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

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

Postby MikeSpivey » Tue Jun 09, 2015 6:33 pm

Boredlaw wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:Coming today. Heaps and heaps of cycle DATA! Will tweet its existence the moment it is up. Enjoy!


I just saw the new data and there is no doubt medians are going down.


I also think more salient to many people on this board, or more timely at least, there is no way there won't be more WL movement.

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buckiguy_sucks
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Postby buckiguy_sucks » Tue Jun 09, 2015 6:55 pm

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

Postby haus » Tue Jun 09, 2015 7:51 pm

MikeSpivey wrote:
Boredlaw wrote:
MikeSpivey wrote:Coming today. Heaps and heaps of cycle DATA! Will tweet its existence the moment it is up. Enjoy!


I just saw the new data and there is no doubt medians are going down.


I also think more salient to many people on this board, or more timely at least, there is no way there won't be more WL movement.

You don't think that all of the top school are looking to significantly reduce class sizes to make things feel more cozy?

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

Postby iVi » Tue Jun 09, 2015 11:32 pm

buckiguy_sucks wrote:Man schools are going to have to fight for those unknown ethnicity candidates with such a precipitous decline in applications


Care to elaborate? Not seeing the connection.

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

Postby EnderWiggin » Tue Jun 09, 2015 11:37 pm

iVi wrote:
buckiguy_sucks wrote:Man schools are going to have to fight for those unknown ethnicity candidates with such a precipitous decline in applications


Care to elaborate? Not seeing the connection.


Since there's no way to know what group unknown ethnicity candidates belong to, they get an automatic bump for possible diversity. Thought this was common knowledge

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

Postby chaitealatte » Tue Jun 09, 2015 11:43 pm

Hi Mike and Karen-- I have a q about LSAT retakes. I'm hoping to make it into a T-6 school. I took the exam in Feb and cancelled, and re-took it yesterday-- in general, I definitely feel like I did much better this time around, but if I don't break a 170, I'd want to retake the exam next year after I'm through with the fellowship I'm currently working on and actually have free time to study.

Do you have any experience with candidates taking the LSAT three times for a t-6 school? I know the conventional wisdom is that most places except HYS just take your highest, but would taking it a second or third time negatively impact my chances at the very top schools? My GPA is on the low side for all three, so I'm pretty sure the only way I'll get in is with a killer LSAT. Thank you!

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

Postby iVi » Tue Jun 09, 2015 11:45 pm

EnderWiggin wrote:
iVi wrote:
buckiguy_sucks wrote:Man schools are going to have to fight for those unknown ethnicity candidates with such a precipitous decline in applications


Care to elaborate? Not seeing the connection.


Since there's no way to know what group unknown ethnicity candidates belong to, they get an automatic bump for possible diversity. Thought this was common knowledge


Well it's news to me! Thanks for the explanation.

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buckiguy_sucks
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Postby buckiguy_sucks » Tue Jun 09, 2015 11:52 pm

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

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Jun 10, 2015 7:51 am

buckiguy_sucks wrote:
iVi wrote:
buckiguy_sucks wrote:Man schools are going to have to fight for those unknown ethnicity candidates with such a precipitous decline in applications


Care to elaborate? Not seeing the connection.



It was a joke haha
About the data that spivey published today



Here is the linky link link, fyi.

http://spiveyconsulting.com/blog/2014-2 ... -june-5th/

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

Postby Talarose » Wed Jun 10, 2015 8:53 am

If I am an extreme splitter, what is the latest date you suggest applying? I took the June LSAT. The only reason I registered for it was because I thought the June test date was the best option for applying early. That being said, I don't feel as if I was prepared for it, especially still being in school and dealing with finals. I anticipate a 170, but my goal was a 179/180. Do you recommend canceling my score? Is that even a factor in the admissions process? And if I take the October LSAT, should I wait to apply until I get my results? Will sending in my application with a 170 and then sending in the October Score make a difference? Sorry for the over abundance of questions. I'm just trying to understand the purpose of score canceling on the LSAT and how the October test will affect my admissions cycle. Thank you in advance!

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

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Wed Jun 10, 2015 10:38 am

EnderWiggin wrote:
iVi wrote:
buckiguy_sucks wrote:Man schools are going to have to fight for those unknown ethnicity candidates with such a precipitous decline in applications


Care to elaborate? Not seeing the connection.


Since there's no way to know what group unknown ethnicity candidates belong to, they get an automatic bump for possible diversity. Thought this was common knowledge


Just in case anyone doesn't realize the above is a joke, this is false. The unknown ethnicity category is not classified this way.

