Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

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girlmonster
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Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby girlmonster » Sat Oct 12, 2013 12:12 pm

What percentage of law school applicants do you think utilize professional consultation services, and to what extent? I have to admit, as someone who could only afford the CAS and the LSAT because of an LSAC fee waiver, it is disheartening to learn that other applicants are paying $4,000+ for professional assistance.

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altoid99
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby altoid99 » Sat Oct 12, 2013 12:15 pm

I personally think anyone who utilizes admission consultants are straight up uninformed about the process. But, that, unfortunately represents most people out there applying to law school. I wouldn't spend a dime on admission consultants knowing very well that admissions is all about numbers. It makes absolutely no sense unless they have some magical way of increasing your LSAT score or GPA for you..and they dont..so thats that.

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northwood
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby northwood » Sat Oct 12, 2013 12:19 pm

you don't need help applying. This website will be very helpful to you, just use the search function and enjoy.

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JazzOne
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby JazzOne » Sat Oct 12, 2013 12:46 pm

girlmonster wrote:What percentage of law school applicants do you think utilize professional consultation services, and to what extent? I have to admit, as someone who could only afford the CAS and the LSAT because of an LSAC fee waiver, it is disheartening to learn that other applicants are paying $4,000+ for professional assistance.

That's $4,000+ down the drain. Don't sweat it. TLS has your back.

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dsn32
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby dsn32 » Sat Oct 12, 2013 12:59 pm

TLS is the only admissions consultant you need. If you know a TLSer in real life, listen to them too. They will give you much more personal advice, and you can get the advice over a beer (which is way better than going to some dudes office who is trying to steal your $$$).

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girlmonster
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby girlmonster » Sat Oct 12, 2013 1:08 pm

Thanks, everyone! The neuroticism from working on these applications is escalating. I appreciate the reassurance!

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BruinRegents
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby BruinRegents » Sat Oct 12, 2013 3:06 pm

girlmonster wrote:1. What percentage of law school applicants do you think utilize professional consultation services, and to what extent? I have to admit, as someone who could only afford the CAS and the LSAT because of an LSAC fee waiver, 2. it is disheartening to learn that other applicants are paying $4,000+ for professional assistance.

1. I don't know.

2. Why should it dishearten you? Lucky for you, the democratizing effect of the Internet makes resources like TLS possible. Though, like previous posters on this thread, I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss that all admissions consultants as not being worth whatever someone is willing and able to pay for their services. Sometimes people use them because they don't want to have to wade through thread after thread on TLS. Sometimes people pay for consultants for something as intangible as peace of mind.

Think about it this way, if you are willing to pay for an LSAT tutor, you're paying for a consultant specifically for your LSAT.

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girlmonster
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby girlmonster » Sun Oct 13, 2013 3:05 pm

Bruin, I recognize the democratizing effects of technology; but even after wading through the material on TLS for years, I still feel as if I'm learning more every day and seeing contradictions. However, I understand a lot of this is also because of the dramatic change in law school admissions over the last few years. The reason it would be disheartening to me is because I really have no other form of guidance in the law school application process -- nobody else in my family even graduated from college, and I only have one friend who attended a T14 law school. The fact that some people are utilizing highly-skilled, highly-paid professionals doesn't really nurture my confidence in comparison. Furthermore, regarding your LSAT tutor statement, I couldn't afford an LSAT tutor. As mentioned previously, the only reason I could afford the required fees was through LSAC's fee waiver. Ironically, that probably didn't hurt me as much as the fact I couldn't even afford the Prozac or any other anxiolytic I probably should have started before test day (I averaged a 177 on all the practice tests, and ended up scoring a 172 -- first time I ever experienced paralyzing anxiety).

But thank you very much for your post!

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nothingtosee
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby nothingtosee » Sun Oct 13, 2013 3:21 pm

It's not fair, there are rich kids getting tutored for prep school admissions!
It's not fair, there are rich kids getting SAT tutoring!
It's not fair, there are rich kids getting LSAT tutoring!
It's not fair, there are rich kids getting admissions consultants!
It's not fair, there are rich kids getting jobs because of their dad!

Life's not fair.
TLS is extremely rich in content to mine.
You may, along with Aubrey Graham, assert that your success is "all me."

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girlmonster
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby girlmonster » Sun Oct 13, 2013 3:28 pm

When did I ever assert that "it's not fair"? It is what it is. The reason I asked the question is because outside of TLS, consultants are advertised everywhere at very high prices, almost as if they are the norm. Yet on TLS, it seems there are many highly successful people who don't use these services. It's intriguing to me, and yes, I was looking for a little validation of my TLS impression. But I don't think in my 25 years of existence, anyone has ever heard me proclaim that anything "is not fair." Thanks for the leaping conclusion about my mindset and attitude, though. You contributed a lot.

