URM Boost

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mcds
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Re: URM Boost

Postby mcds » Fri Oct 17, 2008 1:30 pm

I can only speak of what I know from our internal statistics, but I would venture there are two common scenarios:

1) HBCU candidates with 3.9/15x
2) HYP, etc. candidates with >3.5/<165
3) Other candidates with regular GPAs and middle 160s

Looking at the BLSA Facebook Group, there was an interesting breakdown

T10 schools, 12 members
HBCU, 7
T20 schools, 7
State, 7

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summertimechi
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Re: URM Boost

Postby summertimechi » Fri Oct 17, 2008 1:31 pm

kurama20 wrote:
That is definitely NOT it; you're speaking as if simpy studying for this amount of time gurantees you those scores. Trust me it certainly DOES NOT;and it has nothing to do with expectations. Scoring in the 95+% on the lsat is not something that is going to be done without some sort of innate skill at standardized tests. Everyone on here acts as if you can just do some preptests and read powerscore bibles and score a 165; that's not true for most people. This website is filled with ivy leagurers and kids who thrive on standardized testing. The posters on this site are NOT indicative of the general population.

The general populace could not score a 165 + if their life depended on it, that's why it's the 95%. The lsat is not a knowledge based test, it really has more in common with an IQ test. Consequently just studying is only going to improve your score to an extent. I'm afraid the score gap is due to a much more complicated issue than "lowered expectations" . I am black and I know I don't need a sky high score to get into a good school;however I'm doing everything I can to get a 170, still it's just not coming. I've been studying for months. To score that high high expectations and hard work are NOT enough. People are always saying blacks are lazy and that' why they don't do well on standardized tests; this is utterly ridiculous and not true. They're other reasons.


Thank goodness for your viewpoint. I think it's utterly ridiculous to assume that Blacks don't score higher because they know they don't need anything higher. I think this whole argument opens up a can of the most disagreeable worms ever, so I hate even getting into it, and I won't get much further than this for sure because I see no point in arguing with people whose fundamental views of the world make them incapable of seeing things from any other perspective, but it always amazes me how narrow-minded so many people can be to just assume this when there are so may other factors (socioeconomic, et. al) to be considered.

mcds
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Re: URM Boost

Postby mcds » Fri Oct 17, 2008 1:46 pm


That is definitely NOT it; you're speaking as if simpy studying for this amount of time gurantees you those scores. Trust me it certainly DOES NOT;and it has nothing to do with expectations. Scoring in the 95+% on the lsat is not something that is going to be done without some sort of innate skill at standardized tests. Everyone on here acts as if you can just do some preptests and read powerscore bibles and score a 165; that's not true for most people. This website is filled with ivy leagurers and kids who thrive on standardized testing. The posters on this site are NOT indicative of the general population.

The general populace could not score a 165 + if their life depended on it, that's why it's the 95%. The lsat is not a knowledge based test, it really has more in common with an IQ test. Consequently just studying is only going to improve your score to an extent. I'm afraid the score gap is due to a much more complicated issue than "lowered expectations" . I am black and I know I don't need a sky high score to get into a good school;however I'm doing everything I can to get a 170, still it's just not coming. I've been studying for months. To score that high high expectations and hard work are NOT enough. People are always saying blacks are lazy and that' why they don't do well on standardized tests; this is utterly ridiculous and not true. They're other reasons.


So are you saying that blacks on average have a lower IQ?

Obviously, a 165 is a hard score to get; that isn't what is being debated. What we're talking about is relativity. White people score at a rate 10x that of blacks. We're going on the assumption that that isn't primarily due to a IQ gap - don't put yourself in a trap there. And like I said before, the poorest whites do just as well as the richest blacks - its not purely socio-economic based.

People do things based on incentive. Think about the What are my chances? Thread. 95% of new posters say, What score do I need to get into x school. Why? Because chances are that person wants to get into said school, and therefore is willing to put the effort in to achieving that score.

Now, lets say I'm white and someone tells me I need a 175 to get into Harvard. If I really want to go, I'm going to do my best to get a 175. However, lets say I'm white and I want to get into, say, Washington & Lee, and someone tells me I need to get a 165. Again, if I really want to go, I'm going to do my best to get a 165.

