Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

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Pneumonia

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.82 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby Pneumonia » Tue Dec 26, 2017 7:25 pm

sash wrote: I’m just looking at the numbers like ...190 students...160 passed the bar...50 end up at a law firm this size with this 25th percentile salary...20 end up at a law firm this size with this 25th percentile salary...35 end up at a law firm this size with this 25th percentile salary...so it looks like the majority are making a minimum of this salary...

it would helpful if you could pick a specific school as a reference point.

The reason people are reacting so aggressively is that many of us have also looked at 509's and the info you're pulling from them seems off base. There are two common traps. The first was already mentioned: median is not the same as average, and average salary does not mean the salary that the average student gets. The second trap is that few schools get responses from all students. The students that do respond usually have jobs. The students that don't respond usually don't.

You can get into the T14. You need to adjust your study methods. If you haven't already, check in the LSAT prep subforum.

Also, since I didn't see anyone mention it above, try using the Law School Transparency website rather than the reports themselves. LST presents the info more clearly and without many of the obfuscations that the schools like to use.

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby 181plz » Tue Dec 26, 2017 8:22 pm

Just thought I’d emphasize that a 158 is a good diagnostic score. Many, if not most, high scorers start out lower than you did. My diagnostic was either a 157 or 159 (can’t remember,) and I improved well over 10 points. It is not unreasonable to earn a large increase from your current score.

Respectfully, if you have been studying for months and haven’t seen any improvement then you aren’t studying properly at all. Consider a tutor or a class. Good luck.

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Pneumonia

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby Pneumonia » Tue Dec 26, 2017 8:24 pm

181plz wrote:Just thought I’d emphasize that a 158 is a good diagnostic score. Many, if not most, high scorers start out lower than you did. My diagnostic was either a 157 or 159 (can’t remember,) and I improved well over 10 points. It is not unreasonable to earn a large increase from your current score.

Respectfully, if you have been studying for months and haven’t seen any improvement then you aren’t studying properly at all. Consider a tutor or a class. Good luck.


This is a good point. I started at 151 and went up 25+ points.

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby mcmand » Tue Dec 26, 2017 8:58 pm

181plz wrote:Respectfully, if you have been studying for months and haven’t seen any improvement then you aren’t studying properly at all.


+1. Studying smart is what will get you results, OP. Figure this out now, before law school, because it's the same barrier for exam prep in law school and the same barrier for bar exam prep.

Too many prospective and current law students think the way to success is to just read and regurgitate material. There are tried and true methods for the LSAT that will help you understand the test and how to beat it. Use the LSAT forum here to find one that works for you.

158 is just too low for your goals. You can do better!
Last edited by mcmand on Mon Jan 29, 2018 6:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

sash

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby sash » Wed Dec 27, 2017 2:11 am

Okay I’ll retake. Does anyone think taking classes is a good idea? I think usually I hear that classes shouldn’t be done bc it just goes over the basics and it isn’t good for people who start with my diagnostic score but IDK maybe I don’t even have the basics down...I have almost a year until next December exam so maybe it wouldn’t be a total waste of time to do the classes just to get me going?

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby sash » Wed Dec 27, 2017 2:14 am

181plz wrote:Just thought I’d emphasize that a 158 is a good diagnostic score. Many, if not most, high scorers start out lower than you did. My diagnostic was either a 157 or 159 (can’t remember,) and I improved well over 10 points. It is not unreasonable to earn a large increase from your current score.

Respectfully, if you have been studying for months and haven’t seen any improvement then you aren’t studying properly at all. Consider a tutor or a class. Good luck.


Did you take a class? I did 7sage but after going through the curriculum I was just blind reviewing over and over and not really getting anywhere bc the questions I was getting wrong seemed sporadic and didn’t really follow a trend... i just wasn’t understanding anything (obviously since my score didn’t improve at all)

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby Pneumonia » Wed Dec 27, 2017 2:24 am

sash wrote:Okay I’ll retake. Does anyone think taking classes is a good idea? I think usually I hear that classes shouldn’t be done bc it just goes over the basics and it isn’t good for people who start with my diagnostic score but IDK maybe I don’t even have the basics down...I have almost a year until next December exam so maybe it wouldn’t be a total waste of time to do the classes just to get me going?

Taking a class is a fine idea. Your diagnostic score doesn't mean you're above the "basics." There are no careers/professions in which innate ability allows you to skip formal requirements. Sure, completing the reqs may be easier for you and/or you may get through them quicker, but that doesn't mean you get to ignore them.

Here's what the above means for you: if you got a 158 on a timed first LSAT diagnostic, then you absolutely have the ability to get into the 170s. How? The same way that everyone else does: learning to diagram etc.

