Comparing class ranks

A forum for those current students who are or may be transferring from one school to another. Post any questions, advice, or other transfer related comments here.
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letsgetsomeshoes
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2010 6:09 pm

Comparing class ranks

Postby letsgetsomeshoes » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:06 am

I'm terrble at math, so forgive me for asking a dumb question.

How do you think admissions officers compare class ranks of applicants from differently ranked schools? For example, how would a student who is ranked in the top 10% at a school in the 90s compare to a student in the top 20% at a school in the 60s? Or what about a student who is in the top 5% at a t3 school compared to a student in the top 25% at a high T2 school?

Hopefully this makes sense. Any insight would be much appreciated :)

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Aberzombie1892
Posts: 1907
Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2009 10:56 am

Re: Comparing class ranks

Postby Aberzombie1892 » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:17 am

letsgetsomeshoes wrote:I'm terrble at math, so forgive me for asking a dumb question.

How do you think admissions officers compare class ranks of applicants from differently ranked schools? For example, how would a student who is ranked in the top 10% at a school in the 90s compare to a student in the top 20% at a school in the 60s? Or what about a student who is in the top 5% at a t3 school compared to a student in the top 25% at a high T2 school?

Hopefully this makes sense. Any insight would be much appreciated :)


It really just depends on:

1) the rank of the two schools
2) the region of the two schools
3) if the employer hires graduates from both schools
4) if the students have connections to the city that the employer is in
5) what prior to law school experience the two students have
6) what in law school experience the two students have
7) etc.

It is impossible to direclty compare 2 students from different schools. People like to pretend that X rank for student A is equal to Y rank for student B at a different school. Ultimately, this cannot be decided even if you had two students by name and exact rank for comparison because that is simply not enough information. Granted, some schools at the very top are preferable; however, some students at lower ranked schools are related to major clients or equity partners and so they can sometimes "win" in a particular situation.

letsgetsomeshoes
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2010 6:09 pm

Re: Comparing class ranks

Postby letsgetsomeshoes » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:23 am

Thanks for your resopnse. I thnk you slightly misunderstood my question though - I was wondering about admissions officers at law schools, who are comparing transfer applicants from two differently ranked schools. But I see your point - there are many more factors than just class rank/ school rank to consider.

More importantly, however, none of this matters since my applications are out the door and there's nothing I can do but wait. I just wanted to ease my fears that I'll be rejected in favor of a student from a worse school with a higher class rank than me :)

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Aberzombie1892
Posts: 1907
Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2009 10:56 am

Re: Comparing class ranks

Postby Aberzombie1892 » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:28 am

Oh sorry...late night/early morning.

As to your actual question, it really is a black box.

Good luck!

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altoidz
Posts: 71
Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2009 10:27 am

Re: Comparing class ranks

Postby altoidz » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:31 am

op is really nice and polite

AcesandEights
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:09 am

Re: Comparing class ranks

Postby AcesandEights » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:42 am

This is mostly speculation from a transfer student who went through the cycle a few years back, so take it for what it's worth. That said, two things matter most for transfers: school rank and class rank. If you go to a T2 school, you might be able to nab T14 with just top 5 percent, while T3/T4 schools might need top 1 or 2 percent or top 5ish students in the class to make that big of a leap, where they make it at all. If you go to a fairly high up T1 school, you might be able to transfer to T14 with just top 10 percent, but I really think, outside of those rare T14-T14 peer switches, you need minimum top 10 percent at any school to make a T14 leap. It's also important to remember that HYS is extremely tough if you aren't top 5 percent or higher at a T1 or fairly high up in the class (top 10 percent-ish minimum) at a T14. Even if you are from a mid T2 with top one-two percent grades, making the jump to HYS is tough. Finally, some original schools get better mileage for transfers within a region (e.g., I've heard that NYU and CLS tend to take a number from NY schools, including T3/T4, to the exclusion of other higher ranked T2s in more distant regions).

Of course, there will be outlier exceptions and some sliding on the scale, but I think the above are good rules of thumb.

letsgetsomeshoes
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2010 6:09 pm

Re: Comparing class ranks

Postby letsgetsomeshoes » Wed Jun 23, 2010 11:12 am

Thanks for the great responses!

It sounds like the consensus is that they do consider the rank of the school when comparing class ranks, which should help me. I'm not transferring to a t14 - I'm currently at a high t2, looking to transfer to a low t1 for geographic reasons, so hopefully those class ranks you cited are a little more lax for lower ranked schools (i.e. 15-20% instead of 5-10%).




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