Spivey Consulting Q&A with Adcoms from Yale, Harvard, Penn, Chicago etc.

Special forum where professionals are encouraged to help law school applicants, students, and graduates.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Sun May 04, 2014 11:08 am

I also believe that policy went out the door for a variety of good reasons.

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Mon May 05, 2014 11:50 am

There is an option to request an exception to the three-times-in-two-years rule directly through LSAC, though I believe you need a really good reason.

http://www.lsac.org/jd/lsat/about-the-lsat/

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Mon May 05, 2014 11:57 am

workaholic82 wrote:I have a question that I'm sure has come up before. Most if not all schools say your deposits will go toward your first semester's tuition. What if someone has a full scholarship with stipend paying for fees. Are those deposits then non recoverable?


Each school with have an individual deposit policy, and some will require you to pay something even if you have a full tuition scholarship, but some won't have a monetary deposit. If they do require you to pay something, it is likely that you'd recover it at some point but each school has a different process for how they'd do this. I'd check in with the school but I think it's unlikely that you'd have to pay a larger total tuition/fees than other students when everything is added up.

Cheers,
KB

workaholic82
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby workaholic82 » Mon May 05, 2014 12:43 pm

KarenButtenbaum wrote:
workaholic82 wrote:I have a question that I'm sure has come up before. Most if not all schools say your deposits will go toward your first semester's tuition. What if someone has a full scholarship with stipend paying for fees. Are those deposits then non recoverable?


Each school with have an individual deposit policy, and some will require you to pay something even if you have a full tuition scholarship, but some won't have a monetary deposit. If they do require you to pay something, it is likely that you'd recover it at some point but each school has a different process for how they'd do this. I'd check in with the school but I think it's unlikely that you'd have to pay a larger total tuition/fees than other students when everything is added up.

Cheers,
KB

Thank you Karen!

VulturGryphus
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby VulturGryphus » Mon May 05, 2014 1:03 pm

Hi Mike & Karen,

Does your background in admissions give you insight to the question about how wait-listed candidates will be affected by changes in the Dean of Admissions?

VulturGryphus wrote:Hi Mike,

I just read your post "The summer is long and full of melting."

What effect, if any, does the Dean of Admissions leaving their school have on wait-listed candidates? Particularly in the case where a wait-listed candidate had been keeping in touch with that Dean.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Mon May 05, 2014 2:11 pm

VulturGryphus wrote:Hi Mike & Karen,

Does your background in admissions give you insight to the question about how wait-listed candidates will be affected by changes in the Dean of Admissions?

VulturGryphus wrote:Hi Mike,

I just read your post "The summer is long and full of melting."

What effect, if any, does the Dean of Admissions leaving their school have on wait-listed candidates? Particularly in the case where a wait-listed candidate had been keeping in touch with that Dean.


That is way too variable for anyone to really predict. Maybe if we knew the new person we could, but we likely wouldn't publicly anyway.

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dcpanther
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby dcpanther » Tue May 06, 2014 3:18 pm

.
Last edited by dcpanther on Mon May 19, 2014 9:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Hahalollawl
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby Hahalollawl » Tue May 06, 2014 6:14 pm

Do you think that the T14 schools (especially 7-14) accepted more applicants this year so that they might not have to take as many people off of their waitlists? Or that they may have full or overenrolled classes because of this? Or that they intend to cut class sizes significantly? I saw this article (http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/the-su ... f-melting/) on your site, but the impression I've gotten thus far is that schools don't think they are going to be pulling off of their waitlists much this year. For example, wasn't Duke was denying deposit extensions (possibly due to a full class)? Also, UVA has sent out updates and doesn't seem to be planning to take many people off of their waitlist. Is it possible that there is something they know that we don't?

Thanks for any insight you might be able to provide! :)

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed May 07, 2014 9:33 am

Hahalollawl wrote:Do you think that the T14 schools (especially 7-14) accepted more applicants this year so that they might not have to take as many people off of their waitlists? Or that they may have full or overenrolled classes because of this? Or that they intend to cut class sizes significantly? I saw this article (http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/the-su ... f-melting/) on your site, but the impression I've gotten thus far is that schools don't think they are going to be pulling off of their waitlists much this year. For example, wasn't Duke was denying deposit extensions (possibly due to a full class)? Also, UVA has sent out updates and doesn't seem to be planning to take many people off of their waitlist. Is it possible that there is something they know that we don't?