Now, for both of those individuals I'm sure a 177 and a 170 would be great. However, the presumed effort would exceed that of which is necessary. Particularly if you have other obligations or other interests besides trying to memorize different flaw in reasoning types. If you tell a black person you need to get a 165 to get into Harvard, why on earth is said person (who is presumed to be capable) going to spend an extra two months studying to try to get a 175 to get the same outcome? Obviously some people want to get a 180 regardless of need, but for the average person they do things based on goal based incentives and once that goal is attained, they tend not to go further.

I'm in no way saying that everyone and their cousin can pick up a PS bible and score 175 after 6 months; I sure did and although I think I'm capable of scoring that high, for various reasons I probably didn't.

My believe is that if you told everyone you need to get the same score, then everyone will work to get that said score. Will there still be a gap? Sure. But I promise you won't be nearly of the same degree.

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lawdog
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Re: URM Boost

Postby lawdog » Fri Oct 17, 2008 1:56 pm

Now, lets say I'm white and someone tells me I need a 175 to get into Harvard. If I really want to go, I'm going to do my best to get a 175. However, lets say I'm white and I want to get into, say, Washington & Lee, and someone tells me I need to get a 165. Again, if I really want to go, I'm going to do my best to get a 165.


Im missing your logic...

I don't think anyone would intentionally not get an answer right if they know the answer. The goal is 180, and you will score whateer you are capable of scoring.

Soma
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Re: URM Boost

Postby Soma » Fri Oct 17, 2008 1:56 pm

ramblinwreck wrote:What exactly does everyone think are the chances for a 3.3/165-170 URM (African American) male for Emory, Duke, Vanderbilt, and the University of Georgia? I attend a top public school in the South.


The chances are very good.

mcds
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Re: URM Boost

Postby mcds » Fri Oct 17, 2008 1:59 pm

summertimechi wrote:
kurama20 wrote:Thank goodness for your viewpoint. I think it's utterly ridiculous to assume that Blacks don't score higher because they know they don't need anything higher. I think this whole argument opens up a can of the most disagreeable worms ever, so I hate even getting into it, and I won't get much further than this for sure because I see no point in arguing with people whose fundamental views of the world make them incapable of seeing things from any other perspective, but it always amazes me how narrow-minded so many people can be to just assume this when there are so may other factors (socioeconomic, et. al) to be considered.


Only 29 blacks, or 0.3 percent of all LSAT test takers, scored 170 or above. In contrast, more than 1,900 white test takers scored 170 or above on the LSAT. They made up 3.1 percent of all white test takers. Thus whites were more than 10 times as likely as blacks to score 170 or above on the LSAT.

You're missing the point. Less than 1% of those within the black population score a 170+, as supposed to 3% of those within the white population score a 170+

You cannot tell me that there aren't 300 black people who went to a good public or prep school, then went to a good college, come from an upper-middle to upper class background and had all the same resources as their white peers do who apply to law school each year out of the 11,000.
Even if you look just the top black students at the top 10 private and liberal art schools, with an average of 20% applying to law school and an average 33% of those students who come from a relatively privileged background that is still 100 students who could be scoring in the 170s.

29 is way too low of a number to solely attribute socio-economic, bias and other factors. And I am not saying blacks are lazy. All I'm saying is that everyone no matter who they are or where they're from do things that require effort for a certain goal. If that goal can be attained with less effort, the majority of people will not make that extra effort.

Its just human behavior.
Last edited by mcds on Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

mcds
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Re: URM Boost

Postby mcds » Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:04 pm

lawdog wrote:
Now, lets say I'm white and someone tells me I need a 175 to get into Harvard. If I really want to go, I'm going to do my best to get a 175. However, lets say I'm white and I want to get into, say, Washington & Lee, and someone tells me I need to get a 165. Again, if I really want to go, I'm going to do my best to get a 165.


Im missing your logic...

I don't think anyone would intentionally not get an answer right if they know the answer. The goal is 180, and you will score whateer you are capable of scoring.


Its not about intentionally not getting an answer right, its about the amount of time that is required to attain the skills necessary to get answers right.

