MA before JD?

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vicky_speaks
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MA before JD?

Postby vicky_speaks » Tue May 31, 2011 10:29 pm

I am graduating in the next two weeks with a B.A. in Legal Studies. My GPA is 3.91 and LSAT 167. I have a newborn so I have to take online classes to stave off my school loans from undergrad.

1) Would an MA help or hinder my application?

2) Which subject would be most advantageous?
Choices are: architecture, marketing/PR, or creative writing

Thanks for your feedback and help!

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fatdouche
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby fatdouche » Tue May 31, 2011 10:30 pm

It help but it wont help much

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NYC Law
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby NYC Law » Tue May 31, 2011 10:33 pm

As in, from an Online College?

Or from an actual University?

If the former it will probably hurt, the latter it just won't help, marginally at best. Take something writing related if you do it though.

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billyez
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby billyez » Tue May 31, 2011 10:35 pm

Not worth it. Law schools care about LSAC GPA and LSAT and the MA really won't factor into it. I would say go straight into law school if that's what you want to do - there's no reason to take on the extra debt of an MA, especially if it's not going to aid your application.

And honestly, with your stats, there's no reason to need pad your credentials if you have a 3.91.

r6_philly
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby r6_philly » Tue May 31, 2011 10:47 pm

If loans are your primary concern, do the 6/9 months deferment then enroll in 2 classes in the spring.

I am finishing off a MPA before law school, and I think it has helped me. However, it's a professional master that will be helpful down the road (helpful now) and I am getting it from the school that I am attending law school in the fall (where I got the WL last year). I don't think there's a one size fits all answer to this, but I think in your case, just do the 2 classes to keep the loans deferred.

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cinephile
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby cinephile » Tue May 31, 2011 10:48 pm

Take whatever subject seems most interesting to you. It won't help for admissions, but if you need to defer loans you might as well enjoy your masters.

flcath
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby flcath » Tue May 31, 2011 10:50 pm

1) Don't pay for it.

2) Use the time to prep for a better LSAT score.

vicky_speaks
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby vicky_speaks » Thu Jun 02, 2011 1:18 am

Just to clarify a few points:
1) I am planning on attending a real university online graduate program, not a Kaplan or DeVry online graduate program
2) I have to go to school during the next two years, I can't just study for the LSAT or not go to school --- the question is if getting a degree for the classes I am taking is better than not getting a degree at all

Thanks again for all the feedback so far

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bgdddymtty
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby bgdddymtty » Thu Jun 02, 2011 1:39 am

r6_philly has the right idea. If your aim is to avoid repayment rather than to get valuable education, you'd be far better off obtaining a forbearance or enrolling in income-based repayment. Don't put yourself further into debt for something that doesn't sound like it will be of much value to you.

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dr123
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby dr123 » Thu Jun 02, 2011 1:44 am

Americorps/TFA/Peace Corps/JVC

All have loan forbearance, much better choice than obtaining an unnecessary degree

flexityflex86
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby flexityflex86 » Thu Jun 02, 2011 2:01 am

cinephile wrote:Take whatever subject seems most interesting to you. It won't help for admissions, but if you need to defer loans you might as well enjoy your masters.

Life is not about doing what you enjoy. It is about doing what gets you a paycheck to survive, and provide while ideally helping others do the same. It's great if you come from a la-dee-da family with working parents and can afford to do what you like, but when you come back down to planet earth like OP is and have financial concerns, your perspective will change cinephile.

flexityflex86
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby flexityflex86 » Thu Jun 02, 2011 2:24 am

Nightrunner wrote:1. Ask yourself if assuming more loans today in order to stave off loans from yesterday (with the long-term goal of assuming more loans tomorrow) is really your best option. Seriously reflect on that.

2. If the answer to #1 is still "yes," then know the following:

a. It will make almost no difference to your law school applications. The negligible impact of an M.A. program is usually in showing growth (e.g., a student underperformed in undergrad, but has completed an M.A. with high honors and published a thesis/destroyed all comps, etc). With a 3.91, there isn't much room to help yourself through more schooling - the only way to help yourself for law school is to score more highly on the LSAT. Whatever M.A. program you're taking, you're taking it for yourself, not for law schools.

b. If I were asked to name the two fields where university prestige matters the most, I would name law and education. I won't delve into the merits (and misconceptions) behind this idea; let's just acknowledge that it exists. With that in mind, make sure you're pursuing an affordable degree with a brick and mortar institution - even if you're taking all your classes online. While there isn't necessarily much difference in the class difficulty, there will be a difference in the way people look upon your accomplishment. The only online-only school I've seen academics take seriously is Capella, and that's more of a begrudging respect. You'd rather have an M.A. from UT-El Paso or Cal State Fullerton or Northern Arizona than from U. Phoenix. Not that there's something wrong with U. Phoenix (I understand that their programs are incredibly similar to the online programs offered by most universities), but there is a perception with which people will look at your resume/CV, and you have to acknowledge that before selecting a school.

your note on online schools could not be more accurate.

thedive
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby thedive » Thu Jun 02, 2011 2:40 am

But the University of Phoenix is prestigious...they have a law school now.

vicky_speaks
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby vicky_speaks » Thu Jun 02, 2011 3:16 am

bgdddymtty wrote:r6_philly has the right idea. If your aim is to avoid repayment rather than to get valuable education, you'd be far better off obtaining a forbearance or enrolling in income-based repayment. Don't put yourself further into debt for something that doesn't sound like it will be of much value to you.