Thanks for any insight you might be able to provide! :)


The LSAC cycle applicant numbers do not play this out. There will be a few schools 7-14 that *may* have good cycles, but just look at the drop in applications and the drop in the 165-169 range.

So, my guess is that a combination of more high-end applicants applying to a larger number of top schools this cycle, plus more people outside the typical quality applicant pool applying to schools ranked 7-14 has caused an increase in applications.

Just wait though....there will be substantial movement at most of these schools unless for some crazy odd reasons all of them are reducing their class sizes and/or took a huge number of deferrals last cycle.

Everything about "great start to class, full deposits, etc strikes me as a yearly party-line/

-Mike

2014jdapplicant
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby 2014jdapplicant » Wed May 07, 2014 10:58 am

dcpanther wrote:Mike/Karen,

With regards to waitlists, do you know if schools (particularly the top 6) care about their 25/75th breakdowns for GPA and LSAT? Or are they just focused on shoring up medians and then selecting based on diversity/who they like/etc.?

Relatedly, if you are below one 25th and above another 75th, is there anything in particular you should do when on a waitlist? Or is it the same advice re: expressing interest, keeping them updated, etc.

Thanks!



+1. Mike, any insight for the T6?

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nothingtosee
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby nothingtosee » Thu May 08, 2014 5:30 pm

Is using an off-the-waitlist acceptance at school A to boost scholarship at school B a thing?

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drawstring
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby drawstring » Thu May 08, 2014 5:32 pm

Not Spivey/KB, but I know of someone being bumped from 30k to 50k a year by using a WL acceptance, and I know of someone being bumped from 30k a year to full-tuition+stipend by doing the same.

Hahalollawl
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby Hahalollawl » Thu May 08, 2014 7:01 pm

MikeSpivey wrote:
Hahalollawl wrote:Do you think that the T14 schools (especially 7-14) accepted more applicants this year so that they might not have to take as many people off of their waitlists? Or that they may have full or overenrolled classes because of this? Or that they intend to cut class sizes significantly? I saw this article (http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/the-su ... f-melting/) on your site, but the impression I've gotten thus far is that schools don't think they are going to be pulling off of their waitlists much this year. For example, wasn't Duke was denying deposit extensions (possibly due to a full class)? Also, UVA has sent out updates and doesn't seem to be planning to take many people off of their waitlist. Is it possible that there is something they know that we don't?

Thanks for any insight you might be able to provide! :)


The LSAC cycle applicant numbers do not play this out. There will be a few schools 7-14 that *may* have good cycles, but just look at the drop in applications and the drop in the 165-169 range.

So, my guess is that a combination of more high-end applicants applying to a larger number of top schools this cycle, plus more people outside the typical quality applicant pool applying to schools ranked 7-14 has caused an increase in applications.

Just wait though....there will be substantial movement at most of these schools unless for some crazy odd reasons all of them are reducing their class sizes and/or took a huge number of deferrals last cycle.

Everything about "great start to class, full deposits, etc strikes me as a yearly party-line/

-Mike


Thank you for your response. So you think they're doing the law school equivalent of "toeing the line" so to speak? Sigh...why can't they just be straightforward/honest...

truckstop
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby truckstop » Fri May 09, 2014 1:23 pm

Hi!

Is it common to have to make a decision off the wait list without knowing the financial aid package? It seems impossible to make the decision by just hoping you get a certain amount of money and risking having to pay sticker (especially if giving up a substantial scholarship to do so).

Thanks for your help, and happy Friday!

theycallmefoes
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby theycallmefoes » Fri May 09, 2014 1:41 pm

2014jdapplicant wrote:
dcpanther wrote:Mike/Karen,

With regards to waitlists, do you know if schools (particularly the top 6) care about their 25/75th breakdowns for GPA and LSAT? Or are they just focused on shoring up medians and then selecting based on diversity/who they like/etc.?

Relatedly, if you are below one 25th and above another 75th, is there anything in particular you should do when on a waitlist? Or is it the same advice re: expressing interest, keeping them updated, etc.

Thanks!
+1. Mike, any insight for the T6?
Also curious about this.

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Fri May 09, 2014 1:58 pm

truckstop wrote:Hi!

Is it common to have to make a decision off the wait list without knowing the financial aid package? It seems impossible to make the decision by just hoping you get a certain amount of money and risking having to pay sticker (especially if giving up a substantial scholarship to do so).

Thanks for your help, and happy Friday!


