ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

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sparkytrainer
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby sparkytrainer » Sat Nov 04, 2017 6:02 pm

icechicken wrote:
sparkytrainer wrote:Im not an admissions professional, but if I was a splitter, I would be applying ASAP. There may be no such thing next year.


I agree that people with strong LSATs should try to cash in ASAP if they can, but the bolded seems a bit extreme. GPA medians may well go up, and that will make things tougher for splitters (because more people will be splitters if and when that happens), but they'll only find themselves dead in the water if GPA floors go up, and there's no particular reason to believe that's about to happen.


What I am saying is GPA floors are necessarily going to go up when a school can pick between high GPAs with the lsat, gre, or potentially none of the above.

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Pneumonia
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby Pneumonia » Sat Nov 04, 2017 8:32 pm

Does anyone know how this will affect the USNWR methodology? I think it would be premature to completely write them out of the picture. Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but here's what it looks like to me:

assumption: USNWR keeps the LSAT as part of its ranking methodology.
outcome: wouldn't this make 173+ LSATs even more valuable. For example, if you have a 3.9, then you just don't sit for any test. But if you have a 3.3 then you take the LSAT and help boost your school's median. Wouldn't this drive median LSATs higher?

Pretty sure I'm missing something. What is it?

sparkytrainer
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby sparkytrainer » Sat Nov 04, 2017 8:42 pm

Pneumonia wrote:Does anyone know how this will affect the USNWR methodology? I think it would be premature to completely write them out of the picture. Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but here's what it looks like to me:

assumption: USNWR keeps the LSAT as part of its ranking methodology.
outcome: wouldn't this make 173+ LSATs even more valuable. For example, if you have a 3.9, then you just don't sit for any test. But if you have a 3.3 then you take the LSAT and help boost your school's median. Wouldn't this drive median LSATs higher?

Pretty sure I'm missing something. What is it?


The methodology will necessarily have to change. If the LSAT isn't the only required test, the methodology has to shift to account for the other (GRE). Now, if no exam is necessary, then the methodology will shift even more, probably by dropping the LSAT from ranking methodology totally. You cant consistently rate a variable that is not consistent across all schools.

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Pneumonia
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby Pneumonia » Sat Nov 04, 2017 8:53 pm

sparkytrainer wrote:
Pneumonia wrote:Does anyone know how this will affect the USNWR methodology? I think it would be premature to completely write them out of the picture. Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but here's what it looks like to me:

assumption: USNWR keeps the LSAT as part of its ranking methodology.
outcome: wouldn't this make 173+ LSATs even more valuable. For example, if you have a 3.9, then you just don't sit for any test. But if you have a 3.3 then you take the LSAT and help boost your school's median. Wouldn't this drive median LSATs higher?

Pretty sure I'm missing something. What is it?


The methodology will necessarily have to change.

That makes sense. I'm not convinced of the "necessarily" though (e.g., foreign students don't have GPAs). The LSAT isn't dead unless USNWR decides to help kill it. Maybe they will. And maybe you're right that they have to. But I think USNWR's response to the ABA's decision will have at least as big an impact on the LSAT's future as the decision itself.

sparkytrainer
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby sparkytrainer » Sat Nov 04, 2017 8:57 pm

Pneumonia wrote:
sparkytrainer wrote:
Pneumonia wrote:Does anyone know how this will affect the USNWR methodology? I think it would be premature to completely write them out of the picture. Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but here's what it looks like to me:

assumption: USNWR keeps the LSAT as part of its ranking methodology.
outcome: wouldn't this make 173+ LSATs even more valuable. For example, if you have a 3.9, then you just don't sit for any test. But if you have a 3.3 then you take the LSAT and help boost your school's median. Wouldn't this drive median LSATs higher?

Pretty sure I'm missing something. What is it?


The methodology will necessarily have to change.

That makes sense. I'm not convinced of the "necessarily" though (e.g., foreign students don't have GPAs). The LSAT isn't dead unless USNWR decides to help kill it. Maybe they will. And maybe you're right that they have to. But I think USNWR's response to the ABA's decision will have at least as big an impact on the LSAT's future as the decision itself.