The vast majority of people aren't interested in getting a 180 or attending T14. They just want to score high enough to get into a certain school, regardless of that reason. Therefore, they're going to put the time in to get that score.

hayman
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Re: URM Boost

Postby hayman » Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:16 pm

wow. to say that a certain person cant score a certain score because of that person's color is pretty much saying some races are just smarter than others. if the schools dropped AA, are you guys saying that certain people are just incapable of getting in?
initially this might be the case, but i'm willing to bet that urms will start scoring the 170s they need given enough time to adjust. urms will work harder and as mcds says they'll put in more hours. the lsat is learnable. and even iq can be improved with exercise. don't have such a narrow view about intelligence and race...which by the way perpetuates this learned helplessness among racial groups... if you believe you can't do it you won't. or if you know you don't have to you won't.

hayman
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Re: URM Boost

Postby hayman » Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:22 pm

people who wrote the test initially said it's not learnable. but with enough people putting in the effort and learning it..they just can't say that anymore. if urms were held to the same lsat standard they will learn it and put in the effort that whites and asians are putting in. and their score will rise to meet the challenge. but go ahead and tell me that they can't do it. tell me this test is innate and is not learnable. then think about what you are implying

mcds
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Re: URM Boost

Postby mcds » Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:23 pm

hayman wrote:wow. to say that a certain person cant score a certain score because of that person's color is pretty much saying some races are just smarter than others. if the schools dropped AA, are you guys saying that certain people are just incapable of getting in?
initially this might be the case, but i'm willing to bet that urms will start scoring the 170s they need given enough time to adjust. urms will work harder and as mcds says they'll put in more hours. the lsat is learnable. and even iq can be improved with exercise. don't have such a narrow view about intelligence and race...which by the way perpetuates this learned helplessness among racial groups... if you believe you can't do it you won't. or if you know you don't have to you won't.


This is all I'm saying.

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kurama20
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Re: URM Boost

Postby kurama20 » Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:35 pm

So are you saying that blacks on average have a lower IQ?

Obviously, a 165 is a hard score to get; that isn't what is being debated. What we're talking about is relativity. White people score at a rate 10x that of blacks. We're going on the assumption that that isn't primarily due to a IQ gap - don't put yourself in a trap there. And like I said before, the poorest whites do just as well as the richest blacks - its not purely socio-economic based.

People do things based on incentive. Think about the What are my chances? Thread. 95% of new posters say, What score do I need to get into x school. Why? Because chances are that person wants to get into said school, and therefore is willing to put the effort in to achieving that score.

Now, lets say I'm white and someone tells me I need a 175 to get into Harvard. If I really want to go, I'm going to do my best to get a 175. However, lets say I'm white and I want to get into, say, Washington & Lee, and someone tells me I need to get a 165. Again, if I really want to go, I'm going to do my best to get a 165.

Now, for both of those individuals I'm sure a 177 and a 170 would be great. However, the presumed effort would exceed that of which is necessary. Particularly if you have other obligations or other interests besides trying to memorize different flaw in reasoning types. If you tell a black person you need to get a 165 to get into Harvard, why on earth is said person (who is presumed to be capable) going to spend an extra two months studying to try to get a 175 to get the same outcome? Obviously some people want to get a 180 regardless of need, but for the average person they do things based on goal based incentives and once that goal is attained, they tend not to go further.

I'm in no way saying that everyone and their cousin can pick up a PS bible and score 175 after 6 months; I sure did and although I think I'm capable of scoring that high, for various reasons I probably didn't.

My believe is that if you told everyone you need to get the same score, then everyone will work to get that said score. Will there still be a gap? Sure. But I promise you won't be nearly of the same degree.


Ok, I'm not saying this to be insulting,but there is a flaw in your logic here. You're exluding all other possiblities as to the answer to a problem based on your one hypothesis, one that is quite weak at that. Like on of the posters said, you are not going to intentionally miss an answer choice. No matter how much time you spend studying you are going to answer with the answer that you have reasoned is best. This is true whether or not you know you need a certain score. Honestly, you are equating the average black person to being lazy if you think the only reason we do not score as high as whites is because we "don't try as hard".

Do not equate me saying that one needs an innate ability to do well on standardized tests, or my statement that there are similarities between iq tests and the lsat, as me saying that blacks might have inferior iqs. The problem is, people equate these tests and iq tests to intelliegence. Who made the people who designed these tests the be all end all authority on what measures inteligence? Whenever someone says people do not do well on these tests many think it is a reflection of their intellilgence. To an extent that's true, but it is not totally true. Standardized tests are designed by caucasians to test what they perceive to be an effective measure of intelligence. Somewhere along the line people started taking this perception as fact. For example who decided that the 35 minute a section time limit was needed to determine intellligence? Why is this accepted as being correct? Seriously, I'm suprised more people don't question that aspect alone. If anything a time limit like that is going to be extemely biased to anyone with any sort of anxiety issues; let alone a black person who is fighting the stigmas that people attribute to black test takers. The tests are designed by people who do not understand the complexties or circumstances of the black populace. Intelligence is much too broad of a trait to be measured by a standardized test.

