Question about staying another year to raise GPA

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biomedhawk
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Question about staying another year to raise GPA

Postby biomedhawk » Mon Nov 14, 2011 3:26 am

I am an engineering student with a 3.0x gpa. It is the first semester of my junior year. Over the summer I decided I wanted to attend law school Would it be sensible to do another year in undergrad if I decided to add a second major (History) for the purpose:

- reducing the number of classes I would need to take per semester from 5 to 4 (to decrease workload and increase gpa),
- adding an extra year to raise my gpa with easier classes (my GPA in non-engineering courses is 4.0) [I will not drop engineering because I refuse to go into the world without a decent back-up plan]
- working on a skill set most engineers do not have (writing, text analysis)?

I ran the numbers and reasonably speaking I could improve my gpa to 3.4x. If I stay on track and graduate next year with just engineering I'm estimating I will have a 3.1x.

Any thoughts? Do admissions look down on 5 year plans? Is the extra year worth it? Note: I have had sizeable scholarships and am in very little debt to this point.

Thanks!

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FryBreadPower
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Re: Question about staying another year to raise GPA

Postby FryBreadPower » Mon Nov 14, 2011 3:29 am

Doesn't sound like a bad plan at all. I don't think they look negatively at 5 year plans, especially if the 5 years were spent with engineering and history.

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SarahKerrigan
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Re: Question about staying another year to raise GPA

Postby SarahKerrigan » Mon Nov 14, 2011 3:32 am

How much money will this extra year end up costing you? for me personally i think that getting a year work experience and focusing on the LSAT sounds like a much better idea than spending another year in undergrad.

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Sauer Grapes
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Re: Question about staying another year to raise GPA

Postby Sauer Grapes » Mon Nov 14, 2011 3:36 am

Unless you get your GPA up A LOT higher, it really won't matter that much and you'll be looking at splitter schools anyway. Put your time into nailing the LSAT instead. It'll be a lot cheaper.

Really, the highest you could possibly get your GPA is like a 3.6, and that is only if you get a 4.0 in the rest of your classes. (assuming you have a 3.0 for 2/5 of your credits and a 4.0 for 3/5 of them)

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FryBreadPower
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Re: Question about staying another year to raise GPA

Postby FryBreadPower » Mon Nov 14, 2011 3:43 am

Sauer Grapes wrote:Unless you get your GPA up A LOT higher, it really won't matter that much and you'll be looking at splitter schools anyway. Put your time into nailing the LSAT instead. It'll be a lot cheaper.

Really, the highest you could possibly get your GPA is like a 3.6, and that is only if you get a 4.0 in the rest of your classes. (assuming you have a 3.0 for 2/5 of your credits and a 4.0 for 3/5 of them)


Still, there is an enormous difference between a 3.1x splitter and a 3.6x splitter. No one anywhere on this forum could argue that 1 yr WE is worth 0.5 GPA points.

Real question is if you can pull the 4.0 off the rest of the way.

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Sauer Grapes
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Re: Question about staying another year to raise GPA

Postby Sauer Grapes » Mon Nov 14, 2011 3:44 am

FryBreadPower wrote:
Real question is if you can pull the 4.0 off the rest of the way.

That's basically what I was trying to say...

biomedhawk
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Re: Question about staying another year to raise GPA

Postby biomedhawk » Mon Nov 14, 2011 3:58 am

This is the big question. From what I've worked out, mid 3.4's is realistic based on the courses I'd be taking. Is a 3.4 that much bigger than a 3.15?

I'm already working hard on the lsat and have made that priority #1 as to a strong lsat is needed whether I decide to stick around or not. I will look into the status of my schollys to see if I will get my tuition covered still. If that is the case all I'd have to pay is housing which is about ~7k for the year. General living expenses I cover easily with my part time research job.

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FryBreadPower
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Re: Question about staying another year to raise GPA

Postby FryBreadPower » Mon Nov 14, 2011 3:59 am

biomedhawk wrote:This is the big question. From what I've worked out, mid 3.4's is realistic based on the courses I'd be taking. Is a 3.4 that much bigger than a 3.15?

I'm already working hard on the lsat and have made that priority #1 as to a strong lsat is needed whether I decide to stick around or not. I will look into the status of my schollys to see if I will get my tuition covered still. If that is the case all I'd have to pay is housing which is about ~7k for the year. General living expenses I cover easily with my part time research job.


Yes.

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Samara
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Re: Question about staying another year to raise GPA

Postby Samara » Mon Nov 14, 2011 10:11 am

Your GPA is calculated only on classes you take before earning your first bachelor's degree. So, if you earn the engineering degree after your fourth year, your fifth year will have no impact on your LSAC GPA. If you are going to do it, make sure you delay the earning of both degrees until your fifth year.

As for whether it's worth it, I would say that for the T14, the difference between 3.1x and 3.4x is pretty negligible. If you can do the extra year at a very low cost, I suppose it's worth it, but it's much much more valuable to spend that time getting a 172+ on the LSAT.

bmore
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Re: Question about staying another year to raise GPA

Postby bmore » Mon Nov 14, 2011 10:15 am

Study for the LSAT and earn money to pay for Law school.




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