I appreciate the response, but I am convinced of the necessity of it. Foreign students are a tiny subset of the applicant pool. I imagine there will be at least a group of lower ranked schools that will just make admission exams optional. That will screw any ranking, so at a minimum, admissions tests will have to be given extremely minimal strength in the rating methodology. If schools can wholesale not require an admissions test, it will trigger a massive change in the ranking methodology.

shinydunsparce
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby shinydunsparce » Sat Nov 04, 2017 8:58 pm

sparkytrainer wrote:
Pneumonia wrote:
sparkytrainer wrote:
Pneumonia wrote:Does anyone know how this will affect the USNWR methodology? I think it would be premature to completely write them out of the picture. Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but here's what it looks like to me:

assumption: USNWR keeps the LSAT as part of its ranking methodology.
outcome: wouldn't this make 173+ LSATs even more valuable. For example, if you have a 3.9, then you just don't sit for any test. But if you have a 3.3 then you take the LSAT and help boost your school's median. Wouldn't this drive median LSATs higher?

Pretty sure I'm missing something. What is it?


The methodology will necessarily have to change.

That makes sense. I'm not convinced of the "necessarily" though (e.g., foreign students don't have GPAs). The LSAT isn't dead unless USNWR decides to help kill it. Maybe they will. And maybe you're right that they have to. But I think USNWR's response to the ABA's decision will have at least as big an impact on the LSAT's future as the decision itself.


I appreciate the response, but I am convinced of the necessity of it. Foreign students are a tiny subset of the applicant pool. I imagine there will be at least a group of lower ranked schools that will just make admission exams optional. That will screw any ranking, so at a minimum, admissions tests will have to be given extremely minimal strength in the rating methodology. If schools can wholesale not require an admissions test, it will trigger a massive change in the ranking methodology.


How long would a methodology change like this take? I can't imagine it would take hold for at least a few years, until people start applying in much larger numbers with no LSAT scores, right?

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UVA2B
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby UVA2B » Sat Nov 04, 2017 9:01 pm

shinydunsparce wrote:
sparkytrainer wrote:
Pneumonia wrote:
sparkytrainer wrote:
Pneumonia wrote:Does anyone know how this will affect the USNWR methodology? I think it would be premature to completely write them out of the picture. Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but here's what it looks like to me:

assumption: USNWR keeps the LSAT as part of its ranking methodology.
outcome: wouldn't this make 173+ LSATs even more valuable. For example, if you have a 3.9, then you just don't sit for any test. But if you have a 3.3 then you take the LSAT and help boost your school's median. Wouldn't this drive median LSATs higher?

Pretty sure I'm missing something. What is it?


The methodology will necessarily have to change.

That makes sense. I'm not convinced of the "necessarily" though (e.g., foreign students don't have GPAs). The LSAT isn't dead unless USNWR decides to help kill it. Maybe they will. And maybe you're right that they have to. But I think USNWR's response to the ABA's decision will have at least as big an impact on the LSAT's future as the decision itself.


I appreciate the response, but I am convinced of the necessity of it. Foreign students are a tiny subset of the applicant pool. I imagine there will be at least a group of lower ranked schools that will just make admission exams optional. That will screw any ranking, so at a minimum, admissions tests will have to be given extremely minimal strength in the rating methodology. If schools can wholesale not require an admissions test, it will trigger a massive change in the ranking methodology.


How long would a methodology change like this take? I can't imagine it would take hold for at least a few years, until people start applying in much larger numbers with no LSAT scores, right?


It’s basically a glorified academic gossip rag. If this takes effect, they’ll have it ready for next year. So the rankings change effect on applicants will be delayed by ~2 cycles (current and next one).

TargetPoint
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby TargetPoint » Sat Nov 04, 2017 9:13 pm

First post, long time lurker that will likely apply next cycle. I'm on the same page as you, Pneumonia. It's difficult to make a strong prediction about this without USNWR's adjusted methodology and more solidified information from the ABA. I find it pretty unlikely that USNWR removes the LSAT or a standardized test altogether in its tabulation, but I could be wrong.

I'm assuming GPA medians will rise, GPA floors may rise slightly as well, GRE splitters will be less successful than LSAT splitters, LSAT splitters will be less successful overall than in years past, softs will matter slightly more, and some sort of standardized test will be required at all T-14 schools. Like I said though, I could be way off base since we don't have an abundance of information to work with at the moment.

shinydunsparce
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby shinydunsparce » Sat Nov 04, 2017 9:16 pm

UVA2B wrote:
shinydunsparce wrote:
sparkytrainer wrote:
Pneumonia wrote:
sparkytrainer wrote:
Pneumonia wrote:Does anyone know how this will affect the USNWR methodology? I think it would be premature to completely write them out of the picture. Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but here's what it looks like to me:

assumption: USNWR keeps the LSAT as part of its ranking methodology.
outcome: wouldn't this make 173+ LSATs even more valuable. For example, if you have a 3.9, then you just don't sit for any test. But if you have a 3.3 then you take the LSAT and help boost your school's median. Wouldn't this drive median LSATs higher?