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby sash » Wed Dec 27, 2017 2:29 am

Pneumonia wrote:
sash wrote:Okay I’ll retake. Does anyone think taking classes is a good idea? I think usually I hear that classes shouldn’t be done bc it just goes over the basics and it isn’t good for people who start with my diagnostic score but IDK maybe I don’t even have the basics down...I have almost a year until next December exam so maybe it wouldn’t be a total waste of time to do the classes just to get me going?

Taking a class is a fine idea. Your diagnostic score doesn't mean you're above the "basics." There are no careers/professions in which innate ability allows you to skip formal requirements. Sure, completing the reqs may be easier for you and/or you may get through them quicker, but that doesn't mean you get to ignore them.

Here's what the above means for you: if you got a 158 on a timed first LSAT diagnostic, then you absolutely have the ability to get into the 170s. How? The same way that everyone else does: learning to diagram etc.


Any courses you would recommend? Thank u guys a lot for convincing me to retake I appreciate it

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby 181plz » Wed Dec 27, 2017 2:34 am

Did you take a class? I did 7sage but after going through the curriculum I was just blind reviewing over and over and not really getting anywhere bc the questions I was getting wrong seemed sporadic and didn’t really follow a trend... i just wasn’t understanding anything (obviously since my score didn’t improve at all)


I took a Kaplan course, and frankly I don’t recommend doing so. While the online resources are useful, and the curriculum isn’t bad, their instructors are only required to have scored a 164 and are not properly trained.

With that being said, there are other courses which I imagine will prove more useful. I would be sure to ask around here before choosing one.

It sounds like you jumped into blind review without a thorough understanding of the test, and that’s unproductive. The point of BR is to enhance your already honed abilities and find all the little mistakes that can be difficult to spot under timed testing conditions

In my opinion, your first goal should be to get really good at logic games, to the point where you are consistently getting almost all of the questions correct. Others may disagree, but I’m of the opinion that there’s no need to use time constraints until you’ve gotten good at the section, then you can focus on completing it in a timely manner. Just be sure that you are learning the methods that make LG easier and understanding the patterns of the games. 7sage does a great job of helping you do this.

After LG, I’d recommend breaking up LR questions into different types and practicing them one type at a time. Then you can proceed to RC. But for now, focus on LG and mastering the methods and diagramming required to solve games effectively. You can pm me if you have other prep concerns.

Edit: quote function was acting funny. Also, if you haven’t already, you need to get a shitload of preptests.

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby icechicken » Wed Dec 27, 2017 2:45 am

Pneumonia wrote:Your diagnostic score doesn't mean you're above the "basics." There are no careers/professions in which innate ability allows you to skip formal requirements. Sure, completing the reqs may be easier for you and/or you may get through them quicker, but that doesn't mean you get to ignore them.

Here's what the above means for you: if you got a 158 on a timed first LSAT diagnostic, then you absolutely have the ability to get into the 170s. How? The same way that everyone else does: learning to diagram etc.


+1.

If anything, having a high diagnostic means you might get a lot more out of formal study, since it implies you already have a lot of the hard-to-teach stuff (English proficiency, comfort with standardized testing, etc.) figured out. It's kind of like how you'll get more out of dance lessons if you're already physically fit.

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby sash » Wed Dec 27, 2017 3:23 am

I think I’m going to go with ScoreItUp as it has great reviews and a Harvard graduate teaching it who even helps people out with the law school application process and takes emails late at night about specific LSAT qs. Seems very personalized. It starts in late March though so until then I will self study and maybe I won’t even need it...if I do at least I’ll have the money saved by then. I’ll extend my 7sage access too since I think the video explanations are helpful

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby elransfo » Fri Jan 05, 2018 2:53 pm

I would highly, highly recommend TestMasters! They have TONS of practice tests, the class is 3x per week and SO helpful, and you can get personalized assistance through their online portal for any question you have on homework, practice tests, or just a general issue you're struggling with. Also, echoing what people said here, I think long-term studying (3+ months intensive, or 6+ months more casual) is important. On my second diag I saw only a two point increase, but after 3 months of TestMasters and then 3 weeks of individual study I saw a 12pt increase my first time taking the actual test (and I started out around where you are). Going from a 159ish to a 170+ is SUPER doable you just need to take a really great class.

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby Barack O'Drama » Fri Jan 05, 2018 3:59 pm

Check out 7Sage if you're a fan of online course. Can't speak highly enough of their course!
Last edited by Barack O'Drama on Fri Jan 26, 2018 6:25 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.82 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby 38981928 » Fri Jan 05, 2018 4:11 pm

sash wrote:
sparkytrainer wrote:You aren't going to get into any of those schools you listed. You need to retake.

