Law school admissions is flawed

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
User avatar
togepi
Posts: 533
Joined: Thu May 10, 2012 10:13 am

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby togepi » Mon May 14, 2012 11:56 pm

I agree with most of what was just said. The engineers that I do know that are heading to law school or are already in law school (including me) liked engineering for what it was, but felt that the things we were good at, and were interested in, didn't line up accordingly in engineering. The thought process is great, but when it comes down to actual work, I'd rather be doing painstakingly boring lawyer work, than painstakingly boring engineering work. And I'd rather be surrounded by douchebags than nerdy virgins.

integralx2
Posts: 37
Joined: Sat Jan 02, 2010 9:58 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby integralx2 » Tue May 15, 2012 12:26 am

I did engineering. EE specifically. Graduated witha 3.73 GPA, did well on LSAT ( enough to get scholarship money so school is almost free !), and landed a great engineering job (traveled the world, and great pay). At end of the day an engineering major can at anytime really go back and have a great paying job, while a liberal arts major can not really. My opinion engineers go into law, solely for patent law because there is NO COMPETITION from any liberal arts major for this position. So its kinda like a gift wrapped present. I totally understand why (science majors) think the law school admissions is flawed. But, life's not suppose to be fair. And cause you didn't study hard enough and are regretting your decision thats life. Just accept it and move on. Side note: I graduated HS with a 2.1 GPA (european family, first generation ,etc...) , and turned it around. Its all about how bad you want it, and effort.

User avatar
elterrible78
Posts: 1108
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2012 3:09 am

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby elterrible78 » Tue May 15, 2012 12:59 am

You mad Bro! If you didn't do a hard major, you didn't earn you're degree bro!


Your difficulty with properly communicating in written English might be just as problematic for adcoms as your 2.7 GPA. Lawyers typically need to write in proper, well crafted English more often than they need to, say, chemically engineer something.

Law schools need to adopt standards for admission. You can't compare a chemical engineering major to a communication major.


They have standards for admission. You just don't like them. And I agree, you can't compare a chemical engineering major to a communication major any more than you can compare a successful engineering student with a successful law student.

Law schools should look at majors


Yeah, you're probably right...why don't you call them up and tell them that you, Barely Literate Champion of Chemical Engineering Majors, have an idea for them.

User avatar
PDaddy
Posts: 2073
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 4:40 am

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby PDaddy » Tue May 15, 2012 1:27 am

splitter13 wrote:I want you to think about this scenario for a minute.

You have a chemical engineering major who is at the top of his major with a 2.7 GPA. Getting a C+ in a class is hard. He took Calc 5, Physics 3, Econometric's, ect.

You have a Communication major who has a 3.7 GPA. If you don't get a B+ in a class you're mentally retarded. He took Communications 101, Interpersonal Communication.

The communication major scores a 165, the engineering major scores a 175. The communication major gets into Cornell. The engineering major would be lucky to break >30.

Explain to me how this makes sense? I would like to hear some non liberal arts majors too.


It would make sense if the engineering major can't write to save his life, comes across in his essays like an arrogant prick who would likely be a gunner and alienate his classmates, while the communications major's writing demonstrates him to be thoughtful, outwardly focussed yet self-aware, humble, motivated, and community-oriented.

It would also make sense if the communications major took difficult courses outside of his major, some of which included additional hard-sciences and mathematics courses, philosophy, etc. and received A's in those courses, while the engineering major was a gut-hunter who took powder-puff liberal arts courses and received average or poor grades in them.

It would make sense if the communications major graduated from a well-regarded university, and a top-rated communications program (yes...they rank those), while the engineering major's undergrad was average and his engineering program was nothing to write home about.

It would further make sense if the communications major had killer work experience and community service, while the engineering student comes from a rich family, belongs to a well-known frat that tends to produce douche-bags.

It would also make sense if the communications major grew up in a single-parent home, worked during high school and continued to do so throughout college while establishing an upward trend in grades, while the engineering major's grades sunk over the course of his four years.

Finally, it would make sense if the communications major received glowing LOR's from instructors who knew him well, while the engineering major 's recos were superficial and uninspiring, at best.

Give me all of that (or even some of that) and I'm taking the communications major every day of the week and twice on Sunday...and I am sleeping like a baby!

User avatar
PDaddy
Posts: 2073
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 4:40 am

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby PDaddy » Tue May 15, 2012 1:44 am

princeR wrote:What do you want us to say? We know it isn't fair and there is literally nothing we can do.