A school will usually allow you to review a financial aid award prior to making a decision; they are mostly reasonable folks.

truckstop
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby truckstop » Fri May 09, 2014 2:32 pm

KarenButtenbaum wrote:
truckstop wrote:Hi!

Is it common to have to make a decision off the wait list without knowing the financial aid package? It seems impossible to make the decision by just hoping you get a certain amount of money and risking having to pay sticker (especially if giving up a substantial scholarship to do so).

Thanks for your help, and happy Friday!


A school will usually allow you to review a financial aid award prior to making a decision; they are mostly reasonable folks.


I just had an interview with Harvard after being waitlisted and they want me to send them an email by the end of the weekend letting them know if I would attend if accepted. They also told me that once accepted, I would have to commit within 24 hours and that I wouldn't have a chance to visit or find out my financial aid package (but that I could guess what it might be based on information on their website). That's why I was a little confused about whether that was a common practice. Do you think they would be flexible with me if I really needed to know the package before committing? I just don't want to express doubt in the email because then I might not be accepted at all. Thanks again!

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Fri May 09, 2014 3:27 pm

truckstop wrote:
KarenButtenbaum wrote:
truckstop wrote:Hi!

Is it common to have to make a decision off the wait list without knowing the financial aid package? It seems impossible to make the decision by just hoping you get a certain amount of money and risking having to pay sticker (especially if giving up a substantial scholarship to do so).

Thanks for your help, and happy Friday!


A school will usually allow you to review a financial aid award prior to making a decision; they are mostly reasonable folks.


I just had an interview with Harvard after being waitlisted and they want me to send them an email by the end of the weekend letting them know if I would attend if accepted. They also told me that once accepted, I would have to commit within 24 hours and that I wouldn't have a chance to visit or find out my financial aid package (but that I could guess what it might be based on information on their website). That's why I was a little confused about whether that was a common practice. Do you think they would be flexible with me if I really needed to know the package before committing? I just don't want to express doubt in the email because then I might not be accepted at all. Thanks again!



I almost wrote in my response "except with need based aid, where in that case it is a little tricky since you have to provide documentation before receiving an award."
Since I no longer work at HLS, I can't answer the specific question of what they'd do, but I would say that you should think about the larger picture and not just a dollar amount you are hoping for. Many people give up scholarships at great schools to pay sticker at HLS and it's not a bad decision. You can figure it out based on the fin aid website since it is need based, so do a little homework and make sure you are comfortable with what you discover.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue May 13, 2014 3:34 pm

A quick fyi. Within the next day or two we will have what I would consider to be a pretty major blog post up on our website, for those applying next cycle.

Not breaking news -- just major. :) Hopefully major! (hint: it doesn't have to do with majors).

chizzy
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby chizzy » Tue May 13, 2014 3:36 pm

Excited for this announcement

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue May 13, 2014 3:40 pm

chizzy wrote:Excited for this announcement


It's more along the lines of "helpful advice"...but I think it will answer a lot of the many similar questions we see posted online here every year re: application.

I'm also slowly working on reaching out to people who would have an idea about test-takers for next cycle. if I can get some data I will def. post, as that would fall along the lines of announcement!

chizzy
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby chizzy » Tue May 13, 2014 3:46 pm

MikeSpivey wrote:
chizzy wrote:Excited for this announcement


It's more along the lines of "helpful advice"...but I think it will answer a lot of the many similar questions we see posted online here every year re: application.

I'm also slowly working on reaching out to people who would have an idea about test-takers for next cycle. if I can get some data I will def. post, as that would fall along the lines of announcement!


Thanks for your helpful advices on TLS!

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drawstring
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby drawstring » Tue May 13, 2014 5:23 pm

Do some adcoms dislike online speculation/data collection (e.g. starting a spread sheet listing applicants' numbers) to the point where it could hurt someone's application if they were able to match it with a username?

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue May 13, 2014 5:28 pm

drawstring wrote:Do some adcoms dislike online speculation/data collection (e.g. starting a spread sheet listing applicants' numbers) to the point where it could hurt someone's application if they were able to match it with a username?


Well, I'd always be careful with my online name but I seriously doubt someone would hold this against you.

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drawstring
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby drawstring » Tue May 13, 2014 7:20 pm

Thanks for the response!

Another question. Let's say a school offers WL spots over three straight days--is there a most common reason as to why someone gets an offer on one day rather than the others? Just about when files are read?


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