Is it possible to just "not get it" in law school?

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bdm261
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Is it possible to just "not get it" in law school?

Postby bdm261 » Mon Apr 01, 2013 1:23 pm

Are there a significant number of law students in 1L who "just don't get it" and fail out or withdraw? Can you predict this occurrence in incoming students before they enroll, ie. LSAT/GPA below a certain cutoff...or can a 4.0/170 still find themselves lost and just not comprehending law?

At the admitted students day I attended, the admissions director said they take multiple actions to ensure students don't fail out, and even put them in a "special section" if they're below a certain standard. I'm guessing they still end up below median but at least earn their law degree.

TheGreatFish
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Re: Is it possible to just "not get it" in law school?

Postby TheGreatFish » Mon Apr 01, 2013 3:35 pm

I think it's unlikely that a student with a high GPA/LSAT score will have difficulty comprehending the law.

In my experience, most students who have dismal law school grades have trouble with their writing, and not with comprehension.

Poor writing ability and difficulty scoring well on essays is probably a more significant indicator of future law school trouble.

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Skye
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Re: Is it possible to just "not get it" in law school?

Postby Skye » Mon Apr 01, 2013 4:02 pm

I do not know of anyone who went the distance and failed to secure a law degree. Withdraw is another story. Some students, particularly those with low grades, drop out believing that their employment chances are nil.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Is it possible to just "not get it" in law school?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Mon Apr 01, 2013 4:12 pm

It usually correlates pretty well with the rank of the school. That is, it's really really really hard actually to flunk out of a highly-ranked school. It's actually not very hard to flunk out of the lowest ranked schools, because some have mandatory curves that require giving out a certain number of Fs. (I'm thinking of TTTTs mostly, though I don't know what percentage this is.) If a school lets in almost anyone who can sign their name to a LSAT, they are probably cutting a bunch of people during 1L. Conversely, there probably are people who drop out of HYS after 1L, but it's not going to be because they fail out, unless they work really hard at it (like, literally don't take any of their exams).

Of course, withdrawing is a little different. One person in my class (lower T1) withdrew, I want to say after first semester 1L, because he completely didn't grasp that law school exams were different from undergrad exams, sat down in contracts, wrote everything he wanted to write on the first question, then looked at the clock and realized there were 15 minutes and two questions left (for a 4 hour exam). I think he realized it wasn't the right setting for him and also that he'd tanked his grades that semester - but that doesn't mean he wasn't able to comprehend the law, or that he wouldn't have been able to do better if he'd stayed. He just didn't want to stay. As you get higher up the food chain, this is even more likely to be the case. Someone who's the bottom of their class in the T14 and withdraws probably still understands the law pretty well - it's just that someone has to be bottom when you grade on a curve.

In any case, I'm pretty sure the school information you can get through LSAC includes attrition after 1L, so you can go see how many people leave during the first year.

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reasonable_man
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Re: Is it possible to just "not get it" in law school?

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Apr 01, 2013 4:39 pm

Unless you suffer from a very serious cognitive deficit, you should be able to make it through all three years of law school as long as you put in some work. And for that hard work, with mediocre grades, you will almost certainly be unemployed.

The much better question is: "Are there a significant number of people that graduate from law school and never actually get to become a lawyer despite the fact that they want to practice law?"

The answer to that question is an overwhelming "yes."

reverendt
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Re: Is it possible to just "not get it" in law school?

Postby reverendt » Mon Apr 01, 2013 4:52 pm

I knew one guy who was pretty smart in some ways (he had a decent mind for hard science) but he just couldn't gt on board with law. I think he passed the first year, albeit with low grades, but withdrew because the type of thinking involved just didn't work for him.

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typ3
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Re: Is it possible to just "not get it" in law school?

Postby typ3 » Tue Apr 02, 2013 10:25 pm

I am one of those who does not "get it" in law school, despite being raised in a family of lawyers and being a would be 4th generation one myself.

There are lots of people who just don't have an appetite for law especially with its focus on money. It leaves a lot of people jaded, or at least that's what I get from all the unemployed 3L's.

I came in way at the top of my admitted class but I solidly do not give a shit about law school nor the practice of law and I have a post grad job at a law firm with 100k plus starting that I'm turning down.

For me the turning point was when one of my parents was diagnosed with mesothelioma and had most of their internal organs removed during my 2L year along with chemo, treatment, etc. and the whole shebang. Their exposure was from when they were 18. It's hard to give a shit about work that is solely focused on money and helping those with money keep more of it when you have something like that going on in your life.

FWIW I am taking a position at a niche construction company that is around 50 years old that has RMR and is recession proof and is not going anywhere soon. 40 hour weeks, good benefits, and I don't have to deal with idiots in suits all day. Also, I have the luxury of dealing with honest salt of the earth people.

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Is it possible to just "not get it" in law school?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Apr 02, 2013 11:15 pm

There's a big difference between not giving a shit about law school or not having an appetite for the law, and not "getting it" to the extent that you fail out.

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typ3
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Re: Is it possible to just "not get it" in law school?

Postby typ3 » Wed Apr 03, 2013 3:31 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:There's a big difference between not giving a shit about law school or not having an appetite for the law, and not "getting it" to the extent that you fail out.


To quote the dean of my law school, it is impossible to fail a law school exam as long as you take it and do not cheat. The bar, well that's an entirely different story.




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