Disability Reveal?

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lsatisfunbro1996

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Disability Reveal?

Postby lsatisfunbro1996 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 2:33 pm

Hello, I have high-functioning aspergers and have greatly improved. I am a high-achieving student at a top 100 university with a 3.9 gpa. I was wondering if revealing my disability and how I have overcame it would be to my advantage. I know that adcomms, law school in particular, appreciate diversity. I have just started prepping for the lsat and am achieving low 160s; My goal is a t14 school. Thank you for your input.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby HonestAdvice » Wed Aug 24, 2016 4:00 pm

If you crack the high 160s or better, it's probably not worth the risk. You could probably get full scholarships to some t-14s with a 170 or so.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 8:29 pm

HonestAdvice wrote:If you crack the high 160s or better, it's probably not worth the risk. You could probably get full scholarships to some t-14s with a 170 or so.


Not worth the "risk"? Lmao, uh, what kind of risk? That his disability might adversely impact his admissions decisions?

Assuming his numbers are up to par, It will either do nothing or it will help. Theres no chance of it hurting his prospects - that, it would seem, is called discrimination.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby bmathers » Wed Aug 24, 2016 9:03 pm

vcap180 wrote:
HonestAdvice wrote:If you crack the high 160s or better, it's probably not worth the risk. You could probably get full scholarships to some t-14s with a 170 or so.

Assuming his numbers are up to par, It will either do nothing or it will help. Theres no chance of it hurting his prospects - that, it would seem, is called discrimination.

Good luck trying to prove that discrimination. There are enough working parts to an application that a LS could try to hide behind.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 9:26 pm

bmathers wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
HonestAdvice wrote:If you crack the high 160s or better, it's probably not worth the risk. You could probably get full scholarships to some t-14s with a 170 or so.

Assuming his numbers are up to par, It will either do nothing or it will help. Theres no chance of it hurting his prospects - that, it would seem, is called discrimination.

Good luck trying to prove that discrimination. There are enough working parts to an application that a LS could try to hide behind.


No there's not. All we talk about on here is how numbers are the only thing that matter. And there's plenty of data to prove that. If he was median or above in both categories and didn't have any glaring weakness and the disability was the only distinguishing feature, that would not look good. I'm not saying there'd successful lawsuit lmao, but I doubt they'd want to find out.

Not to mention, it would never get to that point. There's not an adcomm in existence that would look at his disability disclosure unfavorably. You can't be serious

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby lebongenre » Wed Aug 24, 2016 9:58 pm

First of all, congrats on your success in college! I'm definitely not an admissions expert, but I (unfortunately) have to agree that disclosing your disability could potentially be a liability in the admissions context, especially as a KJD.

That said, I seriously doubt that it would "break" your application if you get a strong LSAT to match your great GPA. Regardless, it might sow seeds of doubt wrt significant scholarships or top schools that don't interview applicants.

Law schools, esp the top schools, balance their interest in admitting a diverse range of qualified students and their interest in admitting students that they know will be attractive to legal employers (esp big law firms). If you poke around on TLS, you'll see that there's a lot of anecdata indicating that private firm hiring often comes down to strong interviewing skills and networking. Unless you're an amazing interviewer (and are invited to interview in the first place), then law schools may unfairly pre-judge your employability based on your disability, especially without prior work experience and/or very strong student leadership activities.

FWIW, I've heard HLS' initial rounds of interviewing described by an admissions consultant as a "crazy check" where they're mostly screening the most qualified (GPA-/LSAT-wise) early applicants to ensure they have sufficient (basic) social skills. For less qualified applicants (on paper), the interviews take on more significance, and the social skills bar is presumably set marginally higher.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Aug 24, 2016 10:05 pm

vcap180 wrote:
bmathers wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
HonestAdvice wrote:If you crack the high 160s or better, it's probably not worth the risk. You could probably get full scholarships to some t-14s with a 170 or so.

Assuming his numbers are up to par, It will either do nothing or it will help. Theres no chance of it hurting his prospects - that, it would seem, is called discrimination.

Good luck trying to prove that discrimination. There are enough working parts to an application that a LS could try to hide behind.


No there's not. All we talk about on here is how numbers are the only thing that matter. And there's plenty of data to prove that. If he was median or above in both categories and didn't have any glaring weakness and the disability was the only distinguishing feature, that would not look good. I'm not saying there'd successful lawsuit lmao, but I doubt they'd want to find out.

Not to mention, it would never get to that point. There's not an adcomm in existence that would look at his disability disclosure unfavorably. You can't be serious

You sure write with a lot of confidence for someone who is terribly naive. The OP is talking about writing a diversity statement based on his "high-functioning aspergers." If done poorly--if, for example, the OP comes off as narcissistic and unlikable--such a statement could certainly hurt his chances of admission.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 10:32 pm

rpupkin wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
bmathers wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
HonestAdvice wrote:If you crack the high 160s or better, it's probably not worth the risk. You could probably get full scholarships to some t-14s with a 170 or so.