The truth is, as many SOCIOLOGISTS ( I'm always at a loss as to why sociological studies and opinons are never used on tls when it comes to lsat arguments, if anything their opinions/findings are more valid than Sander's crap study,) will tell you and have discovered, they're a lot of other reasons as to why urms do not fare well on standardized tests. Not only that, but that standardized tests have been PROVEN not to predict the ability of urms as well as caucasians. This really shouldn't be a suprise, the test was designed by a certain group to test all groups, which really isn't an effective technique. Most of the reasons as to why urms do not do as well on st can be learned in the average soc 1101 class.

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silver11
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Re: URM Boost

Postby silver11 » Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:49 pm

Wow I don't even know what to say. There seem to be two ideas floating around one that minorities are content with scoring lower and another that if this is not the case then it must follow that they have lower IQs. Couldn't it just be that minorities are at a disadvantage in life leading up to the LSAT? Maybe that four months of intense studying cannot make up for 20 years of handicap? Minorities statistically go to poor public schools, have lower incomes, and have less stable home environments. We haven't even touched the subject of educational legacy and the idea that first college generation minority students face much different hurdles than their white counterparts. I guarantee you that minorities do not approach the test with the idea that they want a 160 to get into Harvard. They try to maximize their score so that they can have all the options in front of them, it just so happens that not everyone can reach the high numbers that are needed for admission to these top schools. The fact that so few minority students reach these scores cannot be solely attributed to a lazy attitude and being complacent obviously there is something that differentiates white and minority students. The differences in income, family environment, and schools contribute and explain the gap.

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kurama20
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Re: URM Boost

Postby kurama20 » Fri Oct 17, 2008 2:52 pm

Wow I don't even know what to say. There seem to be two ideas floating around one that minorities are content with scoring lower and another that if this is not the case then it must follow that they have lower IQs. Couldn't it just be that minorities are at a disadvantage in life leading up to the LSAT? Maybe that four months of intense studying cannot make up for 20 years of handicap? Minorities statistically go to poor public schools, have lower incomes, and have less stable home environments. We haven't even touched the subject of educational legacy and the idea that first college generation minority students face much different hurdles than their white counterparts. I guarantee you that minorities do not approach the test with the idea that they want a 160 to get into Harvard. They try to maximize their score so that they can have all the options in front of them, it just so happens that not everyone can reach the high numbers that are needed for admission to these top schools. The fact that so few minority students reach these scores cannot be solely attributed to a lazy attitude and being complacent obviously there is something that differentiates white and minority students. The differences in income, family environment, and schools contribute and explain the gap.


EXACTLY, the factors you mentioned are just some of the reasons that sociologists attribute the difference to. Again they, can be learned from simply taking an intro sociology class, or researching the issue. There are so many contributing factors, socioeconomic, institutional, self fulfilling prophecy, the fact the test is designed by a set group for that group....the list goes on and on.

mcds
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Re: URM Boost

Postby mcds » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:06 pm

kurama20 wrote:
Ok, I'm not saying this to be insulting,but there is a flaw in your logic here. You're exluding all other possiblities as to the answer to a problem based on your one hypothesis, one that is quite weak at that.

I'm not excluding all other possibilities. I'm just saying that is one of them; and its not a possibility its human nature.

Like on of the posters said, you are not going to intentionally miss an answer choice. No matter how much time you spend studying you are going to answer with the answer that you have reasoned is best. This is true whether or not you know you need a certain score. Honestly, you are equating the average black person to being lazy if you think the only reason we do not score as high as whites is because we "don't try as hard".

Dude, you didn't read what I said. If you studied ad-hoc flaws or causation flaws or whatever when you see it on the test you will quickly recognize it, answer the question correctly and move on. If you didn't study those things, for whatever reason, you're going to be more likely to miss that question. Memorizing the 81 flaw types that Testmasters gives out or the 20 some-odd ones that Powerscore does distinguishes the 170+ student from the 160+ student. This holds whether you're black, white, blue or purple. It has nothing to do with being lazy, its just a function of an awareness of the material you have to absorb to do well enough on an exam. Its no different than any exam you've ever taken in your life. An "A" score requires more absorption of material than a "B" score. The student who got a 85 didn't intentionally answer problems wrong, they just didn't absorb as much material as the A student - and that holds regardless of what you look like.


