UChi Students & Alumni Taking Questions

A forum for applicants and admitted students to ask law students and graduates about law school and the practice of law.
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Emma.
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Emma. » Fri Jul 08, 2011 11:39 pm

California Babe wrote:
What is K&E Scholars? Should I know about this?


It is some award for the top 5% of the class. They get to put Kirkland & Ellis Scholar on their resume.

A-Cow-Demia
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby A-Cow-Demia » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:02 am

Emma. wrote:Has top 10% ever been as high as 180.5? My understanding is that the grade cut off for LR is always somewhere between 179.5 and 180. Considering 180.5 at graduation is high honors and around the top 4% of the class get that, it seems crazy that top 10% could be that high in any given year. It sounds like 180.5 was the cut off for K&E Scholars last year.


Here's what I know about grading:

Last year's K&E cutoff was 180.5-ish. It may have been a bit lower.

No student seems to know the LR cutoff. Students on LR don't know it. They don't even know if they graded-on or wrote-on. (Side note: K&E scholars know the other K&E scholars because they all go to a fancy reception together.) Based on discussions among students, the consensus seems to be that the cutoff ranges from 179.5 (but rarely that low) to slightly above 180. I'm guessing last year's cutoff last was 179.9.

The median GPA after 1L year is higher than 177. I would guess it's about 177.3-177.7. Here's why: professors give lots of 176s and 177s to students at the bottom half of the class. Also, professors tend to use the upper range of the curve more freely than the lower range (C's are usually high, but A's are all over the place). Finally, they tend to give a few more A's than C's. Put together, the average grade in each class is likely to be above 177, even though the median is 177. Remember the only requirements are that median in each class must be 177 and A's must roughly equal C's.

But splitting hairs over median (or any other cutoff aside from LR or K&E) is pointless. Employers likely assume 177 is median, since they won't know class rank. Also, I'd bet few employers actually calculate GPA's. (One exception is Williams & Connolly, which asked students their GPAs in interviews.) To most employers, a 176.5 transcript looks about the same as a 177.5. Same with a 178 and a 179.

Finally, I'm guessing the K&E and LR cutoffs are lower this year—since administration cracked down on grading. I don't know how much, though.

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Emma.
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Emma. » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:13 am

A-Cow-Demia wrote:
Emma. wrote:Has top 10% ever been as high as 180.5? My understanding is that the grade cut off for LR is always somewhere between 179.5 and 180. Considering 180.5 at graduation is high honors and around the top 4% of the class get that, it seems crazy that top 10% could be that high in any given year. It sounds like 180.5 was the cut off for K&E Scholars last year.


Here's what I know about grading:

Last year's K&E cutoff was 180.5-ish. It may have been a bit lower.

No student seems to know the LR cutoff. Students on LR don't know it. They don't even know if they graded-on or wrote-on. (Side note: K&E scholars know the other K&E scholars because they all go to a fancy reception together.) Based on discussions among students, the consensus seems to be that the cutoff ranges from 179.5 (but rarely that low) to slightly above 180. I'm guessing last year's cutoff last was 179.9.

The median GPA after 1L year is higher than 177. I would guess it's about 177.3-177.7. Here's why: professors give lots of 176s and 177s to students at the bottom half of the class. Also, professors tend to use the upper range of the curve more freely than the lower range (C's are usually high, but A's are all over the place). Finally, they tend to give a few more A's than C's. Put together, the average grade in each class is likely to be above 177, even though the median is 177. Remember the only requirements are that median in each class must be 177 and A's must roughly equal C's.

But splitting hairs over median (or any other cutoff aside from LR or K&E) is pointless. Employers likely assume 177 is median, since they won't know class rank. Also, I'd bet few employers actually calculate GPA's. (One exception is Williams & Connolly, which asked students their GPAs in interviews.) To most employers, a 176.5 transcript looks about the same as a 177.5. Same with a 178 and a 179.

Finally, I'm guessing the K&E and LR cutoffs are lower this year—since administration cracked down on grading. I don't know how much, though.


Thanks for the info. I think you conflate mean and median in here though. You say "median in each class must be 177," so if that is true then the overall median should be very close to 177 although the mean is higher. I agree that it is a moot point, but I don't want anyone reading this with a 177.4 average and thinking that they are below median.

A-Cow-Demia
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby A-Cow-Demia » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:37 am

No conflation. Take a class of five students with the following grades: 173, 176, 177, 179, 185. The median is 177 and there is both one A and one C. This meets the requirements, but the average in this class is 178.

If all classes in the entire school have similar distributions the median GPA could be above 177. The point is if the average in each class is above 177, the median GPA (or the median student's average) will also be above 177.

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Emma.
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Emma. » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:49 am

A-Cow-Demia wrote:No conflation. Take a class of five students with the following grades: 173, 176, 177, 179, 185. The median is 177 and there is both one A and one C. This meets the requirements, but the average in this class is 178.

If all classes in the entire school have similar distributions the median GPA could be above 177. The point is if the average in each class is above 177, the median GPA (or the median student's average) will also be above 177.


I see what you are saying, but it isn't necessarily true that just because the mean in any given class might be above median (and I've seen some distribution charts that show they are usually very close in classes other than LRW) the median student's GPA is going to be above that 177 median....

t-pain
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby t-pain » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:58 am

A-Cow-Demia wrote:
Emma. wrote:Has top 10% ever been as high as 180.5? My understanding is that the grade cut off for LR is always somewhere between 179.5 and 180. Considering 180.5 at graduation is high honors and around the top 4% of the class get that, it seems crazy that top 10% could be that high in any given year. It sounds like 180.5 was the cut off for K&E Scholars last year.


Here's what I know about grading:

Last year's K&E cutoff was 180.5-ish. It may have been a bit lower.

No student seems to know the LR cutoff. Students on LR don't know it. They don't even know if they graded-on or wrote-on. (Side note: K&E scholars know the other K&E scholars because they all go to a fancy reception together.) Based on discussions among students, the consensus seems to be that the cutoff ranges from 179.5 (but rarely that low) to slightly above 180. I'm guessing last year's cutoff last was 179.9.

The median GPA after 1L year is higher than 177. I would guess it's about 177.3-177.7. Here's why: professors give lots of 176s and 177s to students at the bottom half of the class. Also, professors tend to use the upper range of the curve more freely than the lower range (C's are usually high, but A's are all over the place). Finally, they tend to give a few more A's than C's. Put together, the average grade in each class is likely to be above 177, even though the median is 177. Remember the only requirements are that median in each class must be 177 and A's must roughly equal C's.

But splitting hairs over median (or any other cutoff aside from LR or K&E) is pointless. Employers likely assume 177 is median, since they won't know class rank. Also, I'd bet few employers actually calculate GPA's. (One exception is Williams & Connolly, which asked students their GPAs in interviews.) To most employers, a 176.5 transcript looks about the same as a 177.5. Same with a 178 and a 179.

Finally, I'm guessing the K&E and LR cutoffs are lower this year—since administration cracked down on grading. I don't know how much, though.

Thanks for the information. Did the crack down include 1L classes, I thought it was only related to seminars? One note is that class size is a little bit larger this year, so if everything else magically stayed the same, the GPA required for LR should go up very slightly.

A-Cow-Demia
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby A-Cow-Demia » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:05 am

Emma. wrote:
A-Cow-Demia wrote:No conflation. Take a class of five students with the following grades: 173, 176, 177, 179, 185. The median is 177 and there is both one A and one C. This meets the requirements, but the average in this class is 178.

If all classes in the entire school have similar distributions the median GPA could be above 177. The point is if the average in each class is above 177, the median GPA (or the median student's average) will also be above 177.


I see what you are saying, but it isn't necessarily true that just because the mean in any given class might be above median (and I've seen some distribution charts that show they are usually very close in classes other than LRW) the median student's GPA is going to be above that 177 median....


The only distribution charts I've seen (pre-grading crackdown, mind you) showed that A's generally outnumbered C's. This leads to the result I'm talking about. But A's may exactly equal C's post-crackdown, which would largely negate the effect.

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Emma.
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Emma. » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:09 am

A-Cow-Demia wrote:
Emma. wrote:
A-Cow-Demia wrote:No conflation. Take a class of five students with the following grades: 173, 176, 177, 179, 185. The median is 177 and there is both one A and one C. This meets the requirements, but the average in this class is 178.

If all classes in the entire school have similar distributions the median GPA could be above 177. The point is if the average in each class is above 177, the median GPA (or the median student's average) will also be above 177.


I see what you are saying, but it isn't necessarily true that just because the mean in any given class might be above median (and I've seen some distribution charts that show they are usually very close in classes other than LRW) the median student's GPA is going to be above that 177 median....