Assuming his numbers are up to par, It will either do nothing or it will help. Theres no chance of it hurting his prospects - that, it would seem, is called discrimination.

Good luck trying to prove that discrimination. There are enough working parts to an application that a LS could try to hide behind.


No there's not. All we talk about on here is how numbers are the only thing that matter. And there's plenty of data to prove that. If he was median or above in both categories and didn't have any glaring weakness and the disability was the only distinguishing feature, that would not look good. I'm not saying there'd successful lawsuit lmao, but I doubt they'd want to find out.

Not to mention, it would never get to that point. There's not an adcomm in existence that would look at his disability disclosure unfavorably. You can't be serious

You sure write with a lot of confidence for someone who is terribly naive. The OP is talking about writing a diversity statement based on his "high-functioning aspergers." If done poorly--if, for example, the OP comes off as narcissistic and unlikable--such a statement could certainly hurt his chances of admission.


How does one write with confidence?

Managing a 3.9 with a learning disability - a real one, mind you, not ADD or something - is incredibly impressive and is precisely the sort of thing that the personal statement should be used to communicate. It's hard for me to imagine how someone could sound unlikable or narcissistic when speaking about how they didn't let their aspergers prevent them from succeeding academically.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 10:37 pm

To be fair, though, I will concede that the employability point made above may have some merit to it.

But overall, I still maintain that it will either do nothing, or it will help. Punishing him for speaking of his experience overcoming aspergers just seems unrealistic to me

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Aug 24, 2016 10:45 pm

vcap180 wrote:
How does one write with confidence?

With sentences like this: "There's not an adcomm in existence that would look at his disability disclosure unfavorably. You can't be serious."

Perhaps "dismissiveness" would be a more apt word than "confidence." Whatever word fits best, your absolutism does not come off well.

Yes, it is unlawful to discriminate against someone based on a disability. It's also unlawful to discriminate against me based on the fact that I'm a Methodist. But the fact that you can't discriminate against me based on my religion does not mean that my writing about my religion is risk free. If I write a diversity statement about my Methodist background, and if I seem arrogant or narrow minded in discussing that background, my chances of admission could suffer. No, an adcomm cannot discriminate against me for being Methodist. But they can discriminate against me for being immature or for lacking perspective. Contrary to your black-and-white view, these kinds of supplemental statements carry some risk.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed Aug 24, 2016 10:52 pm

vcap180 wrote:How does one write with confidence?

Is this a real question?

Managing a 3.9 with a learning disability - a real one, mind you, not ADD or something - is incredibly impressive and is precisely the sort of thing that the personal statement should be used to communicate. It's hard for me to imagine how someone could sound unlikable or narcissistic when speaking about how they didn't let their aspergers prevent them from succeeding academically.

Isn't Aspergers more of a social disabiity than a learning disability? I'm not sure the 3.9 is based on overcoming Aspergers - people with Aspergers can be high-achieving academically.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:02 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
vcap180 wrote:How does one write with confidence?

Is this a real question?

Managing a 3.9 with a learning disability - a real one, mind you, not ADD or something - is incredibly impressive and is precisely the sort of thing that the personal statement should be used to communicate. It's hard for me to imagine how someone could sound unlikable or narcissistic when speaking about how they didn't let their aspergers prevent them from succeeding academically.

Isn't Aspergers more of a social disabiity than a learning disability? I'm not sure the 3.9 is based on overcoming Aspergers - people with Aspergers can be high-achieving academically.


i honestly dont know. but even so, graduating college with a 3.9 absolutely requires a fair amount of social competence -- things that we may take for granted (group projections, presentations, class discussion) may have been a huge obstacle for him.

in any case, achieving a 3.9 with a form of autism is very commendable and certainly warrants mention. i just cannot see how this could be held against him.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby bmathers » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:10 pm

vcap180 wrote:
bmathers wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
HonestAdvice wrote:If you crack the high 160s or better, it's probably not worth the risk. You could probably get full scholarships to some t-14s with a 170 or so.

Assuming his numbers are up to par, It will either do nothing or it will help. Theres no chance of it hurting his prospects - that, it would seem, is called discrimination.

Good luck trying to prove that discrimination. There are enough working parts to an application that a LS could try to hide behind.


No there's not. All we talk about on here is how numbers are the only thing that matter. And there's plenty of data to prove that. If he was median or above in both categories and didn't have any glaring weakness and the disability was the only distinguishing feature, that would not look good. I'm not saying there'd successful lawsuit lmao, but I doubt they'd want to find out.