Again, just to clarify, I have to be enrolled in school for economic reasons besides the loan repayment. Deferment is really not an option. The question is whether it is better to get a degree out of the equation or not.

vicky_speaks
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby vicky_speaks » Thu Jun 02, 2011 3:17 am

dr123 wrote:Americorps/TFA/Peace Corps/JVC

All have loan forbearance, much better choice than obtaining an unnecessary degree


With a newborn?! Has anyone even read my question?

8ballistic
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby 8ballistic » Thu Jun 02, 2011 3:24 am

Of those three, I'd say marketing/PR. It might help a bit, schools will promote the % of their matriculating students with advanced degrees.

09042014
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby 09042014 » Thu Jun 02, 2011 3:29 am

vicky_speaks wrote:I am graduating in the next two weeks with a B.A. in Legal Studies. My GPA is 3.91 and LSAT 167. I have a newborn so I have to take online classes to stave off my school loans from undergrad.

1) Would an MA help or hinder my application?

2) Which subject would be most advantageous?
Choices are: architecture, marketing/PR, or creative writing

Thanks for your feedback and help!


Whoever gave you a bachelors degree should be bitchslapped. The go to school to avoid paying for school is the most retarded thing I've ever heard.

flcath
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby flcath » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:22 am

thedive wrote:But the University of Phoenix is prestigious...they have a law school now.

No, the Phoenix Law School is entirely unrelated to the University of Phoenix; it's named that because it's in Phoenix, AZ.

What's odd is that it is one of the 3 for-proft law schools owned by Infilaw (the other two are Charlotte and Florida Coastal); you'd think they'd want to distinguish themselves.

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TTH
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby TTH » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:35 am

vicky_speaks wrote:
dr123 wrote:Americorps/TFA/Peace Corps/JVC

All have loan forbearance, much better choice than obtaining an unnecessary degree


With a newborn?! Has anyone even read my question?


Are your loans federal loans? You can usually get deferments or forebearances on Federal Student Loans for financial hardship. Even most private student loans have some limited deferment options.

Taking on more debt to avoid making payments is a terrible, terrible idea.

Congratulations on the addition to your family, btw.

flcath
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby flcath » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:38 am

TTH wrote:
vicky_speaks wrote:
dr123 wrote:Americorps/TFA/Peace Corps/JVC

All have loan forbearance, much better choice than obtaining an unnecessary degree


With a newborn?! Has anyone even read my question?


Are your loans federal loans? You can usually get deferments or forebearances on Federal Student Loans for financial hardship. Even most private student loans have some limited deferment options.

Taking on more debt to avoid making payments is a terrible, terrible idea.

Congratulations on the addition to your family, btw.

Depends on how much it costs. 6 hours (half-time) gets you a break on your loan payments, and if he's going to, say, FSU, the tuition is like nothing.

We're talking like $400.

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TTH
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby TTH » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:40 am

flcath wrote:Depends on how much it costs. 6 hours (half-time) gets you a break on your loan payments, and if he's going to, say, FSU, the tuition is like nothing.

We're talking like $400.


Well, that's fair, but don't most online programs (even online programs offered through legit universities) charge through the nose?

flcath
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby flcath » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:46 am

TTH wrote:
flcath wrote:Depends on how much it costs. 6 hours (half-time) gets you a break on your loan payments, and if he's going to, say, FSU, the tuition is like nothing.

We're talking like $400.


Well, that's fair, but don't most online programs (even online programs offered through legit universities) charge through the nose?

I am proud to say that I have no idea.

I would hope to god that if OP is really taking classes just to put off loans, he isn't going substantially deeper into debt. I guess we're on the same page; I just assumed that OP isn't retarded.

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NYC Law
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby NYC Law » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:49 am

I just checked and at UF it's about $168 per credit hour for distance learning if you're a FL resident.

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cinephile
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby cinephile » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:52 am

flexityflex86 wrote:
cinephile wrote:Take whatever subject seems most interesting to you. It won't help for admissions, but if you need to defer loans you might as well enjoy your masters.

Life is not about doing what you enjoy. It is about doing what gets you a paycheck to survive, and provide while ideally helping others do the same. It's great if you come from a la-dee-da family with working parents and can afford to do what you like, but when you come back down to planet earth like OP is and have financial concerns, your perspective will change cinephile.


Please don't presume anything about me, my perspective, or my financial concerns--you don't know me.

And perhaps my post wasn't clear. What I meant to say is that a masters degree (especially an online masters) isn't going to help for admissions, so if they only reason to enroll in a program is for the loan money/deferral then pick your favorite. But yes, there are better was to defer. Someone mentioned taking the 6 month deferral then taking minimum credit hours in spring, this sounds like a better option.

vicky_speaks
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Re: MA before JD?

Postby vicky_speaks » Thu Jun 02, 2011 1:28 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
vicky_speaks wrote:I am graduating in the next two weeks with a B.A. in Legal Studies. My GPA is 3.91 and LSAT 167. I have a newborn so I have to take online classes to stave off my school loans from undergrad.

1) Would an MA help or hinder my application?

2) Which subject would be most advantageous?
Choices are: architecture, marketing/PR, or creative writing

Thanks for your feedback and help!


Whoever gave you a bachelors degree should be bitchslapped. The go to school to avoid paying for school is the most retarded thing I've ever heard.


There are other economic factor besides the loans that are keeping me in school.




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