Pretty sure I'm missing something. What is it?


The methodology will necessarily have to change.

That makes sense. I'm not convinced of the "necessarily" though (e.g., foreign students don't have GPAs). The LSAT isn't dead unless USNWR decides to help kill it. Maybe they will. And maybe you're right that they have to. But I think USNWR's response to the ABA's decision will have at least as big an impact on the LSAT's future as the decision itself.


I appreciate the response, but I am convinced of the necessity of it. Foreign students are a tiny subset of the applicant pool. I imagine there will be at least a group of lower ranked schools that will just make admission exams optional. That will screw any ranking, so at a minimum, admissions tests will have to be given extremely minimal strength in the rating methodology. If schools can wholesale not require an admissions test, it will trigger a massive change in the ranking methodology.


How long would a methodology change like this take? I can't imagine it would take hold for at least a few years, until people start applying in much larger numbers with no LSAT scores, right?


It’s basically a glorified academic gossip rag. If this takes effect, they’ll have it ready for next year. So the rankings change effect on applicants will be delayed by ~2 cycles (current and next one).


So am I being neurotic thinking that splitters would be screwed by next cycle? Just pretty thrown by all the uncertainty this puts into the admissions game.

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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby wmbuff » Sat Nov 04, 2017 9:36 pm

TargetPoint wrote:First post, long time lurker that will likely apply next cycle. I'm on the same page as you, Pneumonia. It's difficult to make a strong prediction about this without USNWR's adjusted methodology and more solidified information from the ABA. I find it pretty unlikely that USNWR removes the LSAT or a standardized test altogether in its tabulation, but I could be wrong.

I'm assuming GPA medians will rise, GPA floors may rise slightly as well, GRE splitters will be less successful than LSAT splitters, LSAT splitters will be less successful overall than in years past, softs will matter slightly more, and some sort of standardized test will be required at all T-14 schools. Like I said though, I could be way off base since we don't have an abundance of information to work with at the moment.


Given that the proposed language seems to indicate that some sort of test is still recommended, I think you've got the right notion. There will be changes, just not as sweeping as some are predicting. It does likely hurt super splitters, and really hurt reverse splitters, but we'll have to see how much and how soon.

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Liberal Theory
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby Liberal Theory » Sat Nov 04, 2017 11:17 pm

The question burning in my mind now is how the hell scholarship offers will be impacted by this.

I spent the last 6 months preparing to ace a test to avoid taking out a fucking mortgage. I can almost feel myself getting fucked already.

Could this possibly have the effect of lowering tuition, or the opposite? Will T2 and T1 schools begin to blur together?

I can't even apply until at least next year. God damn it.

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UVA2B
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby UVA2B » Sat Nov 04, 2017 11:31 pm

Can we please end the speculation that revolves around several factors no one outside the relevant committees/publications can control?

The ABA might go free range on standardized testing, and it seems pretty likely they will. This would possibly neutralize the weight of the LSAT if USNWR also devalues it. That would be a sea change from the current admissions model, but that doesn't mean it's time for hair on fire reactions. If you previously relied on a strong LSAT to get into law schools, you might have to do something different. That could include getting actual work experience and trying to prove yourself beyond a four hour standardized test that helps control a lower GPA in UG.

But you can't control any of that. So stop worrying about it. Maybe you waste your time studying for the LSAT, or maybe your elite LSAT becomes more valuable because USNWR decides to weight it despite the admissions model changing. Or maybe the traditionally strong law schools adjust so that they continue to get elite applicants depending on how the calculus plays out. YLS has been playing with this calculus like toy filled with cat nip for awhile, and I don't expect that to change. Harvard saw the writing on the wall before the ABA moved in that direction. So did NU and GULC for their own reasons.

This isn't going to magically change the prestige-obsessed profession of law. And because it won't change the general prestige of the top law schools, it also won't affect the candidates going to those schools. The only thing that will realistically change is that applicants will change their behavior to continue positioning themselves for admission to the schools that place well in desirable law jobs.

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sodomojo
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby sodomojo » Sat Nov 04, 2017 11:43 pm

wmbuff wrote:Given that the proposed language seems to indicate that some sort of test is still recommended, I think you've got the right notion. There will be changes, just not as sweeping as some are predicting. It does likely hurt super splitters, and really hurt reverse splitters, but we'll have to see how much and how soon.

