A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
User avatar
jetsfan1
Posts: 571
Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:14 pm

A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby jetsfan1 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 12:40 pm

Proposal: The 10% weight given to gpa in the rankings should be split. 5% should be based on gpa, the other 5% on class rank. Hear me out.

So on TLS there are a bunch of threads discussing how imperfect of a measure GPA is, i.e. grade inflation at a school like Brown makes a 3.7 very different there from at Carnegie Mellon, where the median gpa is like a 3.2 (these numbers are off the top of my head, what I remember from Reg's spreadsheet of LSAT/gpa by school, paging kappycaft1 to post it here bc i cant seem to find it).

Like I've said, the unfairness of this has been discussed here at nauseam, but I haven't heard anyone suggest this solution. What if law schools were to take UG class rank into account? Most UGs rank their class, even if they dont publish it. Now before getting to the positives, I do recognize that its not a fix all bc:

1) It doesn't allow you to compare the academic rigor of schools (an Ivy vs a CC, for example), which many think is the root of the problem

2) Within the UG, it is still difficult to distinguish between different majors and how difficult they are relative to one another

3) This whole discussion is pointless because unless USNWR ranking methodology changes, no admissions practices will. So, for the rest of this thread, lets just assume some sort of change there was possible.

4) It gets messy when it comes to transfer students.

Now to the positives.

1) All the discussions about grade inflation are now rendered mute, bc it matters less what your grades are, and is more about how they relate to your peers at your UG.

2) There is less incentive for student X to delay his graduation and attend CC for a semester to get his gpa up, bc that wouldnt effect his class rank.

3) Schools get a more accurate picture of how the candidate actually performed in UG when you look at both gpa and class rank (more info=better picture).

BOTTOM LINE: While there would still be a lot of problems, this would make it a bit better.

Alright TLS, pick me apart. Please be nice haha I do realize there are probably a million problems with this and a million more things I havent thought of. Just trying to get a discussion going, so what do you guys think?
Last edited by jetsfan1 on Sun Jun 02, 2013 12:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse
Posts: 22865
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Jun 02, 2013 12:41 pm

I don't think most UGs actually DO rank their classes.

User avatar
jetsfan1
Posts: 571
Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:14 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby jetsfan1 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 12:44 pm

I don't think most UGs actually DO rank their classes.


I'm pretty sure most of them do, you just need to request it. They have valedictorians, which means they have a mechanism for ranking. That's how it was at my UG, and I've heard similar stories from others. They just don't publicize that they do it.

Mal Reynolds
Posts: 12630
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2011 12:16 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby Mal Reynolds » Sun Jun 02, 2013 12:49 pm

Who cares?

User avatar
Gunnar Stahl
Posts: 1085
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2012 3:57 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby Gunnar Stahl » Sun Jun 02, 2013 12:53 pm

Mal Reynolds wrote:Who cares?

User avatar
sinfiery
Posts: 3308
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2011 2:55 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby sinfiery » Sun Jun 02, 2013 1:00 pm

This will only hurt the elite UG graduates and will for that reason probably face some opposition at the top of law schools as they are generally the same institutions.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse
Posts: 22865
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Sun Jun 02, 2013 1:02 pm

jetsfan1 wrote:
I don't think most UGs actually DO rank their classes.


I'm pretty sure most of them do, you just need to request it. They have valedictorians, which means they have a mechanism for ranking. That's how it was at my UG, and I've heard similar stories from others. They just don't publicize that they do it.

What kind of school was this? Was it a traditional 4-yr undergrad college where people graduate in 4 years? I just think of a school like the University of Minnesota, with about 30,000 undergraduate students in however many programs, many of whom aren't going to graduate in 4 years (whether full-time or part time) so you don't know necessarily what graduating class they're in. How do you effectively rank people in that situation? What does it actually tell you? Especially when most UG programs don't grade on a curve.

