An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

rubydandun
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An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby rubydandun » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:13 pm

So, took the LSAT last September and canceled (wasn't prepared enough and hadn't done my research to fully understand the ramifications of a cancel).

I took it on Saturday and felt like I may have gotten around -4 or so on 3 of the sections, but when it got to LG disaster struck - I got a horrific migraine going into the 5th section (LG), the proctor didn't call 5 minute warning and they called time when I had bubbled in only about 8 answers - I had to guess D on about 15 of them since I couldn't turn back :(. I was about to cry in the room, the combined pain of the migraine and the horrible disaster that had just happened was just too much.

Usually I'd get about -4 on LG, bringing my PT average to about 163-167 (took a lot of PTs). With what happened Saturday, I'm looking at best case scenario:

LR: -8
RC: -4
LG: -17

My question is:

1.) What is worse? Two cancels and one higher score (IM CERTAIN I will score at least a 165 in June), or one cancel, one AWFUL score (155 or something) and then a 165? I know that neither of these scenarios are ideal but...bad luck :( I figure that I can explain two cancels with a strong addendum, but a bad score is there to stay regardless of how I do in June.

2.) How does the 3 LSATS in 2 years policy work? Does that mean that if I took the LSAT in:

Sept 2009
Feb 2011
June 2011

That I'd be able to take the Dec 2011 test since it would fall outside of the 3 LSATS in 2 years? Or does it mean I have to wait 2 years from the June 2011 LSAT?

Thank you all in advance for your help - I don't know where else I'd turn to get opinions. Truly freaking out here and very upset =(

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bk1
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby bk1 » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:16 pm

Any school that will take a 165 isn't going to care whether it is cancel/cancel/165 or cancel/155/165. I say don't cancel because it would be better to at least have one score under your belt, even if it's bad.

You have to wait for the last one to fall off meaning you'd have to wait for 2 years from Sept 09. That being said, you can petition schools to get you a waiver to allow more than 3 takes in the span of 2 years (though I am not sure exactly how this works).

rubydandun
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby rubydandun » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:22 pm

bk1 wrote:Any school that will take a 165 isn't going to care whether it is cancel/cancel/165 or cancel/155/165. I say don't cancel because it would be better to at least have one score under your belt, even if it's bad.

You have to wait for the last one to fall off meaning you'd have to wait for 2 years from Sept 09. That being said, you can petition schools to get you a waiver to allow more than 3 takes in the span of 2 years (though I am not sure exactly how this works).


So if I took it in June 2011 and wasn't satisfied, I'd be able to retake (as a 4th time) in December 2011?

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bk1
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby bk1 » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:23 pm

rubydandun wrote:
bk1 wrote:Any school that will take a 165 isn't going to care whether it is cancel/cancel/165 or cancel/155/165. I say don't cancel because it would be better to at least have one score under your belt, even if it's bad.

You have to wait for the last one to fall off meaning you'd have to wait for 2 years from Sept 09. That being said, you can petition schools to get you a waiver to allow more than 3 takes in the span of 2 years (though I am not sure exactly how this works).


So if I took it in June 2011 and wasn't satisfied, I'd be able to retake (as a 4th time) in December 2011?


I believe so. Call LSAC and ask.

rubydandun
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby rubydandun » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:37 pm

Why do you say having a score is better than 2 cancels?

I feel like not having a bad score on my record > 2 cancels. But I don't know. =(

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bk1
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby bk1 » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:40 pm

rubydandun wrote:Why do you say having a score is better than 2 cancels?

I feel like not having a bad score on my record > 2 cancels. But I don't know. =(


It is probably a tiny tiny bit better, but honestly since the schools that take a 165 don't average anyways, it doesn't matter.

The reason I said having a score would be better is because for some people having at least a score, even a bad one, will take a bit of the edge off for their retake (they at least know they can get into some school). If that's not the case for you then it doesn't really matter.

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buckilaw
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby buckilaw » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:40 pm

2 cancels and a high score >>>>>>>>>> cancel, awful score, high score. Most schools do take the highest LSAT, but many also consider all your scores. Also, if your goals change and you want to aim for schools like HYS your much better of without a low score on your app.

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bk1
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby bk1 » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:44 pm

buckilaw wrote:2 cancels and a high score >>>>>>>>>> cancel, awful score, high score. Most schools do take the highest LSAT, but many also consider all your scores. Also, if your goals change and you want to aim for schools like HYS your much better of without a low score on your app.


The lower schools (ones that admit 165's) almost to a man do not consider lower scores.

