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

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Wed Jun 04, 2014 10:24 am

bloomingtea wrote:I have a question, not really advice related but hopefully you will respond.

Why do schools ask where we are going when we decline admission or withdraw admission? Are they using that information for something?

Thanks in advance!


Admissions offices are very data driven places (or at least they should be!) and knowing which schools your admitted students are choosing to attend over you is very helpful information. The admissions office can use that information to spot trends, inform policy changes, and work on improving communication. For example, if school X suddenly sees that more students are deciding to attend school Z than in previous years, they might be able to figure out why and make some changes to keep those students.

Hope that is helpful!

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bloomingtea
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby bloomingtea » Wed Jun 04, 2014 11:13 am

Thanks Karen! That's what I kind of thought, but wanted confirmation.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Jun 04, 2014 5:06 pm

Would be fascinating to see something like this unfold on the LSAT.

I believe LSAC has long coveted and experimented with a real, graded writing section.

http://college.usatoday.com/2014/06/03/ ... Stories%29

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Sweeny12
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby Sweeny12 » Wed Jun 04, 2014 5:50 pm

Hi Mike and Karen,

Wondering if this is a good or bad idea. Some background: I have been wait-listed at my number one choice. I interviewed in April after being wait-listed and found out that they have a small wait-list. The interview went really well. I sent in a LOCI to go into my file shortly after (mid-April).

Is it a bad idea to email the Dean of Admissions this week and reiterate my interests in the school and that it is my first choice? Accepted students have to commit (unless WL'd elsewhere) to the school this week. They will start pulling from the WL and offering acceptances this next week or so.

Would it be redundant to write him, detrimental in any way? Or could it help my situation?

Thanks in advance (if this has been discussed already I apologize)

BillsFan9907
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby BillsFan9907 » Wed Jun 04, 2014 8:22 pm

Hey Mike/Karen

What information do schools receive regarding your LSAT aside from your score and writing sample? I know I received things like my answer scantron, percentile, etc...

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Thu Jun 05, 2014 12:07 pm

Seoulless wrote:Hey Mike/Karen

What information do schools receive regarding your LSAT aside from your score and writing sample? I know I received things like my answer scantron, percentile, etc...


The schools will get a report that has the score, a percentile rank and a score band as well as a copy of your writing sample. Some schools may use an index, in which case the LSAT will be used with the GPA to calculate an index. Not all schools use that though. As of now, accommodated tests do not receive a percentile rank. I am assuming that with the new changes this fall, there will be uniformity and either all will have a percentile or none will.

The answer sheet/breakdown of how did on each section of the test/raw score are not included in the report.

Hope that helps!

Cheers,
KB

FloridaCoastalorbust
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby FloridaCoastalorbust » Thu Jun 05, 2014 12:39 pm

Hi Mike and Karen,

I am taking the LSAT on Monday the 4th time in 3 years. If I do worse this time around, will it in anyway tarnish my previous highest score? What if I am unhappy with this 4th test and retake AGAIN - for a fifth time - in October? Have you ever seen five scores in 3 years? Essentially I am interested in, from an adcomm's perspective, when returns start to diminish.

I have taken the LSAT 3 times but am now in a position to be able to take it another 3 times and am nearly certain I can improve my previous best (169), but perhaps an applicant with a 171 on their sixth test is worse than the applicant with a 169 on his third and final test. Thank you very much.

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haus
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby haus » Thu Jun 05, 2014 1:09 pm

Six exams?

I get the re-take mantra has a popular following, but I really hope you are doing something other than test prep with your life over the span of time that you would need to take 6 LSAT exams.
Last edited by haus on Thu Jun 05, 2014 2:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Thu Jun 05, 2014 1:57 pm

FloridaCoastalorbust wrote:Hi Mike and Karen,

I am taking the LSAT on Monday the 4th time in 3 years. If I do worse this time around, will it in anyway tarnish my previous highest score? What if I am unhappy with this 4th test and retake AGAIN - for a fifth time - in October? Have you ever seen five scores in 3 years? Essentially I am interested in, from an adcomm's perspective, when returns start to diminish.

I have taken the LSAT 3 times but am now in a position to be able to take it another 3 times and am nearly certain I can improve my previous best (169), but perhaps an applicant with a 171 on their sixth test is worse than the applicant with a 169 on his third and final test. Thank you very much.


Do you have three reportable scores or are any cancelled?
For the next few days, you should focus on that little quiz on Monday. Don't put too much pressure on yourself to do better. At this stage, it is still going to be your high score that matters.

I would caution against taking it too many times, but you don't have to cross that bridge just yet. Six times is a bit much.

FloridaCoastalorbust
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby FloridaCoastalorbust » Thu Jun 05, 2014 3:17 pm

KarenButtenbaum wrote:
FloridaCoastalorbust wrote:Hi Mike and Karen,

I am taking the LSAT on Monday the 4th time in 3 years. If I do worse this time around, will it in anyway tarnish my previous highest score? What if I am unhappy with this 4th test and retake AGAIN - for a fifth time - in October? Have you ever seen five scores in 3 years? Essentially I am interested in, from an adcomm's perspective, when returns start to diminish.