Not to mention, it would never get to that point. There's not an adcomm in existence that would look at his disability disclosure unfavorably. You can't be serious

I'm just giving what I have learned/read/gathered through experience

I personally have a brain injury/disability and was told (not on an internet forum) to be hesitant about disclosing that because admissions can use that information to doubt your ability to deal with the strenuous workload of law school. I was also told that it would be difficult to prove discrimination in the LS admissions process since there are a number of subjective moving parts, and even winning a discrimination lawsuit would ultimately be too many headaches for what it's worth.

I have since made a recovery I was given 1% odds of making and certainly do not allow it to stand between me and my goals, or use it as an excuse, but that's just the general advice that I received. I didn't disclose it during the last admission cycle, but will for this cycle.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby rpupkin » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:10 pm

vcap180 wrote:i honestly dont know. but even so, graduating college with a 3.9 absolutely requires a fair amount of social competence -- things that we may take for granted (group projections, presentations, class discussion) may have been a huge obstacle for him.

You're going to have a hard time in law school.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:17 pm

rpupkin wrote:
vcap180 wrote:i honestly dont know. but even so, graduating college with a 3.9 absolutely requires a fair amount of social competence -- things that we may take for granted (group projections, presentations, class discussion) may have been a huge obstacle for him.

You're going to have a hard time in law school.



i'll do just fine. on an unrelated note, the line you have highlighted is true. im speaking of "social competence" in the most basic sense. you do need this to achieve a 3.9 in college. you may not need to be super charismatic, but you do need to be able to navigate basic social situations (again--class participation, group projects, presentations, communicating with your profs, etc.) things that are easy for us may have posed a real challenge for him. it really isn't that hard to understand...

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:19 pm

Eh, it depends a lot on your major/requirements.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:23 pm

bmathers wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
bmathers wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
HonestAdvice wrote:If you crack the high 160s or better, it's probably not worth the risk. You could probably get full scholarships to some t-14s with a 170 or so.

Assuming his numbers are up to par, It will either do nothing or it will help. Theres no chance of it hurting his prospects - that, it would seem, is called discrimination.

Good luck trying to prove that discrimination. There are enough working parts to an application that a LS could try to hide behind.


No there's not. All we talk about on here is how numbers are the only thing that matter. And there's plenty of data to prove that. If he was median or above in both categories and didn't have any glaring weakness and the disability was the only distinguishing feature, that would not look good. I'm not saying there'd successful lawsuit lmao, but I doubt they'd want to find out.

Not to mention, it would never get to that point. There's not an adcomm in existence that would look at his disability disclosure unfavorably. You can't be serious

I'm just giving what I have learned/read/gathered through experience

I personally have a brain injury/disability and was told (not on an internet forum) to be hesitant about disclosing that because admissions can use that information to doubt your ability to deal with the strenuous workload of law school. I was also told that it would be difficult to prove discrimination in the LS admissions process since there are a number of subjective moving parts, and even winning a discrimination lawsuit would ultimately be too many headaches for what it's worth.

I have since made a recovery I was given 1% odds of making and certainly do not allow it to stand between me and my goals, or use it as an excuse, but that's just the general advice that I received. I didn't disclose it during the last admission cycle, but will for this cycle.


i am glad to hear you've beat the odds. in theory, i guess the reasoning behind the warnings you were given is sound. and im certainly no law school admissions expert - despite my "absolutist" tone. i really just find it hard to believe this kind of thing would be used against you. again, were talking about OVERCOMING adversity, not blaming any shortcomings on it.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby DELG » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:27 pm

aspergers is surely ORM right

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:29 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:Eh, it depends a lot on your major/requirements.



no, not really. with a 3.9 there is basically no room for error. colleges have enough liberal arts requirements to ensure that everyone will need to have SOME degree of meaningful interactions.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:29 pm

DELG wrote:aspergers is surely ORM right


what is ORM

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby bmathers » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:38 pm

I take back a little bit of what I said about having not disclosed my injury during last cycle. I did disclose it to my 2 huuuuggeee reach schools, one of which WLd me with both my GPA below their 25th-percentile and LSAT 7 points below their median, but over their 25th percentile.

Here was a piece of my PS for that school: "The Volunteer Clinic for Veterans would provide me with an opportunity to advocate for veterans on behalf of discrimination and/or the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance. I sustained a traumatic brain injury (TBI) during a 2004 automobile accident, which has become one of the leading disabilities sustained by veterans returning from deployment overseas. My experience of living with a TBI for more-than eleven years affords me the unique ability to relate to the obstacles that they are facing, and a realness to the rights afforded to them."

See if you can find a way to tie your dissability in to make it serve as an advantage for you.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:42 pm

vcap180 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:Eh, it depends a lot on your major/requirements.



no, not really. with a 3.9 there is basically no room for error. colleges have enough liberal arts requirements to ensure that everyone will need to have SOME degree of meaningful interactions.