TITCR in addition to mine above. The process is a bit intuitive, and that gives people a chance to develop and excercize their case-building skills. In many ways, when you apply to law school you are building a case. Applicants start with evidence of varying quanities and strengths, but it's about "presentation", "argumentation" and connecting with people...the jury...er...adcom...at a base level. The inherent degree of uncertainty of the process is exactly what makes it perfect, because it gives everyone with any potential a fair shot at a top law school (even if only so small)...almost paradoxical, wouldn't you say?

User avatar
chem
Posts: 867
Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2011 8:14 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby chem » Tue May 15, 2012 9:45 am

PDaddy wrote:
princeR wrote:What do you want us to say? We know it isn't fair and there is literally nothing we can do.


TITCR in addition to mine above. The process is a bit intuitive, and that gives people a chance to develop and excercize their case-building skills. In many ways, when you apply to law school you are building a case. Applicants start with evidence of varying quanities and strengths, but it's about "presentation", "argumentation" and connecting with people...the jury...er...adcom...at a base level. The inherent degree of uncertainty of the process is exactly what makes it perfect, because it gives everyone with any potential a fair shot at a top law school (even if only so small)...almost paradoxical, wouldn't you say?


Thats idiotic. Unless you are applying to HYS and potentially Berk, your case begins with your LSAT and ends with your GPA? Whats in the middle? Just you not having aspies, and they may even waive that (based on what I have seen at some ASWs)

It seems to me that any engineering or sceince major is inherently more dfficult just because of the dependency between classes. In the higher level science or engineering classes, you need a support of three or four other classes to even understand what was going on, and you need to know it pretty damn cold. So as you move through your education, if there wasnt something you understood your freshman year, that deficiency is going to be hurting you until you graduate, making every course harder. Speculatively, I think most science majors view liberal arts and the humanities as a broader base education. If you didnt understand something in political thought, it wont hurt you so bad in philosophy 3000.

User avatar
Samara
Posts: 3245
Joined: Wed May 11, 2011 4:26 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby Samara » Tue May 15, 2012 9:57 am

I agree that engineering courses are generally harder than liberal arts courses. Though, my UG is top ten in engineering and somewhere around 175 for liberal arts, so maybe my view is skewed.

But I think one of the primary reasons for this general relationship is the education that kids receive at the high school level. STEM classes are insanely emphasized, often at the cost of liberal arts classes. Not to mention fine arts classes, which are always the first to get cut. Most high school curricula require 4 years of math and 3 or 4 years of science, but only 3 years of of English and 2 or 3 years of social studies. Additionally, liberal arts requirements are often met largely through unrelated electives, whereas math classes build on each other. High school students can't write anymore and consequently, most college students spend most of their careers trying to learn how to write.

With a high school educational system that actually prepares students for engineering, but not for liberal arts, it should be no surprise that engineering classes are harder.

User avatar
iceicebaby
Posts: 272
Joined: Thu Jun 10, 2010 3:31 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby iceicebaby » Tue May 15, 2012 10:06 am

Image

Are you Madonna posing as Eva Peron... because I promised myself I would not cry for you!

But seriously, don't be surprised you won't get top 30 with that gpa, regardless of your major. Take it from me, I never expected top 30 with my GPA (partied too hard and was super lazy) and certainly didn't expect it when I bombed my LSAT (see aforementioned reasons). Bitching about it isn't going to solve the problem. Get a chip on your shoulder, go to a lower-ranked school with a scholarship and work your ass off... if you're truly "smarter" and harder working than that Comms major, you'll reign supreme in the end. Or just abandon all hope, never go and put your major to good use elsewhere. Employers want good lawyers, not just fancy degrees.

Image

TheProsecutor
Posts: 108
Joined: Mon May 14, 2012 12:50 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby TheProsecutor » Tue May 15, 2012 10:17 am

splitter13 wrote:I want you to think about this scenario for a minute.

You have a chemical engineering major who is at the top of his major with a 2.7 GPA. Getting a C+ in a class is hard. He took Calc 5, Physics 3, Econometric's, ect.

You have a Communication major who has a 3.7 GPA. If you don't get a B+ in a class you're mentally retarded. He took Communications 101, Interpersonal Communication.

The communication major scores a 165, the engineering major scores a 175. The communication major gets into Cornell. The engineering major would be lucky to break >30.

Explain to me how this makes sense? I would like to hear some non liberal arts majors too.


Part of being a lawyer is good judgment. What idiot would go to a school where a 2.7 is at the top of their major and they wanted to go to law school? Also, undergrad is four years. Why stay in a major where you're clearly getting your ass kicked for future opportunities? Either transfer schools or transfer majors.

