2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

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arak
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2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby arak » Tue Jan 18, 2011 11:14 pm

Hi everyone. I feel very trapped and frustrated with my situation right now, hopefully someone out there can give me some pointers on what I should do.

I currently attend a UC in California. I transferred from a JC.

My JC GPA was a 3.0
At my current school, my GPA is a 3.1

I took the LSAT in October and got a 156.
I took it again in december and got a 167.

I'm a pretty smart guy. I was lazy with the LSAT the first time around and my score showed it. I decided to take the December LSAT 3 weeks prior to test day and I pulled a 167 with just 3 weeks of PTs.

That being said, I know I can pull a 4.0 GPA, I've been lazy and I regret it big time. I plan on getting straight A's for my last 2 quarters at my university. This should push my overall GPA into the 3.2-3.3 range. My GPA at my UC will be around a 3.4-3.5. My GPA for my senior year should be close to a 3.8.

How can I play these numbers in my favor? What schools should I be looking at? I don't mind going east for school as long as I can land a job in California when I'm done.

I plan on taking a year off once I graduate in June. Is there anything I should be doing during my year off of school to show these law schools that I'm worthy? I'm ready to do anything it takes to get into a T20 school.

How can I explain my GPA on an addendum? How about my multiple LSAT scores? Can job or internship at a firm during my time off help me out? Is there anything else I could be doing that I haven't thought of?

I'll take any help I can get at this point, I'm desperate. Thank you.

ColomboHeat
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby ColomboHeat » Wed Jan 19, 2011 4:02 pm

I am in a similar, but not identical, situation as you. I spent the year after graduating as a teaching assistant to show that I am serious about academia and competent in the classroom. It also turned into a great recommendation letter source. I also am working full time, so I focused on the career ladder in my application.

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bk1
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby bk1 » Wed Jan 19, 2011 5:42 pm

Retake the LSAT and aim for something like UVa or UMich (probably with ED). You're unlikely to get UCLA/USC even with your hypothetical maximum GPA and a 180. Virginia and Michigan can definitely find you a job in CA.

Retake is pretty obvious considering you didn't try very hard and still got a 167. Get a 170+ and you should manage some of the lower T14. While something like UCD or UCH with some $$ would be nice, these schools are stingy with scholarship money and I wouldn't count on it.

You probably won't need an LSAT or GPA addendum unless schools specifically ask for it considering you have no real reason other than your own fault. The schools won't care (considering almost all of them just take the highest LSAT anyways).

The best thing you can do to get into a top school is retake.

09042014
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby 09042014 » Wed Jan 19, 2011 5:44 pm

1) Get your grades up now you lazy shit. Don't even argue you aren't lazy I was a low gpa/high lsat guy myself I know you are lazy.

2) Work for at least two years, preferably 5.

3) Retake LSAT and get a decent score >170 at least.

4) Come back.

arak
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby arak » Wed Jan 19, 2011 8:42 pm

Desert Fox wrote:1) Get your grades up now you lazy shit. Don't even argue you aren't lazy I was a low gpa/high lsat guy myself I know you are lazy.

2) Work for at least two years, preferably 5.

3) Retake LSAT and get a decent score >170 at least.

4) Come back.


I appreciate the brutality, I know it's my fault, I am lazy, and I deserve it.

I have decided not to re-take the LSAT for personal reasons. I want to see what else I can do to boost my chances.

What kind of job should I look for when I graduate?

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bk1
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby bk1 » Wed Jan 19, 2011 8:56 pm

arak wrote:I have decided not to re-take the LSAT for personal reasons. I want to see what else I can do to boost my chances.


This is insanely dumb unless the personal reasons have to do with a gun being pointed at your head stopping you from retaking.

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Kabuo
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby Kabuo » Wed Jan 19, 2011 9:06 pm

What exactly are "personal reasons" for not retaking the test? A proctor do something inappropriate?

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apollo13
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby apollo13 » Thu Jan 20, 2011 12:29 am

Desert Fox wrote:1) Get your grades up now you lazy shit. Don't even argue you aren't lazy I was a low gpa/high lsat guy myself I know you are lazy.

2) Work for at least two years, preferably 5.

3) Retake LSAT and get a decent score >170 at least.

4) Come back.


LOL... so concise and correct, cuts right deep into the heart.
NO excuses.. rofl.

Here are your answers... (LinkRemoved)

arak
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby arak » Thu Jan 20, 2011 4:44 pm

bk1 wrote:Retake the LSAT and aim for something like UVa or UMich (probably with ED). You're unlikely to get UCLA/USC even with your hypothetical maximum GPA and a 180. Virginia and Michigan can definitely find you a job in CA.


