Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

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crazi4law
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Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby crazi4law » Thu Jul 21, 2011 3:48 am

I read an excerpt of the very well-reviewed "How to get into the top law schools" book by Richard Montauk and I noticed that he emphasized the importance of a challenging courseload, and of avoiding vocational majors such as business, while everyone on TLS keeps stressing the overwhelming importance of solely the GPA and LSAT.

So who is right?

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bk1
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby bk1 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 3:52 am

On one hand you have thousands of law students who have been through the process recently and on the other hand you have a single dooder who is trying to make money selling books.

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Hawkeye Pierce
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby Hawkeye Pierce » Thu Jul 21, 2011 3:53 am

bk1 wrote:On one hand you have thousands of law students who have been through the process recently and on the other hand you have a single dooder who is trying to make money selling books.


This.

Just spend some time looking at LSN and I think it will become patently clear that LSAT and GPA are by far the two most important factors.

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KevinP
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby KevinP » Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:25 am

From excerpt:
Based on interviews with dozens of admissions officers

I don't think most, if any, admissions officers will admit that they don't take a holistic approach. I don't blame them considering the nature of rankings.

TLS is correct.

shoeshine
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby shoeshine » Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:31 am

TLS is overwhelmingly correct about this one.

But if you think you can get a 4.0 while majoring in nuclear physics then go right ahead.

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crazi4law
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby crazi4law » Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:39 am

What is the factor(s) that most commonly explains the statistical anomalies (either gpa or lsat or both out of range) who still get accepted to the top law schools?

gators88
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby gators88 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:41 am

skin color

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KingMenes
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby KingMenes » Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:39 am

TLS >>> Mountauk

TLS is the forum of tough love, but the advice on LSAT prep and law school admissions is second to none when supplemented with http://www.lawschoolsnumbers.com. The conventional ignorance is that a LSAT score that gets you into a law school is a "good score". On the other hand, the TLS expectation is 170/T14 or bust. Reach for the stars and touch the sky...

TLS easily....

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Patriot1208
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby Patriot1208 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:00 am

shoeshine wrote:TLS is overwhelmingly correct about this one.

But if you think you can get a 4.0 while majoring in nuclear physics then go right ahead.

If you can do this I don't think law school is your best option

bdubs
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby bdubs » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:10 am

crazi4law wrote:What is the factor(s) that most commonly explains the statistical anomalies (either gpa or lsat or both out of range) who still get accepted to the top law schools?


These people are exactly that, statistical anamolies. There is no "most common" characteristic because it is so uncommon for a non-URM to be accepted outside of the normal range of GPA/LSAT. Schools balance splitters fairly well, so if you're not above one of the medians then your chances are really small.

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bport hopeful
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby bport hopeful » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:12 am

lolz

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aerogear
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby aerogear » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:32 am

shoeshine wrote:TLS is overwhelmingly correct about this one.

But if you think you can get a 4.0 while majoring in nuclear physics then go right ahead.


+1 lmfao.

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Kilpatrick
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby Kilpatrick » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:37 am

Never heard of this book but it sounds hilariously wrong

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bport hopeful
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby bport hopeful » Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:42 am

TLS: The Law of the Land.

die Zauberflote
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby die Zauberflote » Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:31 am

May I ask if you are still in college and, if so, what year?

I just finished with my cycle and I am pleased with the results. In many instances I heeded TLS, but sometimes I strayed from the so-called conventional wisdom.

I read all of TLS, Montauk’s book, and many other books on law school preparation and admissions.

As far as admissions go, I don’t like the articles on TLS, nor do I like 99% of the books that are available. I found only two that invariably gave me solid, insightful advice:

Anna Ivey’s book: http://www.amazon.com/Ivey-Guide-School ... 785&sr=8-5

and

Susan Estrich’s book: http://www.amazon.com/How-Get-Into-Scho ... 885&sr=1-1

Also, I believe large sections are outdated and inaccurate, but I would read Law School Confidential and One L, as they do get you excited about law school.

I would strongly advise against taking the time to read any of the following:

The Law School Admission Game: Play Like an Expert by Ann K. Levine

How to Get Into the Top Law Schools by Richard Montauk

Planet Law School II by Atticus Falcon

The Best Law Schools' Admissions Secrets by Joyce Curll

55 Successful Harvard Law School Application Essays by The Staff of the Harvard Crimson

Learn from my mistakes. Do not buy or read these books. Everything you could do to help yourself and more are in the Ivey and Estrich books.

Also, I would advise against much of the advice on TLS. If it ever conflicts with Ivey or Estrich, the women trump. When someone is admitted to law school, they don’t know what admissions liked about their application and what admissions didn’t…they just know that they are in. Perhaps someone just got a full ride to Harvard: their numbers are probably phenomenal, but what did admissions think about their essay? How were their recommendations? How was their resume? People may assume that their application was similarly phenomenal and treat that person’s advice like scripture. But maybe their application sucked and it was just the numbers. Who knows? TLS advice on LS admissions is necessarily the blind leading the blind.

