How do schools rank incoming transfers?

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omnomnom
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How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby omnomnom » Sun Sep 26, 2010 1:04 pm

I apologize if this has been answered already, but any search involving the words "transfer" and "rank" seems to bury the answer I'm looking for.

Generally speaking, how do most schools determine class rank incoming transfer students? Assuming transfers between schools with normal grading structures (A+ thru F), do you even get to keep your GPA? Any notable exceptions?

solidsnake
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby solidsnake » Sun Sep 26, 2010 1:28 pm

You lose your GPA and your 1L class rank. You can use them of course (at least at my school) for job interviews/EIW; but you essentially have to start all over again gpa-wise 2L year (one huge plus for having biglaw hiring take place before 2L begins).

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omnomnom
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby omnomnom » Sun Sep 26, 2010 2:05 pm

solidsnake wrote:You lose your GPA and your 1L class rank. You can use them of course (at least at my school) for job interviews/EIW; but you essentially have to start all over again gpa-wise 2L year.


So how does this work? Based on what you're telling me, you've got most students at the new school who's GPA is determined by 1L and 2L, and others who's GPA is only based on 2L. Rank is then determined at the end of 2L by numerically sorting ALL of these GPAs. Seems unfair to the people who started at the new school, but I guess one usually needs to be at the top of their 1L class to transfer anyways.

When you say "you can use them" for OCI, are you allowed to submit resumes to employers that have class rank and new school name on it, or is this considered a serious misrepresentation?

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vanwinkle
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby vanwinkle » Sun Sep 26, 2010 2:07 pm

You can submit your GPA (and class rank if you have one) from your old school to employers during OCI. It's not a misrepresentation because you make clear it's from your old school and not your current school. It's not the same as having gotten those grades at your current school, but it's still great to be able to show very high grades off to an employer (which they will be if you did well enough to transfer upward).

solidsnake
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby solidsnake » Sun Sep 26, 2010 6:20 pm

Yes, what vanwinkle said. A transfer student's resume (at least at the EIW stage) will include, among other things, both the 1L school and the transferee school. The 1L gpa/class rank goes under the 1L school line. As far as latin honors etc. at the transferee school (assuming transfers are eligible for these designations), you have two years (2L and 3L) to bust ass and make it, as opposed to three.

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XxSpyKEx
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby XxSpyKEx » Sun Sep 26, 2010 11:13 pm

solidsnake wrote:You lose your GPA and your 1L class rank. You can use them of course (at least at my school) for job interviews/EIW; but you essentially have to start all over again gpa-wise 2L year (one huge plus for having biglaw hiring take place before 2L begins).


I think this is a whether you view the glass as half full or half empty scenario. For the vast majority of transfers, it'll be a glass that's half empty because you will be competing with students from your new and better school at OCI with no grades at that school making it difficult for firms to know how to evaluate you (particularly if you are aiming for firms that don't typically recruit at your old school). Furthermore, most transfers typically continue their success at their new schools, so that means many employers will end up looking over a transfer student who winds up with really good grades after OCI is all done with.

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Helmholtz
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby Helmholtz » Sun Sep 26, 2010 11:17 pm

solidsnake wrote:Yes, what vanwinkle said. A transfer student's resume (at least at the EIW stage) will include, among other things, both the 1L school and the transferee school. The 1L gpa/class rank goes under the 1L school line. As far as latin honors etc. at the transferee school (assuming transfers are eligible for these designations), you have two years (2L and 3L) to bust ass and make it, as opposed to three.


I have done zero research into this, so this may be an idiotic question, but doesn't this give transfers a huge step up in achieving honors, e.g. order of the coif, considering how much higher GPAs are for 2L+3L compared to 1L?

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vanwinkle
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby vanwinkle » Sun Sep 26, 2010 11:22 pm

XxSpyKEx wrote:For the vast majority of transfers, it'll be a glass that's half empty because you will be competing with students from your new and better school at OCI with no grades at that school making it difficult for firms to know how to evaluate you (particularly if you are aiming for firms that don't typically recruit at your old school).

This seems a bit too downbeat. At least toward the top schools it should be much more of a half-full thing for transfers, since (based on both personal experience and what I've seen happen with other transfers) the solid grades that allow you to transfer are recognized by many employers as a big positive. It's not that difficult for firms to know how to evaluate you since As are rare everywhere.

Helmholtz wrote:I have done zero research into this, so this may be an idiotic question, but doesn't this give transfers a huge step up in achieving honors, e.g. order of the coif, considering how much higher GPAs are for 2L+3L compared to 1L?

It can at schools that don't forbid transfers from receiving such honors.

ToTransferOrNot
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Mon Sep 27, 2010 9:01 am

Helmholtz wrote:
solidsnake wrote:Yes, what vanwinkle said. A transfer student's resume (at least at the EIW stage) will include, among other things, both the 1L school and the transferee school. The 1L gpa/class rank goes under the 1L school line. As far as latin honors etc. at the transferee school (assuming transfers are eligible for these designations), you have two years (2L and 3L) to bust ass and make it, as opposed to three.


I have done zero research into this, so this may be an idiotic question, but doesn't this give transfers a huge step up in achieving honors, e.g. order of the coif, considering how much higher GPAs are for 2L+3L compared to 1L?