Why would it really hurt reverse splitters if any change would seem to devalue the weight of test scores in favor of GPA?

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slurp
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby slurp » Sun Nov 05, 2017 1:12 am

sodomojo wrote:
wmbuff wrote:Given that the proposed language seems to indicate that some sort of test is still recommended, I think you've got the right notion. There will be changes, just not as sweeping as some are predicting. It does likely hurt super splitters, and really hurt reverse splitters, but we'll have to see how much and how soon.

Why would it really hurt reverse splitters if any change would seem to devalue the weight of test scores in favor of GPA?

weight of test scores isn't devalued. actually, it's likely going to be increased. the problem for traditional LSAT takers is that they will be competing against a larger pool of takers (how many future GRE takers will be considering law as their primary field of study?)

Schools will probably be reporting both GRE and LSAT medians, and they get to choose between high scoring applicants in both GRE/LSAT pools with plenty of high GPAs to go around. Will USNWR require law schools to give out a full distribution of x amount of LSAT takers, x amount of GRE takers, and x amount of no test takers? can they require this? who knows, certainly not me.

despite this, it's probable that no legit law school will accept an applicant based on GPA only w/o a standardized test score, unless the applicant - as trite as it is to say - basically cured cancer.

preamble
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby preamble » Sun Nov 05, 2017 1:39 am

Wouldn't the USNWR need to find a way to tabulate softs for them to suddenly matter a lot more? (i.e. I really don't want my podunk state UG to be held against me. :( )

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sodomojo
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby sodomojo » Sun Nov 05, 2017 2:20 am

slurp wrote:
sodomojo wrote:
wmbuff wrote:Given that the proposed language seems to indicate that some sort of test is still recommended, I think you've got the right notion. There will be changes, just not as sweeping as some are predicting. It does likely hurt super splitters, and really hurt reverse splitters, but we'll have to see how much and how soon.

Why would it really hurt reverse splitters if any change would seem to devalue the weight of test scores in favor of GPA?

weight of test scores isn't devalued. actually, it's likely going to be increased. the problem for traditional LSAT takers is that they will be competing against a larger pool of takers (how many future GRE takers will be considering law as their primary field of study?)

Schools will probably be reporting both GRE and LSAT medians, and they get to choose between high scoring applicants in both GRE/LSAT pools with plenty of high GPAs to go around. Will USNWR require law schools to give out a full distribution of x amount of LSAT takers, x amount of GRE takers, and x amount of no test takers? can they require this? who knows, certainly not me.

I don't mean devalue as far as weighting methodology in rankings go, I mean devalue as in this should lessen the impact of a subpar test score. Which is why I am still confused why this decision would "really hurt" reverse splitters. Not sure whether that was a typo or I am missing something here.

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MichiganHoosier
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby MichiganHoosier » Sun Nov 05, 2017 5:49 am

I see a lot of posts regarding how this is really bad for low GPAs, and that is definitely worrisome (sub 3.0 may truly be in bad shape). However, to me, this potential change looks like it could be modeled after MBA programs (accept both GMAT and GRE). And almost all graduate programs, particularly MBA programs, have a wider range of GPAs than their law school counterparts:

Yale: 3.69 avg (3.38-3.94)
Harvard: 3.71 avg
Stanford: 3.73 avg
UChicago: 3.6 avg (2.72-4.0)
Columbia: 3.5 avg (3.2-3.9)
NYU: 3.48 avg (80% range 3.12-3.81)
Penn: 3.6 avg
Michigan: No GPA listed on student profile page
Virginia: 3.5 avg
Cal: 3.71 avg (3.07-4.0)
Duke: 80% range 3.0-3.83
Northwestern: 3.6 avg
Cornell: 3.39 avg
Texas: 3.42 avg
Georgetown: 2.95-3.78


Now I could be totally off base and may have interpreted this wrong, but I see this as potentially a change that will put a lot more value on "softs" and truly make it more
holistic. So yes, it could be bad for k-jd low gpas (and previously stated sub 3.0s). But I don't see this hurting people with decent work experience and low 3 GPAs, i actually see it benefiting them. Maybe I'm just being an optimist though. In the end, at this point anything that anyone says on here is hypothetical. It is a bummer though for people studying for the LSAT 1+ year out wondering if they're just wasting their time.
Last edited by MichiganHoosier on Sun Nov 05, 2017 6:31 am, edited 1 time in total.