Could you explain why I stand a chance at UVa or UMich but not at UCLA or USC, which are lower ranked schools?

Why do I keep getting advised to ED at UVa? Is there something about their ED process I don't know?


I don't plan on retaking the LSAT for multiple reasons. I plan on getting straight A's, to do this I don't see myself studying for the LSAT again. I'm currently enrolled in 16 units at my school, and I'll be taking another 16 next quarter, possibly 20. I could have pulled straight A's my fall quarter but I lost too much potential study time because of the LSAT, since I took it both in October and December. I'll also be taking 2 classes over the summer, so won't have any time while I'm out of school to study for the LSAT. I feel that I'm choosing between raising my LSAT a few points or giving myself a last chance to show these schools that I've pulled my act together and that I can get good grades. I decided for the latter.

trudat15
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby trudat15 » Thu Jan 20, 2011 6:43 pm

arak wrote:
bk1 wrote:Retake the LSAT and aim for something like UVa or UMich (probably with ED). You're unlikely to get UCLA/USC even with your hypothetical maximum GPA and a 180. Virginia and Michigan can definitely find you a job in CA.


Could you explain why I stand a chance at UVa or UMich but not at UCLA or USC, which are lower ranked schools?

Why do I keep getting advised to ED at UVa? Is there something about their ED process I don't know?


I don't plan on retaking the LSAT for multiple reasons. I plan on getting straight A's, to do this I don't see myself studying for the LSAT again. I'm currently enrolled in 16 units at my school, and I'll be taking another 16 next quarter, possibly 20. I could have pulled straight A's my fall quarter but I lost too much potential study time because of the LSAT, since I took it both in October and December. I'll also be taking 2 classes over the summer, so won't have any time while I'm out of school to study for the LSAT. I feel that I'm choosing between raising my LSAT a few points or giving myself a last chance to show these schools that I've pulled my act together and that I can get good grades. I decided for the latter.


Just retake it. Take it in Oct if you must (though really, it should be June). Why are you taking summer classes? Will you grad end of summer?
They wont care that you "got it together", so the only help getting it together is the boost in GPA it will give you.
By the way, getting a 170+ and keeping your GPA at 3.3 or whatever is much better than keeping the 167 and having a 3.4.

jkay
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby jkay » Thu Jan 20, 2011 6:44 pm

I am surprised no one has come up with the real* solution here: During your last quarter, make sure to skip a class you need to graduate. Then do an additional quarter, where you take 25 credits worth of 100 level intro classes, plus your one final requirement. Bingo, an extra 25 credits of 4.0.

You can pay me later.







*real expensive

Edit: Also, RETAKE.

trudat15
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby trudat15 » Thu Jan 20, 2011 6:56 pm

jkay wrote:I am surprised no one has come up with the real* solution here: During your last quarter, make sure to skip a class you need to graduate. Then do an additional quarter, where you take 25 credits worth of 100 level intro classes, plus your one final requirement. Bingo, an extra 25 credits of 4.0.

You can pay me later.







*real expensive

Edit: Also, RETAKE.


Though it sounds like he's taking summer classes because he cant grad this spring. If I were him I'd just do it in the fall where I can take these 25 credits of A+ courses. Though it's expensive, it's credited.

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bk1
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby bk1 » Thu Jan 20, 2011 6:59 pm

arak wrote:Could you explain why I stand a chance at UVa or UMich but not at UCLA or USC, which are lower ranked schools?

Why do I keep getting advised to ED at UVa? Is there something about their ED process I don't know?


Simply put, California schools are GPA whores. See:

http://ucla.lawschoolnumbers.com/stats/0910/
http://usc.lawschoolnumbers.com/stats/0910/

Below a 3.4, UCLA took 4 people and USC took 4 people. These schools have fairly solid GPA floors that they will not cross for almost anybody.

UVa and UMich are not GPA whores. See

http://michigan.lawschoolnumbers.com/stats/0910/
http://uva.lawschoolnumbers.com/stats/0910/

They regularly admit people all the way down to 3.0. (Sub 3 it does get sketchy so stay above that.) The reason their graphs are so yellow is because they yieldprotect a lot, meaning they WL applicants who they think will go somewhere else whereas schools like UCLA/USC just admit everyone they hope will attend, accepting that many will go elsewhere.

