British applicant question

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ikm212
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British applicant question

Postby ikm212 » Tue May 17, 2011 12:10 pm

Hello everyone. I am an undergrad student at a British college. I have several questions regarding the way US Law Schools will view my British grades.

1. I am a freshman currently, which means I will be taking my prelims at the end of the year. The prelims do not count for my final graduation grade. I will not have a final graduation grade until I graduate from college. How will this work when I am applying to US law schools as a senior? Will they be looking at the prelim grades, or will my acceptance be conditional on my final grades which will be released after I graduate? Will the law schools even care about my prelim grades (British colleges ignore them for postgrad programs I think)

2. How difficult is it to get into a T-14 without a 1st class degree? Is it possible to get into Harvard, Stanford, et al with a 2:1 and excellent LSAT scores (hypothetical question)?

Thank you!

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bernaldiaz
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Re: British applicant question

Postby bernaldiaz » Tue May 17, 2011 2:31 pm

I think you should explain the system a bit more. The average American doesn't really understand the British grading system, as it is entirely different from ours. I am studying in England next year, so I've learned the language and terms, but I was entirely ignorant of the system up until that point. I would explain the percentages of people who get a 1st or 2,1 as well as some other general information.

For what it's worth, my school is interpreting both 1sts and high 2,1's (65ish or above) on my exams next year as an "A" or 4.0 on my American transcript. So if other schools interpret those scores in the same way that my university does (top 20 private), then I would say you need to crack the high 2,1 range. This is, of course, anecdotal and could be way off base.

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AntipodeanPhil
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Re: British applicant question

Postby AntipodeanPhil » Tue May 17, 2011 9:20 pm

British applicants have asked similar questions many times before on this website.

Have your transcript mailed to LSAC the summer before you apply to LSAC. As an applicant with a foreign degree, LSAC will assign your transcript one of four ratings: superior, above average, average, or below average. It is this rating that law schools will pay the most attention to (after LSAT score, of course). They might pay some attention to specific grades, but not much.

Exactly how LSAC determines the ratings is a mystery, as they don't release any information. Based on previous results, it seems that most or all 1sts are rated 'superior' and most - but not all - 2,1s are rated 'above average.' Obviously, the rating depends entirely on the information listed on your transcript when it is sent to LSAC. My guess is that LSAC will take into account your prelims if the grades are listed on your transcript - although nobody can do more than guess an answer to that question. When US students have grades that their colleges don't count (e.g., for repeated courses), LSAC still takes the grades into account - so long as they are on the transcript.

People with 'above averages' have gotten into the T14 before - even the T6. I don't recall any reports of 'above averages' getting into HYS, though. The standard view here is that, for foreign applicants, LSAT score is by far the most important part of your application - even more important than it is for US applicants. However, HYS get so many amazing LSAT scores that they can be more picky.

CanadianWolf
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Re: British applicant question

Postby CanadianWolf » Tue May 17, 2011 9:26 pm

The most important factor in your law school applications will be your LSAT score. A score of 172 or higher should enable you to get an offer of admission to at least 2 Top 14 (15) law schools assuming that the rest of your application is satisfactory.

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FlanAl
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Re: British applicant question

Postby FlanAl » Tue May 17, 2011 9:27 pm


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FlanAl
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Re: British applicant question

Postby FlanAl » Tue May 17, 2011 9:31 pm

I'm guessing that a good deal of people in the above thread will write a full debrief of their cycle to help out future applicants. as of now I'd say that grades seem to matter more than I would have expected and school prestige may count for something.




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