Fall 2013 Applications?

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
PAMLICO
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Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby PAMLICO » Mon May 07, 2012 11:53 am

I'd like to start working on applications to send out this fall for fall 2013, but I can't find any that are available yet. Is there a date when they are generally released? Should I start on the essay topics from the 2012 application? Thanks

law2015
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby law2015 » Mon May 07, 2012 11:57 am

Applications will be released sometime in late August or in September depending on the school. For now you should just get your LORs and write your personal statement and addendum's if you need. Apps are easy and maybe take 30 minutes to do each one.

MeSoLitigious
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby MeSoLitigious » Tue May 08, 2012 10:47 am

I'm getting my applications together now too. My goal is to have everything complete when the cycle opens. I'm a non-trad so I want to give myself every possible boost.

Now... I really should be doing my Kaplan homework... :lol:

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Ruxin1
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby Ruxin1 » Tue May 08, 2012 10:49 am

MeSoLitigious wrote:I'm getting my applications together now too. My goal is to have everything complete when the cycle opens. I'm a non-trad so I want to give myself every possible boost.

Now... I really should be doing my Kaplan homework... :lol:


Get Powerscore/Manhattan, Kaplan sucks

727813
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby 727813 » Tue May 08, 2012 1:54 pm

Ruxin1 wrote:
MeSoLitigious wrote:I'm getting my applications together now too. My goal is to have everything complete when the cycle opens. I'm a non-trad so I want to give myself every possible boost.

Now... I really should be doing my Kaplan homework... :lol:


Get Powerscore/Manhattan, Kaplan sucks


Not a bandwagon person, but EVERYONE at school says that Kaplan was the worst and that they all ended up using another company and retaking.......Good luck.

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calidancer2
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby calidancer2 » Tue May 08, 2012 2:12 pm

law2015 wrote:Applications will be released sometime in late August or in September depending on the school. For now you should just get your LORs and write your personal statement and addendum's if you need. Apps are easy and maybe take 30 minutes to do each one.



is there a list accessible to help with schools that like/have the option of "Why X" essays? And is there a prompt online somewhere for the personal statement? I want to work on it this summer as well.

how do we know if we need addendums? :shock:

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cutecarmel
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby cutecarmel » Tue May 08, 2012 2:17 pm

Applications are not going to be available until August at the earliest. But while you are waiting:

Have you LORs ready way before August so you don't have to worry about hunting professors down at the last minute.

You Personal Statement should be nearly perfect. No grammatical errors, clear theme, related to law school in some way. If you have a pre-law counselor, have he/she look it over. You should also write a back up personal statement that is 500 words, for those schools who require shorter ones. Figure out now which details you can cut from your personal statement to make it perfect if necessary.

Have your resume updated, error-free, and professional.

Do detailed research into the law schools you want to attend. Come up with a list of clinics, classes, programs, etc. that you are interested in so that you can work these details into your PS.

MeSoLitigious
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby MeSoLitigious » Fri May 18, 2012 10:52 am

727813 wrote:
Ruxin1 wrote:
MeSoLitigious wrote:I'm getting my applications together now too. My goal is to have everything complete when the cycle opens. I'm a non-trad so I want to give myself every possible boost.

Now... I really should be doing my Kaplan homework... :lol:


Get Powerscore/Manhattan, Kaplan sucks


Not a bandwagon person, but EVERYONE at school says that Kaplan was the worst and that they all ended up using another company and retaking.......Good luck.


I am finding that it works for me, apart from the multiple technical glitches that are really irritating. They bumped me up to the more expensive course to compensate me for the stress, but then my previous test score I entered (along with analysis of what I did well/poorly) was somehow deleted. :(

The test is in 24 days, I'm not going to change horses midstream. Plus I took Powerscore before and I dont' really see a qualitative difference between the two courses so far.

MeSoLitigious
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby MeSoLitigious » Fri May 18, 2012 10:53 am

cutecarmel wrote:Applications are not going to be available until August at the earliest. But while you are waiting:

Have you LORs ready way before August so you don't have to worry about hunting professors down at the last minute.