Do not equate me saying that one needs an innate ability to do well on standardized tests, or my statement that there are similarities between iq tests and the lsat, as me saying that blacks might have inferior iqs. The problem is, people equate these tests and iq tests to intelligence. Who made the people who designed these tests the be all end all authority on what measures intelligence?

Well, I'm not sure how you define intelligence, but I do think that the sections do a good job of decifering your reading comprehension, analytical and logical reasoning skills. Obviously your score also depends greatly on your nerves and your attention to detail, but if you can deduce the relationship between cloths and Chinese oratory then you have good logical reasoning skills, which would be sufficient, in my opinion, to deem someone intelligent. However, being "intelligent" does not hinge on your ability to solve said problem - intelligence is a broad term that has many derivations and getting a question right or wrong on the LSAT is not the sole determinant; you're making a mistaken reversal to say so in LSAT terms. :wink:


Whenever someone says people do not do well on these tests many think it is a reflection of their intelligence. To an extent that's true, but it is not totally true. Standardized tests are designed by caucasians to test what they perceive to be an effective measure of intelligence.

You're opening a pandora's box there.

Somewhere along the line people started taking this perception as fact. For example who decided that the 35 minute a section time limit was needed to determine intellligence? Why is this accepted as being correct? Seriously, I'm suprised more people don't question that aspect alone. If anything a time limit like that is going to be extemely biased to anyone with any sort of anxiety issues; let alone a black person who is fighting the stigmas that people attribute to black test takers. The tests are designed by people who do not understand the complexties or circumstances of the black populace. Intelligence is much to broad of a trait to be measured by a standardized test.

When you are in a courtroom, or when you're sitting with clients or when you are doing anything in the real world, you have to act quick on your feet and you don't have time to be anxious. If you choke when you're trying to figure out the relationship between beans and plumpness, then you're not looking good to figure out how you're going to finalize a deal in 4 hours before the Asian markets open. People need to remember that real world tress >> law school stress >>> lsat stress. And although just because you get nervous doesn't meant you can't excel in the real world, and just because you don't get nervous doesn't mean you will excel in the real world, the timing component is a very necessary aspect of the test.

The truth is, as many SOCIOLOGISTS ( I'm always at a loss as to why sociological studies and opinons are never used on tls when it comes to lsat arguments, if anything their opinions/findings are more valid than Sander's crap study,) will tell you and have discovered, they're a lot of other reasons as to why urms do not fare well on standardized tests. Not only that, but that standardized tests have been PROVEN not to predict the ability of urms as well as caucasians. This really shouldn't be a suprise, the test was designed by a certain group to test all groups, which really isn't an effective technique. Most of the reasons as to why urms do not do as well on st can be learned in the average soc 1101 class.

I know of the studies of what happens when you put blacks in a room with whites versus with a room solely of blacks. Or what happens when you tell blacks something counts versus when you tell them it doesn't count, etc. But at some point - and connotively I will acknowledge this sounds bad - you have to get over it. You need to remember what the LSAT is for, and ultimately law school is for. Its to prepare you for the real world. The real world is very stressful and scary regardless of what you look like. I don't disagree with you in what you're saying, but I do disagree in that you can't keep making that argument without looking at the greater context of its relevance.

I don't care if you want to be a city councilman or if you want to be President, whether you want to be a partner at Wachtell or start your own firm in a local town. You're going to have to deal with shit, people may or may not be racist and not everything is going to seem fair. On the one hand, yes a lot should be done to try to fight these injustices, but on the other hand you're not going to be successful if you can't deal with overcoming them.

The LSAT is nothing compared to what you're ultimately going to face.




mcds
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Re: URM Boost

Postby mcds » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:11 pm

silver11 wrote:Wow I don't even know what to say. There seem to be two ideas floating around one that minorities are content with scoring lower and another that if this is not the case then it must follow that they have lower IQs. Couldn't it just be that minorities are at a disadvantage in life leading up to the LSAT? Maybe that four months of intense studying cannot make up for 20 years of handicap? Minorities statistically go to poor public schools, have lower incomes, and have less stable home environments. We haven't even touched the subject of educational legacy and the idea that first college generation minority students face much different hurdles than their white counterparts. I guarantee you that minorities do not approach the test with the idea that they want a 160 to get into Harvard. They try to maximize their score so that they can have all the options in front of them, it just so happens that not everyone can reach the high numbers that are needed for admission to these top schools. The fact that so few minority students reach these scores cannot be solely attributed to a lazy attitude and being complacent obviously there is something that differentiates white and minority students. The differences in income, family environment, and schools contribute and explain the gap.


1) White students in $>15K households score at the same level of black students in <$60K households.

2) There are more than 29 black students who fit none of the categories you mentioned and are perfectly capable of answering 90 or more questions right on the test.

3) I'm not saying anyone is lazy. I'm saying that people are goal oriented. They do what is necessary to reach whatever their goal. If studying for 2 months will achieve that goal, then doing anything more than that is superfluous. This holds true for every demographic.

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kurama20
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Re: URM Boost

Postby kurama20 » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:16 pm

However, being "intelligent" does not hinge on your ability to solve said problem - intelligence is a broad term that has many derivations and getting a question right or wrong on the LSAT is not the sole determinant; you're making a mistaken reversal to say so in LSAT terms.


You're mistaking my reasoning. I'm not making a reversal, I'm saying that a standardized test is somehwhat sufficient for proving intelligence NOT NECCESARY as many on tls seem to think it is. In terms of me opening a "can of worms" with my statement about the creation of the test, what I'm saying is controversial but true. Hell, even a lot of sociological studies cite this as one of the reasons. In additon, have you researched the history of the lsat? It doesn't exactly have an unbiased background, to say the least. Let's just agree to diasgree. Your'e of the camp that says blacks don't do well because we don't work hard enough. I'm of the camp that says that there are many reasons. Honestly, I wish it was just an issue of us not working hard enough. If it was that simple I'd have a 180 by now lol.

mcds
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Re: URM Boost

Postby mcds » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:26 pm

kurama20 wrote:
Wow I don't even know what to say. There seem to be two ideas floating around one that minorities are content with scoring lower and another that if this is not the case then it must follow that they have lower IQs. Couldn't it just be that minorities are at a disadvantage in life leading up to the LSAT? Maybe that four months of intense studying cannot make up for 20 years of handicap? Minorities statistically go to poor public schools, have lower incomes, and have less stable home environments. We haven't even touched the subject of educational legacy and the idea that first college generation minority students face much different hurdles than their white counterparts. I guarantee you that minorities do not approach the test with the idea that they want a 160 to get into Harvard. They try to maximize their score so that they can have all the options in front of them, it just so happens that not everyone can reach the high numbers that are needed for admission to these top schools. The fact that so few minority students reach these scores cannot be solely attributed to a lazy attitude and being complacent obviously there is something that differentiates white and minority students. The differences in income, family environment, and schools contribute and explain the gap.


EXACTLY, the factors you mentioned are just some of the reasons that sociologists attribute the difference to. Again they, can be learned from simply taking an intro sociology class, or researching the issue. There are so many contributing factors, socioeconomic, institutional, self fulfilling prophecy, the fact the test is designed by a set group for that group....the list goes on and on.


This is the reason why I have a problem with that argument.

How many classes do blacks have that whites are in during college, with all of the same conditions as the LSAT.

And how many of these classes see a 500% differential in relative success?

I'd be really interested to see what the comparative numbers are for students with the same GPAs in the same schools. I'll have to ask around.

Just as an andecdote.

I know a black male with a 3.5 and a white woman with a 3.5. The guy is from inner city Philly and the girl is from Connecticut. In my personal opinion, the guy is smarter than the girl.

The girl desperately wants to go to Columbia, so she started studying about 6 months ago after I told her she'd probably need a 173. The male wants to go to Harvard and started studying about 3 months ago after I told him he'd probably need a 165. The girl took the October exam and is probably going to re-take next year to study more so she can hit 173 or higher. The guy took the October exam after successfully reaching 165 in PT.

If I told the girl she'd need a 165 and the guy he'd need a 173, both of them would (likely) have made the choice the other one made as they have roughly the same goal - to get into a certain school.

I'm not trying to argue that the LSAT is the sole predictor of success in law school; the SAT isn't either (I got like 300+ higher than this guy on the SAT, but his grades are definitely better than mine are). However, all I'm saying is that given everything that college students and full-time workers have to do, people are going to do what is necessary to achieve a certain goal.

That, along with all of the above that you mentioned are potential reasons why the gap exists.

But I really think that an un-equal level of preparation is a much bigger factor than people give it credit for.

mcds
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Re: URM Boost

Postby mcds » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:31 pm

kurama20 wrote:
However, being "intelligent" does not hinge on your ability to solve said problem - intelligence is a broad term that has many derivations and getting a question right or wrong on the LSAT is not the sole determinant; you're making a mistaken reversal to say so in LSAT terms.