The way to avoid getting waitlisted at UMich/UVa is to ED. UVa has a very predictable ED pattern early in the cycle, any 160+/3.8+ will get in and any 170+/3.0+ will get in. This is why people are telling you to ED UVa because it is easy to get in and is the best school you can manage assuming you retake to a 170+ (your stats are unlikely to get any of the T6 or Boalt even if you hit 180). UVa has broad placement and can easily get you a CA job assuming you have ties to the state.

arak wrote:I don't plan on retaking the LSAT for multiple reasons. I plan on getting straight A's, to do this I don't see myself studying for the LSAT again. I'm currently enrolled in 16 units at my school, and I'll be taking another 16 next quarter, possibly 20. I could have pulled straight A's my fall quarter but I lost too much potential study time because of the LSAT, since I took it both in October and December. I'll also be taking 2 classes over the summer, so won't have any time while I'm out of school to study for the LSAT. I feel that I'm choosing between raising my LSAT a few points or giving myself a last chance to show these schools that I've pulled my act together and that I can get good grades. I decided for the latter.


Then take more time if that's what it takes. You are wrong here on two counts.

Basically, a few more points on the LSAT is a huge deal. A 170 or better will get you into the lower T14 whereas getting all A's your last few quarters will not. Schools don't really care that much about grade trends, they are going to see your 3.0 and interpret it as a 3.0. Being below a 3.0 would be bad but considering you can't pull your GPA much higher than that, even with straight A's, you should really just make sure you get at least a 3.0. Even if you could raise your GPA to a 3.4, you'd be waaaaaay better off with a 170/3.0 than 167/3.4.

The bottom line is, you should retake. If you really want to raise your GPA then do that, but also retake. If you can't find the time to do it simultaneously then do it successively and postpone law school a bit and take a year off if you have to so you can find the time to study. You'll be much better off graduating from UVa/UMich/GULC/etc in 2016 than you would be graduating from WUSTL/GW/UIUC/etc in 2015. Don't let your impatience hurt you.

Three more points on the LSAT really is that big a deal. You're selling yourself short if you don't try and get that (considering you easily have the ability to do it).

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crumpetsandtea
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby crumpetsandtea » Thu Jan 20, 2011 7:08 pm

arak wrote:Could you explain why I stand a chance at UVa or UMich but not at UCLA or USC, which are lower ranked schools?

Why do I keep getting advised to ED at UVa? Is there something about their ED process I don't know?


I don't plan on retaking the LSAT for multiple reasons. I plan on getting straight A's, to do this I don't see myself studying for the LSAT again. I'm currently enrolled in 16 units at my school, and I'll be taking another 16 next quarter, possibly 20. I could have pulled straight A's my fall quarter but I lost too much potential study time because of the LSAT, since I took it both in October and December. I'll also be taking 2 classes over the summer, so won't have any time while I'm out of school to study for the LSAT. I feel that I'm choosing between raising my LSAT a few points or giving myself a last chance to show these schools that I've pulled my act together and that I can get good grades. I decided for the latter.


California schools are notorious for preferring high GPAs to high LSATs. Therefore, even though UCLA and USC are ranked lower, their criteria for admittance/preference for GPA places you at a disadvantage over, say, UVa, which has a history of admitting splitters like yourself through their ED program.

That also somewhat explains why people keep directing you to UVa.

As for the LSAT--Okay look, I know how you feel. I'm currently a 2.9/168 splitter and it sucks ass. For a while, I decided that I wasn't going to retake. Then I took a step back and realized how stupid that is. There are a lot of 'thresholds' in law school acceptances that mean a LOT--for example, 2.9 vs 3.0, 3.4 vs 3.5, etc etc. When it comes to the lsat, one of the BIGGEST is the 169/170 threshold. If you can break 170, the number of schools who will take a look at your application will be MUCH higher.

I would honestly recommend that you get some work experience in--maybe take a year off and apply the cycle after this one to give yourself some time to distance yourself from your GPA and study to retake. I personally am working and studying for the june LSAT right now. A good GPA is nice, but at your level it isn't going to do as much for your app as a 170+ LSAT will.

arak
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby arak » Sun Jan 23, 2011 10:41 pm

Thanks for the help everyone, I'll consider re-taking tha LSAT in October.


Just wonder, if I ED at UVa with my current ~3.1 GPA and a 167 do I stand a chance?

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bk1
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby bk1 » Sun Jan 23, 2011 10:42 pm

arak wrote:Thanks for the help everyone, I'll consider re-taking tha LSAT in October.


Just wonder, if I ED at UVa with my current ~3.1 GPA and a 167 do I stand a chance?


No, you need a 170+.

Excel
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Re: 2 Quarters left, low GPA, strong LSAT what do I do?

Postby Excel » Mon Jan 24, 2011 12:26 am

I know what you're saying about lazyness...it really is so true.

Some times at school, I feel like procrastination brings out the best in me; that if I didnt do it, I wouldnt be challenged at all :lol:

My bro studies 1 and 1/2 weeks for a test I cram 3 hours for; He gets a 95 and I receive a 94. I do find it humorous.




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