The only distribution charts I've seen (pre-grading crackdown, mind you) showed that A's generally outnumbered C's. This leads to the result I'm talking about. But A's may exactly equal C's post-crackdown, which would largely negate the effect.


I think the means are still a little higher, but only by a small margin (often something like 177.2). A couple professors disclose the mean in their faculty memos too. I was just thinking that since the grades cluster really heavily at median (I'd think in any given 100 person class there are probably 30 or 40 177s) there's a pretty good chance that the median student at the end of the year has all median grades.

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Sentry
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Sentry » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:12 am

So could a prof give 177s to the whole section?

A-Cow-Demia
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby A-Cow-Demia » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:12 am

t-pain wrote:Thanks for the information. Did the crack down include 1L classes, I thought it was only related to seminars? One note is that class size is a little bit larger this year, so if everything else magically stayed the same, the GPA required for LR should go up very slightly.


Good point. I didn't think about the larger class size. Seminars were the main reason for the crackdown, but I think it affected all classes. The registrar now scrutinizes all class distributions (making sure they satisfy the two requirements). Another difference is that the school now releases 1L grades at the same time. Last year, students who had crim with McAdams, for example, got grades sooner than other students. I think they made the change to ensure that one class doesn't have a more favorable distribution.

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Emma.
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Emma. » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:16 am

t-pain wrote:Thanks for the information. Did the crack down include 1L classes, I thought it was only related to seminars? One note is that class size is a little bit larger this year, so if everything else magically stayed the same, the GPA required for LR should go up very slightly.


I wonder if they'll use one of their discretionary spots on LR to make up for this. They said 19 people would grade on, but also said the top 10% will grade on... That would be 20 people and then we wouldn't expect the cut off to be significantly different. Not that (as A-Cow-Demia noted) anyone ever knows what the cut off is.

They did "crack down" on all classes, but I think for the most part the 1L classes had been following the grading requirements already and they make sure the grades are pretty consistent between sections in the big classes, so that probably mitigates any one professor's idiosyncrasies.

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Emma.
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Emma. » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:23 am

Sentry wrote:So could a prof give 177s to the whole section?


I doubt it, and don't know why a prof would choose to do this. AFAIK there is a 10-80-10 distribution that professors are expected to stick to. Beyond that, no one knows exactly what the faculty handbook tells them to do.

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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby A-Cow-Demia » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:24 am

Emma. wrote:
t-pain wrote:Thanks for the information. Did the crack down include 1L classes, I thought it was only related to seminars? One note is that class size is a little bit larger this year, so if everything else magically stayed the same, the GPA required for LR should go up very slightly.


I wonder if they'll use one of their discretionary spots on LR to make up for this. They said 19 people would grade on, but also said the top 10% will grade on... That would be 20 people and then we wouldn't expect the cut off to be significantly different. Not that (as A-Cow-Demia noted) anyone ever knows what the cut off is.

They did "crack down" on all classes, but I think for the most part the 1L classes had been following the grading requirements already and they make sure the grades are pretty consistent between sections in the big classes, so that probably mitigates any one professor's idiosyncrasies.


Another good point. The LR site says 20 will grade on this year (see --LinkRemoved--), but I know that only 19 graded on last year. They must have changed it for this year.

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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby pehaigllleises » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:43 am

I remember when I was anxious about whether I'd be invited to perform mind numbing drudgery for anal 3Ls with no actual work experience on a power trip.

I met with Dean Gardner last year for another reason and brought up my concerns about the new grading regime because I was already in a bunch of small, hard classes (upper level tax), that now, all of a sudden, were going to be curved to a 177. Because twelve tax geeks, 177 curve, I thought bye bye GPA. She said the main concern that they were trying to address was that different 1L classes in my year had different distributions. This year they tried to make it more fair across the sections. You really shouldn't benefit or get screwed because you had X Civ Pro professor instead of Y Civ Pro professor. And I think everyone agrees with that. She pulled up her list and read off some of the seminars that had curved to above a 181 median, and others that had curved to around a 176 median. That's really not a fair situation either. I really don't think that grading was any "harsher" this year than it was last year.

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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby TaipeiMort » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:47 am

Emma. wrote:
Sentry wrote:So could a prof give 177s to the whole section?


I doubt it, and don't know why a prof would choose to do this. AFAIK there is a 10-80-10 distribution that professors are expected to stick to. Beyond that, no one knows exactly what the faculty handbook tells them to do.


