How much do LOR's/PS matter in relation to LSAT/GPA?

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Dookie39
Posts: 21
Joined: Sun Apr 29, 2012 11:15 pm

How much do LOR's/PS matter in relation to LSAT/GPA?

Postby Dookie39 » Mon Oct 08, 2012 6:10 pm

I just took the October Lsat and feel like I did pretty solid on it, like at least a 170 and have a 3.8+ GPA. I have one strong LOR from a professor, but don't really know where to get my second one from as I attend a large undergraduate university with big classes and it is too late for me to schmooze another professor. Also, I have no clue what to write for my PS as I'm non-URM/upper-middle class and have no really emotional stories to convey, which I see in basically every other PS on here. I also have pretty avg softs, as I take it planning functions as a social chair in a fraternity probably isn't considered all too strong by admissions people. I'm looking to go to T14 schools, not really set on any one in particular though.

Essentially I want to ask fellow TLSers a) how bad would it be to have one strong LOR and one pretty mediocre one from someone prestigious that doesn't me all too well or one from a boss? Would this hurt my chances or would this just be neutral b) any ideas for a PS from people who were in a similar boat a.k.a. partied a lot in college/not a whole lot of community service and haven't really had to overcome any crazy obstacles? For these people, what did you decide to focus on in the personal statement?

Thanks guys!

bp shinners
Posts: 3091
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 7:05 pm

Re: How much do LOR's/PS matter in relation to LSAT/GPA?

Postby bp shinners » Tue Oct 09, 2012 11:15 am

Dookie39 wrote:Essentially I want to ask fellow TLSers a) how bad would it be to have one strong LOR and one pretty mediocre one from someone prestigious that doesn't me all too well or one from a boss? Would this hurt my chances or would this just be neutral b) any ideas for a PS from people who were in a similar boat a.k.a. partied a lot in college/not a whole lot of community service and haven't really had to overcome any crazy obstacles? For these people, what did you decide to focus on in the personal statement?

Thanks guys!


a) It wouldn't be the worst thing in the world, but you should be able to find a second professor to write you a decent enough LoR. The profs are used to doing this, and as long as you demonstrated competence in their class, they're usually willing to write something that will be good enough to pass the relatively low bar required by a LoR.

b) You can literally write about anything, as long as it's personal to you and told well. I've edited weak essays that were about unbelievably emotional stories, and I've edited strong essays about Star Trek episodes. Pick something that had a profound impact on you and write about the change you experienced. Don't straight up tell me any of your good qualities; show them in action without bragging. And don't be afraid to reveal your personality - that's what the admissions officers are looking for. Unless you suck.

For my PS (which wasn't very strong, so I wouldn't necessarily use it as a model), I wrote about reading Brothers Karamazov and drinking Scotch. It wandered and needed focus, but it definitely got my personality across. You can find it on our website if you dig a bit, with commentary. But, again, it's not a very good personal statement.




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