Some preliminary questions from someone new to the site...

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aiminghighin2012
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:01 am

Some preliminary questions from someone new to the site...

Postby aiminghighin2012 » Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:26 am

Hello all! I am an undergrad senior-to-be and I have been following this site for about a year now, but spring break has me bored at home and I thought what better time than now to ask a few big questions about the law school admissions process.
Sorry if this is misplaced or if these questions have already been asked 1000 times...

To preface, a few things about myself...I'm a third-year (senior by credits) who will be graduating either May 2011 (or possibly December 2010 if I overload myself next fall) from a top-25 (top 3 public) university. I am planning on taking the LSAT in December, as I am about 99 percent certain that I want to take at least one year off before starting law school.

A few questions I have had:
1. UG school. As I said before, I am a student at a top public college, certainly no Ivy but a step up from many less selective schools. To what extent would my undergrad institution help/hinder my chances at a top law school, does the school one attends undergrad have any effect in the eyes of admissions officers, and if so, is a school like mine ranked highly enough to benefit me as an applicant? I should graduate somewhere in the realm on 3.6, with a slight upward trend in grades since I have really excelled since I have finished my distribution requirements and focused on courses within my majors.

2. Making good use of my year off. Since I will likely have time after finishing college to gain some experience, I was wondering how what I end up doing might affect me. My goal is to work for a congressman/senator on a campaign in some fashion, but I am open to just about anything. I am concerned that with the economy how it is, that I will not be able to find any meaningful work. If this ends up being the case and I end up working in a job that might not require me to utilize any of the academic skills I have gained as an UG, will I be hurting myself as an applicant or merely stay the same?

3. LSAT prep course. Through an honorary organization I am in, I was lucky enough to win a full Kaplan class scholarship and I plan on taking their "LSAT Extreme" course this fall to prepare me for the test in December. Have any of you taken this class, and can I expect a significant jump in score as a result of it?

One more thing, about reading various law school profiles: when schools list their 25/75 ranges for GPA and test scores, are those for all applicants or only accepted students?

I haven't really started thinking about where I want to go to law school, but I have been very impressed with what I know about the UC schools, Berkeley has always been a dream of mine and though I will probably be on the lower end of the type of student they accept, that would definitely be something I couldn't turn down if offered.

Thanks for all your help, I look forward to actively participating in TLS over the next few years!

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Dany
Posts: 11580
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2009 3:00 pm

Re: Some preliminary questions from someone new to the site...

Postby Dany » Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:31 am

That's kind of a lot of questions; it might be helpful to use the "Search Forum" feature at the top left of the page. I don't say that to blow off your questions; rather, you can find a TON of information that way (as opposed to the 1 or 2 posts you'll get in response to this thread.) Good luck!

aiminghighin2012
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:01 am

Re: Some preliminary questions from someone new to the site...

Postby aiminghighin2012 » Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:36 am

Will do, thanks!

Renzo
Posts: 4265
Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2008 3:23 am

Re: Some preliminary questions from someone new to the site...

Postby Renzo » Wed Mar 03, 2010 12:46 am

You'll be well served by the search, because there's a goldmine of info on the stuff your asking, but briefly: Undergrad reputation is of minimal consequence. A super-high GPA from your local community college will do more for you than a lackluster GPA from a school everyone knows. As for your year off, don't worry about necessarily doing something related to law school. The best thing you can do for yourself is to do something interesting that will give you a story to tell.

hsprophet
Posts: 161
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2009 10:42 am

Re: Some preliminary questions from someone new to the site...

Postby hsprophet » Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:34 am

The score/gpa ranges schools report are for the actual attending students of the entering class.

I would take the LSAT before December just in case you don't take a year off. Plans can change, and you don't want to get yourself in a bind. Taking it in December is the latest you want to take it to enter law school the next fall.

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Cupidity
Posts: 2214
Joined: Sun Jun 07, 2009 10:21 pm

Re: Some preliminary questions from someone new to the site...

Postby Cupidity » Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:37 am

UG Rank/Quality does not matter at all. It's something all the students who are already 100k in debt are sad to learn. 3.6 from UF is a 3.6 from Harvard is a 3.6 from Bumfuck Community College.

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Cupidity
Posts: 2214
Joined: Sun Jun 07, 2009 10:21 pm

Re: Some preliminary questions from someone new to the site...

Postby Cupidity » Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:40 am

As for prep, take the Kaplan course because its free, but after that you can prep on your own. Diagnostics! Diagnostics! Diagnostics! Do like 30 of them.

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Some preliminary questions from someone new to the site...

Postby 09042014 » Wed Mar 03, 2010 10:45 am

aiminghighin2012 wrote:Hello all! I am an undergrad senior-to-be and I have been following this site for about a year now, but spring break has me bored at home and I thought what better time than now to ask a few big questions about the law school admissions process.
Sorry if this is misplaced or if these questions have already been asked 1000 times...

To preface, a few things about myself...I'm a third-year (senior by credits) who will be graduating either May 2011 (or possibly December 2010 if I overload myself next fall) from a top-25 (top 3 public) university. I am planning on taking the LSAT in December, as I am about 99 percent certain that I want to take at least one year off before starting law school.

