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

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compass
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby compass » Mon Feb 16, 2015 11:42 am

MikeSpivey wrote:Have we missed any questions in this thread of late?


Hi Mike,

Not a missed question but something that's been on my mind. I was reading the Q&A PDF in the OP for this thread and saw your advice about sending a LOCI to a school before a decision is rendered. Does that advice hold for schools at the top of the rankings where common knowledge is that they assume you're interested and don't want to hear about how much you want to attend? This assumes, I suppose, that you don't have anything substantive to update (new grades, job promotion, etc.).

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Mon Feb 16, 2015 11:51 am

compass wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:Have we missed any questions in this thread of late?


Hi Mike,

Not a missed question but something that's been on my mind. I was reading the Q&A PDF in the OP for this thread and saw your advice about sending a LOCI to a school before a decision is rendered. Does that advice hold for schools at the top of the rankings where common knowledge is that they assume you're interested and don't want to hear about how much you want to attend? This assumes, I suppose, that you don't have anything substantive to update (new grades, job promotion, etc.).


I suspect my advice was a bit specific because whether you should or should not is nuanced based on many variables, including timing and time from submit, etc. Was there a specific question I was addressing?

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compass
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby compass » Mon Feb 16, 2015 12:09 pm

MikeSpivey wrote:
compass wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:Have we missed any questions in this thread of late?


Hi Mike,

Not a missed question but something that's been on my mind. I was reading the Q&A PDF in the OP for this thread and saw your advice about sending a LOCI to a school before a decision is rendered. Does that advice hold for schools at the top of the rankings where common knowledge is that they assume you're interested and don't want to hear about how much you want to attend? This assumes, I suppose, that you don't have anything substantive to update (new grades, job promotion, etc.).


I suspect my advice was a bit specific because whether you should or should not is nuanced based on many variables, including timing and time from submit, etc. Was there a specific question I was addressing?


That definitely makes sense. I don't think the questions included too much specific information, but the relevant excerpt is below:

Q&A wrote:Question: What are your thoughts on sending a LOCI before a decision? I'm trying to get into X school my application already went complete in January. I know they've already passed me based on other people reporting, and it looks like I may be part of a mass wave of either rejections or wait-lists in mid-March. It's my top choice and I'm just a little worried. Too soon?

Mike: I need to make sure I disclaim I am in no way speaking for X school, but on a much more broad level why would you ever send a LOCI after a decision is made? I would always send before the decision is rendered.

Question: Your comments on a LOCI are very interesting! So if you expect to get wait-listed at a school, should you be sending one if you haven't heard back after a while? As opposed to right after you get WLed, which is what I did for two schools already...?

Mike: I would send a school a very toned down one even if you expect to get admitted to that school. You don't want to say things like "if admitted, this is where I want to go" as I think that may have the potential to have negative consequences on scholarship negotiation, particularly if you later get a large scholarship from a different school and start backing down from the statement. BUT, simply letting a school know you are interested in them can never hurt. I promise. Actually, to be on the hyper-paranoid safe side I shouldn't say never. So, I cannot see a scenario where a very soft "I am very much interested in X law school because of the following reasons..." could hurt.

Question: In regards to the LOCI discussion, what about someone who is below medians, but above 25th? Worth it to send a LOCI prior to a possible WL, or save it for the WL?

Mike: I had dinner with an admissions dean last week and we discussed this. We both agree that you want to express an interest through a LOCI before a decision is rendered and then again after if you are wait-listed. As a side note, please don't, anyone, if you are denied (this happens and is quite frankly painful). The "before a decision" applies to everyone, including if you are above both medians. Some schools may yield protect and consider this very valuable and worth the effort.

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Mon Feb 16, 2015 12:15 pm

compass wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:
compass wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:Have we missed any questions in this thread of late?


Hi Mike,

Not a missed question but something that's been on my mind. I was reading the Q&A PDF in the OP for this thread and saw your advice about sending a LOCI to a school before a decision is rendered. Does that advice hold for schools at the top of the rankings where common knowledge is that they assume you're interested and don't want to hear about how much you want to attend? This assumes, I suppose, that you don't have anything substantive to update (new grades, job promotion, etc.).


I suspect my advice was a bit specific because whether you should or should not is nuanced based on many variables, including timing and time from submit, etc. Was there a specific question I was addressing?


