Rigorous Coursework for undergrad transfer, then coast 4.0?

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eachdaythewiser
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Rigorous Coursework for undergrad transfer, then coast 4.0?

Postby eachdaythewiser » Sun May 13, 2012 12:14 am

Background listing at end of post.

So I have done a few searches before posting and wanted to ask about my situation. A student interested in transferring from a two-year institution to a much better University or Liberal Arts College has it in their best interest to show a rigorous course-load for a major leap of a transfer. This seems to be the consensus in undergrad admissions for transferring, anyway. The interesting concern afterwards comes in wanting to attend a T-14. The way I have it understood; Take up rigorous coursework to transfer to a T-10 LA college or university, and then for junior and senior year concentrate on that GPA (not the courses) and train for the LSAT until your ears bleed.

Am I correct in this assumption?

Lately I've been approached by the prospect of going to grad school before law school to really beef up my logic/reasoning and intensive writing skills. Although I'm not sure if this would be the best choice, it would be great to know how the course-load should be for someone considering law school after grad-school; if the coursework helps getting into grad-school at all, for example.

Random observation: LawSchoolNumbers.com seems like a nice resource, but I worry about how often those who were dinged in the 'sea of green' decided not to report. I'm sure braggers wanna brag, the incentive to report having a dream shattered isn't so high. I mean, maybe that's me. My point is I'm kind of wary about how so much is leaned on for those stats. The idea that my GPA is very significantly more important than my course for junior and senior year rubs me the wrong way. I understand the logic, but it still seems 'too easy' of a solution; "The schools worry about their numbers, so if you get into the sea of green zone for anything but YS, you're in."


Background: 27 y/o with background in IT and volunteering/ethical involvement, no undergrad at all.
I'm starting my undergrad freshman year at my local two-year college (extremely high change of full-ride scholarship, where everyone except the committee itself has gone above and beyond to assume me I'm a shoe-in without promising). I have planned and financially prepared for all possibilities related to school that I could think of, come across, or research into for a few years while I've worked. So far the plan is two-year college, then Amherst or another nice LA college (hopefully without needing to take the SAT, but it seems likely so far) and major in Philosophy and maybe mathematics (seems analytical/logical), and after that stem to a grad school for a Master's and/or Ph.D with a final destination dream goal of HLS.
Last edited by eachdaythewiser on Mon May 14, 2012 6:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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2014
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Re: Rigorous Coursework for undergrad transfer, then coast 4.0?

Postby 2014 » Sun May 13, 2012 12:22 am

Masters programs are not as competitive as you might think, I don't think you should worry a whole lot about academic rigor. Reading this site you will soon see that for HLS or any other top school it is your GPA that matters. Don't risk that by trying to take more difficult courses, take what interests you while assuring you can get as many A's as possible. Same logic goes for transferring, going to a top UG isn't going to help you get into HLS unless you are going to HYP and even then the consensus is that the boost is negligible.

Can't really comment on whether grad school will help prep you for law school, from my experience halfway through a liberal arts masters I can say I really doubt it will.

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eachdaythewiser
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Re: Rigorous Coursework for undergrad transfer, then coast 4.0?

Postby eachdaythewiser » Sun May 13, 2012 12:43 am

The points you've brought up I've read before. My concern for transferring isn't purely based on prestige, but more so on quality of education and the proper faculty/environment to reach my goals. Right now I'm fond of the idea of majoring in Philosophy and transferring to an elite LA college for the smaller classrooms and engaging student body as well as faculty. I know that sounds silly, but I absolutely can't stand being held back quality in classmates as well as faculty. It would be nice to be surrounded by hard-working peers and professors/advisers. It doesn't hurt to know a school has established itself with a healthy statistic of students going off to T-14, as well. I'm sure if I went to a state flagship uni and destroyed the LSAT while holding a high GPA, it's all the same, but in my eyes this makes a difference.

A lot of this is my personal philosophy, but I wouldn't be here expressing as much if I didn't feel the points of view on TLS were worthwhile to engage with. You guys make very compelling arguments and I'm all ears.

Bgibbs
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Re: Rigorous Coursework for undergrad transfer, then coast 4.0?

Postby Bgibbs » Sun May 13, 2012 1:17 am

You're already 27, why do you want to do a Masters program after 4 years of undergrad? If your goal is to go to law school, and since you're on TLS I'd say that's a given, then there is no reason to go that path; you'll just be wasting time. No matter what job you get out of law school (assuming, and this is not a given, that you get one at all) those 2 years are costing you a lot more than just their ridiculously overpriced tuitions.

There's also no reason to go to a better undergrad if it's going to result in more debt. Especially as a philosophy major, because it's not as if you're going to be hired to some think-tank to contemplate philosophy all day after undergrad. Your career options are going to be limited and law school is potentially a great option at that point, but taking out unnecessary debt to pursue your ideal of higher education (which doesn't exist, btw, and plus you can find any book you're going to read in the library and have just as meaningful discussions of those works in online forums) is ridiculous if it means being tens of thousands more in debt with the crazy prices of law school staring you in the face.

You really want to go to Harvard? Kill it at the 2 year institution and transfer to wherever you can study the cheapest. Take a diagnostic LSAT early in your junior year, figure out what you need to do to get to the upper 170s by that June (while continuing to get a great GPA), retake in October if necessary, and then once you have achieved your dreams and have a 4.0 and a 180 on the LSAT, go to Yale.

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eachdaythewiser
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Re: Rigorous Coursework for undergrad transfer, then coast 4.0?

Postby eachdaythewiser » Sun May 13, 2012 1:38 am

Bgibbs wrote:There's also no reason to go to a better undergrad if it's going to result in more debt.


Many chances to earn scholarships, even to the pricey elites. I'm not going to turn down those possibilities. Scholarships are a great product of killing it at the two-year institution. In all fairness; i'm also financially capable to afford the time in another state. At worst I might get a part-time job at a computer store doing repairs (done it before) just to pay rent if things got tight. I'm not concerned about undergrad debt. I plan to earn my place if I transfer, safety nets aside.

Bgibbs wrote:Take a diagnostic LSAT early in your junior year, figure out what you need to do to get to the upper 170s by that June (while continuing to get a great GPA), retake in October if necessary


I had planned to spend the third summer eating, sleeping, and breathing old LSAT exams with some of the bibles to boot until my eyes fell out. Probably overkill, but no harm in giving it every absolute bit you can to get closer to that 180.

Bgibbs wrote:You really want to go to Harvard? ... go to Yale.


I'm not sure if this was intentional or not, but I definitely laughed. An H admit recently told me he chose H and didn't apply to Yale (assuming he had the chance as he said) because at H there was a better chance to network. I found that pretty interesting.

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1776
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Re: Rigorous Coursework for undergrad transfer, then coast 4.0?

Postby 1776 » Mon May 14, 2012 1:57 pm

I went to a Highly ranked UG, and it wasn't that much better than a state school I took classes at. There was about 40 spots between the two in the rankings. The kids were smarter at my UG, but a lot of them were pricks. The Professors taught the classes vs TAs at the state school, but ilthe education wasn't worth the difference in price.
Your writing style is a bit odd.

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eachdaythewiser
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Re: Rigorous Coursework for undergrad transfer, then coast 4.0?

Postby eachdaythewiser » Mon May 14, 2012 2:11 pm

1776 wrote:Your writing style is a bit odd.


hahaha! Reading that made my week. What part/s really stood out?




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