I get that everyone has the “you need to retake” attitude but is it really feasible to get your LSAT score up like 10 points? While working a full time job? It just doesn’t seem realistic. Also, again, even getting into those schools, aside from Stanford, i’ll be making 100k a year and paying off student loans until i’m 40 and not able to live in a nice place


It's definitely possible. I got a 9-point increase above 170+ territory in 4 months while working full time. I also traveled for two weeks, got hit by a hurricane and had to deal with some property damage (the week of my scheduled LSAT, which got postponed because of the hurricane damage to my area), was volunteering, had a social life, and adopted a dog that needed lots of TLC. I studied a lot from Feb through June but ended up with a score just 3 points above my diagnostic, and after the first disappointing LSAT I did practice tests/drills + review every free moment I had (even on the plane to / long bus or train rides throughout Europe and during work lunch breaks).

ETA: A class might work for you, but it absolutely did not help me as much as doing drills/PTs/my own review did in addition to getting some balance and happiness in other aspects of my life. Everyone is different though, and ultimately I recommend finding the strategy that works best for you and don't just chug along with a method if something's really not clicking for you. I have a friend who studied for over a year with multiple expensive prep courses and couldn't get higher than a 162 (from a 158 diagnostic) because she just followed the plans thrown at her without evaluating along the way if the methods were clicking for her or not.

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby Lysander26 » Sun Jun 17, 2018 9:31 am

​Sash, I highly recommend Score it Up. My LSAT diagnostic was 159; after completing Score It Up I hit a 175. I had your GPA (3.8ish) from a small liberal arts college and went to Duke with scholarship. Mark's class teaches you the tricks that LSAT authors like to use and how to think with the analytic rigor to do well on test day. He also made the class fun! And Mark can help with other components of law school admissions. He recently helped a friend of mine craft a personal statement.

I recently posted this review of SIU on the class's main thread:
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=184641&p=10318207#p10318207

Feel free to PM me if you'd like more info/have specific questions.

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby sash » Fri Aug 10, 2018 1:01 pm

Thanks ya'll for pushing me to retake. I got a 10 point increase. Not quite a 170 but hoping for some good results in the lower t14. Might retake in November for a 170. I know everyone on here would say you must retake for a 170+ and I really am considering it.

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby JohnnieSockran » Fri Aug 10, 2018 1:56 pm

sash wrote:Thanks ya'll for pushing me to retake. I got a 10 point increase. Not quite a 170 but hoping for some good results in the lower t14. Might retake in November for a 170. I know everyone on here would say you must retake for a 170+ and I really am considering it.


Nice work, so you ended up with a 168-169? That'll certainly get you some T14 acceptances, but with such a high GPA, I'm sure you could get some pretty significant scholarship money with a 171+.

Either way, you're in a good position, but as someone who started biglaw with $300k in student loans, the scholarship money will be worth the effort if you can bring your score about a bit. If you can't get your score any higher, even with my debt I'd say law school was worth it (based on going to a school that makes biglaw probable).

sash

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Re: Can you get into a t14 with a 3.8 gpa/should I retake the LSAT/should I settle for a low ranked school with merit $

Postby sash » Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:29 pm

JohnnieSockran wrote:
sash wrote:Thanks ya'll for pushing me to retake. I got a 10 point increase. Not quite a 170 but hoping for some good results in the lower t14. Might retake in November for a 170. I know everyone on here would say you must retake for a 170+ and I really am considering it.


Nice work, so you ended up with a 168-169? That'll certainly get you some T14 acceptances, but with such a high GPA, I'm sure you could get some pretty significant scholarship money with a 171+.

Either way, you're in a good position, but as someone who started biglaw with $300k in student loans, the scholarship money will be worth the effort if you can bring your score about a bit. If you can't get your score any higher, even with my debt I'd say law school was worth it (based on going to a school that makes biglaw probable).


Yeah I wasn't quite at a 170. I was ultimately aiming for a 170+ and I ended up taking the July LSAT kind of on a whim as my average was certainly not 170. I studied for 6 months but had only taken 10 or so PTs. My LSAT score was 2 points higher than my average PT score. I only hit a 170 twice, with mostly mid-high 160s and a couple low 160s. This July LSAT felt like it was really tailored to my strengths and I'm concerned about getting my average up (while working full time), and then ending up with an LSAT that has a lot of qs which I'm weak at and possibly ending up with a worse score on the retake. And then I get stuck in a cycle of retaking for like years until I finally hit 170. I don't want to be that guy who applies to law school 6 times. Not that there's anything wrong with it but I'm really ready to go to school and I'm not at a job which I enjoy enough to stay for years. Also, it seems like the difference in scholarship money between my score and a 170 is negligible, although the acceptance rate difference is pretty huge. It seems like the real difference in scholly $ is getting over a 170 and I can't imagine getting over a 170.



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