Advice

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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Anonymous User
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Advice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:13 pm

I received a grade which I believe to be completely erroneous. After seeking feedback about what happened to my grade I received a response from my professor. According to my professor, I failed to spot an issue (worth 10% of the test) which in no way was an issue in his fact pattern. I know I'm right on this because I've never had a problem spotting issues on exams. Also, i'm 100% the professor is just flat out wrong. I'm challening my grade and taking it to the dean if I have too.

As a result of getting screwed over, the grade takes me out of contention of some of my transfer schools. Other than this grade, my grades would have been on par for admittance (along with my first semester grades). What should I do to communicate this to the admissions offices? I'm so frustrated because I know I'm getting screwed as a result of my professors incompetency. Should I write an addendum regarding the grade? I'm currently an SA in the market of the school I want to transfer too. Should I ask to meet with them in person?

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chuckbass
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Re: Advice

Postby chuckbass » Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:15 pm

Well, if the grade isn't changed, it's final and you're just going to have to accept it unfortunately.

lawman84
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Re: Advice

Postby lawman84 » Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:34 pm

I hate to be dismissive of your gripe but it seems more likely that you simply did miss an important issue. Or, at least, an issue that the professor considered important. You "knowing" that you're right because you've never had a problem spotting issues on the exam just doesn't carry a ton of weight...because you're a 1L. It's not like you're a 20 year veteran here.

I hope this all works out for you but I don't know that there's much advice to give unless the grade gets changed. You might want to inform the schools that you're wanting to transfer to that you're having an issue with that grade and you're working on getting it rectified. But I'd be very careful with how you put it...you don't want to come off as entitled or as a person blaming others for not getting a good grade.

You might be right. The professor might be wrong. But in my experience, professors aren't looking to screw students over. If they made a mistake, they'll step up and own it. But I've been lucky to have good professors...maybe you just got a bad one.

Anonymous User
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Re: Advice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:47 pm

lawman84 wrote:I hate to be dismissive of your gripe but it seems more likely that you simply did miss an important issue. Or, at least, an issue that the professor considered important. You "knowing" that you're right because you've never had a problem spotting issues on the exam just doesn't carry a ton of weight...because you're a 1L. It's not like you're a 20 year veteran here.

I hope this all works out for you but I don't know that there's much advice to give unless the grade gets changed. You might want to inform the schools that you're wanting to transfer to that you're having an issue with that grade and you're working on getting it rectified. But I'd be very careful with how you put it...you don't want to come off as entitled or as a person blaming others for not getting a good grade.

You might be right. The professor might be wrong. But in my experience, professors aren't looking to screw students over. If they made a mistake, they'll step up and own it. But I've been lucky to have good professors...maybe you just got a bad one.


I don't mean to come across as entitled. I know how my argument sounds and I think that's what's most frustrating. There are others in the class that feel similar to me. Idk what to do

lawman84
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Re: Advice

Postby lawman84 » Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:58 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
lawman84 wrote:I hate to be dismissive of your gripe but it seems more likely that you simply did miss an important issue. Or, at least, an issue that the professor considered important. You "knowing" that you're right because you've never had a problem spotting issues on the exam just doesn't carry a ton of weight...because you're a 1L. It's not like you're a 20 year veteran here.

I hope this all works out for you but I don't know that there's much advice to give unless the grade gets changed. You might want to inform the schools that you're wanting to transfer to that you're having an issue with that grade and you're working on getting it rectified. But I'd be very careful with how you put it...you don't want to come off as entitled or as a person blaming others for not getting a good grade.

You might be right. The professor might be wrong. But in my experience, professors aren't looking to screw students over. If they made a mistake, they'll step up and own it. But I've been lucky to have good professors...maybe you just got a bad one.


I don't mean to come across as entitled. I know how my argument sounds and I think that's what's most frustrating. There are others in the class that feel similar to me. Idk what to do


From your situation, all you can do is challenge the grade and hope for a speedy resolution. If it's going to make or break you getting into the school, I'd let them know what's happening...but as neutrally as possible and without badmouthing the professor (which will be hard to do). But it's just not a good situation to be in. Unless it gets resolved in your favor before the schools make their transfer decisions, I think you're stuck.

Some might even advise you against mentioning it to the schools you're trying to transfer to. As it could paint you in the wrong light. It's a tough call.