(And, of course, this:
Mal Reynolds wrote:Who cares?

totoro
Posts: 153
Joined: Sat Oct 13, 2012 7:55 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby totoro » Sun Jun 02, 2013 2:03 pm

I think seeing an applicant's rank could be potentially helpful to help even out the differences in grade inflation between schools. For instance in helping a law school decide how competitive an applicant is (i.e. maybe they'll go down to median for someone at Harvard UG but only top 10% for a state school undergrad). So it could be useful in that sense. However, if we're gonna factor class rank into the USNEWS rankings... this would only exacerbate the problem by incentivizing law schools to choose people who are number 1 from poor UG's rather than people who do relatively poorer at top schools.

20141023
Posts: 3072
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2012 12:17 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby 20141023 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 3:56 pm

.
Last edited by 20141023 on Sun Feb 15, 2015 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
kay2016
Posts: 1121
Joined: Mon Nov 05, 2012 11:23 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby kay2016 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 5:29 pm

My school definitely does not rank.

User avatar
untar614
Posts: 646
Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2013 1:01 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby untar614 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 5:41 pm

jetsfan1 wrote: Alright TLS, pick me apart.


Since you asked...

It's ad nauseum, not "at nausem", and the discussion would be rendered moot, not "mute".

...

Oh, you meant about the proposal? Yeah, as others have said, my school does not rank either. Given the great diversity among majors and colleges (within the university that is, e.g. College of Liberal Arts and Sciences or College of Education). Even within one college you have biochemistry majors and English majors together. You could try ranking within majors I guess, but that would prove difficult since not everyone operates on the same strict timetable, some people change majors, and some have double majors.

User avatar
jetsfan1
Posts: 571
Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:14 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby jetsfan1 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 5:43 pm

hat kind of school was this? Was it a traditional 4-yr undergrad college where people graduate in 4 years? I just think of a school like the University of Minnesota, with about 30,000 undergraduate students in however many programs, many of whom aren't going to graduate in 4 years (whether full-time or part time) so you don't know necessarily what graduating class they're in. How do you effectively rank people in that situation? What does it actually tell you? Especially when most UG programs don't grade on a curve.


For the most part, yeah it was a traditional 4 year school, but there were kids who didnt graduate in may; however, those kids were ranked in the class that graduated in may.

I went to a top 15 undergrad, but when I called to find out my class rank for law school applications I was told that I literally didn't have one. I don't know if it was because of my major or something, but I couldn't find out my rank to put it on applications.


Ok thats interesting. I've talked to people from 5 or so schools, big and small, and they all ranked. But I guess its not as universal as I thought.

I think seeing an applicant's rank could be potentially helpful to help even out the differences in grade inflation between schools. For instance in helping a law school decide how competitive an applicant is (i.e. maybe they'll go down to median for someone at Harvard UG but only top 10% for a state school undergrad). So it could be useful in that sense. However, if we're gonna factor class rank into the USNEWS rankings... this would only exacerbate the problem by incentivizing law schools to choose people who are number 1 from poor UG's rather than people who do relatively poorer at top schools.


But it already is like that. The number 1 at a poor undergrad still has a 4.0+, so the way the system works top schools already have a huge incentive to take him/her. However, for schools that inflate grades and therefore give their applicants an unfair advantage in the admissions process, it brings them back down to the playing field. For schools that dont, it gives them a deserving boost.

My point is they already have incentive to take the number one from a poor UG. That wont change. But what will is those who are being penalized just for going to a UG that deflates grades wont be so anymore. (also, for schools that inflate grades, I dont see them as being "penalized" for this, bc they had an unfair advantage anyway).

Who cares?


--ImageRemoved--

User avatar
jetsfan1
Posts: 571
Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:14 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby jetsfan1 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 5:48 pm

It's ad nauseum, not "at nausem", and the discussion would be rendered moot, not "mute".


Just pulling out my inner joey (sort of) haha :lol:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iObtPBh3NXs

On a more serious note, a big part of the whole proposal was the assumption that most schools rank, which I mistakenly thought to be true. But if they did, it would be a good idea. Ranking across majors is no more problematic than comparing gpa across majors.

User avatar
Br3v
Posts: 4174
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 7:18 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby Br3v » Sun Jun 02, 2013 5:50 pm

Q:A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs
A: A high LSAT score

HTH

Ti Malice
Posts: 1955
Joined: Sat Mar 03, 2012 2:55 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby Ti Malice » Sun Jun 02, 2013 6:44 pm

untar614 wrote:
jetsfan1 wrote: Alright TLS, pick me apart.