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buckiguy_sucks
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Postby buckiguy_sucks » Wed Jun 10, 2015 10:43 am

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

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Wed Jun 10, 2015 10:45 am

chaitealatte wrote:Hi Mike and Karen-- I have a q about LSAT retakes. I'm hoping to make it into a T-6 school. I took the exam in Feb and cancelled, and re-took it yesterday-- in general, I definitely feel like I did much better this time around, but if I don't break a 170, I'd want to retake the exam next year after I'm through with the fellowship I'm currently working on and actually have free time to study.

Do you have any experience with candidates taking the LSAT three times for a t-6 school? I know the conventional wisdom is that most places except HYS just take your highest, but would taking it a second or third time negatively impact my chances at the very top schools? My GPA is on the low side for all three, so I'm pretty sure the only way I'll get in is with a killer LSAT. Thank you!


If you take it for the third time, you will only have two scores since you cancelled the first. The rest of your application will matter as well, of course, but on the LSAT alone, I would say this scenario is fine for almost every school. I believe that Yale might be the one exception here; they prefer to see just one score.

Cheers,
KB

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

Postby EnderWiggin » Wed Jun 10, 2015 10:46 am

buckiguy_sucks wrote:
KarenButtenbaum wrote:
EnderWiggin wrote:
iVi wrote:
buckiguy_sucks wrote:Man schools are going to have to fight for those unknown ethnicity candidates with such a precipitous decline in applications


Care to elaborate? Not seeing the connection.


Since there's no way to know what group unknown ethnicity candidates belong to, they get an automatic bump for possible diversity. Thought this was common knowledge


Just in case anyone doesn't realize the above is a joke, this is false. The unknown ethnicity category is not classified this way.


Yeah sorry for causing confusion haha


+1, sorry. dry humor wins the internet again

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

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Wed Jun 10, 2015 10:53 am

Talarose wrote:If I am an extreme splitter, what is the latest date you suggest applying? I took the June LSAT. The only reason I registered for it was because I thought the June test date was the best option for applying early. That being said, I don't feel as if I was prepared for it, especially still being in school and dealing with finals. I anticipate a 170, but my goal was a 179/180. Do you recommend canceling my score? Is that even a factor in the admissions process? And if I take the October LSAT, should I wait to apply until I get my results? Will sending in my application with a 170 and then sending in the October Score make a difference? Sorry for the over abundance of questions. I'm just trying to understand the purpose of score canceling on the LSAT and how the October test will affect my admissions cycle. Thank you in advance!


In my experience, I would say that in most cases you shouldn't cancel your score. A cancelled score counts for a "take" in the LSAC calculation of the "three takes in two years." Schools will see that you took the test, but one cancelled score generally doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things.

Submitting your application in September vs. submitting it at the end of October are both considered "early" applications, so the October test is still early in the process. And there really is no difference in results if you submit during that time frame. Most admissions offices don't even start reading applications until October anyway.

Cheers,
KB

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

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Wed Jun 10, 2015 10:57 am

EnderWiggin wrote:
buckiguy_sucks wrote:
Yeah sorry for causing confusion haha


+1, sorry. dry humor wins the internet again


No worries! Just didn't want anyone to be confused. I really need to invent a sarcasm font. It would make all of our lives easier.

Broncos15
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby Broncos15 » Wed Jun 10, 2015 12:58 pm

Hey Mike or Karen,

To what extent does the "highest score=most considered score" go as far as my case is concerned? I got a 154 the first time, now aiming for a score in the high 160's to low 170's

I'd imagine if you had an applicant scoring in the 130's the first time a stellar retake score would not erase some of the red flags a first take in the 130's would raise

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jetsfan1
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby jetsfan1 » Wed Jun 10, 2015 1:16 pm

Broncos15 wrote:Hey Mike or Karen,

To what extent does the "highest score=most considered score" go as far as my case is concerned? I got a 154 the first time, now aiming for a score in the high 160's to low 170's

I'd imagine if you had an applicant scoring in the 130's the first time a stellar retake score would not erase some of the red flags a first take in the 130's would raise


Curious about this well, especially as it relates to the T6.

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

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Wed Jun 10, 2015 1:33 pm

jetsfan1 wrote:
Broncos15 wrote:Hey Mike or Karen,

To what extent does the "highest score=most considered score" go as far as my case is concerned? I got a 154 the first time, now aiming for a score in the high 160's to low 170's

I'd imagine if you had an applicant scoring in the 130's the first time a stellar retake score would not erase some of the red flags a first take in the 130's would raise


Curious about this well, especially as it relates to the T6.


When I saw a jump in LSAT of more than 15 points on an application, I was instantly curious about the circumstances surrounding the first take..and then what happened in between the two takes. I have to say that statistically, this doesn't happen very often, fwiw.