You're mistaking my reasoning. I'm not making a reversal, I'm saying that a standardized test is somehwhat sufficient for proving intelligence NOT NECCESARY as many on tls seem to think it is. In terms of me opening a "can of worms" with my statement about the creation of the test, what I'm saying is controversial but true. Hell, even a lot of sociological studies cite this as one of the reasons. In additon, have you researched the history of the lsat? It doesn't exactly have an unbiased background, to say the least. Let's just agree to diasgree. Your'e of the camp that says blacks don't do well because we don't work hard enough. I'm of the camp that says that there are many reasons. Honestly, I wish it was just an issue of us not working hard enough. If it was that simple I'd have a 180 by now lol.


Well to quote Powerscore:

A+ ---> Study
Not the other way around :wink:

lol, well "not working hard enough" isn't necessarily what I'm saying, but I will agree to disagree

montoya31
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Re: URM Boost

Postby montoya31 » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:31 pm

very good for all of them, if your GPA was a little higher I would think you were practically in at most if not all of them

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summertimechi
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Re: URM Boost

Postby summertimechi » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:42 pm

mcds wrote:
kurama20 wrote:
Wow I don't even know what to say. There seem to be two ideas floating around one that minorities are content with scoring lower and another that if this is not the case then it must follow that they have lower IQs. Couldn't it just be that minorities are at a disadvantage in life leading up to the LSAT? Maybe that four months of intense studying cannot make up for 20 years of handicap? Minorities statistically go to poor public schools, have lower incomes, and have less stable home environments. We haven't even touched the subject of educational legacy and the idea that first college generation minority students face much different hurdles than their white counterparts. I guarantee you that minorities do not approach the test with the idea that they want a 160 to get into Harvard. They try to maximize their score so that they can have all the options in front of them, it just so happens that not everyone can reach the high numbers that are needed for admission to these top schools. The fact that so few minority students reach these scores cannot be solely attributed to a lazy attitude and being complacent obviously there is something that differentiates white and minority students. The differences in income, family environment, and schools contribute and explain the gap.


EXACTLY, the factors you mentioned are just some of the reasons that sociologists attribute the difference to. Again they, can be learned from simply taking an intro sociology class, or researching the issue. There are so many contributing factors, socioeconomic, institutional, self fulfilling prophecy, the fact the test is designed by a set group for that group....the list goes on and on.


This is the reason why I have a problem with that argument.

How many classes do blacks have that whites are in during college, with all of the same conditions as the LSAT.

And how many of these classes see a 500% differential in relative success?

I'd be really interested to see what the comparative numbers are for students with the same GPAs in the same schools. I'll have to ask around.

Just as an andecdote.

I know a black male with a 3.5 and a white woman with a 3.5. The guy is from inner city Philly and the girl is from Connecticut. In my personal opinion, the guy is smarter than the girl.

The girl desperately wants to go to Columbia, so she started studying about 6 months ago after I told her she'd probably need a 173. The male wants to go to Harvard and started studying about 3 months ago after I told him he'd probably need a 165. The girl took the October exam and is probably going to re-take next year to study more so she can hit 173 or higher. The guy took the October exam after successfully reaching 165 in PT.

If I told the girl she'd need a 165 and the guy he'd need a 173, both of them would (likely) have made the choice the other one made as they have roughly the same goal - to get into a certain school.

I'm not trying to argue that the LSAT is the sole predictor of success in law school; the SAT isn't either (I got like 300+ higher than this guy on the SAT, but his grades are definitely better than mine are). However, all I'm saying is that given everything that college students and full-time workers have to do, people are going to do what is necessary to achieve a certain goal.

That, along with all of the above that you mentioned are potential reasons why the gap exists.

But I really think that an un-equal level of preparation is a much bigger factor than people give it credit for.



See, here's the thing, I see where you're coming from with that example. That the white girl will keep trying harder because her score wasn't at what shee needed. And that's fine. But I don't think that during those two months of studying, the white girl was trying harder than the black guy. Yes, each went in studying with the goal of reaching AT LEAST a certain number. But I don't think either one went in without trying to do their very best. I also do wish you'd take more sociology courses and study people's behaviors as they relate to doing the bare minimum to get what they want. While many people believe it is human nature to do the bare minimum to scrape by, it's just not true and has been disproven many times (You should take a look at some of the Hofstede studies, quite interesting stuff), but that's a whole other issue.

