Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

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MagnumLifeStyle
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Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby MagnumLifeStyle » Mon May 17, 2010 9:06 pm

Hey Guys!

I've done my research and know that admissions to Harvard is very numbers-driven.
I just finished my 3rd year and my LSAC GPA is 3.87. I plan to apply in early October.

The median GPA of successful Harvard applicants is 3.88, according to the ABA Report.

If I take my summer classes, I can raise my GPA up to 3.89.

Would such a trivial difference (being below or above the median GPA by .1) be a deciding factor, considering how Harvard is so numbers-driven?

I've been studying the LSAT for quite a while, and I'm scoring between 170-174 on PTs now. I think I can raise it a few points by October.

So I'm wondering which option is better: 1) taking summer classes to boost my GPA above their median or 2) spending that time instead on studying LSAT to get 175+.

I'm not posting this to get some sort of reassuarance or brag about my GPA. In fact, it's the opposite, as throughout high school, I was a B- student, and I never really liked kids who bragged about their grades or cried over A-.

I'm genuinely interested in hearing the opinions of those who've already experienced the "cycle" and have knowledge about trivial differences in GPA making a difference in admissions, especially considering the numbers-driven nature of admissions to Harvard. I've worked very hard for the past three years to have a decent shot into getting into the law school of my dreams, and I would really appreciate if I could get some feedback.

Of course, when I make it to the finish line, I'll make sure to pass my knowledge/experience to future TSL-users.

Thanks =)

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acadec
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Re: Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby acadec » Mon May 17, 2010 9:11 pm

I'm a 0L too, but i feel like it's pretty obvious that a 2-3 point increase in LSAT is better than a .02 increase in GPA. I'd definitely do the test prep, assuming the two are mutually exclusive. Good luck!

yeff
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Re: Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby yeff » Mon May 17, 2010 9:18 pm

Being above median would be nice, but I think LSAT prep gives better bang-for-the-buck unless you feel you've exhausted your prep. Since it doesn't sound like that is the case, a few points on the LSAT will be MUCH MUCH better than a few hundredths of gpa.

Dbate
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Re: Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby Dbate » Mon May 17, 2010 9:43 pm

I think it depends upon the school. You should check to see if your career office has statistics on the average GPA of students accepted to Harvard from your school. For example, people from my school typically get into Harvard with about a 3.74, so the standards vary by school. So the average GPA of students accepted to Harvard may be higher the the average GPA needed to be accepted from your school. If that is the case, you should be fine.

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BlueCivic
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Re: Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby BlueCivic » Mon May 17, 2010 9:48 pm

I think its probably overstated how much a school like Harvard cares about above/below median numbers. They have enough people to keep both numbers high and I think the admissions process is more human than is believed.

februaryftw
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Re: Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby februaryftw » Mon May 17, 2010 9:55 pm

BlueCivic wrote:I think its probably overstated how much a school like Harvard cares about above/below median numbers. They have enough people to keep both numbers high and I think the admissions process is more human than is believed.


TITCR.

I don't think Harvard cares to the exact decimal point. You will be in the median cluster. As long as you don't slip below a 3.8, your LSAT score is going to matter a lot more for your chances at Harvard. To be specific, I think one point on your LSAT will affect your admissions chances more than raising your gpa from a 3.87 to 3.89. You are much better off spending the time on LSAT prep.

I'll also be shocked if Harvard's median GPA is not 3.9 or greater for the 2010 incoming class.

MagnumLifeStyle
Posts: 112
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 9:53 pm

Re: Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby MagnumLifeStyle » Mon May 17, 2010 10:07 pm

februaryftw, and all others,
thank you all for your response. I keep forgetting the importance of LSAT (still thinking like a high school senior when GPA mattered much more).
Dbate, I'm surprised that the avg. GPA of successful applicants was 3.74. Was your school an Ivy?

Thanks =).

Dbate
Posts: 51
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 6:48 pm

Re: Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby Dbate » Mon May 17, 2010 10:14 pm

MagnumLifeStyle wrote:februaryftw, and all others,
thank you all for your response. I keep forgetting the importance of LSAT (still thinking like a high school senior when GPA mattered much more).
Dbate, I'm surprised that the avg. GPA of successful applicants was 3.74. Was your school an Ivy?

Thanks =).


Yeah, I go to Yale. But a 3.74 isn't all that great considering one-third of the school has a 3.77 or higher, so Idk what Harvard is doing in their admissions office.

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BlueCivic
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Re: Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby BlueCivic » Mon May 17, 2010 10:25 pm

I'm too lazy to look up the HLS gpa medians in these forums but i think it is significantly lower than 3.88, also.

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BlueCivic
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Re: Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby BlueCivic » Mon May 17, 2010 10:29 pm

BlueCivic wrote:I'm too lazy to look up the HLS gpa medians in these forums but i think it is significantly lower than 3.88, also.


Eh, i retract that. That may be about right.

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$1.99
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Re: Would Being Above/Below the Median GPA Decide Harvard?

Postby $1.99 » Mon May 17, 2010 10:34 pm

it was 3.88 for the class of 2011 i think, now it should be around 3.90




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