I have taken the LSAT 3 times but am now in a position to be able to take it another 3 times and am nearly certain I can improve my previous best (169), but perhaps an applicant with a 171 on their sixth test is worse than the applicant with a 169 on his third and final test. Thank you very much.


Do you have three reportable scores or are any cancelled?
For the next few days, you should focus on that little quiz on Monday. Don't put too much pressure on yourself to do better. At this stage, it is still going to be your high score that matters.

I would caution against taking it too many times, but you don't have to cross that bridge just yet. Six times is a bit much.



Thanks Karen - I've got a cancel, 166, 169.

I've started a non-legal career since I took the Dec. 2012 LSAT. Hence the possibility of retaking another 3 times.

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Thu Jun 05, 2014 7:58 pm

FloridaCoastalorbust wrote:
Thanks Karen - I've got a cancel, 166, 169.

I've started a non-legal career since I took the Dec. 2012 LSAT. Hence the possibility of retaking another 3 times.


Thanks for adding this info - it makes this fourth time not so bad with only two other scores. The time separation also helps.
Good luck!

flowers3456
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby flowers3456 » Fri Jun 06, 2014 6:26 am

Hi Mike and Karen,

Quick Question: Do schools in which I am currently on the Waitlist know if I am registered for the June LSAT? If so, do you think they will they hold off on reviewing my file until they see my new LSAT score in July?

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Fri Jun 06, 2014 8:20 am

flowers3456 wrote:Hi Mike and Karen,

Quick Question: Do schools in which I am currently on the Waitlist know if I am registered for the June LSAT? If so, do you think they will they hold off on reviewing my file until they see my new LSAT score in July?


Not unless you tell them, and ask them. GL!

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Fri Jun 06, 2014 8:44 am

flowers3456 wrote:Hi Mike and Karen,

Quick Question: Do schools in which I am currently on the Waitlist know if I am registered for the June LSAT? If so, do you think they will they hold off on reviewing my file until they see my new LSAT score in July?


They can run a report on all applicants to see if you are registered for a future test. Many won't do that, but it is possible for them to see that you are registered/took the test. And they will automatically get a report when the score comes in if you are still an active applicant. But you should alert them anyway if you want them to see your score.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Fri Jun 06, 2014 3:07 pm

Flowers: to be more precise than my first answer, you generally would have to tell them if they were to flag your file into some rare "wait on this WL person" ... if you told them (which you probably would not want to do), then yes they would likely hold off.

Also, we added a blog post on 7 Things You Might Now Know About Spivey Consulting at the below link. There isn't any advice in here, fyi. but we've been meaning to do something like this for some time.

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/7-thin ... ave-known/

in the process
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby in the process » Mon Jun 09, 2014 6:05 pm

Hi Mike/Karen,

The consensus on this forum seems to be that one LSAT cancellation is no big deal but that two will raise red flags.
How true is this sentiment?
Additionally, what would be better......to have two cancellations and a very good score (low 170's).......or to have only one cancellation but then have a worse score (let's say mid-high 160's) to go along with the good one?

Thanks for your (always) sage advice!

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue Jun 10, 2014 11:20 am

in the process wrote:Hi Mike/Karen,

The consensus on this forum seems to be that one LSAT cancellation is no big deal but that two will raise red flags.
How true is this sentiment?
Additionally, what would be better......to have two cancellations and a very good score (low 170's).......or to have only one cancellation but then have a worse score (let's say mid-high 160's) to go along with the good one?

Thanks for your (always) sage advice!


Definitely one cancelation is no big deal, agreed, although keeping in mind the schools care tremendously more about the higher score, I think way too many people cancel. Again though, the school won't care.

Two is a bit odd. The problem for admissions is that law schools are replete with neurotic behavior -- among faculty and students alike :) Since it makes very little sense, other than for personal emergencies or medical reasons, to cancel twice, the default assumption (for or not) may be that the twice cancelations could be a red flag. (Although also keep in mind that the very best lawyers I know are all neurotic)

All of this said, if you could predict the scenario, you would rather have two cancelations and a 170 something versus 1 and a 160 something. So, sadly, this advice probably doesn't sound rather sage at all.

chizzy
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby chizzy » Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:12 pm

HI Mike and Karen,

Is it a good idea to visit a waitlist school if it is your top choice? And if so how do you present yourself? Thanks!

in the process
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby in the process » Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:34 pm

MikeSpivey wrote:
in the process wrote:Hi Mike/Karen,

The consensus on this forum seems to be that one LSAT cancellation is no big deal but that two will raise red flags.
How true is this sentiment?
Additionally, what would be better......to have two cancellations and a very good score (low 170's).......or to have only one cancellation but then have a worse score (let's say mid-high 160's) to go along with the good one?