That definitely makes sense. I don't think the questions included too much specific information, but the relevant excerpt is below:

Q&A wrote:Question: What are your thoughts on sending a LOCI before a decision? I'm trying to get into X school my application already went complete in January. I know they've already passed me based on other people reporting, and it looks like I may be part of a mass wave of either rejections or wait-lists in mid-March. It's my top choice and I'm just a little worried. Too soon?

Mike: I need to make sure I disclaim I am in no way speaking for X school, but on a much more broad level why would you ever send a LOCI after a decision is made? I would always send before the decision is rendered.

Question: Your comments on a LOCI are very interesting! So if you expect to get wait-listed at a school, should you be sending one if you haven't heard back after a while? As opposed to right after you get WLed, which is what I did for two schools already...?

Mike: I would send a school a very toned down one even if you expect to get admitted to that school. You don't want to say things like "if admitted, this is where I want to go" as I think that may have the potential to have negative consequences on scholarship negotiation, particularly if you later get a large scholarship from a different school and start backing down from the statement. BUT, simply letting a school know you are interested in them can never hurt. I promise. Actually, to be on the hyper-paranoid safe side I shouldn't say never. So, I cannot see a scenario where a very soft "I am very much interested in X law school because of the following reasons..." could hurt.

Question: In regards to the LOCI discussion, what about someone who is below medians, but above 25th? Worth it to send a LOCI prior to a possible WL, or save it for the WL?

Mike: I had dinner with an admissions dean last week and we discussed this. We both agree that you want to express an interest through a LOCI before a decision is rendered and then again after if you are wait-listed. As a side note, please don't, anyone, if you are denied (this happens and is quite frankly painful). The "before a decision" applies to everyone, including if you are above both medians. Some schools may yield protect and consider this very valuable and worth the effort
.


I bolded the salient parts. Yes I would, but only if it has been a long time since you went complete. In other words, if you went complete in Dec I think a nice short letter saying "You guys are still at the top" could help, and could get you a decision more quickly. Keep it brief since there is no update and if WL'd send another more detailed one.

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compass
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby compass » Mon Feb 16, 2015 12:24 pm

Thanks!

Cradle6
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby Cradle6 » Mon Feb 16, 2015 12:40 pm

compass wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:
compass wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:Have we missed any questions in this thread of late?


Hi Mike,

Not a missed question but something that's been on my mind. I was reading the Q&A PDF in the OP for this thread and saw your advice about sending a LOCI to a school before a decision is rendered. Does that advice hold for schools at the top of the rankings where common knowledge is that they assume you're interested and don't want to hear about how much you want to attend? This assumes, I suppose, that you don't have anything substantive to update (new grades, job promotion, etc.).


I suspect my advice was a bit specific because whether you should or should not is nuanced based on many variables, including timing and time from submit, etc. Was there a specific question I was addressing?


That definitely makes sense. I don't think the questions included too much specific information, but the relevant excerpt is below:

Q&A wrote:Question: What are your thoughts on sending a LOCI before a decision? I'm trying to get into X school my application already went complete in January. I know they've already passed me based on other people reporting, and it looks like I may be part of a mass wave of either rejections or wait-lists in mid-March. It's my top choice and I'm just a little worried. Too soon?

Mike: I need to make sure I disclaim I am in no way speaking for X school, but on a much more broad level why would you ever send a LOCI after a decision is made? I would always send before the decision is rendered.

Question: Your comments on a LOCI are very interesting! So if you expect to get wait-listed at a school, should you be sending one if you haven't heard back after a while? As opposed to right after you get WLed, which is what I did for two schools already...?

Mike: I would send a school a very toned down one even if you expect to get admitted to that school. You don't want to say things like "if admitted, this is where I want to go" as I think that may have the potential to have negative consequences on scholarship negotiation, particularly if you later get a large scholarship from a different school and start backing down from the statement. BUT, simply letting a school know you are interested in them can never hurt. I promise. Actually, to be on the hyper-paranoid safe side I shouldn't say never. So, I cannot see a scenario where a very soft "I am very much interested in X law school because of the following reasons..." could hurt.

Question: In regards to the LOCI discussion, what about someone who is below medians, but above 25th? Worth it to send a LOCI prior to a possible WL, or save it for the WL?

Mike: I had dinner with an admissions dean last week and we discussed this. We both agree that you want to express an interest through a LOCI before a decision is rendered and then again after if you are wait-listed. As a side note, please don't, anyone, if you are denied (this happens and is quite frankly painful). The "before a decision" applies to everyone, including if you are above both medians. Some schools may yield protect and consider this very valuable and worth the effort.