While it is generally true that GPA outweighs you major, if I could rewind time I would have declared a double major. A hard science and a “traditional” area of the humanities that requires a lot of writing (e.g., English, Philosophy, History). I would also have structured my classes in a way that mirrored the classical liberal arts model. I would have earned a B.A. & B.S., tried to graduate Phi Beta Kappa, AND kept my GPA stellar. I would also have sought out a leadership role and a long-term volunteer position. Not only would these things help your application, but they would (I think) help prepare you for law school, lawyering, and life. Even so, I really enjoy school and being challenged. Some people would rather get an easy 4.0 in fashion or business. But that’s not my attitude and I don’t think that that’s an attitude that admissions officers look for.
Last edited by die Zauberflote on Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:38 pm, edited 3 times in total.

hurldes
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby hurldes » Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:59 am

Some people would rather get an easy 4.0 in fashion or business. But that’s not my attitude and I don’t think that that’s an attitude that admissions officers look for.


I did a "harder" major, got a low gpa, and was automatically shut out of the T14. While law school admissions do value candidates who have challenged themselves by selecting challenging course loads, there comes a point when the candidate's gpa is just too low. If my goal going into undergrad was to get into the best law school possible, I would have majored in humanities.

By the nature of the rankings, law school admissions have to value the numbers over a "holistic approach."

09042014
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby 09042014 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:01 pm

Why would you avoid vocational majors when you are applying to vocational school (law school).

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Patriot1208
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby Patriot1208 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:04 pm

Desert Fox wrote:Why would you avoid vocational majors when you are applying to vocational school (law school).

Also, as far as WE goes, vocational majors are more likely to get you jobs out of the vast majority of schools.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:05 pm

If Montauk were right, then Berkeley would match Northwestern's scholarship offers.
Unfortunately, USNews sets the parameters, not idealistic admissions officers.

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Kilpatrick
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby Kilpatrick » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:05 pm

die Zauberflote wrote: TLS advice on LS admissions is necessarily the blind leading the blind and also thousands of people who have been through the process.



TLS isn't just 0ls. Plenty of people on TLS have gone through admissions cycles and have shared their experience. The conventional wisdom that LSAT>GPA>>>everything else (unless URM) has been shown to be true time and time again.

You can't listen to admissions officers, they're not going to admit that its 99% numbers based. You certainly can't listen to Ann Ivy, she's trying to sell books for christs sakes. If she published the truth no one would buy it because it would just be one page with this graph:

Image

die Zauberflote
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby die Zauberflote » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:07 pm

hurldes wrote:By the nature of the rankings, law school admissions have to value the numbers over a "holistic approach."


Sure. But if you can get the GPA WHILE executing a holistic approach I think that the extra effort is worth it. College grades seem to be more about priorities and self-discipline than about aptitude. I don't think that it's an either/or scenario for most people.

SchopenhauerFTW
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby SchopenhauerFTW » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:09 pm

die Zauberflote wrote:While it is generally true that GPA outweighs you major, if I could rewind time I would have declared a double major. A hard science and a “traditional” area of the humanities that requires a lot of writing (e.g., English, Philosophy, History). I would also have structured my classes in a way that mirrored the classical liberal arts model.

This was my undergrad experience. I had a double major in mathematics and philosophy.

bdubs
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby bdubs » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:09 pm

Kilpatrick wrote:
die Zauberflote wrote: TLS advice on LS admissions is necessarily the blind leading the blind and also thousands of people who have been through the process.



TLS isn't just 0ls. Plenty of people on TLS have gone through admissions cycles and have shared their experience. The conventional wisdom that LSAT>GPA>>>everything else (unless URM) has been shown to be true time and time again.

You can't listen to admissions officers, they're not going to admit that its 99% numbers based. You certainly can't listen to Ann Ivy, she's trying to sell books for christs sakes. If she published the truth no one would buy it because it would just be one page with this graph:


I got the Ivey guide when she was giving it away and it does basically say that 99% of it is numbers, the guide is written for people who are at the margins. Almost everyone has a "reach" school where they are a marginal, but potentially acceptable, candidate. Guide books are meant to help you get into the reach schools, not tell you how to get into a school where you are below both medians.

Graphic is pretty good, but GPA and LSAT should overlap.

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Kilpatrick
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby Kilpatrick » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:12 pm

But who needs to buy a whole book full of advice about the rest of the app? You can find that stuff for free on TLS.

(I didnt make the graphic btw, its old)

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fanmingrui
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Re: Richard Montauk's advice inconsistent with TLS's...?

Postby fanmingrui » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:18 pm

die Zauberflote wrote: Some people would rather get an easy 4.0 in fashion or business. But that’s not my attitude and I don’t think that that’s an attitude that admissions officers look for.

Unless your "attitude" led you to win a Nobel Prize or cure a disease, adcomms aren't looking for an attitude, they're looking for someone to boost their medians. Unless they are once-in-a-cycle phenomenal, softs are just softs. They may help you beat out a candidate with similar numbers but they won't get you in if your numbers aren't already competitive.




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