How bad does it make your transfer situation? Are you intent on transferring? Would you still be in the running at other schools you could see yourself at?

timmyd
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Re: Advice

Postby timmyd » Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:37 pm

Dude, you missed an issue, get over it. Why do you think you're so good at spotting issues? Because you did well on some 1L exams? No one knows what the hell they are doing 1L year. Even the highest grades would look like shit if the student reviewed them as a practicing attorney or even a 3L. Moreover, usually exams, there's no right answer. The problem for you is not that you disagree with the profs take on it which is reasonable, but that you totally missed an issue that everyone else caught.

timmyd
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Re: Advice

Postby timmyd » Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:44 pm

I think my last post's tone was a bit much. I apologize, I'm studying for the bar. I'm just hesitant to side with a 1L in an exam dispute over the prof. It's possible he made a mistake. I've read of that happening here, but I've never experienced it. Moreover, all the instances I have seen of this happening involve a computational error. Not a substantive error.

callmekimba
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Re: Advice

Postby callmekimba » Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:50 pm

1. There are very, very few ways to be 100% wrong in the law, just like there are very few ways to be 100% right.

2. Let's assume you are right. Are you sure this is the hill you want to die on?

3. Still assuming you're right and the professor is wrong and this issue he imagined wasn't there...assuming he turned in grades that follow the mandatory curve you were still outperformed by your class in other aspects of the exam because the entire class would have missed something that wasn't there making it a wash.

you need to let it go.

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Re: Advice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:52 pm

timmyd wrote:I think my last post's tone was a bit much. I apologize, I'm studying for the bar. I'm just hesitant to side with a 1L in an exam dispute over the prof. It's possible he made a mistake. I've read of that happening here, but I've never experienced it. Moreover, all the instances I have seen of this happening involve a computational error. Not a substantive error.


No worries. I know how crazy I sound. Nothing I say will give you context of the situation I'm in. However, I can say is that I've never been one to argue about the unfairness/mistake of a professors test.




lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
lawman84 wrote:I hate to be dismissive of your gripe but it seems more likely that you simply did miss an important issue. Or, at least, an issue that the professor considered important. You "knowing" that you're right because you've never had a problem spotting issues on the exam just doesn't carry a ton of weight...because you're a 1L. It's not like you're a 20 year veteran here.

I hope this all works out for you but I don't know that there's much advice to give unless the grade gets changed. You might want to inform the schools that you're wanting to transfer to that you're having an issue with that grade and you're working on getting it rectified. But I'd be very careful with how you put it...you don't want to come off as entitled or as a person blaming others for not getting a good grade.

You might be right. The professor might be wrong. But in my experience, professors aren't looking to screw students over. If they made a mistake, they'll step up and own it. But I've been lucky to have good professors...maybe you just got a bad one.


I don't mean to come across as entitled. I know how my argument sounds and I think that's what's most frustrating. There are others in the class that feel similar to me. Idk what to do


From your situation, all you can do is challenge the grade and hope for a speedy resolution. If it's going to make or break you getting into the school, I'd let them know what's happening...but as neutrally as possible and without badmouthing the professor (which will be hard to do). But it's just not a good situation to be in. Unless it gets resolved in your favor before the schools make their transfer decisions, I think you're stuck.

Some might even advise you against mentioning it to the schools you're trying to transfer to. As it could paint you in the wrong light. It's a tough call.

How bad does it make your transfer situation? Are you intent on transferring? Would you still be in the running at other schools you could see yourself at?


I'm an EA admit to GULC. I want Penn/Duke/Mich but this grade alone takes me out of contention

lawman84
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Re: Advice

Postby lawman84 » Tue Jun 16, 2015 7:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm an EA admit to GULC. I want Penn/Duke/Mich but this grade alone takes me out of contention


Well, on the bright side, you have an option. Have you already applied to those schools?

Anonymous User
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Re: Advice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 16, 2015 8:01 pm

lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I'm an EA admit to GULC. I want Penn/Duke/Mich but this grade alone takes me out of contention


Well, on the bright side, you have an option. Have you already applied to those schools?


Yes, I've applied to those schools. I'm meeting my professor on Monday and I hope something can be worked out.

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chuckbass
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Re: Advice

Postby chuckbass » Tue Jun 16, 2015 8:05 pm

Unless the grade is changed, don't contact schools about this though honestly.

lawman84
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Re: Advice

Postby lawman84 » Tue Jun 16, 2015 8:09 pm

scottidsntknow wrote:Unless the grade is changed, don't contact schools about this though honestly.


Yea. I think you're probably right. Just don't see a way you can frame it where it doesn't paint you in a bad light.

Gotta hope you can get into one of those schools with the grades you have or that there's a speedy resolution if you appeal.