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northwood
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby northwood » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:47 pm

keep the score. that way if worst comes to pass you have a score( and you wont put extra pressure on your third attempt).

its much easier to have a score in hand and re take, knowing you have a good baseline- than to have the extra pressure of 2 cancels, and knowing full well that no matter what you have to keep the third test

rubydandun
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby rubydandun » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:48 pm

buckilaw wrote:2 cancels and a high score >>>>>>>>>> cancel, awful score, high score. Most schools do take the highest LSAT, but many also consider all your scores. Also, if your goals change and you want to aim for schools like HYS your much better of without a low score on your app.


How do I explain 2 cancels though? :(

I hate making excuses but I figure I'll have to write an addendum either way. You're right, I should definitely cancel this score. They can't hold 2 cancels with a good reason as to why I canceled the 2nd time against me. A low score though, they can hold against me.

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bk1
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby bk1 » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:49 pm

rubydandun wrote:
buckilaw wrote:2 cancels and a high score >>>>>>>>>> cancel, awful score, high score. Most schools do take the highest LSAT, but many also consider all your scores. Also, if your goals change and you want to aim for schools like HYS your much better of without a low score on your app.


How do I explain 2 cancels though? :(

I hate making excuses but I figure I'll have to write an addendum either way. You're right, I should definitely cancel this score. They can't hold 2 cancels with a good reason as to why I canceled the 2nd time against me. A low score though, they can hold against me.


You don't have to explain them because schools who take 165's don't care.

rubydandun
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby rubydandun » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:53 pm

bk1 wrote:
rubydandun wrote:
buckilaw wrote:2 cancels and a high score >>>>>>>>>> cancel, awful score, high score. Most schools do take the highest LSAT, but many also consider all your scores. Also, if your goals change and you want to aim for schools like HYS your much better of without a low score on your app.


How do I explain 2 cancels though? :(

I hate making excuses but I figure I'll have to write an addendum either way. You're right, I should definitely cancel this score. They can't hold 2 cancels with a good reason as to why I canceled the 2nd time against me. A low score though, they can hold against me.


You don't have to explain them because schools who take 165's don't care.


What do you mean schools that take 165s? So you mean USC won't care as long as I have a 165 (considering my GPA is above their 75th percentile?)

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bk1
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby bk1 » Mon Feb 14, 2011 3:14 pm

rubydandun wrote:What do you mean schools that take 165s? So you mean USC won't care as long as I have a 165 (considering my GPA is above their 75th percentile?)


Pretty much yes. Any school that would take even a 165/4.0/non-URM isn't one that actually cares about retakes (which is primarily HYS and to some extent CCN in certain instances). My point is that a 165 isn't getting into the T6, which are the only schools who really care.

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luckyme
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby luckyme » Mon Feb 14, 2011 3:22 pm

I would probably keep it in this situation...having almost any score relieves pressure

BrianOz1
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby BrianOz1 » Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:12 pm

Keep the score. I had a freak nose bleed during the October LSAT (literally bled on the test), caused me to miss an entire game, scored a 163. Well below my PT averages. Came back with a 170 in Dec. Having the score did ease the preassure of a retake.

09042014
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby 09042014 » Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:18 pm

Cancel. No school who takes a 155 is worth going to. 13 off your PT average is fucking awful.

benito
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby benito » Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:34 pm

Desert Fox wrote:Cancel. No school who takes a 155 is worth going to. 13 off your PT average is fucking awful.


I agree I'd say cancel if you only got to 8 questions in any section. You'll have to write an addendum though you should also be careful with that as well; according to Anna Ivey among other admissions consultants, most LSAT addenda do more harm than good and adcomms get really sick of hearing excuses from one applicant after another. That being said I'd still prefer that downside to having a score 13 or more points below my level of aptitude on my record. And yeah if a school admits you with a 155 its a bad investment of a lot of money to attend that school.

geminivegitarian
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby geminivegitarian » Mon Feb 14, 2011 6:41 pm

I don't think it really matters that much. TONS of applicants (thousands and thousands) are in that exact situation and law school admission officers are aware of that. That's why there are so many opportunities to retake the exam! Plus, that is why you include the addendum in your application packet.

I have heard that multiple "cancellations" make you look a bit like a "flake." In a way, you gotta own up to your score, for lack of a better phrase, no matter what the consequences. I was on the brink of getting the flu while taking the test (the stress and adrenaline just brought it on even more). My spine was aching and I developed a fever toward the end of the exam, so I know how you feel about the circumstances being beyond your control.

I guess to answer your question, IMO, cancel/155/165+ is my vote. But you are the one who has to live with the decision so do what you think will put your MOST at ease if you will. Either way, you are going to get an awesome score in the end and are gonna be a great law student and even better lawyer!

Oh and yes, Dec. 2011 is when you are eligible for a 4th retake. I might be doing the same if things don't go as planned.

rubydandun
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby rubydandun » Mon Feb 14, 2011 6:48 pm

Talked to USC, Hastings, UCLA, and Boalt. For anyone who is curious/interested:

UCLA - they see so many applications that they don't have the time to factor in "multiple cancels", etc. They just look at your highest score, you can include an addendum if you'd like.

USC - 2 cancels, 5 cancels in 6 years, etc - they don't care. They take the highest score.

Boalt - interesting. If your two tests are more than 6 points apart, they take the higher score. But if they are within 6 points of each other, they average the two or three scores.

Hastings: the highest score is all they care about, don't care about cancels. Also get this - the admissions officer put a HUGE emphasis on writing sample - never heard that before. All the more reason for me to cancel, because after I'd bombed section 5 I could care less about what mountain Farlow should scale.

In conclusion, just SEEING a 155 or some score 10 points lower than my lowest practice test will scare the crap out of me. I'd rather have to explain 2 cancels than explain away a very low score. I'm going to take my chances with two cancels.

Thank you to everyone who posted in this thread - huge help. Further opinions welcome.

rubydandun
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby rubydandun » Mon Feb 14, 2011 6:51 pm

geminivegitarian wrote:I don't think it really matters that much. TONS of applicants (thousands and thousands) are in that exact situation and law school admission officers are aware of that. That's why there are so many opportunities to retake the exam! Plus, that is why you include the addendum in your application packet.

I have heard that multiple "cancellations" make you look a bit like a "flake." In a way, you gotta own up to your score, for lack of a better phrase, no matter what the consequences. I was on the brink of getting the flu while taking the test (the stress and adrenaline just brought it on even more). My spine was aching and I developed a fever toward the end of the exam, so I know how you feel about the circumstances being beyond your control.

I guess to answer your question, IMO, cancel/155/165+ is my vote. But you are the one who has to live with the decision so do what you think will put your MOST at ease if you will. Either way, you are going to get an awesome score in the end and are gonna be a great law student and even better lawyer!

Oh and yes, Dec. 2011 is when you are eligible for a 4th retake. I might be doing the same if things don't go as planned.


Thank you, great post. I wonder how taking the LSAT 3+ times looks :/

I guess it goes back to them only caring about the highest score at the end of the day.

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suspicious android
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby suspicious android » Mon Feb 14, 2011 11:33 pm

As I suspected, this is not an atypical cancellation thread. I have some excellent advice to offer, but as I was lured here on false pretenses, I will not be sharing.

rubydandun
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby rubydandun » Tue Feb 15, 2011 1:15 am

suspicious android wrote:As I suspected, this is not an atypical cancellation thread. I have some excellent advice to offer, but as I was lured here on false pretenses, I will not be sharing.


Sorry, didn't realize until I saw the others that mine wasn't so special after all. Please share Suspicious Android :cry:

geminivegitarian
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Re: An atypical "should I cancel" thread...please help :(

Postby geminivegitarian » Thu Feb 24, 2011 6:57 pm

rubydandun wrote:
geminivegitarian wrote:I don't think it really matters that much. TONS of applicants (thousands and thousands) are in that exact situation and law school admission officers are aware of that. That's why there are so many opportunities to retake the exam! Plus, that is why you include the addendum in your application packet.

I have heard that multiple "cancellations" make you look a bit like a "flake." In a way, you gotta own up to your score, for lack of a better phrase, no matter what the consequences. I was on the brink of getting the flu while taking the test (the stress and adrenaline just brought it on even more). My spine was aching and I developed a fever toward the end of the exam, so I know how you feel about the circumstances being beyond your control.

I guess to answer your question, IMO, cancel/155/165+ is my vote. But you are the one who has to live with the decision so do what you think will put your MOST at ease if you will. Either way, you are going to get an awesome score in the end and are gonna be a great law student and even better lawyer!

Oh and yes, Dec. 2011 is when you are eligible for a 4th retake. I might be doing the same if things don't go as planned.


Thank you, great post. I wonder how taking the LSAT 3+ times looks :/

I guess it goes back to them only caring about the highest score at the end of the day.


Yes, I agree. Don't give up! And don't let it discourage you. In all actuality, it's just a test. And you are going to do wonderful :D

And about taking it more than 3 times, well, there isn't much you can do about it except your best. The goal is to get that high score and get into the best law school you can.




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