How to explain pass/fail courses?

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avth
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How to explain pass/fail courses?

Postby avth » Wed Oct 30, 2013 6:12 pm

Hi, I have a lot of pass/fail courses on my transcript, mostly because I was part of an honors program where all courses were pass/fail. In most cases, the director of the honors program sends an official letter to graduate schools explaining the rationale behind these pass/fail courses, but I'm not sure what to do about it in the case of LSAC. Should I ask the director to send these official letters individually to law schools, or is there some other workaround?

Thanks in advance :)

IpleadtheFiF
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Re: How to explain pass/fail courses?

Postby IpleadtheFiF » Wed Oct 30, 2013 7:12 pm

How many is a lot? For most schools, only GE classes are allowed to be taken pass/fail. Are more than 25% of the classes on your transcript P/F? If so, I would write a brief addendum explaining that the courses were compulsory and were only allowed to be taken pass/fail. It can't hurt.

avth
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Re: How to explain pass/fail courses?

Postby avth » Wed Oct 30, 2013 7:22 pm

IpleadtheFiF wrote:How many is a lot? For most schools, only GE classes are allowed to be taken pass/fail. Are more than 25% of the classes on your transcript P/F? If so, I would write a brief addendum explaining that the courses were compulsory and were only allowed to be taken pass/fail. It can't hurt.


Yep - the courses were compulsory for my honors program, and were only P/F (again, it was a very weird system ... if I knew I was going to be applying to law school, I don't think I'd have enrolled in it, haha). I think these P/F courses comprise more than 50% of my grades unfortunately so it'll definitely look weird to the admissions committees if they don't know the context. I'll definitely be writing an addendum, thank you for your input :)

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Cicero76
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Re: How to explain pass/fail courses?

Postby Cicero76 » Wed Oct 30, 2013 7:56 pm

While that is very weird, the fact that they're required and it isn't your fault means it probably isn't going to hurt you at all.

What is with the epidemic of pass/fail classes threads jeez.

avth
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Re: How to explain pass/fail courses?

Postby avth » Wed Oct 30, 2013 8:07 pm

Cicero76 wrote:While that is very weird, the fact that they're required and it isn't your fault means it probably isn't going to hurt you at all.

What is with the epidemic of pass/fail classes threads jeez.


lol sorry :oops: I didn't notice until after I posted the thread. Thank you for your input though, I appreciate it!

IpleadtheFiF
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Re: How to explain pass/fail courses?

Postby IpleadtheFiF » Wed Oct 30, 2013 8:57 pm

>50%!?! :lol: :lol: :lol:

Is that >50% of your current transcript or >50% of your transcript by graduation?

Is your program and/or school really prestigious? Normally, only the players at the top of the food chain get to pull stunts like this, e.g. HYS law, Columbia B-school, MIT undergrad.

Edit:
I saw your post on another thread stating that you've already graduated.

bp shinners
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Re: How to explain pass/fail courses?

Postby bp shinners » Thu Oct 31, 2013 1:39 pm

avth wrote: I think these P/F courses comprise more than 50% of my grades unfortunately so it'll definitely look weird to the admissions committees if they don't know the context. I'll definitely be writing an addendum, thank you for your input :)


Yep, definitely something that needs an addendum. Having a letter from the director of the honors program might help put it in context, as well. Normally I wouldn't recommend that, but this seems like an extreme case.

Can you ask the director what they've done for previous law school applicants? You can't be the first.

avth
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Re: How to explain pass/fail courses?

Postby avth » Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:10 am

IpleadtheFiF wrote:>50%!?! :lol: :lol: :lol:

Is that >50% of your current transcript or >50% of your transcript by graduation?

Is your program and/or school really prestigious? Normally, only the players at the top of the food chain get to pull stunts like this, e.g. HYS law, Columbia B-school, MIT undergrad.

Edit:
I saw your post on another thread stating that you've already graduated.


haha yeah, >50% of my transcript period... and no, my school isn't particularly prestigious, although my program is pretty decent and generally geared toward sending people off to academia

Yep, definitely something that needs an addendum. Having a letter from the director of the honors program might help put it in context, as well. Normally I wouldn't recommend that, but this seems like an extreme case.

Can you ask the director what they've done for previous law school applicants? You can't be the first.


Thanks for your input! I emailed the admissions office of my program and they said they could provide a hard copy of the "official" letter from the director as well as a soft copy that I can use for online applications, which is what they generally do for all grad school applicants. I think I'll just stick with the soft copy since it doesn't seem like schools are amenable to getting any supplementary materials in the mail...




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