I don't think the distribution is required to be this way. Helmholtz is known to use nearly every grade in the spectrum and it sounds like the property professors used a wide spectrum this time.

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Emma.
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Emma. » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:51 am

TaipeiMort wrote:
Emma. wrote:
Sentry wrote:So could a prof give 177s to the whole section?


I doubt it, and don't know why a prof would choose to do this. AFAIK there is a 10-80-10 distribution that professors are expected to stick to. Beyond that, no one knows exactly what the faculty handbook tells them to do.


I don't think the distribution is required to be this way. Helmholtz is known to use nearly every grade in the spectrum and it sounds like the property professors used a wide spectrum this time.


Using all the grades in the spectrum (I'm pretty sure even the Hammer doesn't give 155s) wouldn't be inconsistent with a 10-80-10ish distribution.

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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby California Babe » Sat Jul 09, 2011 9:29 am

Emma. wrote:
TaipeiMort wrote:
Emma. wrote:
Sentry wrote:So could a prof give 177s to the whole section?


I doubt it, and don't know why a prof would choose to do this. AFAIK there is a 10-80-10 distribution that professors are expected to stick to. Beyond that, no one knows exactly what the faculty handbook tells them to do.


I don't think the distribution is required to be this way. Helmholtz is known to use nearly every grade in the spectrum and it sounds like the property professors used a wide spectrum this time.


Using all the grades in the spectrum (I'm pretty sure even the Hammer doesn't give 155s) wouldn't be inconsistent with a 10-80-10ish distribution.


Yes my understanding is that by "using every grade on the spectrum," Helmholz gives both low C's and high A's frequently. As in, if a professor has to give 10 C's in a class, they can still clump them around 172-73 if they want, but Helmholz will dip into the 168-69 range.

The new grading "crackdown" was intended to give all the 1Ls an equal shot at making LR, but I don't think it makes it more/less harsh. If you happened to be assigned to a professor who graded historically difficult, it made it easier for you to grade onto LR than previous students in that class, but the opposite is true for students assigned to historically generous professors.

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Emma.
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Emma. » Sat Jul 09, 2011 11:17 am

California Babe wrote:
The new grading "crackdown" was intended to give all the 1Ls an equal shot at making LR, but I don't think it makes it more/less harsh. If you happened to be assigned to a professor who graded historically difficult, it made it easier for you to grade onto LR than previous students in that class, but the opposite is true for students assigned to historically generous professors.


I totally agree. The only potentially harsh result was the fact that they didn't notify people in advance of what was going on, and a few people who had signed up for notoriously easy-graded classes acting in reliance on the fact that they were going to get a 181 for sure ended up getting screwed. I'm not exactly crying a river for those folks though, since they probably should have just been signing up for the classes they were genuinely interested in.

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Chicago2L
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Chicago2L » Mon Jul 11, 2011 7:59 pm

Anyone know when they release K&E Scholar info? Did they already? :oops:

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Emma.
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Emma. » Mon Jul 11, 2011 8:02 pm

Chicago2L wrote:Anyone know when they release K&E Scholar info? Did they already? :oops:


They can't until after all the grades are in!

Last year I think the cutoff was around 180.5, and people heard towards the end of July.

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Chicago2L
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Chicago2L » Mon Jul 11, 2011 8:06 pm

Sorry, I'm a 2L (rising 3L?) weird to say. Didn't realize you guys were still waiting (I've blocked 1L out of my mind - haha).

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Emma.
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Emma. » Mon Jul 11, 2011 8:13 pm

Chicago2L wrote:Sorry, I'm a 2L (rising 3L?) weird to say. Didn't realize you guys were still waiting (I've blocked 1L out of my mind - haha).


Ah, got it. Sorry. I guess maybe they wait and notify everyone at the same time?

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Chicago2L
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Chicago2L » Mon Jul 11, 2011 8:37 pm

That's what I figured. At least we're all done with finals.

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JollyGreenGiant
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby JollyGreenGiant » Mon Jul 11, 2011 8:45 pm

K&E Scholar is after 1st year? I thought it was after all 3 years. Interesting.

Peeblepop
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Re: UChi Rising 2Ls (!!) Taking Questions

Postby Peeblepop » Mon Jul 11, 2011 9:10 pm

If I transfer in as a 2L, will you all be my friends or will most of you hate me?




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