should I take legal writing pass/fail

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
gaucholaw
Posts: 136
Joined: Thu Sep 01, 2011 8:29 pm

should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby gaucholaw » Tue Feb 07, 2012 2:29 am

Hello,
here's the situation... I have a 3.95 gpa with practice lsat's between 170-173 (taking october)

I'm trying to get into Harvard btw

so here's the dilemma: I just got a B on a paper for my legal writing class. Because I haven't gotten less than a 4.0 since fall of freshman year I'm contemplating taking it pass/fail (ive already done this once before). Will Harvard look down on this? Especially since its LEGAL WRITING. I've been trying as hard as I possibly can, but the professor, despite being a nice guy, is VERY nitpicky and in my opinion somewhat arbitrary in how he hands out grades. What's my best option? a B in the class will take me down to around a 3.90.... doesn't sound like much, but it's also the difference between being in the middle 50% of acceptees and being in the top 25%

User avatar
J-e-L-L-o
Posts: 418
Joined: Sun Dec 04, 2011 8:42 am

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby J-e-L-L-o » Tue Feb 07, 2012 2:39 am

I don't know much but this is my take on it:

If it doesn't matter what your major is, the g.p.a trumps all. I doubt one class on your transcript taken as pass/fail (if it is not a requirement for your major) will matter.

Why jeopardize your g.p.a over a class that is not a requirement? Take P/F option.

gaucholaw
Posts: 136
Joined: Thu Sep 01, 2011 8:29 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby gaucholaw » Tue Feb 07, 2012 3:01 am

those were my sentiments.... however, it's just the fact that its a legal writing class... i mean will Harvard take that as a total cop out?

Asleep
Posts: 89
Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 2:29 am

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby Asleep » Tue Feb 07, 2012 3:17 am

P/F it

Curious1
Posts: 964
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2011 7:54 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby Curious1 » Tue Feb 07, 2012 3:24 am

gaucholaw wrote:those were my sentiments.... however, it's just the fact that its a legal writing class... i mean will Harvard take that as a total cop out?


Harvard, specifically, says that it frowns upon classes taken pass/fail. That said, a pass will look better than a B.

User avatar
Bronck
Posts: 2025
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 1:28 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby Bronck » Tue Feb 07, 2012 3:24 am

gaucholaw wrote:those were my sentiments.... however, it's just the fact that its a legal writing class... i mean will Harvard take that as a total cop out?


Lol, they don't give a shit. Pass/fail it.

ringo
Posts: 109
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2009 11:25 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby ringo » Tue Feb 07, 2012 11:22 am

gaucholaw wrote:those were my sentiments.... however, it's just the fact that its a legal writing class... i mean will Harvard take that as a total cop out?


Harvard won't care that you take it P/F because they don't care what your grade is because they have absolutely no respect for a "legal writing" class in undergrad.

gaucholaw
Posts: 136
Joined: Thu Sep 01, 2011 8:29 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby gaucholaw » Tue Feb 07, 2012 3:11 pm

btw, I'm only taking 2 other classes this quarter. Additionally, i called their admissions office today and they said "we have a very holistic process... we encourage you to challenge yourself"

User avatar
ColtsFan88
Posts: 1432
Joined: Thu Oct 13, 2011 5:05 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby ColtsFan88 » Tue Feb 07, 2012 3:52 pm

gaucholaw wrote:btw, I'm only taking 2 other classes this quarter. Additionally, i called their admissions office today and they said "we have a very holistic process... we encourage you to challenge yourself"


Seriously, P/F is TCR. The most important things for all schools is the numerical value of your LSAT and GPA. If your GPA is higher with P/F, take it P/F.

User avatar
Bronck
Posts: 2025
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 1:28 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby Bronck » Wed Feb 08, 2012 1:34 am

gaucholaw wrote:btw, I'm only taking 2 other classes this quarter. Additionally, i called their admissions office today and they said "we have a very holistic process... we encourage you to challenge yourself"


of course they're going to say that. all schools are ostensibly holistic in their admissions process. arguably, the only ones that genuinely care about softs are Yale and Stanford.

Just p/f it.

User avatar
Yeshia90
Posts: 988
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2011 12:23 am

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby Yeshia90 » Wed Feb 08, 2012 1:36 am

Bronck wrote:
gaucholaw wrote:btw, I'm only taking 2 other classes this quarter. Additionally, i called their admissions office today and they said "we have a very holistic process... we encourage you to challenge yourself"


of course they're going to say that. all schools are ostensibly holistic in their admissions process. arguably, the only ones that genuinely care about softs are Yale and Stanford.

Just p/f it.


And Boalt.

