Engineering v. Economics

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Kraiye
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Engineering v. Economics

Postby Kraiye » Fri May 27, 2011 1:39 pm

Hello everyone! This is my first post on the forum, but I have been speculating the law school charts for awhile now. This is going to be a rather thorough post, but I would just like to point out beforehand that my ultimate goal is to attend Duke Law.

I attend a technical college in South Carolina. The reason for this being that I did poorly in high school, attempted college, dropped out, took a break, and now I'm back. I have essentially completed my first academic year with 27 credit hours. My current GPA is a 3.83--not the greatest (especially considering my school's credentials), but there's not much I can do about this other than to pull it up.

My original academic calendar I prescribed for myself was to major in Economics then go to law school. However, lately, I've realized that the major guiding role which persuaded this decision was my Microeconomics class; I have no interest in Macroeconomics. Hanging out on law school discussions and forums has made me pretentious towards majors; I comprehend how your major defines you as a person.

This is where my dilemma comes into play. My original plan was to attend the Moore School of Business (of the University of South Carolina) for a B.S. in Economics, but lately I've been considering the idea of an Engineering degree from Clemson University. This is where my question comes in.

If I were to switch majors, what are my chances of being accepted into Duke with an Engineering degree of a reputable university with a mediocre GPA as opposed to an Economics degree from a less reputable university with an above average GPA (taking into account a relatively satisfactory LSAT)?

Thanks for any and all answers.

Bumi
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Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby Bumi » Fri May 27, 2011 1:44 pm

Kraiye wrote:Hanging out on law school discussions and forums has made me pretentious towards majors

What the hell? Must not be hanging out at TLS. All I hear around here is you should choose the major where you can get the best GPA.

Also, so you have F's on your transcript from the first time you "attempted" college? Because those are going to be in your LSDAS GPA.

Kraiye
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Joined: Fri May 27, 2011 1:23 pm

Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby Kraiye » Fri May 27, 2011 1:51 pm

Bumi wrote:
Kraiye wrote:Hanging out on law school discussions and forums has made me pretentious towards majors

What the hell? Must not be hanging out at TLS. All I hear around here is you should choose the major where you can get the best GPA.

Also, so you have F's on your transcript from the first time you "attempted" college? Because those are going to be in your LSDAS GPA.


So then I should major in Interpretive Basketweaving? It was my understanding that law schools discriminate between difficult majors and jokes.

And indeed, I do have F's from my first round 3 years ago. I have retaken all of classes and replaced the grades with A's, save for one in which I made a B (which is what caused my 3.83). Can you please elaborate on LSDAS?

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ahduth
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Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby ahduth » Fri May 27, 2011 1:55 pm

The LSDAS is the deathstar of law school information reporting.

http://lsac.org/JD/Apply/cas-requesting-transcripts.asp

And yeah, interpretive basketweaving is kosher, even if it sounds lame as hell.

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FantasticMrFox
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Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby FantasticMrFox » Fri May 27, 2011 1:56 pm

Kraiye wrote:
Bumi wrote:
Kraiye wrote:Hanging out on law school discussions and forums has made me pretentious towards majors

What the hell? Must not be hanging out at TLS. All I hear around here is you should choose the major where you can get the best GPA.

Also, so you have F's on your transcript from the first time you "attempted" college? Because those are going to be in your LSDAS GPA.


So then I should major in Interpretive Basketweaving? It was my understanding that law schools discriminate between difficult majors and jokes.

And indeed, I do have F's from my first round 3 years ago. I have retaken all of classes and replaced the grades with A's, save for one in which I made a B (which is what caused my 3.83). Can you please elaborate on LSDAS?

There's a separate GPA calculating body for law school admissions meaning your school transcript GPA may not be the GPA that the law school sees; they have specific process for retaken courses

EDIT: And yeah, don't do engineering :o I'd stick to Econ actually...macroeconomics isn't as boring as some people make it and the math involved with it is much easier than microeconomics (after you go above the intermediate theory levels, that is). Or do majors like American Studies :wink:
Last edited by FantasticMrFox on Fri May 27, 2011 1:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

duckmoney
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Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby duckmoney » Fri May 27, 2011 1:57 pm

Kraiye wrote:
Bumi wrote:
Kraiye wrote:Hanging out on law school discussions and forums has made me pretentious towards majors

What the hell? Must not be hanging out at TLS. All I hear around here is you should choose the major where you can get the best GPA.

Also, so you have F's on your transcript from the first time you "attempted" college? Because those are going to be in your LSDAS GPA.


So then I should major in Interpretive Basketweaving? It was my understanding that law schools discriminate between difficult majors and jokes.

And indeed, I do have F's from my first round 3 years ago. I have retaken all of classes and replaced the grades with A's, save for one in which I made a B (which is what caused my 3.83). Can you please elaborate on LSDAS?


Yes, interpretive basketweaving is the best choice if that's a major you feel confident you can get a 4.0 in. GPA is ALWAYS more important than major and school. A 3.0 Engineering major from Harvard is nowhere near as good a 4.0 in psych from a fourth tier state school. That said, a 3.0 engineering major from Harvard is somewhat better than a 3.0 psych major from fourth tier state, but not enough to overcome a point or two difference on the LSAT.

LSDAS computes ALL of your college grades from ALL colleges you attended. There's lots of information on it on this site.

Kraiye
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri May 27, 2011 1:23 pm

Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby Kraiye » Fri May 27, 2011 2:06 pm

Thanks everyone for the perspective; I was not aware of LSAC and LSDAS. I have 3 F's and a W. Is Duke still achievable even with my entire track record taken into account?

Edit:

I am just curious as to if employers take into account UG majors. I would love to say I'm aiming for BigLaw just as anyone else, but do they not value a challenging major over one that is not? Do they truly not care about UG major, which is what the opinion of this board is as to law school admission is?

duckmoney
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Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby duckmoney » Fri May 27, 2011 4:03 pm

Kraiye wrote:Thanks everyone for the perspective; I was not aware of LSAC and LSDAS. I have 3 F's and a W. Is Duke still achievable even with my entire track record taken into account?

Edit:

I am just curious as to if employers take into account UG majors. I would love to say I'm aiming for BigLaw just as anyone else, but do they not value a challenging major over one that is not? Do they truly not care about UG major, which is what the opinion of this board is as to law school admission is?


Your shot at Duke depends on your final GPA in 2-3 years, as well as your LSAT score. If you make all A's from here out and get a 178, then yes, Duke is in reach. If you end up with a 3.2 / 165, then no, you're not going to Duke.

Employers might look at majors, it depends on the employers. If you have an engineering major, then you might be eligible for patent law, which is very lucrative and not many people qualify for, so that could give you an edge. In general though, economics vs political science vs interpretive basket weaving won't do much to differentiate you.

Employers also look at the strength of your school, but generally only if you go to an Ivy League or similar. They won't care about the difference between USC and Clemson; they probably wouldn't have heard of either if it weren't for football.

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beachbum
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Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby beachbum » Fri May 27, 2011 4:13 pm

Economics and Duke go together like peanut butter and jelly. And a high LSAT is the bread that keeps it all together. Or something like that. Go Devils.

(Pick a major you enjoy, but be aware that engineering may pose a threat to your GPA, which may hurt your chances at Duke. Also, economics is just awesome. But if you can't achieve a top LSAT, then all of this is moot).

Bumi
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Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 4:57 pm

Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby Bumi » Sun May 29, 2011 11:39 am

Kraiye wrote:So then I should major in Interpretive Basketweaving? It was my understanding that law schools discriminate between difficult majors and jokes.

And indeed, I do have F's from my first round 3 years ago. I have retaken all of classes and replaced the grades with A's, save for one in which I made a B (which is what caused my 3.83). Can you please elaborate on LSDAS?


I want to know what law school boards you've been hanging out at.

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ahduth
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Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby ahduth » Sun May 29, 2011 3:25 pm

Bumi wrote:
Kraiye wrote:So then I should major in Interpretive Basketweaving? It was my understanding that law schools discriminate between difficult majors and jokes.

And indeed, I do have F's from my first round 3 years ago. I have retaken all of classes and replaced the grades with A's, save for one in which I made a B (which is what caused my 3.83). Can you please elaborate on LSDAS?


I want to know what law school boards you've been hanging out at.


Same. I want to hang out there - this board sucks balls.

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kapital98
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Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:58 pm

Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby kapital98 » Sun May 29, 2011 3:57 pm

FantasticMrFox wrote:
Kraiye wrote:
Bumi wrote:
Kraiye wrote:Hanging out on law school discussions and forums has made me pretentious towards majors

What the hell? Must not be hanging out at TLS. All I hear around here is you should choose the major where you can get the best GPA.

Also, so you have F's on your transcript from the first time you "attempted" college? Because those are going to be in your LSDAS GPA.


So then I should major in Interpretive Basketweaving? It was my understanding that law schools discriminate between difficult majors and jokes.

And indeed, I do have F's from my first round 3 years ago. I have retaken all of classes and replaced the grades with A's, save for one in which I made a B (which is what caused my 3.83). Can you please elaborate on LSDAS?

There's a separate GPA calculating body for law school admissions meaning your school transcript GPA may not be the GPA that the law school sees; they have specific process for retaken courses

EDIT: And yeah, don't do engineering :o I'd stick to Econ actually...macroeconomics isn't as boring as some people make it and the math involved with it is much easier than microeconomics (after you go above the intermediate theory levels, that is). Or do majors like American Studies :wink:


+1

The math in Macro is very simple compared to Micro. Knowledge of statistics and basic econometrics is enough to understand 95% of modern macro. If you plan on doing anything in Microeconomics you should have, at minimum, a math minor. (I LOVE macroeconomics, especially business cycle and monetary theory, but I would hardly say it defines me.)

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pkrtbx
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Re: Engineering v. Economics

Postby pkrtbx » Mon May 30, 2011 7:49 pm

Kraiye wrote:My original academic calendar I prescribed for myself was to major in Economics then go to law school. However, lately, I've realized that the major guiding role which persuaded this decision was my Microeconomics class; I have no interest in Macroeconomics. Hanging out on law school discussions and forums has made me pretentious towards majors; I comprehend how your major defines you as a person.


2 things I have learned as an Econ major:

-I, too, have absolutely no interest in Macroeconomics. I was able to take a combined & accelerated Micro/Macro course for my intro class and so have only had to take Macro theory. Otherwise I choose all Micro- or Stats-focused classes. You can definitely complete an Econ degree while avoiding Macro as much as possible.

-Econ can be a "soft" social science or a really quantitative discipline, and this is largely a function of your school's program and the classes that you choose. When I entered UG, most of the Econ people I knew were B.A. students/graduates and assured me that I would use only the most basic math skills. I chose to go the B.S. route and have had to take Calc 1-3, Linear Algebra, Econometrics, etc. So if you want something that is quantitative and more "respectable" than underwater basket weaving, you can get that from Econ without taking on the shitstorm of Engineering.




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