Score addendum necessary?

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yong1ekim
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Score addendum necessary?

Postby yong1ekim » Thu Sep 27, 2012 10:45 am

If I received a 162 on my 1st LSAT and a 169 on my 2nd is it necessary or recommended that I attach a note explaining the 7 point discrepancy?

I did not think it necessary but I read on one of the past threads that PENN wants an addendum if there is > 4-5 pt increase.

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northwood
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby northwood » Thu Sep 27, 2012 11:07 am

contact the schools in question. Some want them, others do not.

yong1ekim
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby yong1ekim » Thu Sep 27, 2012 11:22 am

Great. Thanks!

(some b/g)

I took my 1st test in December 2010 and got a pretty gnarly cold a few days before the exam (took it congested).
I saw the score and freaked out...I was PTing around 170-172. I realized I needed to compensate with my retake score
because there would be schools that averaged. I considered taking it in June but because I was working a lot around that time
I did not want to take a risk and pushed the test date back a few months. I eventually took it again almost a year later in October
2011 and received my 169.

It seems many if not most candidates who write score addendums cite health reasons for their under performance...that being
said, how weak of an excuse is "I was sick" to an adcomm?

WhiskeynCoke
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby WhiskeynCoke » Thu Sep 27, 2012 2:24 pm

"how weak of an excuse is "I was sick" to an adcomm?"

Very weak. Don't write an addendum unless you have a very good (not typical) reason for your underperformance. These would include:

- Death of a family member/friend the day before
- Serious illness/injury (no, not a "cold"... more like broken arm, salmonella, etc..)
- extraordinary event during testing (car crashed through the wall, etc...)

I had the sniffles does not constitute a valid justification for underperformance. Neither is "I was underprepared" or "I choked." By citing it as an excuse in your application the addcom will interpret its inclusion as a belief in its validity, which makes you look very unprofessional.

Long story short... NO ADDENDUM

milanproda
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby milanproda » Thu Sep 27, 2012 2:55 pm

Will writing an addendum hurt your chances? NO IT WON'T. You have a right to feel that it was a legitimate reason for why you performed poorly and you have the right to put that down. No adcomm will actually look negatively upon something like that. If they don't buy it then it won't help you, but it never hurts.

milanproda
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby milanproda » Thu Sep 27, 2012 2:58 pm

And before the trolls get here, I spoke with Penn and they said make sure you write an addendum for more than a 3 point increase.

shntn
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby shntn » Thu Sep 27, 2012 7:06 pm

milanproda wrote:And before the trolls get here, I spoke with Penn and they said make sure you write an addendum for more than a 3 point increase.

Yeah. If it's more than a couple of points, I'd just throw in a quick paragraph as an addendum. I had a 12-point jump, so I definitely did.

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Tiago Splitter
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby Tiago Splitter » Thu Sep 27, 2012 10:16 pm

I really doubt they care.

shntn
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby shntn » Thu Sep 27, 2012 10:23 pm

Tiago Splitter wrote:I really doubt they care.

True. Since they only have to report the highest LSAT, there's no reason for them to care. But some still request it nonetheless.

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dietcoke0
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby dietcoke0 » Sat Sep 29, 2012 5:24 pm

I got asked about 162 to 170 a lot.

Truth was the testing center. I took first test at Temple because I figured all testing centers were standard. I had a small desk enough for one piece a paper (so having to hold my book out and shit) and had to keep pencils in my lap. It was a small room with a drop ceiling, and I could hear everything going on around me. My proctors were talking (I was in first row) and just general other problems.

Went to Penn second time, had a row desk with high ceilings (see pic)

Image

And was in the back row by luck this time. I attribute my score difference 100% to testing centers, and that's exactly what I told schools that asked. I didn't write an addendum unless they asked, but if they did, that's what I said.

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Spritzpiggy
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby Spritzpiggy » Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:03 am

Related question: I have a 14 point score increase that is the result of several factors -at the time I lived in a rural area and had to drive over two hours to a different state to get to the nearest test center and got very lost on the way. By the time I arrived I was freaking out about missing the test. Then took a few years off before my retake to work. I think the difference in scores is due to both these factors but are they too lame? I know that getting terribly lost or taking a few years off is so minimal a reason compared to a family members death and I don't want an ad com to think I'm making up an excuse even if its truthful. Thoughts please, thank you!

Edited to remove awkward phone auto-corrects

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northwood
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby northwood » Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:08 am

Spritzpiggy wrote:Related question: I have a 14 point score increase that is the result of several factors -at the time I lived in a rural area and had to drive over two hours to a different state to get to the nearest test center and got very lost on the way. By the time I arrived I was freaking out about missing the test. Then took a few years off before my retake to work. I think the difference in scores is due to both these factors but are they too lame? I know that getting terribly lost or taking a few years off is so minimal a reason compared to a family members death and I don't want an ad com to think I'm making up an excuse even if its truthful. Thoughts please, thank you!


you will most likely have to explain that 14 point increase. which of the factors do you think was the biggest reason for it? THat answer is how you explain the increase.

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dietcoke0
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby dietcoke0 » Thu Oct 04, 2012 9:05 pm

Spritzpiggy wrote:Related question: I have a 14 point score increase that is the result of several factors -at the time I lived in a rural area and had to drive over two hours to a different state to get to the nearest test center and got very lost on the way. By the time I arrived I was freaking out about missing the test. Then took a few years off before my retake to work. I think the difference in scores is due to both these factors but are they too lame? I know that getting terribly lost or taking a few years off is so minimal a reason compared to a family members death and I don't want an ad com to think I'm making up an excuse even if its truthful. Thoughts please, thank you!

Edited to remove awkward phone auto-corrects


Yeah, 14 points is huge, no matter where it was on the scale.

I'd just do something like this:

"I took X test and scored X. After receiving my score, I decided to hold off attending law school at that time, and spent a few years work at X. Then, after reconsidering law school, I took X test and scored X. I reevaluated my testing strategy, studied for the test again, and had a 14 point increase. I attribute the score increase to (insert one or two things), and a better testing venue for me. "

You can easily add something like maturity, critical thinking skills from your job you had, life experience, or just a more rigorous test prep plan. If it was truly nerves and testing center, just say that. You don't think most students have nerves that don't affect them on this thing. Test is huge, probably bigger than the bar, just because bar just need to pass, and if you go to a good law school, you probably will. LSAT can determine if you go to St. Johns or NYU, Drexel or Penn, Hastings or Berkley. So much more important.

Whatever you do, don't just say "I was lucky and received a good score"

But a gap that long between test is a lot easier to explain than say an Oct to Dec jump.

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Spritzpiggy
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Re: Score addendum necessary?

Postby Spritzpiggy » Sun Oct 07, 2012 9:17 pm

Thank you very much for the feedback, I am drafting it now. :] I know everyone is nervous when they take the exam (although, for instance, most don't find themselves lost in Nebraska an hour before the test when they should be in Iowa). Anyways, I think getting so lost and freaking out cost me about 5 points, but the largest jump was due to maturity, determination, and better training so that's what I will focus on. Thanks again for your help.




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