I would suggest sending a very brief addendum that gives a good explanation of why there is such a big difference - I know I would want to know the reason if I were reading it. If there is a good reason, then the red flags might just go away. In any case, the highest score would be the one reported to the ABA -- always.

Cheers,
KB

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jetsfan1
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby jetsfan1 » Wed Jun 10, 2015 1:41 pm

KarenButtenbaum wrote:
jetsfan1 wrote:
Broncos15 wrote:Hey Mike or Karen,

To what extent does the "highest score=most considered score" go as far as my case is concerned? I got a 154 the first time, now aiming for a score in the high 160's to low 170's

I'd imagine if you had an applicant scoring in the 130's the first time a stellar retake score would not erase some of the red flags a first take in the 130's would raise


Curious about this well, especially as it relates to the T6.


When I saw a jump in LSAT of more than 15 points on an application, I was instantly curious about the circumstances surrounding the first take..and then what happened in between the two takes. I have to say that statistically, this doesn't happen very often, fwiw.

I would suggest sending a very brief addendum that gives a good explanation of why there is such a big difference - I know I would want to know the reason if I were reading it. If there is a good reason, then the red flags might just go away. In any case, the highest score would be the one reported to the ABA -- always.

Cheers,
KB


Thanks a ton for the response Karen, super helpful as usual. Couple of follow ups if that is alright.

1) What if there is no real reason for the score difference besides the fact that the first take was sort of on a whim and you did not study at all but afterwards found TLS and actually studied for the second attempt?

2) I know it would vary by school, but would you be able to guestimate the smallest score jump that would generally warrant an addendum? 10 points? 12? 15?

3) If #1 above is the case, does 3 years between the LSATs in question dampen the red flag?

Thanks again, you're the best!

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

Postby KarenButtenbaum » Wed Jun 10, 2015 2:01 pm

jetsfan1 wrote:
Thanks a ton for the response Karen, super helpful as usual. Couple of follow ups if that is alright.

1) What if there is no real reason for the score difference besides the fact that the first take was sort of on a whim and you did not study at all but afterwards found TLS and actually studied for the second attempt?

2) I know it would vary by school, but would you be able to guestimate the smallest score jump that would generally warrant an addendum? 10 points? 12? 15?

3) If #1 above is the case, does 3 years between the LSATs in question dampen the red flag?

Thanks again, you're the best!


1.) That is a reason: you didn't prepare at all for the first test. We all learn from our mistakes!
2.) 11 points
3.) Yes! Time/distance helps a lot (with many things, including this!)

Cheers,
KB

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jetsfan1
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby jetsfan1 » Wed Jun 10, 2015 2:17 pm

KarenButtenbaum wrote:
jetsfan1 wrote:
Thanks a ton for the response Karen, super helpful as usual. Couple of follow ups if that is alright.

1) What if there is no real reason for the score difference besides the fact that the first take was sort of on a whim and you did not study at all but afterwards found TLS and actually studied for the second attempt?

2) I know it would vary by school, but would you be able to guestimate the smallest score jump that would generally warrant an addendum? 10 points? 12? 15?

3) If #1 above is the case, does 3 years between the LSATs in question dampen the red flag?

Thanks again, you're the best!


1.) That is a reason: you didn't prepare at all for the first test. We all learn from our mistakes!
2.) 11 points
3.) Yes! Time/distance helps a lot (with many things, including this!)

Cheers,
KB


Thanks again! I guess I meant not a reason I would want to write in an addendum to a T3. I think with the time distance I'd rather let it ride without an explanation

mmhh1144
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Re: Q&A with former Harvard, Chicago, Vandy Admissions officers

Postby mmhh1144 » Wed Jun 10, 2015 2:44 pm

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Last edited by mmhh1144 on Mon Jun 15, 2015 1:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

flowering
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Postby flowering » Wed Jun 10, 2015 4:13 pm

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

Postby MikeSpivey » Wed Jun 10, 2015 4:47 pm

flowering wrote:Not sure if this was addressed, but any theories as to why schools keep insisting that they average LSAT scores even though they take the highest? Does it sound more prestigious to say that you average scores for some reason?


A few things.

1. They see all scores. It would almost impossible not to unless you used a piece of colored paper or something to obscure scores below, above, or both as you are looking at the LSDAS report. So they usually say "we holistically view all scores..." That is true. They do view them.

2. Not too too long ago they averaged scores. Why? Because all scores went to the ABA and thus USNWR. Much of the written language, indeed some of which I believe Karen wrote, hang around from those days.

3. Your "true" score, at least statistically speaking, is your average, not high (or low). So it just sounds more intellectually honest to say so.


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