I've been to a few undergraduate schools. Will this matter?

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openwindow

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I've been to a few undergraduate schools. Will this matter?

Postby openwindow » Sat Jun 30, 2018 10:27 am

I've been to a few different schools - 4, to be exact.

The first school I lived on campus for. I attended for one year and then transferred so I didn't have to take out further student loans.

The second school I attended was near my house and so I commuted there and paid out of pocket. I attended classes at night while working during the day. Then I moved to Italy and decided to work on my business.

I'm still in Italy now but am finally finishing my undergraduate degree - I am attending a reputable online campus of a state school, and I am also concurrently attending another reputable state school's online campus. It's like a dual B.A. program, and one of the schools gives A+s so this helps for my LSAC GPA.

Will this be a problem?

openwindow

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Re: I've been to a few undergraduate schools. Will this matter?

Postby openwindow » Sun Jul 01, 2018 3:22 am

Bump?

sparkytrainer

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Re: I've been to a few undergraduate schools. Will this matter?

Postby sparkytrainer » Sun Jul 01, 2018 9:48 am

openwindow wrote:I've been to a few different schools - 4, to be exact.

The first school I lived on campus for. I attended for one year and then transferred so I didn't have to take out further student loans.

The second school I attended was near my house and so I commuted there and paid out of pocket. I attended classes at night while working during the day. Then I moved to Italy and decided to work on my business.

I'm still in Italy now but am finally finishing my undergraduate degree - I am attending a reputable online campus of a state school, and I am also concurrently attending another reputable state school's online campus. It's like a dual B.A. program, and one of the schools gives A+s so this helps for my LSAC GPA.

Will this be a problem?


As a general matter, attending one or two schools isn't a big deal. However, you have two issues. First, you have attended 4 schools, half of which are online and will be your degree-bearing institutions. That many schools isn't probably gonna look too great.

Second, and the much bigger problem, is that your degree is coming from an online school. Almost no one considers online classes as reputable. That will be a major hamper to your application. How much will it hurt? I dont know, but it will be an issue in your overall evaluation. Graduating from an online school, even with a 4.0 does not show anything about your ability as a student. A half asleep donkey could get a 4.0 attending online classes (not to belittle your work at all, just saying).

You are going to need to spin a strong narrative in your personal statement that explains why so many schools and how it shows your strengths as a student. But more importantly, you are going to have to really crush the LSAT. You are going to need a 170+ to even get legitimate looks I think.

openwindow

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Re: I've been to a few undergraduate schools. Will this matter?

Postby openwindow » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:53 am

I am sorry but I don't agree with your point about online schools.

I mentioned that it is the online campus of two very reputable state schools. Think, University of Wisconsin (just an example), but a B.A. that is offered both online and in person. My degree will not show anywhere that it is was obtained online, and it is the exact equivalent of a degree in residence.

DerKatze

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Re: I've been to a few undergraduate schools. Will this matter?

Postby DerKatze » Sun Jul 01, 2018 1:24 pm

sparkytrainer wrote:As a general matter, attending one or two schools isn't a big deal.


I would hope attending one school isn't a big deal, seeing as it's a requirement to getting into law school :P.

@Openwindow: It may come up regardless. If you choose to explain why there will be four different institutions on your academic report (not saying you should, idk about whether or not you would want to), then the law schools you apply to will most likely be able to figure out that you did some coursework online. That, or your explanation doesn't have enough details and makes you look shady.

I think you are both right to a degree. Taking courses online isn't always bad, and the quality of online courses has increased in recent years. However, if someone's whole degree (or most of it) is online, I would agree with sparky. It seems like you've spent two years taking courses in person (though I couldn't tell how many courses you took in year 2), so as long as you did well in those courses too the online part should not be a problem.

Overall, I think your situation is fine. Four colleges does look kind of sketchy, but transferring due to cost happens a lot, and completing a dual BA makes the second two acceptable. I don't think your question should be whether it will hurt you, but whether you need to briefly discuss why--and others on the forum can give a better answer for that than I.

openwindow

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Re: I've been to a few undergraduate schools. Will this matter?

Postby openwindow » Sun Jul 01, 2018 6:17 pm

Thanks so much for your reply.

I just feel like that's so silly and not at all indicative of an inability to see something through. I stopped attending the first school because I made the responsible choice--to move back home, work a 9 to 5, go to night school and pay out of pocket. As an 18 year old, that takes a lot of maturity instead of just racking up loans. I moved to Italy while attending the second school because I wanted to grow my business, saw an opportunity in my field that was going to blow up (I work in a really niche industry) and grabbed it by the horns. It paid off.

It took a LOT of pluck and determination at 20 to move by myself to another country and grow a business from a little seed into a successful one. I'm still in Italy and obtaining a dual Bachelor of Arts because I want to finish school and I want to make a career change--my law degree will also help in my current career. How in the world could any admissions officer see this as a bad thing? What am I supposed to do while I'm living abroad? Stagnate? I can't attend a brick and mortar school here because there aren't many opportunities to attend an American school here. :D I guess I'm just... perplexed. I'm 29, and I feel like my life experience is going to hurt me for no reason!

sparkytrainer

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Re: I've been to a few undergraduate schools. Will this matter?

Postby sparkytrainer » Mon Jul 02, 2018 1:58 pm

openwindow wrote:Thanks so much for your reply.

I just feel like that's so silly and not at all indicative of an inability to see something through. I stopped attending the first school because I made the responsible choice--to move back home, work a 9 to 5, go to night school and pay out of pocket. As an 18 year old, that takes a lot of maturity instead of just racking up loans. I moved to Italy while attending the second school because I wanted to grow my business, saw an opportunity in my field that was going to blow up (I work in a really niche industry) and grabbed it by the horns. It paid off.

It took a LOT of pluck and determination at 20 to move by myself to another country and grow a business from a little seed into a successful one. I'm still in Italy and obtaining a dual Bachelor of Arts because I want to finish school and I want to make a career change--my law degree will also help in my current career. How in the world could any admissions officer see this as a bad thing? What am I supposed to do while I'm living abroad? Stagnate? I can't attend a brick and mortar school here because there aren't many opportunities to attend an American school here. :D I guess I'm just... perplexed. I'm 29, and I feel like my life experience is going to hurt me for no reason!


No one is saying your life experiences are going to hurt your application. What we are saying is that an online degree is likely to hurt. Again that isn't a reflection on you per se, but it is a reflection of the diploma-mills that are online schools. Even reputable schools such as ASU are notorious for graduating anyone online with a high GPA who is willing to pay for the degree. Same with schools like Liberty and other name-brand schools with online programs.

Again, not a reflection on you particularly, but your application will be viewed through the eyes of admission people who are very skeptical of online degrees. Like I said earlier, your best bet is to crush the LSAT and show the adcomms you are a serious student, even with a less than reputable degree.



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