And it isn't really unfair because you can imagine a scenario where an engineering major has a 3.7 and a 170. That engineering major will ALWAYS get in over a lib arts major with the same scores all else being equal. So the reward is that with similar performance, you'll always get the upper hand on liberal arts majors for law school admissions. The risk is that the material is more difficult and you can end up screwing yourself over.

Taking it one step further, a liberal arts major with a respectable 3.4 will be laughed at in most t14 admissions. An engineering major will still be quite competitive with a reasonably high LSAT.

sjj1409
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 8:23 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby sjj1409 » Tue May 15, 2012 10:59 am

Samara wrote:I agree that engineering courses are generally harder than liberal arts courses. Though, my UG is top ten in engineering and somewhere around 175 for liberal arts, so maybe my view is skewed.

But I think one of the primary reasons for this general relationship is the education that kids receive at the high school level. STEM classes are insanely emphasized, often at the cost of liberal arts classes. Not to mention fine arts classes, which are always the first to get cut. Most high school curricula require 4 years of math and 3 or 4 years of science, but only 3 years of of English and 2 or 3 years of social studies. Additionally, liberal arts requirements are often met largely through unrelated electives, whereas math classes build on each other. High school students can't write anymore and consequently, most college students spend most of their careers trying to learn how to write.

With a high school educational system that actually prepares students for engineering, but not for liberal arts, it should be no surprise that engineering classes are harder.


I'm not sure where you're getting this. I agree that engineering and hard science courses are more difficult for most people, but I can't agree with your high school education analysis. Granted, I have no idea where you're from/where you went to school/what type of school you went to, etc., so this can really only be an issue of personal observations.

The minimum requirements to graduate from public high school in Texas are 4 years of English, 3 years of Social Studies (incl. Econ.), 3 years of Math (can be reduced if Algebra or Geometry were taken in Middle School), 2 years of Science, and misc. PE/Health/Speech to fill in the rest. So 7-5 liberal arts, and the math/science side can go down even lower if you took the math in middle school and decided not to go on to higher levels.

Granted, this could all be meaningless, because, you know, LOL Texas.

User avatar
Samara
Posts: 3245
Joined: Wed May 11, 2011 4:26 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby Samara » Tue May 15, 2012 11:03 am

sjj1409 wrote:
Samara wrote:I agree that engineering courses are generally harder than liberal arts courses. Though, my UG is top ten in engineering and somewhere around 175 for liberal arts, so maybe my view is skewed.

But I think one of the primary reasons for this general relationship is the education that kids receive at the high school level. STEM classes are insanely emphasized, often at the cost of liberal arts classes. Not to mention fine arts classes, which are always the first to get cut. Most high school curricula require 4 years of math and 3 or 4 years of science, but only 3 years of of English and 2 or 3 years of social studies. Additionally, liberal arts requirements are often met largely through unrelated electives, whereas math classes build on each other. High school students can't write anymore and consequently, most college students spend most of their careers trying to learn how to write.

With a high school educational system that actually prepares students for engineering, but not for liberal arts, it should be no surprise that engineering classes are harder.


I'm not sure where you're getting this. I agree that engineering and hard science courses are more difficult for most people, but I can't agree with your high school education analysis. Granted, I have no idea where you're from/where you went to school/what type of school you went to, etc., so this can really only be an issue of personal observations.

The minimum requirements to graduate from public high school in Texas are 4 years of English, 3 years of Social Studies (incl. Econ.), 3 years of Math (can be reduced if Algebra or Geometry were taken in Middle School), 2 years of Science, and misc. PE/Health/Speech to fill in the rest. So 7-5 liberal arts, and the math/science side can go down even lower if you took the math in middle school and decided not to go on to higher levels.

Granted, this could all be meaningless, because, you know, LOL Texas.

Wow, those math standards are low. Most states are emphasizing STEM classes more and more. I suspect that Texas is the exception here, not the norm. And even in the Texas case, are the English classes all progressive, like with math? At my high school, progressive English classes ended after freshman year. It was all electives from there on out.

User avatar
rinkrat19
Posts: 13918
Joined: Sat Sep 25, 2010 5:35 am

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby rinkrat19 » Tue May 15, 2012 11:31 am

Samara wrote:
sjj1409 wrote:
Samara wrote:I agree that engineering courses are generally harder than liberal arts courses. Though, my UG is top ten in engineering and somewhere around 175 for liberal arts, so maybe my view is skewed.

But I think one of the primary reasons for this general relationship is the education that kids receive at the high school level. STEM classes are insanely emphasized, often at the cost of liberal arts classes. Not to mention fine arts classes, which are always the first to get cut. Most high school curricula require 4 years of math and 3 or 4 years of science, but only 3 years of of English and 2 or 3 years of social studies. Additionally, liberal arts requirements are often met largely through unrelated electives, whereas math classes build on each other. High school students can't write anymore and consequently, most college students spend most of their careers trying to learn how to write.