You Personal Statement should be nearly perfect. No grammatical errors, clear theme, related to law school in some way. If you have a pre-law counselor, have he/she look it over. You should also write a back up personal statement that is 500 words, for those schools who require shorter ones. Figure out now which details you can cut from your personal statement to make it perfect if necessary.

Have your resume updated, error-free, and professional.

Do detailed research into the law schools you want to attend. Come up with a list of clinics, classes, programs, etc. that you are interested in so that you can work these details into your PS.


Now THIS is some useful advice! :D

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Br3v
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby Br3v » Fri May 18, 2012 11:31 am

What should a personal statement consist of? Are they all the same (no prompt or prompt?)

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rinkrat19
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby rinkrat19 » Fri May 18, 2012 11:45 am

Br3v wrote:What should a personal statement consist of? Are they all the same (no prompt or prompt?)

No, they're not all the same (different prompts), but the majority are close enough that you'll be able to use the same essay (maybe with minor tweaking).

Read the sample essays in the PS thread.

A PS should:
--be personal (duh), introducing yourself as a person, not a resume. What makes you you?
--NOT be a resume dump
--be relatively formal in writing style (avoid contractions, slang, etc.)
--NOT try to cover too much. You don't have room to talk about more than probably 2 events/situations/etc.
--have a coherent theme
--NOT leave the reader wondering why you're attending law school instead of [X], although it (usually, unless prompted) does not have to explicitly explain 'why law school'
--NOT exceed the length limit (exceeding the limit tells the reader that A. you don't respect their school enough to follow their instructions and B. you're not a good enough writer to edit your essay properly)
--be double-spaced with 1" margins
--draw the reader in immediately with something attention-grabbing and vivid, not a navel-gazing abstract informing the reader of what you are about to talk about for two pages
--NOT start with a quote (SOOOOO overdone, and usually trite)
--NOT try to inform the reader about The Law, because they almost surely know more about it than you do and you will sound like an idiot (although you can certainly talk about a personal experience you have had with the legal/justice systems)
--NOT say you want to be a lawyer because 'you love to argue' or you grew up watching Law & Order

A PS can be about pretty much anything, but some topics are MUCH MUCH harder to pull off and you'd need the writing skills of the time-traveling love child of Shakespeare and Virginia Woolf. Some people can make an essay about sharpening a pencil compelling or an essay about killing an toddler sound reasonable and sane. Most of us are not those people and should stick to safer topics.

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Br3v
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby Br3v » Fri May 18, 2012 11:52 am

Thanks a lot rink. Will reference this in the near future

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rinkrat19
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby rinkrat19 » Fri May 18, 2012 11:55 am

Br3v wrote:Thanks a lot rink. Will reference this in the near future

No prob.

Oh, and 99% of pre-law advisors have no idea what they're talking about. Get someone here on TLS (preferably multiple someones) to edit your PS. The PS thread is incredibly useful. There are a bunch of us who get our jollies by spilling figurative red ink all over people's essays. :P (Personally, I do it to practice my writing skills, which have been sitting around rusting since college.) It can be harsh at times when someone can't take constructive criticism, but we're really, seriously, just trying to help.

MeSoLitigious
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby MeSoLitigious » Fri May 18, 2012 12:14 pm

Oh, god, I am really loathing this PS stuff already! I am way too shy to put mine up here to get ripped to shreds. :oops:

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Yaaaas2013
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby Yaaaas2013 » Fri May 18, 2012 12:42 pm

MeSoLitigious wrote:Oh, god, I am really loathing this PS stuff already! I am way too shy to put mine up here to get ripped to shreds. :oops:


Dont look at in that manner. Its constructive criticism that we'll all need to make sure we put the best work forward.

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Helicio
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby Helicio » Fri May 18, 2012 12:42 pm

Everyone talks about the PS length limit. What is the length limit?!?!

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rinkrat19
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby rinkrat19 » Fri May 18, 2012 12:53 pm

Helicio wrote:Everyone talks about the PS length limit. What is the length limit?!?!
Read the instructions provided by each school. It's usually 2-3 pages.

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Helicio
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby Helicio » Fri May 18, 2012 12:55 pm

rinkrat19 wrote:
Helicio wrote:Everyone talks about the PS length limit. What is the length limit?!?!
Read the instructions provided by each school. It's usually 2-3 pages.