This is incredibly overstated for the vast majority of schools. Many schools don't go 'off the curve' for lecture classes in 2L/3L, and the vast majority of law professors do not hand As out like candy even when they're not required to be on the curve.

Combine that with the more difficult subject matter in 2L/3L classes (Bankruptcy, Securities, Secured Transactions, Tax classes... these are all far more difficult than the 1L classes,) and you do not have an Order of the Coif machine.

rando
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby rando » Mon Sep 27, 2010 9:40 am

^ Even though a lot of lectures don't go off the curve, many smaller classes do. And most people take some of these smaller classes where the median often jumps an entire grade (e.g. B+ to A-). It is just a fact that at most schools the median GPA increases as the class progresses 1L-3L year with 1L being the lowest.

The difficulty of classes (tax, bankruptcy etc.) is irrelevant.

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Helmholtz
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby Helmholtz » Mon Sep 27, 2010 10:39 am

ToTransferOrNot wrote:
Helmholtz wrote:
solidsnake wrote:Yes, what vanwinkle said. A transfer student's resume (at least at the EIW stage) will include, among other things, both the 1L school and the transferee school. The 1L gpa/class rank goes under the 1L school line. As far as latin honors etc. at the transferee school (assuming transfers are eligible for these designations), you have two years (2L and 3L) to bust ass and make it, as opposed to three.


I have done zero research into this, so this may be an idiotic question, but doesn't this give transfers a huge step up in achieving honors, e.g. order of the coif, considering how much higher GPAs are for 2L+3L compared to 1L?


This is incredibly overstated for the vast majority of schools. Many schools don't go 'off the curve' for lecture classes in 2L/3L, and the vast majority of law professors do not hand As out like candy even when they're not required to be on the curve.

Combine that with the more difficult subject matter in 2L/3L classes (Bankruptcy, Securities, Secured Transactions, Tax classes... these are all far more difficult than the 1L classes,) and you do not have an Order of the Coif machine.


At my school, it's a 3.31 for 1Ls versus a 3.47 for upperclassmen. I guess not a huge advantage, but it still seems like it would make a difference.

ToTransferOrNot
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby ToTransferOrNot » Mon Sep 27, 2010 11:51 am

rando wrote:^ Even though a lot of lectures don't go off the curve, many smaller classes do. And most people take some of these smaller classes where the median often jumps an entire grade (e.g. B+ to A-). It is just a fact that at most schools the median GPA increases as the class progresses 1L-3L year with 1L being the lowest.

The difficulty of classes (tax, bankruptcy etc.) is irrelevant.


No, the difficulty of classes is not irrelevant, because it can change who does well and who doesn't. Someone who can blow the 1L common law classes out of the water will very frequently tank the complex statutory courses - I know several people who were top 10% 1L, and dropped considerably 2L/3L (and these were clerkship gunners - it wasn't due to any lack of effort on their part). Some people aren't as good at the common law classes and blow the statutory stuff up - and then, there are people who do very well on both. It's a different kind of test.

Additionally, in very difficult classes off the curve, it isn't uncommon for the median grade to be lower than the normal curve - at least at Chicago. And even in small classes, the professors largely stick to the curve around here, though I imagine that varies at other schools.

In conclusion, your schools all lack rigor;)

rando
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby rando » Mon Sep 27, 2010 11:56 am

ToTransferOrNot wrote:
rando wrote:^ Even though a lot of lectures don't go off the curve, many smaller classes do. And most people take some of these smaller classes where the median often jumps an entire grade (e.g. B+ to A-). It is just a fact that at most schools the median GPA increases as the class progresses 1L-3L year with 1L being the lowest.

The difficulty of classes (tax, bankruptcy etc.) is irrelevant.


No, the difficulty of classes is not irrelevant, because it can change who does well and who doesn't. Someone who can blow the 1L common law classes out of the water will very frequently tank the complex statutory courses - I know several people who were top 10% 1L, and dropped considerably 2L/3L (and these were clerkship gunners - it wasn't due to any lack of effort on their part). Some people aren't as good at the common law classes and blow the statutory stuff up - and then, there are people who do very well on both. It's a different kind of test.

Additionally, in very difficult classes off the curve, it isn't uncommon for the median grade to be lower than the normal curve - at least at Chicago. And even in small classes, the professors largely stick to the curve around here, though I imagine that varies at other schools.

In conclusion, your schools all lack rigor;)


Fair enough on the lacking rigor...

and as to the complex material I see your point - just haven't seen this in practice. Anecdote vs. Anecdote - to each his own. I honestly just figured you were making the basic 0L mistake of failing to contemplate how a curve works.

CanadianWolf
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby CanadianWolf » Mon Sep 27, 2010 11:57 am

This is why you need to transfer to Yale.

rynabrius
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby rynabrius » Mon Sep 27, 2010 12:30 pm

I wonder why schools do not adjust the curves of 2L and 3L courses based on student quality as judged by performance in 1L courses.

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Jordan77
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Re: How do schools rank incoming transfers?

Postby Jordan77 » Thu Sep 30, 2010 4:22 am

The school I transferred to did not rank transfers; and they were ineligible for Order of the Coif. However, you could still get "honors" (cum laude etc.) if you had the GPA and a minimum number of graded credits.




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