Thanks for your (always) sage advice!


Definitely one cancelation is no big deal, agreed, although keeping in mind the schools care tremendously more about the higher score, I think way too many people cancel. Again though, the school won't care.

Two is a bit odd. The problem for admissions is that law schools are replete with neurotic behavior -- among faculty and students alike :) Since it makes very little sense, other than for personal emergencies or medical reasons, to cancel twice, the default assumption (for or not) may be that the twice cancelations could be a red flag. (Although also keep in mind that the very best lawyers I know are all neurotic)

All of this said, if you could predict the scenario, you would rather have two cancelations and a 170 something versus 1 and a 160 something. So, sadly, this advice probably doesn't sound rather sage at all.



Thanks so much!.........it's still pretty sage:)...........just to clarify what you wrote at the end (because I realize now that i may have been unclear in my original question).......which scenario of 3 tests is better......A. Cancel, 17x, Cancel...or...B. Cancel, 17x, 168(in that order)...?

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Jun 11, 2014 12:30 pm

in the process wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:
in the process wrote:Hi Mike/Karen,

The consensus on this forum seems to be that one LSAT cancellation is no big deal but that two will raise red flags.
How true is this sentiment?
Additionally, what would be better......to have two cancellations and a very good score (low 170's).......or to have only one cancellation but then have a worse score (let's say mid-high 160's) to go along with the good one?

Thanks for your (always) sage advice!


Definitely one cancelation is no big deal, agreed, although keeping in mind the schools care tremendously more about the higher score, I think way too many people cancel. Again though, the school won't care.

Two is a bit odd. The problem for admissions is that law schools are replete with neurotic behavior -- among faculty and students alike :) Since it makes very little sense, other than for personal emergencies or medical reasons, to cancel twice, the default assumption (for or not) may be that the twice cancelations could be a red flag. (Although also keep in mind that the very best lawyers I know are all neurotic)

All of this said, if you could predict the scenario, you would rather have two cancelations and a 170 something versus 1 and a 160 something. So, sadly, this advice probably doesn't sound rather sage at all.



Thanks so much!.........it's still pretty sage:)...........just to clarify what you wrote at the end (because I realize now that i may have been unclear in my original question).......which scenario of 3 tests is better......A. Cancel, 17x, Cancel...or...B. Cancel, 17x, 168(in that order)...?


Ah. I like C better. The 17x is what will matter and the two cancels look at bit odd. but quite frankly, the key is the 170-something which far and away trumps the choice between one or the other.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Thu Jun 12, 2014 8:22 pm

chizzy wrote:HI Mike and Karen,

Is it a good idea to visit a waitlist school if it is your top choice? And if so how do you present yourself? Thanks!


YES! But be a chill, business professional. So dress business casual, be professional, but don't be overly excitable or try too hard to impress. Also keep in mind at this time of the season they are burnt out on questions about their school -- so you can show interest but try to avoid the typical "how many and when will you take off the WL" type questions. GL!

FloridaCoastalorbust
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby FloridaCoastalorbust » Fri Jun 13, 2014 4:57 pm

I've been told that schools readily hand out fee waivers at LSAC forum events. There's one in DC about a mile from my house here in a few days and I'd like to take advantage. Do T14 schools hand out fee waivers at the events? Do I feign interest and then ask for a waiver after a few minutes? What's the protocol here?

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KarenButtenbaum
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Mon Jun 16, 2014 12:29 pm

FloridaCoastalorbust wrote:I've been told that schools readily hand out fee waivers at LSAC forum events. There's one in DC about a mile from my house here in a few days and I'd like to take advantage. Do T14 schools hand out fee waivers at the events? Do I feign interest and then ask for a waiver after a few minutes? What's the protocol here?


Schools have given out fee waivers at these events in the past. It's likely that many schools will continue to do that this year. Some T-14 schools do give out fee waivers, but many also only do need-based fee waivers. I wouldn't advise you to feign interest in a school just to get a fee waiver. If you are going to apply to a school, you should be interested in that school :)
If you are interested in applying to a school, you can ask the representatives some questions about the school and ask if they are giving out fee waivers. There's no harm in asking about fee waivers since it is a common practice, but it shouldn't be your first question :)

Mike wrote a blog about forums last year which might be helpful now: http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/forums ... e-or-draw/

By the way, Mike is traveling this week so is a little slow to respond to PM's

Cheers,
KB

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Jun 18, 2014 9:20 am

Quick heads up. If you sent me a PM I'll get to it this weekend. I've been traveling every day and now locked into a conference with pre-law advisors and admissions folks. Good stuff but apologies for being so slow.

Pau.C.
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Re: Q&A with former Admissions Officers

Postby Pau.C. » Wed Jun 18, 2014 9:31 am

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Last edited by Pau.C. on Sun Jul 17, 2016 6:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.


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