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Re: Advice

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 16, 2015 8:14 pm

I understand. I appreciate the advice.

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stego
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Re: Advice

Postby stego » Tue Jun 16, 2015 8:17 pm

It's crazy that one missed issue on one exam in one class could be enough to keep someone out of a school they'd otherwise get into. Straw that broke the camel's back, etc.

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swampman
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Re: Advice

Postby swampman » Tue Jun 16, 2015 9:42 pm

callmekimba wrote:3. Still assuming you're right and the professor is wrong and this issue he imagined wasn't there...assuming he turned in grades that follow the mandatory curve you were still outperformed by your class in other aspects of the exam because the entire class would have missed something that wasn't there making it a wash.

This is key. If the issue really wasn't there then nobody spotted it, nobody got the points, and it didn't hurt your grade.

ex_nunc
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Re: Advice

Postby ex_nunc » Wed Jun 17, 2015 11:34 am

swampman wrote:
callmekimba wrote:3. Still assuming you're right and the professor is wrong and this issue he imagined wasn't there...assuming he turned in grades that follow the mandatory curve you were still outperformed by your class in other aspects of the exam because the entire class would have missed something that wasn't there making it a wash.

This is key. If the issue really wasn't there then nobody spotted it, nobody got the points, and it didn't hurt your grade.


I think this is right, with the caveat that it's possible that other students incorrectly spotted a non-existent issue and were rewarded for it. But that strikes me as a bit remote.

Good luck, OP. Let us know how it turns out.

CanadianWolf
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Re: Advice

Postby CanadianWolf » Wed Jun 17, 2015 11:37 am

Are you willing to share the specifics ? If so, PM me.

UTTransfer2015
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Re: Advice

Postby UTTransfer2015 » Wed Jun 17, 2015 12:05 pm

I had a very similar situation, except I have no idea why my one class turned out badly. I can say my professor was absolute garbage but due to my school's policy I was unable to take a look at the exam since I wasn't physically on campus (I was thousands of miles away when I got my grades).

So I had all As and one B-, which took me from top 1-2% to barely top 10%. I thought I'd be out of the running for transferring but I took a shot anyways. I got in (at UT, as my name suggests). I was just as outraged as you are, and I to this day do not believe the grade was my "fault."

Despite that, I never brought the B- up in any way. I knew that there was no way to discuss it without sounding petulant or like I was refusing to take responsibility for it. The only people I ever discussed it with were friends/family, not anyone who might make decisions affecting my professional life.

One erroneous grade amongst many good grades may raise an eyebrow but it isn't likely to sink what would otherwise be a successful application. If they would have taken you with all As then they'll more than likely take you with 7 As and one much lower grade. Everyone knows that these things happen, and even the best students sometimes have one or two completely unexpected grades. Reasonable people won't hold that against you.

I keep saying reasonable people--so obviously if they're unreasonable they might. Or if there is a candidate who is just slightly better than you on paper they might take him over you. But honestly at the point that the administration is making decisions like that other soft factors are more important, like whether or not you had a good interview with them, etc.

I also did well at OCI, had interviews and callbacks with numerous biglaw firms. Of course, this was in TX, so TX biglaw; I didn't apply to any non-TX firms. I also didn't apply to any other schools higher ranked than UT for transfer because I want to be at UT, want to stay in TX, have been in TX my whole life, etc. So maybe at these higher ranked schools it will make a difference. But if you take into account WHY schools even TAKE transfers -- extra tuition, they think you can be a successful alumnus and bring money and prestige to the school, be employed, etc -- then 7 As + 1 B- versus 8 As really shouldn't be the breaking point.


Just my 2 cents.

lawman84
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Re: Advice

Postby lawman84 » Wed Jun 17, 2015 12:49 pm

UTTransfer2015 wrote:I had a very similar situation, except I have no idea why my one class turned out badly. I can say my professor was absolute garbage but due to my school's policy I was unable to take a look at the exam since I wasn't physically on campus (I was thousands of miles away when I got my grades).

So I had all As and one B-, which took me from top 1-2% to barely top 10%. I thought I'd be out of the running for transferring but I took a shot anyways. I got in (at UT, as my name suggests). I was just as outraged as you are, and I to this day do not believe the grade was my "fault."

Despite that, I never brought the B- up in any way. I knew that there was no way to discuss it without sounding petulant or like I was refusing to take responsibility for it. The only people I ever discussed it with were friends/family, not anyone who might make decisions affecting my professional life.