Does this apply to law schools in general where it's been several months since going complete? Even say schools like Stanford or Columbia who are less likely to YP? I know a LOCI is great for showing interest and can help for a YP

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby landshoes » Mon Feb 16, 2015 11:12 pm

Hi Mike!

Thanks for this thread.

I have a BA in English with a 3.6 from nearly a decade ago. I recently decided to take a hard science class at my local well-regarded community college. I aced the first semester (A) and signed up for the second semester.

I desperately want to move out of my current area. The only thing holding me back is that I can't quit this class without taking a withdrawal. It doesn't show as a withdrawal pass, either, all withdrawals look the same regardless of whether you're passing. I could maybe get a letter of rec from the professor but I'm not sure.

Given my LSAT and my URM status, I'm looking at the T-6, especially CCN.

Would this look bad to a law school admissions committee who was on the borderline about my academic chops? Will I have to write an addendum about moving? I'm willing to stay for another few months and stick it out if it could really make a big difference in my apps.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue Feb 17, 2015 9:10 am

I think people are going to love the last two things I just tweeted :) Particularly the most recent. Enjoy I'm going to keep the crazy good data coming.

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pylon
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby pylon » Tue Feb 17, 2015 9:23 am

MikeSpivey wrote:I think people are going to love the last two things I just tweeted :) Particularly the most recent. Enjoy I'm going to keep the crazy good data coming.

WOW!!!! What a drop... Such good news!

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue Feb 17, 2015 11:41 am

Here is the data dump with LSAT bandwidths for this cycle!

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/2014-2 ... cant-data/

Also, please please help with even more data by filling out this survey on choosing a law school based on what is important to you. We will blog the results so you can compare with others. Also, we are going to share the aggregate results of this survey with law schools, so that what matters to you will be high on their radar. THANKS !

http://www.jotform.us/form/50473815659161

LSCHI
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby LSCHI » Tue Feb 17, 2015 11:46 am

MikeSpivey wrote:Here is the data dump with LSAT bandwidths for this cycle!

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/2014-2 ... cant-data/

Also, please please help with even more data by filling out this survey on choosing a law school based on what is important to you. We will blog the results so you can compare with others. Also, we are going to share the aggregate results of this survey with law schools, so that what matters to you will be high on their radar. THANKS !

http://www.jotform.us/form/50473815659161

Thanks for all of the great data! Your blog has been an invaluable resource. I am wondering whether you could speculate on how the decrease in applicants, specifically the decrease in 170+ applicants, will impact merit aid.

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby nickhalden » Tue Feb 17, 2015 11:54 am

MikeSpivey wrote:Here is the data dump with LSAT bandwidths for this cycle!

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/2014-2 ... cant-data/


Would these help explain UVA's strange scholarship behavior (you answered a question on it here)?

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby lawschool1741 » Tue Feb 17, 2015 11:59 am

LSCHI wrote:Thanks for all of the great data! Your blog has been an invaluable resource. I am wondering whether you could speculate on how the decrease in applicants, specifically the decrease in 170+ applicants, will impact merit aid.

This. In addition, the 15%+ drop in 165-169...make those 170+ all the more valuable to maintain medians?

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby asdfrewa » Tue Feb 17, 2015 12:32 pm

Thank you so much for this thread and for this data.

I'm curious what you think LSAC does when it comes to counting applicants with two or more scores for the purpose of these data drops. Do they place this person within the data multiple times, or do they take the USNWR route and only count the higher score?

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby Iwanttolawschool » Tue Feb 17, 2015 12:43 pm

asdfrewa wrote:Thank you so much for this thread and for this data.

I'm curious what you think LSAC does when it comes to counting applicants with two or more scores for the purpose of these data drops. Do they place this person within the data multiple times, or do they take the USNWR route and only count the higher score?


Highest I believe. As indicated above the chart

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby asdfrewa » Tue Feb 17, 2015 12:48 pm

Iwanttolawschool wrote:
asdfrewa wrote:Thank you so much for this thread and for this data.

I'm curious what you think LSAC does when it comes to counting applicants with two or more scores for the purpose of these data drops. Do they place this person within the data multiple times, or do they take the USNWR route and only count the higher score?


Highest I believe. As indicated above the chart


Oops. Didn't see that. Thanks.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue Feb 17, 2015 12:59 pm

nickhalden wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:Here is the data dump with LSAT bandwidths for this cycle!

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/2014-2 ... cant-data/


Would these help explain UVA's strange scholarship behavior (you answered a question on it here)?