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hephaestus
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby hephaestus » Sun Oct 13, 2013 3:36 pm

girlmonster wrote:When did I ever assert that "it's not fair"? It is what it is. The reason I asked the question is because outside of TLS, consultants are advertised everywhere at very high prices, almost as if they are the norm. Yet on TLS, it seems there are many highly successful people who don't use these services. It's intriguing to me, and yes, I was looking for a little validation of my TLS impression. But I don't think in my 25 years of existence, anyone has ever heard me proclaim that anything "is not fair." Thanks for the leaping conclusion about my mindset and attitude, though. You contributed a lot.

Consultants are useless. LSAT/GPA are 99% of the package, and there's no reason to pay hundreds or thousands to hear that.

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girlmonster
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby girlmonster » Sun Oct 13, 2013 4:35 pm

ImNoScar wrote:Consultants are useless. LSAT/GPA are 99% of the package, and there's no reason to pay hundreds or thousands to hear that.


Thank you!

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haus
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby haus » Sun Oct 13, 2013 4:54 pm

For most, these type of services are likely not needed. But I would agree that Mike Spivey (and his new partner) have provided useful info in their thread here.

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=197451

I think they have a legitimate niche for those looking for help for those looking for the perspective who have spent time working in admissions. Although I do not their rates, I suspect that considerable aide can be received for less than the $4k mentioned by the OP.

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TheThriller
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby TheThriller » Sun Oct 13, 2013 5:35 pm

I'm going to play devil's advocate and say that the wealth of knowledge that admissions consultants like Spivey and KarenB offer is something a specific body of applicants could greatly benefit from. For the general applicant wondering how to correctly submit applications and what not, TLS is a great resource. But for some individual cases, I personally see merit in soliciting paid advice from the former 12 year director of admissions of Harvard Law.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby MikeSpivey » Sun Oct 13, 2013 6:10 pm

I'll chime in!

Girlmonster, for starters let me put your mind at ease. (1), if we are indeed useless as you might very well seem to think (and I am not in the least attacking this thought, you are of course entitled to have your own about consultants) then the people utilizing our help get no bump from those that do not. (2) I do not think that many people use good admissions consultants. I'll elaborate.

(2) I know of only a very few (less than 6) people that consultant who have actually read law admissions files and made law admissions decisions. For any other admissions consultant, and there are tons out there I think, their advice is no better (and perhaps worse) than much of the wisdom you can get here on TLS for free. So again, revert to (1) for these people. Now for the 5-6 that have files reading/admit decision making experience I am, of course, biased. But regardless consider this: if they are good at what they do they will cap their services to a very small number relative to the applicant pool. This takes a great deal of time and you can be of much more benefit if you get to know the applicant well. So, if they do this the cap is likely between 50-100 people. So again, where the advice is (IMO) value added the numbers are very low. Maybe like 500 tops and and likely much less.

Hopefully both (1) and (2) make you feel at ease.

I would also note that I have talked people out of using our services -- because I do not think they will help everyone. I agree with that to the point I have lived it. I also had a pro bono client last cycle who is at a top 3 school who I think would strongly support that the time we spent working together greatly enhanced the chances of said person getting there.

Finally, for splitters, WL people etc these decisions can be razor thin. Even when looking at the down cycle keep in mind that many of these top schools have very large numbers of applicants with nearly the exact same numbers. Some get admitted and some do not. Again the decision making at this level I think is razor thin and, again in my biased opinion, is worth having multiple eyes on -- be it a pre-law adviser or parent, friend etc. We have real time experience making tens of thousands of these decisions which is why I think our clients are very happy with us from last cycle --including the ones that made a great deal of money in negotiating scholarships from 0 to upwards of 100k. But I can certainly see your perspective and to each their own of course.

I'm glad this thread exists and I think both sides of the argument have good points.

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girlmonster
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby girlmonster » Sun Oct 13, 2013 8:05 pm

MikeSpivey wrote:I'll chime in!

Girlmonster, for starters let me put your mind at ease. (1), if we are indeed useless as you might very well seem to think (and I am not in the least attacking this thought, you are of course entitled to have your own about consultants) then the people utilizing our help get no bump from those that do not.


I hope that's really not the impression you got from anything I've said. If I felt admissions consultants were useless, I never would have posted this thread; they would be completely irrelevant to me. I also realize not all consultants are of equal ability and repute, and that consultants who have actually worked on admissions committees at top law schools are few and far between. In fact, part of what spurred me to the original post was finding multiple advertisements and blogs from consultants who charge thousands of dollars without such credentials.

As I mentioned previously, "I still feel as if I'm learning more every day." I would hope that would give the impression that I'm not a know-it-all who dismisses the value of professional guidance. It's the value I that I do see in such guidance that causes me to worry, since it is out of reach for me. In fact, Mike, part of the reason I understand the significant impact that professional consultation can have is because your thread with Karen is probably the most eye-opening and helpful source of information I have found regarding law school admissions. There are several topics and concerns you discuss that I did not even realize were relevant to the admissions process. Clearly anyone who can afford your services is very fortunate to have you, hence my concern over how many people that could be.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Prevalence of Admissions Consultants?

Postby MikeSpivey » Mon Oct 14, 2013 10:50 am

No worries, girlmonster. Thanks for the open minded and cogent response!

We will keep posting in the Q&A thread and we will continue to try not spend a penny on advertising.




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