Helmholtz wrote:I think an H safely equates to an A- in a substantive class. As you mentioned, getting an H equates to the top 20% in your small section. It's true that some people at least claim not to try in legal practice, but this is probably more than compensated for by the fact that it's a 5% higher cutoff than an A- and that legal practice is the only practical course.
Finally, employers are likely aware of the import of an H. They're used to the class being graded at other schools, and they're used to semi-pass fail systems from other schools (like HYS). The fact that it doesn't factor into your GPA is somewhat relevant, since firm's like to put latin honors on their associates firm bios. However, it's not like law school admissions, where the hard GPA has a major impact on the school. Law firms are genuinely looking for the strongest candidates. They'll certainly prefer an H to a P, and I think they'll give it a fair amount of weight, at least in favor of those who have an H.
I understand where you are coming from, and I could see some, maybe most or all firms siding with you, but this is largely an empirical question: do you have any data that supports this position? If you look at the 2L data that just got posted on lawopen, faulted/self-selected as it may be, shows that there is no boost for law review or any other journal, when controlling for grades. And law review, and other journals, are arguably much more legal writing intensive than Legal Practice.
Yeah, at the target range, it would be 5% more likely to get an A-. If you have 3.5, let's assume your H you got is equivalent to an A- in legal practice, and it counts as one substantive class. That would put your gpa at a 3.523. I can buy that it matters that much, but that's what I am saying: it's a good talking point or a good tiebreaker, between you and someone with a 3.5 or a 3.55. As you noted, firms are not nearly this grade responsive. If your 3.5 is good, your 3.53 is good too. If it's not, it's similarly likely not going to be. It's not going to get you in a firm that has a 3.6, 3.7 floor.