I think you're underestimating how easy it is to fly underneath the radar at a bunch of institutions. You can fill plenty of liberal arts requirements by taking a 100-200 person lecture course. I get your point but I think you're overstating it a little, especially given that the OP describes themselves as high-functioning.

In any case, you may be right - the OP may have meant that they overcame the disability in an academic context - but it may well be that they mean they overcame it in a social/personal context. Either way, I don't think it answers the question of whether the OP should write about it - it just seems that you're making assumptions about what "overcoming" the disability means that may not be what the OP would be writing about.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:50 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:Eh, it depends a lot on your major/requirements.



no, not really. with a 3.9 there is basically no room for error. colleges have enough liberal arts requirements to ensure that everyone will need to have SOME degree of meaningful interactions.

I think you're underestimating how easy it is to fly underneath the radar at a bunch of institutions. You can fill plenty of liberal arts requirements by taking a 100-200 person lecture course. I get your point but I think you're overstating it a little, especially given that the OP describes themselves as high-functioning.

In any case, you may be right - the OP may have meant that they overcame the disability in an academic context - but it may well be that they mean they overcame it in a social/personal context. Either way, I don't think it answers the question of whether the OP should write about it - it just seems that you're making assumptions about what "overcoming" the disability means that may not be what the OP would be writing about.


Fair enough, but regardless of what exactly he means by "overcoming the disability", i still have a hard time believing it could adversely effect his chances at admission. i am in no way suggesting that it will help whatsoever, but i think he'd really have to write something ridiculous in order for it to harm his candidacy.

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby bmathers » Thu Aug 25, 2016 12:03 am

vcap180 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:Eh, it depends a lot on your major/requirements.



no, not really. with a 3.9 there is basically no room for error. colleges have enough liberal arts requirements to ensure that everyone will need to have SOME degree of meaningful interactions.

I think you're underestimating how easy it is to fly underneath the radar at a bunch of institutions. You can fill plenty of liberal arts requirements by taking a 100-200 person lecture course. I get your point but I think you're overstating it a little, especially given that the OP describes themselves as high-functioning.

In any case, you may be right - the OP may have meant that they overcame the disability in an academic context - but it may well be that they mean they overcame it in a social/personal context. Either way, I don't think it answers the question of whether the OP should write about it - it just seems that you're making assumptions about what "overcoming" the disability means that may not be what the OP would be writing about.


Fair enough, but regardless of what exactly he means by "overcoming the disability", i still have a hard time believing it could adversely effect his chances at admission. i am in no way suggesting that it will help whatsoever, but i think he'd really have to write something ridiculous in order for it to harm his candidacy.

If written and framed correctly, it may help. Maybe frame the PS to be about how OP has overcome adversity throughout life and has succeeded in spite of adversity and how it has set him up to be a stronger candidate for LS - leading to his work ethic, etc. Or, you could make it a diversity statement. Either way, I would have some people help you with it/look it over plenty before submitting (as should be the case with anyone and their PS/DS)

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Re: Disability Reveal?

Postby vcap180 » Thu Aug 25, 2016 12:09 am

bmathers wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:
vcap180 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:Eh, it depends a lot on your major/requirements.



no, not really. with a 3.9 there is basically no room for error. colleges have enough liberal arts requirements to ensure that everyone will need to have SOME degree of meaningful interactions.

I think you're underestimating how easy it is to fly underneath the radar at a bunch of institutions. You can fill plenty of liberal arts requirements by taking a 100-200 person lecture course. I get your point but I think you're overstating it a little, especially given that the OP describes themselves as high-functioning.

In any case, you may be right - the OP may have meant that they overcame the disability in an academic context - but it may well be that they mean they overcame it in a social/personal context. Either way, I don't think it answers the question of whether the OP should write about it - it just seems that you're making assumptions about what "overcoming" the disability means that may not be what the OP would be writing about.


Fair enough, but regardless of what exactly he means by "overcoming the disability", i still have a hard time believing it could adversely effect his chances at admission. i am in no way suggesting that it will help whatsoever, but i think he'd really have to write something ridiculous in order for it to harm his candidacy.

If written and framed correctly, it may help. Maybe frame the PS to be about how OP has overcome adversity throughout life and has succeeded in spite of adversity and how it has set him up to be a stronger candidate for LS - leading to his work ethic, etc. Or, you could make it a diversity statement. Either way, I would have some people help you with it/look it over plenty before submitting (as should be the case with anyone and their PS/DS)


absolutely agree with everything you say here. my main point is that, barring a completely ridiculous PS, it can only help.

im generally of the belief that a PS will either help or have no effect at all--and when it comes to topics like this, i feel significantly stronger about that.



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