Since you asked...

It's ad nauseum, not "at nausem", and the discussion would be rendered moot, not "mute".

...


Except it's actually "ad nauseam," not "ad nauseum." :P

User avatar
untar614
Posts: 646
Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2013 1:01 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby untar614 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 6:47 pm

Ti Malice wrote:
untar614 wrote:
jetsfan1 wrote: Alright TLS, pick me apart.


Since you asked...

It's ad nauseum, not "at nausem", and the discussion would be rendered moot, not "mute".

...


Except it's actually "ad nauseam," not "ad nauseum." :P


Dammit, Muphry's Law strikes. That's what I get for not paying careful enough attention when correcting someone.

User avatar
Cobretti
Posts: 2560
Joined: Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:45 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby Cobretti » Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:00 pm

untar614 wrote:
Ti Malice wrote:
untar614 wrote:
jetsfan1 wrote: Alright TLS, pick me apart.


Since you asked...

It's ad nauseum, not "at nausem", and the discussion would be rendered moot, not "mute".

...


Except it's actually "ad nauseam," not "ad nauseum." :P


Dammit, Muphry's Law strikes. That's what I get for not paying careful enough attention when correcting someone.

It's actually "Murphy's Law". What'd you lern?

User avatar
untar614
Posts: 646
Joined: Mon Feb 04, 2013 1:01 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby untar614 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:09 pm

Cobretti wrote:
untar614 wrote:
Ti Malice wrote:
Except it's actually "ad nauseam," not "ad nauseum." :P


Dammit, Muphry's Law strikes. That's what I get for not paying careful enough attention when correcting someone.

It's actually "Murphy's Law". What'd you lern?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muphry's_law

I learned that you're not as good at the interwebz as you think.

User avatar
Cobretti
Posts: 2560
Joined: Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:45 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby Cobretti » Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:11 pm

untar614 wrote:
Cobretti wrote:
untar614 wrote:
Ti Malice wrote:
Except it's actually "ad nauseam," not "ad nauseum." :P


Dammit, Muphry's Law strikes. That's what I get for not paying careful enough attention when correcting someone.

It's actually "Murphy's Law". What'd you lern?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muphry's_law

I learned that you're not as good at the interwebz as you think.

god damnit...

User avatar
Micdiddy
Posts: 2190
Joined: Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:38 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby Micdiddy » Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:45 pm

Cobretti wrote:
untar614 wrote:
Cobretti wrote:
untar614 wrote:
Dammit, Muphry's Law strikes. That's what I get for not paying careful enough attention when correcting someone.

It's actually "Murphy's Law". What'd you lern?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muphry's_law

I learned that you're not as good at the interwebz as you think.

god damnit...


Hoisted by your own Picard :mrgreen:

User avatar
suralin
better than you
Posts: 15079
Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2012 1:52 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby suralin » Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:52 pm

Micdiddy wrote:
Cobretti wrote:
untar614 wrote:
Cobretti wrote:It's actually "Murphy's Law". What'd you lern?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muphry's_law

I learned that you're not as good at the interwebz as you think.

god damnit...


Hoisted by your own Picard :mrgreen:


:lol:

User avatar
Cobretti
Posts: 2560
Joined: Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:45 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby Cobretti » Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:16 pm

Micdiddy wrote:
Cobretti wrote:god damnit...


Hoisted by your own Picard :mrgreen:

Googled this to avoid more embarrassment and was not disappointed:
Image

User avatar
Clearly
Posts: 4166
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2012 4:09 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby Clearly » Sun Jun 02, 2013 9:26 pm

Tls in a nutshell.

20141023
Posts: 3072
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2012 12:17 am

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby 20141023 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 9:38 pm

.
Last edited by 20141023 on Sun Feb 15, 2015 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Cicero76
Posts: 1276
Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:41 pm

Re: A possible remedy to the unfairness of GPAs

Postby Cicero76 » Sun Jun 02, 2013 11:17 pm

My UG has 32,958 undergraduates. Lol @ the idea of them ranking classes.




Return to “Law School Admissions Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 3 guests