But yeah.

gaucholaw
Posts: 136
Joined: Thu Sep 01, 2011 8:29 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby gaucholaw » Wed Feb 08, 2012 1:44 am

sorry for being redundant.... but you guys are saying that HARVARD is going to look at my transcripts, see that i only took two other classes that quarter (which means i won't qualify for dean's honors) and took LEGAL writing P/F?

Btw, side note.... i was on the fence today... but one thing that is pushing me farther in the direction of taking it p/f is that i heard that the professor has a bone to pick with me, the short of the long of it is that im on the school mock team, and I guess i was about abrasive in correcting him in class on a couple of things... bad move in hindsight, at least i learned this lesson now instead of something more serious down the road oops :shock:

User avatar
Bronck
Posts: 2025
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 1:28 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby Bronck » Wed Feb 08, 2012 1:52 am

gaucholaw wrote:sorry for being redundant.... but you guys are saying that HARVARD is going to look at my transcripts, see that i only took two other classes that quarter (which means i won't qualify for dean's honors) and took LEGAL writing P/F?

Btw, side note.... i was on the fence today... but one thing that is pushing me farther in the direction of taking it p/f is that i heard that the professor has a bone to pick with me, the short of the long of it is that im on the school mock team, and I guess i was about abrasive in correcting him in class on a couple of things... bad move in hindsight, at least i learned this lesson now instead of something more serious down the road oops :shock:


Yes. Harvard is very numbers based (as are almost all law schools). Look at LSN for data to corroborate the claim. And seriously, it's an undergraduate legal writing class. They won't care.

Think of it this way: pass/failing this one course will not be the determining factor for whether or not you get into HLS.

User avatar
kalvano
Posts: 11725
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 2:24 am

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby kalvano » Wed Feb 08, 2012 2:01 am

Why the hell are you subjecting yourself voluntarily to a legal writing course, anyway? Wouldn't scratching your back with salt-dipped razors be more fun?

gaucholaw
Posts: 136
Joined: Thu Sep 01, 2011 8:29 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby gaucholaw » Wed Feb 08, 2012 2:08 am

kalvano wrote:Why the hell are you subjecting yourself voluntarily to a legal writing course, anyway? Wouldn't scratching your back with salt-dipped razors be more fun?


^^^well you know, too much sun where I go to school 8) so I figured id force some library time on myself

well cool.... I guess ill p/f it.... i was just really uncomfortable on the phone today with HLS and they were like "we encourage you to challenge yourself..."

btw, my lsac is 4.06 and Im a non-urm male.... would 173 put me in the clear... cuz i think any goal of higher than that might be pushing my luck

User avatar
Bronck
Posts: 2025
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 1:28 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby Bronck » Wed Feb 08, 2012 2:22 am

Always aim for 180. But yes, a 173 would put you in a very nice position for H with that GPA.

User avatar
Yeshia90
Posts: 988
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2011 12:23 am

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby Yeshia90 » Wed Feb 08, 2012 2:23 am

Bronck wrote:Always aim for 180. But yes, a 173 would put you in a very nice position for H with that GPA.


Man, anyone gunnery enough to ask HLS what they thought of his UG class load belongs there.

User avatar
Bronck
Posts: 2025
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2012 1:28 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby Bronck » Wed Feb 08, 2012 2:24 am

Yeshia90 wrote:
Bronck wrote:Always aim for 180. But yes, a 173 would put you in a very nice position for H with that GPA.


Man, anyone gunnery enough to ask HLS what they thought of his UG class load belongs there.


:lol: :lol: too true, too true.

gaucholaw
Posts: 136
Joined: Thu Sep 01, 2011 8:29 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby gaucholaw » Wed Feb 08, 2012 4:25 am

haha thanks guys,
i appreciate the reassurances!
of course its too early for me to make any predictions as ive only taken pt classes and not the real thing yet... I'll stay optimistic though!

User avatar
sunynp
Posts: 1899
Joined: Tue May 24, 2011 2:06 pm

Re: should I take legal writing pass/fail

Postby sunynp » Wed Feb 08, 2012 9:17 am

Yeshia90 wrote:
Bronck wrote:Always aim for 180. But yes, a 173 would put you in a very nice position for H with that GPA.


Man, anyone gunnery enough to ask HLS what they thought of his UG class load belongs there.


Haha. Not just that, but s/he keeps arguing about it.

OP: You need to learn. Admissions offices might actually believe what they tell you on the phone, but the reality is (except for the above mentioned schools) they look at numbers only. This same advice applies to employment statistics, but I don't think that career services offices even believe those to be accurate (not referring to Harvard here) Bottom line, question the official information from schools.




Return to “Law School Admissions Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests