High GPA, low chances for LSAT

cityandcolour
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High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby cityandcolour » Thu Dec 09, 2010 2:32 pm

Hello all,
I'm going to finish up my undergraduate from the University of Utah with somewhere between a 3.7 and 3.8, but I've only had about two weeks to prepare for the December LSAT, and haven't been particularly diligent. I'm relatively smart, and generally a good test taker, but I doubt I'll do better than a 160 (I've been scoring between 155 and 162 on practice tests, with no other form of prep). As admissions will be difficult, especially since I'll be applying in January, which is late, do you suggest I re-take the test in 4 or 5 months after true preparation, and try to get into a great school at the beginning of the next cycle and not the current one?
Thanks.

Edit: I'm a three year graduate as well with a major in PoliSci and minor in Campaign Management with work managing professional political campaigns, wondering if that will be a favorable thing to law schools.

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Adjudicator
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby Adjudicator » Thu Dec 09, 2010 2:36 pm

Next cycle, definitely. You aren't ready for the LSAT and you've already missed the best window of opportunity for applications.

You will under-perform your potential severely if you apply this cycle. You can do much better if you start focusing on next cycle.
Last edited by Adjudicator on Thu Dec 09, 2010 2:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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megaTTTron
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby megaTTTron » Thu Dec 09, 2010 2:38 pm

If you score, let's say, a 159 and have a 3.8 you're going to be limited to a T2 with little to no scholarship money, unless a T1 comes through off a waitlist. And I base that on my cycle, with the exact same numbers. Most definitely retake, especially since you graduated early. It'll be well worth it. You don't want to waste that killer gpa.

gambelda
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby gambelda » Thu Dec 09, 2010 2:42 pm

Don't show up. Absence is better than a retake.

cityandcolour
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby cityandcolour » Thu Dec 09, 2010 2:46 pm

That is a question I guess, am I better not going at all? Should I take an absent or go for the retake later with an explanation?

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megaTTTron
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby megaTTTron » Thu Dec 09, 2010 2:48 pm

cityandcolour wrote:That is a question I guess, am I better not going at all? Should I take an absent or go for the retake later with an explanation?


retake is worse.

cityandcolour
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby cityandcolour » Thu Dec 09, 2010 2:55 pm

I also wanted to ask again if this will be favorable upon applying...
I'm a three year graduate as well with a major in PoliSci and minor in Campaign Management with work managing professional political campaigns, wondering if that will be a favorable thing to law schools.

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fastforward
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby fastforward » Thu Dec 09, 2010 3:08 pm

You are wise to wait a cycle. Please read my blog post about the value of your LSAT score:--LinkRemoved--

Your campaign mgt. will be valuable, not because it is law-related, but because highly responsible WE of any sort is viewed with favor.

PoliSci is one of the most common pre-law majors. The consensus among admissions professionals and the experience on this board is that your major is not a prominent factor, absent some extraordinary circumstance, such as an engineering major interested in patent law.

All the best to you.

Edit: Epic fail for me in the pasting links department. :roll: Got it right this time.
Last edited by fastforward on Thu Dec 09, 2010 7:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Claudius
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby Claudius » Thu Dec 09, 2010 3:10 pm

cityandcolour wrote:I also wanted to ask again if this will be favorable upon applying...
I'm a three year graduate as well with a major in PoliSci and minor in Campaign Management with work managing professional political campaigns, wondering if that will be a favorable thing to law schools.


Yes it will be a strength on your resume, but it doesn't compare in importance to your LSAT. I'd rather my LSAT increase by one point than have that on my resume.

gambelda
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby gambelda » Thu Dec 09, 2010 3:12 pm

fastforward wrote:You are wise to wait a cycle. Please read my blog post about the value of your LSAT score:--LinkRemoved--

Your campaign mgt. will be valuable, not because it is law-related, but because highly responsible WE of any sort is viewed with favor.

PoliSci is one of the most common pre-law majors. The consensus among admissions professionals and the experience on this board is that your major is not a prominent factor, absent some extraordinary circumstance, such as an engineering major interested in patent law.

All the best to you.


Link doesn't work. Retake! :lol:

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2014
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby 2014 » Thu Dec 09, 2010 4:02 pm

Show up and cancel. I've heard that absence can make you look like you can't keep your commitments, and you don't want that. Plus if you show up and sit through it, you have the advantage of having been through the process once.

fosterp
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby fosterp » Thu Dec 09, 2010 4:10 pm

I agree with that. I think sitting through the actual test is probably a very valuable experience for a later administration.

gens1tb
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby gens1tb » Thu Dec 09, 2010 4:59 pm

2014 wrote:Show up and cancel. I've heard that absence can make you look like you can't keep your commitments, and you don't want that. Plus if you show up and sit through it, you have the advantage of having been through the process once.


The only reason I could think of to not go and take the test would be if your subsequent score was viewed as higher than it might have been because of firsthand experience with actual test conditions (versus the person who is taking it for the first time). But I've only heard that's the case (sometimes) from one person.

cityandcolour
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby cityandcolour » Thu Dec 09, 2010 5:40 pm

Hmm, so what's the consensus then? Should I go, take it, and then cancel, or just take an absent?

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BrownBears09
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby BrownBears09 » Thu Dec 09, 2010 5:42 pm

Absent. Why would you take the test with an intention of canceling? That's such a waste of time.

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JennBNYC
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby JennBNYC » Thu Dec 09, 2010 5:43 pm

cityandcolour wrote:Hmm, so what's the consensus then? Should I go, take it, and then cancel, or just take an absent?


I've taken it twice, and I really think the experience of going and sitting through it is valuable. You can take many, many practice tests at your kitchen table, but taking it at a center with all the extra added pressures (and teeny desks) is a whole 'nother animal. I'd say go, take it, cancel, then study a lot and apply next cycle.

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JennBNYC
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby JennBNYC » Thu Dec 09, 2010 5:45 pm

BrownBears09 wrote:Absent. Why would you take the test with an intention of canceling? That's such a waste of time.

The experience isn't a waste of time if it helps OP prepare mentally for when he REALLY wants to take it. For all the hours invested in the whole app process, 4 or so hours for a test isn't a huge deal.

gens1tb
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby gens1tb » Thu Dec 09, 2010 5:48 pm

BrownBears09 wrote:Absent. Why would you take the test with an intention of canceling? That's such a waste of time.


It's a few hours on a Saturday that he already anticipated would be used to take the test.

krad
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby krad » Thu Dec 09, 2010 5:53 pm

2014 wrote:Show up and cancel. I've heard that absence can make you look like you can't keep your commitments, and you don't want that. Plus if you show up and sit through it, you have the advantage of having been through the process once.

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AreJay711
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby AreJay711 » Thu Dec 09, 2010 5:56 pm

2014 wrote:Show up and cancel. I've heard that absence can make you look like you can't keep your commitments, and you don't want that. Plus if you show up and sit through it, you have the advantage of having been through the process once.


Or take it and cancel. Then you can void the score unless you feel like you crushed it (you will know), in which case it might be worth seeing the score.

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fastforward
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby fastforward » Thu Dec 09, 2010 7:29 pm

gambelda wrote:
fastforward wrote:You are wise to wait a cycle. Please read my blog post about the value of your LSAT score:--LinkRemoved--

Your campaign mgt. will be valuable, not because it is law-related, but because highly responsible WE of any sort is viewed with favor.

PoliSci is one of the most common pre-law majors. The consensus among admissions professionals and the experience on this board is that your major is not a prominent factor, absent some extraordinary circumstance, such as an engineering major interested in patent law.

All the best to you.


Link doesn't work. Retake! :lol:


Busted. :oops: Epic fail. :( Fixed. 8) --LinkRemoved--

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fastforward
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby fastforward » Thu Dec 09, 2010 7:35 pm

OP: Here is a link to a post by the author of LSAT Blog, Steve Schwartz, with a very thorough analysis of the cancel/absence debate. It will help to hear what the views of various law schools are on this topic.
http://lsatblog.blogspot.com/2009/05/cancel-postpone-absence-june-2009-lsat.html

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2014
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby 2014 » Thu Dec 09, 2010 7:50 pm

AreJay711 wrote:
2014 wrote:Show up and cancel. I've heard that absence can make you look like you can't keep your commitments, and you don't want that. Plus if you show up and sit through it, you have the advantage of having been through the process once.


Or take it and cancel. Then you can void the score unless you feel like you crushed it (you will know), in which case it might be worth seeing the score.

Oh that's what I meant. If you already go through the trouble of waking up at 8 am, you might as well take the thing.

HeavenWood
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Re: High GPA, low chances for LSAT

Postby HeavenWood » Thu Dec 09, 2010 9:25 pm

cityandcolour wrote:Hello all,
I'm going to finish up my undergraduate from the University of Utah with somewhere between a 3.7 and 3.8, but I've only had about two weeks to prepare for the December LSAT, and haven't been particularly diligent. I'm relatively smart, and generally a good test taker, but I doubt I'll do better than a 160 (I've been scoring between 155 and 162 on practice tests, with no other form of prep). As admissions will be difficult, especially since I'll be applying in January, which is late, do you suggest I re-take the test in 4 or 5 months after true preparation, and try to get into a great school at the beginning of the next cycle and not the current one?
Thanks.

Edit: I'm a three year graduate as well with a major in PoliSci and minor in Campaign Management with work managing professional political campaigns, wondering if that will be a favorable thing to law schools.


Don't give up. I diagnosed at a 156 in January, and it took me until August to be able to break 160 (I ended up with a 166 on test day). It took a lot of hard work and dedication, but it's possible. Don't let this test get the better of you. There's no reason you can't improve at least ten points, if not more!




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