Anyways, the way I see it, I just don't think you can say the reason for underachievement in URM scores is that they don't try as hard. Is there one concrete answer as to why they don't score as high? Of course not. Are statements like "If you knew that you can get in with lower numbers, you'll get lower numbers," a great way to sum up the problem? Hell no. And that's all I'm trying to say.
Last edited by summertimechi on Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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kurama20
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Re: URM Boost

Postby kurama20 » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:43 pm

Well to quote Powerscore:

A+ ---> Study
Not the other way around


Thank you for conceding this point! That's one of the things i've been trying to say! Just because blacks (or anyone else) study hard does NOT mean they will get a good lsat score. Up until this post you were saying that it was sufficient and that it was the only reason that blacks do not score as high. That's simply not true, there are other more complex reasons. A lot of people on TLS attribute blacks underscoring to what is an essentially a reversal of that simple powerscore reasoning rule. I don't understand why they want to apply these rules to everything except this issue.
Last edited by kurama20 on Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Objection
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Re: URM Boost

Postby Objection » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:45 pm

I think a lot of it may have to do with a culture of education vs not.

There are a lot of blacks I know who don't want to appear too studious or too intelligent because they are considered to be "acting white" or to be "sellouts."

Might be a subconscious hurdle.

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lawdog
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Re: URM Boost

Postby lawdog » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:48 pm

You guys gotta also realize this board is not representative of how many people get accepted into HLS or any other top schools in the 25%tile. Most of these people never once in there life thought of a LSN or TLS or XOXO to view what their chances would be. They just applied and gotten in.

Imagine if all the 25%tiles came to this message board and fervently posted their numbers. Wed be sitting here assuming you could get into Harvard with a 3.4gpa 163lsat regardless of race.

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uvalaw4l
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Re: URM Boost

Postby uvalaw4l » Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:52 pm

I know of the studies of what happens when you put blacks in a room with whites versus with a room solely of blacks. Or what happens when you tell blacks something counts versus when you tell them it doesn't count, etc. But at some point - and connotively I will acknowledge this sounds bad - you have to get over it. You need to remember what the LSAT is for, and ultimately law school is for. Its to prepare you for the real world. The real world is very stressful and scary regardless of what you look like. I don't disagree with you in what you're saying, but I do disagree in that you can't keep making that argument without looking at the greater context of its relevance.

I don't care if you want to be a city councilman or if you want to be President, whether you want to be a partner at Wachtell or start your own firm in a local town. You're going to have to deal with shit, people may or may not be racist and not everything is going to seem fair. On the one hand, yes a lot should be done to try to fight these injustices, but on the other hand you're not going to be successful if you can't deal with overcoming them.

The LSAT is nothing compared to what you're ultimately going to face.


Harsh, but words to live by.

mcds
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Re: URM Boost

Postby mcds » Fri Oct 17, 2008 4:02 pm

summertimechi wrote:
See, here's the thing, I see where you're coming from with that example. That the white girl will keep trying harder because her score wasn't at what shee needed. And that's fine. But I don't think that during those two months of studying, the white girl was trying harder than the black guy.

I won't disagree with you there.

Yes, each went in studying with the goal of reaching AT LEAST a certain number. But I don't think either one went in without trying to do their very best. I also do wish you'd take more sociology courses and study people's behaviors as they relate to doing the bare minimum to get what they want. While many people believe it is human nature to do the bare minimum to scrape by, it's just not true and has been disproven many times (You should take a look at some of the Hofstede studies, quite interesting stuff), but that's a whole other issue.

I only took two sociology classes, so I'll have to concede this point. However, I think you get the gist of what I'm saying.

Anyways, the way I see it, I just don't think you can say the reason for underachievement in URM scores is that they don't try as hard. Is there one concrete answer as to why they don't score as high? Of course not. Are statements like "If you knew that you can get in with lower numbers, you'll get lower numbers," a great way to sum up the problem? Hell no. And that's all I'm trying to say.


I never said that is the sole reason. I said that is a reason that isn't brought up enough by those who argue all the points you're making. Just as all the reasons you're making isn't brought up enough by those who say blacks don't try as hard.

Those on both ends of the argument don't concede the validity of the other. The true answer is somewhere in between. I perfectly understand and acknowledge the opinions on this thread, I just think that there is more to it than that, thats all.




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