Lackluster UGrad GPA... will a masters make up for it?

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Visirale
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Lackluster UGrad GPA... will a masters make up for it?

Postby Visirale » Thu Mar 18, 2010 7:37 pm

I am determined to go to a top 14 law school. I have the LSAT for it, but my GPA will not be quite up to par. I am on track to have about a 3.5 when I graduate. I was a little disappointed when I started undergrad. I got into some of the schools of my dreams but could not afford to attend. I went to a smaller local school that I could afford and I was depressed/apathetic to start out with. My first 2 years of school I got about a 3.2.

Right after my sophomore year my best friend in the world died. I realized that I was mostly throwing a hissy fit and my future wasn't worth not doing my best at all times. From then on I've had between 3.9 and a 4.0 every semester.

I know I'm intelligent enough to get by at the T14, and now I know I have the drive to make it too. Will my upward grade trend and maybe a letter explaining it be enough? If not, if I go to a 1 year masters program and get a 4.0, will they consider that as my GPA instead of undergrad?

Thank you very much for the time and advice.

starsong
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Re: Lackluster UGrad GPA... will a masters make up for it?

Postby starsong » Thu Mar 18, 2010 7:39 pm

Visirale wrote:I know I'm intelligent enough to get by at the T14, and now I know I have the drive to make it too. Will my upward grade trend and maybe a letter explaining it be enough? If not, if I go to a 1 year masters program and get a 4.0, will they consider that as my GPA instead of undergrad?


No. But write an addendum, with an excellent LSAT you have a great shot at the T14.

Fark-o-vision
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Re: Lackluster UGrad GPA... will a masters make up for it?

Postby Fark-o-vision » Thu Mar 18, 2010 7:41 pm

Not the best person to ask, because I don't have a lot of experience. However, it seems the general consensus is that LSAT is more important than GPA, upward trend can help quite a bit, especially if you're close, but a graduate degree doesn't help your GPA. In fact, it doesn't seem like they really pay much attention to grad school, unless you're doing a program that would tangibly benefit the practice of law (econ or something).

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KMaine
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Re: Lackluster UGrad GPA... will a masters make up for it?

Postby KMaine » Thu Mar 18, 2010 7:42 pm

So, your GPA will be about a 3.5 and you have an excellent LSAT. You have a good chance at at least a couple of T-14s. The Master's will not help too much.

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nealric
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Re: Lackluster UGrad GPA... will a masters make up for it?

Postby nealric » Thu Mar 18, 2010 7:59 pm

The conventional wisdom is that a masters is a soft factor, and will not make up for a lackluster undergraduate GPA. At the same time, low GPA/ High LSAT splitters tend to fare better when there is some distance between their undergraduate degree.

yeff
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Re: Lackluster UGrad GPA... will a masters make up for it?

Postby yeff » Thu Mar 18, 2010 10:31 pm

In terms of admissions, LSAT >>>Undergrad GPA>>>>>>>Grad GPA, other softs, etc

The value placed on LSAT versus GPA varies from school to school, but you can definitely get into T14 schools if your LSAT is high enough.

3.50 isn't even that low. It is above the 25th percentile for 4 of the T14.

What was your LSAT? <169? 169? 170? 171? >171?

Each of these would likely produce different results, though they are functionally pretty much the same.

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Kilpatrick
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Re: Lackluster UGrad GPA... will a masters make up for it?

Postby Kilpatrick » Thu Mar 18, 2010 10:41 pm

If your LSAT is 170+ you've got a good shot at the t-14, don't bother with a masters. If your LSAT is less than 170, even a 169, I would advise a retake if you think you can do better. Either way the masters isn't going to do anything for you.




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