Nick, thanks for including my previous blatherings, that is helpful. I still do not know what UVa is doing this cycle. I have a best guess but it is nothing I want to say publically. Incidentally, I think you may have misinterpreted my earlier prognostication. I am not saying certain schools are "making their move" in a down cycle with their scholarship offerings, I am saying that is the strategy they should employ if they have the resources. Few do.

nickhalden
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby nickhalden » Tue Feb 17, 2015 1:39 pm

MikeSpivey wrote:Nick, thanks for including my previous blatherings, that is helpful. I still do not know what UVa is doing this cycle. I have a best guess but it is nothing I want to say publically. Incidentally, I think you may have misinterpreted my earlier prognostication. I am not saying certain schools are "making their move" in a down cycle with their scholarship offerings, I am saying that is the strategy they should employ if they have the resources. Few do.


Thanks for the reply Mike! This seems like a great cycle to analyze in retrospect, but it's certainly frustrating in the middle of it! Sorry for misattribution regarding the "make a move" strategy - I've gone back to my post and corrected it. Thank you for all the work you and the team do reporting, analyzing, and advising on the admissions process!

ongtexas
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby ongtexas » Tue Feb 17, 2015 1:49 pm

Hi all, so conventional wisdom says in a down cycle for high LSATs and applications, top LSAT performers should see better results than in past cycles and/or class sizes should shrink, right?

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Auxilio
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby Auxilio » Tue Feb 17, 2015 7:36 pm

Is it fair to say at this point that the 02/06/2015 data is going to be very close to final numbers for the cycle then at the higher ranges.

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Tue Feb 17, 2015 9:45 pm

landshoes wrote:Hi Mike!

Thanks for this thread.

I have a BA in English with a 3.6 from nearly a decade ago. I recently decided to take a hard science class at my local well-regarded community college. I aced the first semester (A) and signed up for the second semester.

I desperately want to move out of my current area. The only thing holding me back is that I can't quit this class without taking a withdrawal. It doesn't show as a withdrawal pass, either, all withdrawals look the same regardless of whether you're passing. I could maybe get a letter of rec from the professor but I'm not sure.

Given my LSAT and my URM status, I'm looking at the T-6, especially CCN.

Would this look bad to a law school admissions committee who was on the borderline about my academic chops? Will I have to write an addendum about moving? I'm willing to stay for another few months and stick it out if it could really make a big difference in my apps.


Don't let this hold you back from moving. This transcript is not going to factor into your LSAC GPA and you have a very good reason for withdrawing. I don't think this will come up as an issue - especially if they have all of the information from the start.

Cheers,
KB

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Feb 18, 2015 9:51 am

LSCHI wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:Here is the data dump with LSAT bandwidths for this cycle!

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/2014-2 ... cant-data/

Also, please please help with even more data by filling out this survey on choosing a law school based on what is important to you. We will blog the results so you can compare with others. Also, we are going to share the aggregate results of this survey with law schools, so that what matters to you will be high on their radar. THANKS !

http://www.jotform.us/form/50473815659161

Thanks for all of the great data! Your blog has been an invaluable resource. I am wondering whether you could speculate on how the decrease in applicants, specifically the decrease in 170+ applicants, will impact merit aid.


Among other things, I believe people will get more money later in the cycle as schools start getting closer to their Mendoza lines of losing an LSAT median. It is really hard to predict scholarship considerations on a macro level, however, because each school has different budget each year, different deans (risky takers v. risk averse etc) and different applicant pools. But again, I think people should take this data as a confidence booster for negotiation. It is almost impossible to believe that some schools at the top won't lose an LSAT point in their medians, and I promise you they are going to fight hard for that point.

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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby eed333 » Wed Feb 18, 2015 1:43 pm

.
Last edited by eed333 on Wed Jun 24, 2015 6:41 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Feb 18, 2015 6:49 pm

USNWR RANKING CONTECT:

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=243939&p=8397640#p8397640

It was begun!

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MikeSpivey
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Feb 18, 2015 6:50 pm

aad993 wrote:Hi again,

I know it's best not to send unnecessary communications to admissions officers because they have too many emails already, but would it be okay to send a (very) short thank you email after being sent an acceptance email? I missed the phone call. The reason I want to thank them is I was just so incredibly lucky to get into this school, so it just feels like it makes sense. But I don't want to do it if it would be annoying or poor etiquette.

Thanks for your help.

(Please don't quote- I'll want to edit out everything except the basic question)


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