Harvard Student(s) Answering Your 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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TripTrip
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby TripTrip » Mon Mar 21, 2016 1:06 pm

tomwatts wrote:
hlsperson123 wrote:
TripTrip wrote:stats.


Thanks TripTrip for yet another amazing stats post! Though there may be a confounding factor: students on HLR might have bid more selective firms than they otherwise would have given their grades.

Yeah, I was wondering what variables your dataset has. Do you have, for an individual student, grades + offer from specific firm (yes/no) + HLR (yes/no)? If so, you should be able to compare whether a given firm is more likely to take someone given HLR. If it's just grades + number of offers, not so much.

Yes, and absolutely that's confounding. Also more competitive students tend to bid on fewer firms, which allows them to focus on preparing for the interviews they do have. There are a lot of variables at play here.

Yes, I can separate out by firm and look for HLR utility among the more selective firms. I haven't done that yet, but it's a good idea. My intuition says it will matter at e.g. Susman but not Cravath, but I'll report back if I end up doing that analysis.

lawlorbust
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby lawlorbust » Mon Mar 21, 2016 1:41 pm

tomwatts wrote:
leslieknope wrote:Do I need to pick up the HLR packet in person, or is it downloadable remotely?

It can be snail-mailed to a distant location. You have to request this in advance and, I believe, pay the postage.

Most basic HLR competition questions are easily Google-able, by the way, if you don't want to wait for a response here.


To the other part of the question, the sources for the writing component is both electronic and paper, but the subcite component is paper only. (As are the other forms required to finish the competition.)

SCOTUS Twerk
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby SCOTUS Twerk » Mon Mar 21, 2016 3:58 pm

How does HLR actually weigh the write-on score and grades? Saying it's 50%-50% doesn't really tell us anything if we don't know how they calculate the grade score. Like, imagine they grade the write-on score out of 100 and the grade score is calculated as a GPA out of 4.0 scaled to 100. Then the difference between a 3.5 and a 4 is treated equivalently to 25 writing competition points, which seems like it would be basically insurmountable.

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TripTrip
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby TripTrip » Mon Mar 21, 2016 7:43 pm

SCOTUS Twerk wrote:How does HLR actually weigh the write-on score and grades? Saying it's 50%-50% doesn't really tell us anything if we don't know how they calculate the grade score. Like, imagine they grade the write-on score out of 100 and the grade score is calculated as a GPA out of 4.0 scaled to 100. Then the difference between a 3.5 and a 4 is treated equivalently to 25 writing competition points, which seems like it would be basically insurmountable.

More than half of the slots are grade-blind: http://harvardlawreview.org/about/

If you actually mean the 14 that include grades: I don't have any idea how the scores are handed out, but I can think of plenty of ways to do 50%/50% scoring between two differently scaled items. The easiest would be to rank everyone by highest to lowest GPA and best to worst write-on and assign linear scores which are then added together.

You're not going to grade on with a 3.5 though; you're right about that.

SCOTUS Twerk
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby SCOTUS Twerk » Mon Mar 21, 2016 7:56 pm

TripTrip wrote:
SCOTUS Twerk wrote:How does HLR actually weigh the write-on score and grades? Saying it's 50%-50% doesn't really tell us anything if we don't know how they calculate the grade score. Like, imagine they grade the write-on score out of 100 and the grade score is calculated as a GPA out of 4.0 scaled to 100. Then the difference between a 3.5 and a 4 is treated equivalently to 25 writing competition points, which seems like it would be basically insurmountable.

More than half of the slots are grade-blind: http://harvardlawreview.org/about/

If you actually mean the 14 that include grades: I don't have any idea how the scores are handed out, but I can think of plenty of ways to do 50%/50% scoring between two differently scaled items. The easiest would be to rank everyone by highest to lowest GPA and best to worst write-on and assign linear scores which are then added together.

You're not going to grade on with a 3.5 though; you're right about that.


Right! I'm wondering how they scale the two items. It's easy to say the weight is 50%-50%, but that doesn't actually tell us anything. Even saying "assign[ing] linear scores" doesn't tell us anything if the variances are dissimilar. For a 50%-50% grades-writing-score breakdown to be meaningful, they'd have to normalize both scores, then average, for all participants. Which I doubt they do.