AJordan
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby AJordan » Sun Nov 05, 2017 6:25 am

It still comes down to numbers of applicants. As long as there’s SOME test requirement you’re still weeding out the “just because” crowd. I still think it’s folly to assume that applicant numbers will increase significantly because the GRE is now accepted. Huge assumption there.

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wmbuff
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby wmbuff » Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:32 am

sodomojo wrote:
slurp wrote:
sodomojo wrote:
wmbuff wrote:Given that the proposed language seems to indicate that some sort of test is still recommended, I think you've got the right notion. There will be changes, just not as sweeping as some are predicting. It does likely hurt super splitters, and really hurt reverse splitters, but we'll have to see how much and how soon.

Why would it really hurt reverse splitters if any change would seem to devalue the weight of test scores in favor of GPA?

weight of test scores isn't devalued. actually, it's likely going to be increased. the problem for traditional LSAT takers is that they will be competing against a larger pool of takers (how many future GRE takers will be considering law as their primary field of study?)

Schools will probably be reporting both GRE and LSAT medians, and they get to choose between high scoring applicants in both GRE/LSAT pools with plenty of high GPAs to go around. Will USNWR require law schools to give out a full distribution of x amount of LSAT takers, x amount of GRE takers, and x amount of no test takers? can they require this? who knows, certainly not me.

I don't mean devalue as far as weighting methodology in rankings go, I mean devalue as in this should lessen the impact of a subpar test score. Which is why I am still confused why this decision would "really hurt" reverse splitters. Not sure whether that was a typo or I am missing something here.


What I'm reading still looks like the ABA wants there to be *some* test, which probably means the spread of the GRE in the short term. That would increase the pool of high score testers in multiple ways, including applicants with good GPAs who can do better on one of the tests than the other taking both. The folks who just underperform on standardized tests in general lose out to the folks who are merely bad at the LSAT in specific. If you're still a low test score applicant in a world where high scores are easier to come by, I suspect you get left in the lurch (short term, because it's hard to predict what this would look like if test scores in general are deemphasized, which doesn't seem to be what the proposal is discussing yet).

rideagain
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby rideagain » Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:58 am

Ehh. I think it's pretty bullshit to be honest. The GRE just as much as the LSAT favors those who have the $$$ to spend on studying/prep, so that excuse schools use is out. We all know this is just so they can open up the floodgates to more applicants. Could schools use this to increase their focus on soft factors- work experience, writing skills etc- sure. Will they? At the top yeah I think so, the t-20 will be able to be selective about applicants. But most schools, who are cash strapped and want to grow class sizes, will use this as a chance to increase enrolled students. We all know that's not good for the job market. Plus, it'll take away a lot of negotiating power for potential students re: scholarships.

The LSAT served as a significant barrier to entry to the legal field. That's gone now, and it's the opposite of the type of action the ABA should be taking.

Veil of Ignorance
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby Veil of Ignorance » Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:36 am

Do we think there's any chance that USNWR will devalue the LSAT metric for this cycle? I'd be pretty miffed if that happened.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby MikeSpivey » Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:46 am

Veil of Ignorance wrote:Do we think there's any chance that USNWR will devalue the LSAT metric for this cycle? I'd be pretty miffed if that happened.


Very little chance of that this cycle. There's very little chance of anything odd happening this cycle, ABA LSAC, USNWR. But with that said, there is a very great chance applications will be up substantially this cycle. So I'd be aware of that factor as well.

bamboo_72
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby bamboo_72 » Sun Nov 05, 2017 11:59 am

Mike, do you know if the GRE and the LSAT are perceived equally in the sense that a 99% GRE score is viewed as comparable to a 99% LSAT score?

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MikeSpivey
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby MikeSpivey » Sun Nov 05, 2017 12:02 pm

bamboo_72 wrote:Mike, do you know if the GRE and the LSAT are perceived equally in the sense that a 99% GRE score is viewed as comparable to a 99% LSAT score?


We (I've talked to a lot of people about this in the last week) very much believe so. The one thing we don't know yet if if you have both a LSAT and a GPA, what will USNWR do with it.

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Jack_Kelly
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Re: ABA decides that each school can use whatever test, or no test, they want for admissions

Postby Jack_Kelly » Sun Nov 05, 2017 12:08 pm

How will the GRE be weighted by admissions? Surely quant shouldn't be given the same weight as verbal.




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