wrote:All true. However, schools are still leery of admitting more than a handful of people with very low numbers (relative to the rest of the class) because they also want to matriculate students who will be able to keep up with coursework and be strong students. Harvard, for example, may dip down to the both-numbers-sub-25th range for maybe 5 or 6 non-URMs each year, people with such extraordinary things going for them that Harvard is convinced that they will be successful despite low numbers. But if Harvard took every sub-25th applicant who was a military veteran and Peace Corps volunteer, they'd probably end up taking on a lot of students who just weren't up to the workload or couldn't keep up with their classmates. So Harvard is very, very picky among the 169/3.74s who apply and only takes the tiny number who can seriously demonstrate that they will outperform their numbers substantially.

Same goes for medians, of course. 171/3.81s do get into Harvard. Just not very many of them.

You make a good point, but Harvard is not the best example because everyone there is of very high quality. Lets take Brooklyn for example, if your below median on both there, but have a good soft then why not accept them. Brooklyn while have good medians certainly aren't extraordinary in there students where the work is super hard. And, while law schools obvs do this becasue its the only thing they have to base academic potential on, I'd be leery of saying just because your below medians doesn't mean you'd have a hard time doing the work. For one, GPA and the LSAT show nothing towards how you do in law schools I mean at least from what my 1L friends tell me your not reading case law trying to weaken arguments or put variables in order. Second you could just be lazy. I know an engineer ho had a 2.5 and an LSAT in the 150s, but hes one of the smartest kids I know. Not smart in the sense like he knows trivia but smart like he understands concepts, which is what law is, concepts of situations. GPA is low because well he's and engineer at a top school, give him a break. As far as LSAT well, he probably didn't TOO much time in and maybe logiv isnt his thing, but Logic is not law school, logic is of subdivision of Philosophy and math. So all in all, can he do the work at a T14? Honestly I really do think he'd perform well from the schools in the 10-14 range. Is he below median, yes. Will he go to a T1, sadly prob not.

This leads me to another question of whether schools should require you to disclose if you took a prep course. Or, how much prep you did. Doing well on the LSAT doesn't really mean your smart or going to do well in law school its all prep. I also know someone who starting prepping Freshman year of college. His name is George we call him parageorge (as in paranoid) For some reason he started prepping very early. He wasn't the brightest kid, did ok studied moderately for the rest of his classes. His diag was 150 something (I can't recall exactly as it was 5 year ago) but he took it junior year and scored a 174. Now if I were a school I would rather take a kid who scored a 170 with 4 months of studying then someone who scored a 174 with 3 years of studying. Someone who can score a 170 with that little prep time to me is smarter than someone who takes three years to get a 174. But, do schools know that he took 3 years to study? Of course not, so he gets admitted over the kid with the 170 even though the kid with the 170 is smarter (maybe even more adept for law). Sorry for the rant. It's just with all these rankings and schools pretty much taking people for the sole reason to boost their rankings it mkaes me wonder if US News should just disconinue the rankings and let students and schools fend for themselves.

Also for the record if you think I am bitter or something, I will be attending a T2 next year, which I am happy about. Obviously its not great, but it's not like I am at a T4.