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TripTrip
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby TripTrip » Mon Mar 21, 2016 8:06 pm

SCOTUS Twerk wrote:
TripTrip wrote:
SCOTUS Twerk wrote:How does HLR actually weigh the write-on score and grades? Saying it's 50%-50% doesn't really tell us anything if we don't know how they calculate the grade score. Like, imagine they grade the write-on score out of 100 and the grade score is calculated as a GPA out of 4.0 scaled to 100. Then the difference between a 3.5 and a 4 is treated equivalently to 25 writing competition points, which seems like it would be basically insurmountable.

More than half of the slots are grade-blind: http://harvardlawreview.org/about/

If you actually mean the 14 that include grades: I don't have any idea how the scores are handed out, but I can think of plenty of ways to do 50%/50% scoring between two differently scaled items. The easiest would be to rank everyone by highest to lowest GPA and best to worst write-on and assign linear scores which are then added together.

You're not going to grade on with a 3.5 though; you're right about that.


Right! I'm wondering how they scale the two items. It's easy to say the weight is 50%-50%, but that doesn't actually tell us anything. Even saying "assign[ing] linear scores" doesn't tell us anything if the variances are dissimilar. For a 50%-50% grades-writing-score breakdown to be meaningful, they'd have to normalize both scores, then average, for all participants. Which I doubt they do.

You don't actually need to normalize and average if you just rank participants in each category and assign them an arbitrary (but equal) point value.

For example: if there are 100 students participating, first rank them by GPA. Mary has a GPA of 3.7 and ranks #40 of all participants. Assign her 60 points (100-40). Now rank all participants by write-on. Mary's write on was #1, so assign her 100 points. Now Mary has 160 points. Rank all the participants by points and select the top two from each section.

Again, I have no idea whether they do that, but it wouldn't be difficult to do it that way and assign exactly equal weight to both GPA and the write-on.

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby blueberrycrumble » Tue Mar 22, 2016 12:38 am

TripTrip wrote:
SCOTUS Twerk wrote:How does HLR actually weigh the write-on score and grades? Saying it's 50%-50% doesn't really tell us anything if we don't know how they calculate the grade score. Like, imagine they grade the write-on score out of 100 and the grade score is calculated as a GPA out of 4.0 scaled to 100. Then the difference between a 3.5 and a 4 is treated equivalently to 25 writing competition points, which seems like it would be basically insurmountable.

More than half of the slots are grade-blind: http://harvardlawreview.org/about/

If you actually mean the 14 that include grades: I don't have any idea how the scores are handed out, but I can think of plenty of ways to do 50%/50% scoring between two differently scaled items. The easiest would be to rank everyone by highest to lowest GPA and best to worst write-on and assign linear scores which are then added together.

You're not going to grade on with a 3.5 though; you're right about that.


What kind of GPA do you need to have to be competitive for a grade-on spot? Thanks!

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gamerish
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby gamerish » Tue Mar 22, 2016 1:48 am

tomwatts wrote:
gamerish wrote:First, is the often-quoted line that median at H/slightly below median (straight Ps) can still land a BigLaw gig more the result of the “power” of Harvard itself, or that at the level of applicant that Harvard generally pulls from it’s just expected that they will have certain backgrounds and experiences that are conducive to pursuing a career in BigLaw? For example, I know an enormous portion of the class has prior work experience. I’m concerned because, even by K-JD standards (which I am), my resume is… lackluster due to a medical issue that resulted in a multi-year professional gap that’s only been book-ended by a job I got quite recently. I know a lot of people come into schools like HLS thinking they’re the underachiever of the group, but it’s hard to shake the feeling that I’ll be very much behind the curve when it comes to substantive things like work experience and pre-law school extracurriculars, which I imagine would hurt when EIP rolls around.

It's Harvard, not prior work experience. K-JDs aren't expected to have much work experience anyway (internships during college? A lot of people's internships during college are pretty meh anyway), and pre-law extracurriculars probably don't do much of anything at all for your law employment prospects.

Do something law-related during your 1L summer and you'll be fine (and will look like pretty much every other K-JD).

gamerish wrote:And second, is the hype that Harvard gets for its placement in FedGov mainly derived from placement in the Honors program, or does the advantage carry over to people who take the clerkship -> biglaw ->fedgov route? Even then, is the boon mostly derived from HLS’ strong clerkship placement? FedGov litigation is my end game and I do have some connections but nothing compelling enough that I feel I can really count on them to do much for me, especially given my dearth of experience relative to what I imagine my peers would bring to the table. I’ll note that I have no illusions of landing an Honors spot so I'm mostly curious about the BigLaw path. I did read the HLS “Fast Track to a USAO” paper that was linked itt but it didn’t reveal much in the way of this kind of information.