One erroneous grade amongst many good grades may raise an eyebrow but it isn't likely to sink what would otherwise be a successful application. If they would have taken you with all As then they'll more than likely take you with 7 As and one much lower grade. Everyone knows that these things happen, and even the best students sometimes have one or two completely unexpected grades. Reasonable people won't hold that against you.

I keep saying reasonable people--so obviously if they're unreasonable they might. Or if there is a candidate who is just slightly better than you on paper they might take him over you. But honestly at the point that the administration is making decisions like that other soft factors are more important, like whether or not you had a good interview with them, etc.

I also did well at OCI, had interviews and callbacks with numerous biglaw firms. Of course, this was in TX, so TX biglaw; I didn't apply to any non-TX firms. I also didn't apply to any other schools higher ranked than UT for transfer because I want to be at UT, want to stay in TX, have been in TX my whole life, etc. So maybe at these higher ranked schools it will make a difference. But if you take into account WHY schools even TAKE transfers -- extra tuition, they think you can be a successful alumnus and bring money and prestige to the school, be employed, etc -- then 7 As + 1 B- versus 8 As really shouldn't be the breaking point.


Just my 2 cents.


And to this very day, that grade still was your fault. One of the advantages of the curve is that everybody suffers from having a garbage professor. Your classmates had the same professor. And yet you still ended up with that curved grade. It's your fault. You came up short when compared to your classmates in that class.

Who else's fault is it? Your professor? If it's his fault and you're such a good student, why didn't your classmates fare worse?

And from your other grades, you clearly are a great student. So you might just have to chalk that one up to a class/exam that just didn't suit your academic skill-set.
Last edited by lawman84 on Wed Jun 17, 2015 1:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

UTTransfer2015
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Re: Advice

Postby UTTransfer2015 » Wed Jun 17, 2015 12:55 pm

lawman84 wrote:
UTTransfer2015 wrote:I had a very similar situation, except I have no idea why my one class turned out badly. I can say my professor was absolute garbage but due to my school's policy I was unable to take a look at the exam since I wasn't physically on campus (I was thousands of miles away when I got my grades).

So I had all As and one B-, which took me from top 1-2% to barely top 10%. I thought I'd be out of the running for transferring but I took a shot anyways. I got in (at UT, as my name suggests). I was just as outraged as you are, and I to this day do not believe the grade was my "fault."

Despite that, I never brought the B- up in any way. I knew that there was no way to discuss it without sounding petulant or like I was refusing to take responsibility for it. The only people I ever discussed it with were friends/family, not anyone who might make decisions affecting my professional life.

One erroneous grade amongst many good grades may raise an eyebrow but it isn't likely to sink what would otherwise be a successful application. If they would have taken you with all As then they'll more than likely take you with 7 As and one much lower grade. Everyone knows that these things happen, and even the best students sometimes have one or two completely unexpected grades. Reasonable people won't hold that against you.

I keep saying reasonable people--so obviously if they're unreasonable they might. Or if there is a candidate who is just slightly better than you on paper they might take him over you. But honestly at the point that the administration is making decisions like that other soft factors are more important, like whether or not you had a good interview with them, etc.

I also did well at OCI, had interviews and callbacks with numerous biglaw firms. Of course, this was in TX, so TX biglaw; I didn't apply to any non-TX firms. I also didn't apply to any other schools higher ranked than UT for transfer because I want to be at UT, want to stay in TX, have been in TX my whole life, etc. So maybe at these higher ranked schools it will make a difference. But if you take into account WHY schools even TAKE transfers -- extra tuition, they think you can be a successful alumnus and bring money and prestige to the school, be employed, etc -- then 7 As + 1 B- versus 8 As really shouldn't be the breaking point.


Just my 2 cents.


And to this very day, that grade still was your fault. One of the advantages of the curve is that everybody suffers from having a garbage professor. Your classmates had the same professor. And yet you still ended up with that curved grade. It's your fault. You came up short when compared to your classmates in that class.

Who else's fault is it? Your professor? If it's his fault and you're such a good student, why didn't your classmates fair worse?

And from your other grades, you clearly are a great student. So you might just have to chalk that one up to a class/exam that just didn't suit your academic skill-set.


Well, I'm pretty practical-minded. That's why I put fault in scare quotes. I don't disagree with you. I don't think it was my "fault" but I accept that that's how it is and that I have to deal with it, and that maybe I missed something. I'm just trying to commiserate with the OP and explain that he shouldn't bring it up to employers and those who will make the transfer decision.




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