How do we find the instructions when the applications aren't online? Is it on the interwebs?

Thanks!

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rinkrat19
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby rinkrat19 » Fri May 18, 2012 1:00 pm

Helicio wrote:
rinkrat19 wrote:
Helicio wrote:Everyone talks about the PS length limit. What is the length limit?!?!
Read the instructions provided by each school. It's usually 2-3 pages.


How do we find the instructions when the applications aren't online? Is it on the interwebs?

Thanks!
Some schools may have a list of application requirements (or even last year's entire application) still on the school website, even if LSAC doesn't have the live applications yet. (Look for an 'Apply' or 'Admissions' link.) You'll be gambling that the requirements won't change from one year to another, but just to get started on your PS it shouldn't matter much.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby Tiago Splitter » Fri May 18, 2012 1:03 pm

old but helpful

http://www.appreqs.com

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Br3v
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby Br3v » Fri May 18, 2012 1:18 pm

rinkrat19 wrote:
Br3v wrote:Thanks a lot rink. Will reference this in the near future

No prob.

Oh, and 99% of pre-law advisors have no idea what they're talking about. Get someone here on TLS (preferably multiple someones) to edit your PS. The PS thread is incredibly useful. There are a bunch of us who get our jollies by spilling figurative red ink all over people's essays. :P (Personally, I do it to practice my writing skills, which have been sitting around rusting since college.) It can be harsh at times when someone can't take constructive criticism, but we're really, seriously, just trying to help.


Ha no this is awesome. I imagined having to beg ppl to read my PS. Glad to know people are willing to help.

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Helicio
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby Helicio » Fri May 18, 2012 1:50 pm

Another question:

I plan on doing a Diversity Statement in addition to the PS. How long are these, and are they something that a lot of people do? Do applications even ask for them?

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rinkrat19
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby rinkrat19 » Fri May 18, 2012 1:52 pm

Helicio wrote:Another question:

I plan on doing a Diversity Statement in addition to the PS. How long are these, and are they something that a lot of people do? Do applications even ask for them?
A lot of people (at least here on TLS) do them, if they have any diversity to write about. Some apps ask for them, some apps are more vague about extra materials. I've never heard of a school just flat-out refuse to accept them.

A DS is usually around a page max, I think.

thelogicalconstruct
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby thelogicalconstruct » Fri May 18, 2012 2:15 pm

I too am getting started early. Currently working on my personal statement and LOR. Any recommendations for a nontraditional applicant?

[*]I've been 6 years out of school and have a lengthy resume. Any advice on what kind of items admissions is looking for on a resume?
[*]Some schools list resumes as optional? Should I take this opportunity to omit my resume? (My current career is not stellar. I'm just a HR Manager. Though I am taking a sabbatical this summer to study for the LSAT and travel the world after October. Should I include that in there?)
[*]Any suggestions for the addendum? My GPA was average and I went to a state school.
[*]I also made a drastic career change about a year out of school. My major and current career do not match. Where should I explain that?

Thanks.

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rinkrat19
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Re: Fall 2013 Applications?

Postby rinkrat19 » Fri May 18, 2012 2:17 pm

calidancer2 wrote:And is there a prompt online somewhere for the personal statement? I want to work on it this summer as well.

how do we know if we need addendums? :shock:
Different schools have different prompts. The same essay can frequently be used for a lot of them. I repeat, read a bunch of the essays in the sample PS thread.

Some common addenda:
- explain a period of bad grades with a GOOD reason (illness, death in the family, natural disaster. NOT laziness/immaturity)
- explain a large difference between multiple LSAT scores. This is sometimes required.
- disclose criminal acts/misdemeanors. (Some schools want to know everything right down to parking & speeding tickets)
- disclose academic discipline issues in your undergrad record (suspension for bad grades, drinking on campus, etc.)
- make a case that your standardized testing history (bad) does not reflect your performance in school (good).
- explain a break in your academic timeline (time off for whatever reason)

Explaining bad grades/test scores will very rarely help much, but is kind of expected. Disclosing disciplinary/criminal matters is ESSENTIAL, as anything you leave out can come back to bite you when it comes time to apply to the bar.




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