The Harvard name will help you for the rest of your career. For better or for worse, your school name goes on your resume forever, and people still continue to care for years after you graduate. Any path that takes you to the federal government will be aided by the Harvard name.

I don't have specific numbers — maybe someone else does — but the benefit is strong clerkship placement, strong biglaw placement, and strong fedgov placement. It's at every single step.

(Also, some of your peers will have some kind of relevant experience, but many will not. Don't worry about it. That's not going to be a deal breaker in government hiring.)

Thank you!

tomwatts
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby tomwatts » Tue Mar 22, 2016 12:00 pm

blueberrycrumble wrote:What kind of GPA do you need to have to be competitive for a grade-on spot? Thanks!

My best guess is significantly over 4.0. Here's why:

14 people get on HLR in part due to grades. That's probably people within the top 20-30 of the class, because probably nearly all of the top students are trying out and most of them are doing pretty well on the write-on portion as well. Top 20 out of a class of 560 is top 3.5%. Top 30 is top 5.4%. So I figure that you've got to be in the top 3-5% of the class to be competitive for the half-grade, half-writing slots.

So what is top 3-5%? Top 10% is the magna cutoff, which is around 4.0 (give or take) — which is an equal number of DS's and P's. So we're definitely talking about significantly more DS's than P's (with the rest H's).

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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby 4for44 » Tue Mar 22, 2016 12:12 pm

tomwatts wrote:
blueberrycrumble wrote:What kind of GPA do you need to have to be competitive for a grade-on spot? Thanks!

My best guess is significantly over 4.0. Here's why:

14 people get on HLR in part due to grades. That's probably people within the top 20-30 of the class, because probably nearly all of the top students are trying out and most of them are doing pretty well on the write-on portion as well. Top 20 out of a class of 560 is top 3.5%. Top 30 is top 5.4%. So I figure that you've got to be in the top 3-5% of the class to be competitive for the half-grade, half-writing slots.

So what is top 3-5%? Top 10% is the magna cutoff, which is around 4.0 (give or take) — which is an equal number of DS's and P's. So we're definitely talking about significantly more DS's than P's (with the rest H's).


Also, remember that it's not a pure grade on. A couple of years back there was a Sears prize winner that did not get on. And I know quite a few people with >4.0 that didn't make it. When you compare Magna graduates (they send out a list at graduation) with HLR members, there is less of a correlation than you'd expect.
Overall, I'd say even if you have killer grades don't think that you can sleep on the competition. It's likely that even if you are #1 or #2 in your section , there are others in your section very close behind you. Small differences in the write on can therefore make the difference between getting on or not.

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heythatslife
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby heythatslife » Wed Mar 23, 2016 1:14 am

Has anyone taken Norman Champ's Investman Managment Law class? Opinions?

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jingosaur
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby jingosaur » Wed Mar 23, 2016 2:58 pm

heythatslife wrote:Has anyone taken Norman Champ's Investman Managment Law class? Opinions?


I did. It's a really good class. Covers mostly the Investment Company Act and Advisers Act, with some stuff on 10b-5 and Reg D.

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Mack.Hambleton
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby Mack.Hambleton » Thu Mar 24, 2016 1:00 am

whats the best strategy for chill 2L? two four credit law classes and a cross register class?

robotrick
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby robotrick » Thu Mar 24, 2016 8:41 am

Mack.Hambleton wrote:whats the best strategy for chill 2L? two four credit law classes and a cross register class?

I've also found that 3 4-credit law classes can be a good way to go if you stick with established profs that have a bunch of outlines available on dope

It also takes less effort than cross reg'ing

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Mr. Elshal
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby Mr. Elshal » Thu Mar 24, 2016 10:57 am

robotrick wrote:
Mack.Hambleton wrote:whats the best strategy for chill 2L? two four credit law classes and a cross register class?

I've also found that 3 4-credit law classes can be a good way to go if you stick with established profs that have a bunch of outlines available on dope

It also takes less effort than cross reg'ing


I'm a fan of 6-credit clinic, 3-credit easy class, and a 1-credit reading group. You'll have to make up credits in another semester, but you'll enjoy this one

wwwcol
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby wwwcol » Thu Mar 24, 2016 12:09 pm

Mr. Elshal wrote:
robotrick wrote:
Mack.Hambleton wrote:whats the best strategy for chill 2L? two four credit law classes and a cross register class?