With a high school educational system that actually prepares students for engineering, but not for liberal arts, it should be no surprise that engineering classes are harder.


I'm not sure where you're getting this. I agree that engineering and hard science courses are more difficult for most people, but I can't agree with your high school education analysis. Granted, I have no idea where you're from/where you went to school/what type of school you went to, etc., so this can really only be an issue of personal observations.

The minimum requirements to graduate from public high school in Texas are 4 years of English, 3 years of Social Studies (incl. Econ.), 3 years of Math (can be reduced if Algebra or Geometry were taken in Middle School), 2 years of Science, and misc. PE/Health/Speech to fill in the rest. So 7-5 liberal arts, and the math/science side can go down even lower if you took the math in middle school and decided not to go on to higher levels.

Granted, this could all be meaningless, because, you know, LOL Texas.

Wow, those math standards are low. Most states are emphasizing STEM classes more and more. I suspect that Texas is the exception here, not the norm. And even in the Texas case, are the English classes all progressive, like with math? At my high school, progressive English classes ended after freshman year. It was all electives from there on out.
Oregon requires 3 years each of math, science, and social science. English is the only thing that is required all four years (and most grads are still barely literate, submitting papers in textspeak). In math, high school grads only have to get through Algebra I, which is what I took in 8th grade--and I wasn't even in the most accelerated group. So not only can kids not write coherently, they can't even calculate a 15% tip without an iphone app.

I would support an education overhaul where the kids are separated onto university/professional/vocational paths at at some point, like in Germany. (There's some flexibility to jump between paths, so it's not like one bad test day dooms you to be a janitor.) The way we're doing it, assuring parents that every special snowflake can succeed when clearly they CAN'T, is a disaster. There's also less shame in learning a trade instead of getting a useless college degree.

sjj1409
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 8:23 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby sjj1409 » Tue May 15, 2012 11:42 am

For English it's I-II-III-elective. To be fair, I've just described the minimum of 3 graduation plans Texas has. At the top level, it does even out to 4 English, 4 History, 4 Science, 4 Math, but no one does that except for people planning on attending a public Texas university, where it gives a small scholarship.

Because the minimums are so low, it does allow quite a bit of freedom to the students to choose what they want to work on. I was able to take a ton of math and science, for example. Unfortunately, most of the students on the minimum plan with me weren't playing schedule Jenga to see how many AP courses they could fit in.

And, despite the Texas pride bordering on jingoism instilled into us by mandatory daily recitations of the Texas pledge of allegiance, I kind of hope that it's only this bad in Texas. Education standards for any non-AP class made me sad then, and keep me sad now. I had to drop out of the music track (years of playing instruments, family in music academia) because a conflict forced me to choose between band and AP US History. I chose band at first, and took non-AP US. I went to the registrar and switched over after the first day, when no one in a class of 30 students would (or could?) name the 3 branches of government.

Side note: I just looked up the pledge, and apparently the legislature decided to add "one state under God" to it after I graduated...

sequins
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2012 9:44 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby sequins » Tue May 15, 2012 11:27 pm

And there is no way a 2.7 can ever be top of their major. However hard the curve is in engineering, it's still a curve. That means 20% a's 20% b's etc. And engineering schools still do the whole cum laude Latin honors which at least at my school was by percentiles. That means 20% of the class were getting 3.6+
2.7 means you were round median or lower so don't kid yourself thinking that's top of anything.

User avatar
RedBirds2011
Posts: 623
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:26 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby RedBirds2011 » Tue May 15, 2012 11:32 pm

sequins wrote:And there is no way a 2.7 can ever be top of their major. However hard the curve is in engineering, it's still a curve. That means 20% a's 20% b's etc. And engineering schools still do the whole cum laude Latin honors which at least at my school was by percentiles. That means 20% of the class were getting 3.6+
2.7 means you were round median or lower so don't kid yourself thinking that's top of anything.


But could we say the average engineering major or even below average one is still smarter than the top of the class communications major?

sequins
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2012 9:44 pm

Re: Law school admissions is flawed

Postby sequins » Wed May 16, 2012 12:12 am

I definitely wouldn't say that. I know some "average" engineering majors in the 2.0-3.0 range and they definitely werent that bright. As I said earlier in the thread they were all having trouble getting decent grades in the humanities ge's we had to take. I had one 3.5 engineering friend (white American - no language barrier) struggle to get a b in a linguistics class we took together. I got an a after studying 30 minutes for the final.




Return to “Law School Admissions Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], Yahoo [Bot] and 5 guests