A few questions I have had:
1. UG school. As I said before, I am a student at a top public college, certainly no Ivy but a step up from many less selective schools. To what extent would my undergrad institution help/hinder my chances at a top law school, does the school one attends undergrad have any effect in the eyes of admissions officers, and if so, is a school like mine ranked highly enough to benefit me as an applicant? I should graduate somewhere in the realm on 3.6, with a slight upward trend in grades since I have really excelled since I have finished my distribution requirements and focused on courses within my majors.

2. Making good use of my year off. Since I will likely have time after finishing college to gain some experience, I was wondering how what I end up doing might affect me. My goal is to work for a congressman/senator on a campaign in some fashion, but I am open to just about anything. I am concerned that with the economy how it is, that I will not be able to find any meaningful work. If this ends up being the case and I end up working in a job that might not require me to utilize any of the academic skills I have gained as an UG, will I be hurting myself as an applicant or merely stay the same?

3. LSAT prep course. Through an honorary organization I am in, I was lucky enough to win a full Kaplan class scholarship and I plan on taking their "LSAT Extreme" course this fall to prepare me for the test in December. Have any of you taken this class, and can I expect a significant jump in score as a result of it?

One more thing, about reading various law school profiles: when schools list their 25/75 ranges for GPA and test scores, are those for all applicants or only accepted students?

I haven't really started thinking about where I want to go to law school, but I have been very impressed with what I know about the UC schools, Berkeley has always been a dream of mine and though I will probably be on the lower end of the type of student they accept, that would definitely be something I couldn't turn down if offered.

Thanks for all your help, I look forward to actively participating in TLS over the next few years!


1) Won't help, but won't hurt.

2) Try to find something interesting, but it doesn't really matter. It would be more of a lost opportunity than a negative.

3) No clue.

4)Those are matriculated students, students who end up attending. More important than the 25/75 are the medians. Ideally you want to be above the LSAT and GPA median, but you pretty much need to be above or at one of them.

Marisa5252
Posts: 91
Joined: Sat Jan 09, 2010 10:14 am

Re: Some preliminary questions from someone new to the site...

Postby Marisa5252 » Wed Mar 03, 2010 5:59 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
aiminghighin2012 wrote:Hello all! I am an undergrad senior-to-be and I have been following this site for about a year now, but spring break has me bored at home and I thought what better time than now to ask a few big questions about the law school admissions process.
Sorry if this is misplaced or if these questions have already been asked 1000 times...

To preface, a few things about myself...I'm a third-year (senior by credits) who will be graduating either May 2011 (or possibly December 2010 if I overload myself next fall) from a top-25 (top 3 public) university. I am planning on taking the LSAT in December, as I am about 99 percent certain that I want to take at least one year off before starting law school.

A few questions I have had:
1. UG school. As I said before, I am a student at a top public college, certainly no Ivy but a step up from many less selective schools. To what extent would my undergrad institution help/hinder my chances at a top law school, does the school one attends undergrad have any effect in the eyes of admissions officers, and if so, is a school like mine ranked highly enough to benefit me as an applicant? I should graduate somewhere in the realm on 3.6, with a slight upward trend in grades since I have really excelled since I have finished my distribution requirements and focused on courses within my majors.

2. Making good use of my year off. Since I will likely have time after finishing college to gain some experience, I was wondering how what I end up doing might affect me. My goal is to work for a congressman/senator on a campaign in some fashion, but I am open to just about anything. I am concerned that with the economy how it is, that I will not be able to find any meaningful work. If this ends up being the case and I end up working in a job that might not require me to utilize any of the academic skills I have gained as an UG, will I be hurting myself as an applicant or merely stay the same?

3. LSAT prep course. Through an honorary organization I am in, I was lucky enough to win a full Kaplan class scholarship and I plan on taking their "LSAT Extreme" course this fall to prepare me for the test in December. Have any of you taken this class, and can I expect a significant jump in score as a result of it?

One more thing, about reading various law school profiles: when schools list their 25/75 ranges for GPA and test scores, are those for all applicants or only accepted students?

I haven't really started thinking about where I want to go to law school, but I have been very impressed with what I know about the UC schools, Berkeley has always been a dream of mine and though I will probably be on the lower end of the type of student they accept, that would definitely be something I couldn't turn down if offered.

Thanks for all your help, I look forward to actively participating in TLS over the next few years!


1) Won't help, but won't hurt.

2) Try to find something interesting, but it doesn't really matter. It would be more of a lost opportunity than a negative.

3) No clue.

4)Those are matriculated students, students who end up attending. More important than the 25/75 are the medians. Ideally you want to be above the LSAT and GPA median, but you pretty much need to be above or at one of them.


+1 but I'll add for 3) I took the Kaplan LSAT prep (the normal one - not the extreme) and jumped from a 164 before the course to a 173 on test day. What do you have to lose? a few nights of your life when you should be studying anyway. Also, they give you a ton of materials to study with - you won't use them all for the class so you'll have a ton of real LSATs leftover to study with. You'd have to spend money on these otherwise.




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