I've also found that 3 4-credit law classes can be a good way to go if you stick with established profs that have a bunch of outlines available on dope

It also takes less effort than cross reg'ing


I'm a fan of 6-credit clinic, 3-credit easy class, and a 1-credit reading group. You'll have to make up credits in another semester, but you'll enjoy this one


Strongly disagree with the notion that clinics lend themselves to chill semesters

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jingosaur
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby jingosaur » Thu Mar 24, 2016 12:29 pm

3-4 credit BLL classes with professors known to not give a lot of reading is the best way to maximize the credit/time spend on school ratio. I took 3 BLL classes last semester and probably spent about 18 hours per week total on school. And that's only because I did all the reading and went to almost every class. I also had 4 day weekends every weekend.

Protip: If you take only Wednesday/Thursday/Friday classes in the fall, you get an 11 day Thanksgiving break.

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Mr. Elshal
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby Mr. Elshal » Thu Mar 24, 2016 1:22 pm

wwwcol wrote:
Mr. Elshal wrote:
robotrick wrote:
Mack.Hambleton wrote:whats the best strategy for chill 2L? two four credit law classes and a cross register class?

I've also found that 3 4-credit law classes can be a good way to go if you stick with established profs that have a bunch of outlines available on dope

It also takes less effort than cross reg'ing


I'm a fan of 6-credit clinic, 3-credit easy class, and a 1-credit reading group. You'll have to make up credits in another semester, but you'll enjoy this one


Strongly disagree with the notion that clinics lend themselves to chill semesters


It really depends on the clinic, obviously

Indifference
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby Indifference » Thu Mar 24, 2016 4:31 pm

Would applying for the USAO clinic be a waste of a bid? I see it's been discussed previously as being a "lottery" due to its small size. Or does it not matter, since Clinical/Multi-section/Electives are split into different preferencing windows?

ETA: If anyone has done it and has feedback, that would be great, too. :)

tomwatts
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby tomwatts » Thu Mar 24, 2016 4:35 pm

Indifference wrote:Would applying for the USAO clinic be a waste of a bid? I see it's been discussed previously as being a "lottery" due to its small size. Or does it not matter, since Clinical/Multi-section/Electives are split into different preferencing windows?

ETA: If anyone has done it and has feedback, that would be great, too. :)

Because it's just a clinical #1 bid, I'd say go for it, unless you have something else that you're really going to need a clinical #1 bid for next year (which seems unlikely).

wwwcol
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby wwwcol » Thu Mar 24, 2016 10:33 pm

Mr. Elshal wrote:
wwwcol wrote:
Mr. Elshal wrote:
robotrick wrote:
Mack.Hambleton wrote:whats the best strategy for chill 2L? two four credit law classes and a cross register class?

I've also found that 3 4-credit law classes can be a good way to go if you stick with established profs that have a bunch of outlines available on dope

It also takes less effort than cross reg'ing


I'm a fan of 6-credit clinic, 3-credit easy class, and a 1-credit reading group. You'll have to make up credits in another semester, but you'll enjoy this one


Strongly disagree with the notion that clinics lend themselves to chill semesters


It really depends on the clinic, obviously


I am not aware of any clinics whose workloads are less than a well-selected class schedule. If you load up on Nesson/Ogletree/Feldmanetc-like classes you can easily have an hour of readings per week

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TripTrip
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby TripTrip » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:28 am

wwwcol wrote:Nesson

TCR.

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radio1nowhere
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby radio1nowhere » Fri Mar 25, 2016 12:13 pm

wwwcol wrote:If you load up on Nesson/Ogletree/Feldmanetc-like classes you can easily have an hour of readings per week


None of these three are teaching in the fall, sadly

ValeVale
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby ValeVale » Fri Mar 25, 2016 4:59 pm

If I ranked Fallon for 14th in my 3rd/4th slot, any chance I get in his class?

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TripTrip
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Re: Harvard Student(s) Answering Your Questions

Postby TripTrip » Fri Mar 25, 2016 5:35 pm

radio1nowhere wrote:
wwwcol wrote:If you load up on Nesson/Ogletree/Feldmanetc-like classes you can easily have an hour of readings per week


None of these three are teaching in the fall, sadly

I can speak to Nesson: he probably is teaching in the fall but hasn't put in the correct paperwork yet. Just snatch up his course from the update list if you want it.




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