URM and the LSAT Observations

thecactus
Posts: 60
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2011 5:46 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby thecactus » Thu Jun 30, 2011 11:54 pm

Blessedassurance wrote:
SchopenhauerFTW wrote:Anyways, a point I brought up in my discussion with a co-worker, was that it takes a certain level of confidence to pick an answer and move on (as opposed to ruling out all others) which a younger person may be more inclined to do than an older person. Holding things constant and assuming older people are more prone to over-analysis. Overall, I have no qualms about the LSAT and I think it's a pretty complicated test which tests a number of things. This is good. But to equate it with intelligence and assume success in Law school is dependent on one's score on the LSAT is a bit misguided. After a certain threshold, it becomes a matter of educated guessing with respect to capabilities at best.


I really like your explanation here. I know I keep harping on this idea of "stereotype threat," but I think it's a powerful theory. That ability to be confident, know when to cut loose, and not doubt yourself on standardized tests is a skill and a result of social conditioning.

The LSAT is a huge psychological game. The decisions you make within a 30 second time frame can have a huge impact on your score (as I discovered during the June LSAT...sigh...). A student who doesn't second guess himself/herself and doesn't panic is going to make better decisions on the test. However, if you've been told that your race/gender/age is dumb, not intelligent, and slow, you're going to have far more self-doubt in those 30 seconds and mess up.

As Claude Steele explains in most of his findings, many minorities/women have the added pressure of feeling like they have to disprove negative stereotypes about themselves, which -- surprise surprise -- causes them to underperform. Ironically, students who tend to do BETTER academically were more likely to succumb to stereotype threat -- probably because a large part of their identities are based around being "smart."

This doesn't just apply to minorities either. White engineering students who were taking math tests in the same room as Asian students and were told the tests measured intelligence tended to underperform (I found this lol-worthy for some reason...maybe because I'm Asian? haha).

flexityflex86
Posts: 973
Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2011 6:06 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby flexityflex86 » Thu Jun 30, 2011 11:57 pm

sarahlawg wrote:
flexityflex86 wrote:honestly, i think the LSAT is close to as good as it can be when you realize it will never be perfect. in its current state it really doesn't favor any major. maybe they can focus less q's on paleontologists and things nobody cares about, and incorporate some pop culture (they still talk about cd's) to even things out.

and i disagree there is a cultural bias. blacks are part of the same culture whites are. yes, you have more black people from poorer families, but in all honesty what %age of LSAT test takers grew up in the hood? there are i'm sure, and i'd like to see a stat, but i'm inclined to believe that while their parents may have grew up in poverty, these kids live in the suburbs.


there's definitely more to black culture than growing up poor...

i'm not saying that, but i believe blacks are more integrated into mainstream culture than say religious jews. there's no questions about prayer, blowing the shofar or eating matza yet they do really well against the national average. i mean these are kids who get in the 170s, and sometimes can't even name the 1st 5 us presidents.

what about the asian community? you can't seriously argue that culturally speak the asian community is more in touch with american culture than the african-american culture.... i'm just one guy, but every black person i've ever met has been pretty culturally similar to me. i have no issues with the asian community, and really feel lucky we have asian people in our country as their culture is fascinating, but i honestly have no idea how the hell their brain works a lot of the time.

flexityflex86
Posts: 973
Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2011 6:06 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby flexityflex86 » Thu Jun 30, 2011 11:58 pm

clarification: i don't think it's an IQ thing, but i also don't think culture is a fair argument. what proof is there it is culture?

thecactus
Posts: 60
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2011 5:46 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby thecactus » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:00 am

flexityflex86 wrote:what about the asian community? you can't seriously argue that culturally speak the asian community is more in touch with american culture than the african-american culture.... i'm just one guy, but every black person i've ever met has been pretty culturally similar to me. i have no issues with the asian community, and really feel lucky we have asian people in our country as their culture is fascinating, but i honestly have no idea how the hell their brain works a lot of the time.


..........troll?

User avatar
soj
Posts: 7735
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 11:10 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby soj » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:05 am

flexityflex86 wrote:i'm not saying that, but i believe blacks are more integrated into mainstream culture than say religious jews. there's no questions about prayer, blowing the shofar or eating matza yet they do really well against the national average. i mean these are kids who get in the 170s, and sometimes can't even name the 1st 5 us presidents.

what about the asian community? you can't seriously argue that culturally speak the asian community is more in touch with american culture than the african-american culture.... i'm just one guy, but every black person i've ever met has been pretty culturally similar to me. i have no issues with the asian community, and really feel lucky we have asian people in our country as their culture is fascinating, but i honestly have no idea how the hell their brain works a lot of the time.

Just as it was getting good, flexityflex86 comes back with his derp. :roll:
Last edited by soj on Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:07 am, edited 1 time in total.

flexityflex86
Posts: 973
Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2011 6:06 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby flexityflex86 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:06 am

thecactus wrote:
flexityflex86 wrote:what about the asian community? you can't seriously argue that culturally speak the asian community is more in touch with american culture than the african-american culture.... i'm just one guy, but every black person i've ever met has been pretty culturally similar to me. i have no issues with the asian community, and really feel lucky we have asian people in our country as their culture is fascinating, but i honestly have no idea how the hell their brain works a lot of the time.


..........troll?

i meant the ginger they sell for 100/pound and their medicines.

SchopenhauerFTW
Posts: 1793
Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2010 10:22 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby SchopenhauerFTW » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:07 am

flexityflex86 wrote:
thecactus wrote:
flexityflex86 wrote:what about the asian community? you can't seriously argue that culturally speak the asian community is more in touch with american culture than the african-american culture.... i'm just one guy, but every black person i've ever met has been pretty culturally similar to me. i have no issues with the asian community, and really feel lucky we have asian people in our country as their culture is fascinating, but i honestly have no idea how the hell their brain works a lot of the time.


..........troll?

i meant the ginger they sell for 100/pound and their medicines.

It's good stuff (honestly).

sarahlawg
Posts: 1001
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2010 5:59 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby sarahlawg » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:09 am

flexityflex86 wrote:what about the asian community? you can't seriously argue that culturally speak the asian community is more in touch with american culture than the african-american culture....


what I've personally read about is in part related to the ways in which language is used and how people are brought up to think. If that makes sense. I definitely do not have enough knowledge to actually attest to these things, just putting out there.

thecactus
Posts: 60
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2011 5:46 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby thecactus » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:16 am

flexityflex86 wrote:i meant the ginger they sell for 100/pound and their medicines.


Well, you need to get in on this then. My people make the best aphrodisiacs. Why do you think there are 1 billion + Chinese people?

SchopenhauerFTW
Posts: 1793
Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2010 10:22 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby SchopenhauerFTW » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:21 am

thecactus wrote:
flexityflex86 wrote:i meant the ginger they sell for 100/pound and their medicines.


Well, you need to get in on this then. My people make the best aphrodisiacs. Why do you think there are 1 billion + Chinese people?

This is both the rudest and the funniest comment in this thread.

Anyway...

thecactus
Posts: 60
Joined: Thu Apr 21, 2011 5:46 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby thecactus » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:24 am

SchopenhauerFTW wrote:This is both the rudest and the funniest comment in this thread.



You have to fight troll with troll.

RobMD
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun Mar 06, 2011 9:22 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby RobMD » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:31 am

thecactus wrote:
Blessedassurance wrote:
SchopenhauerFTW wrote:Anyways, a point I brought up in my discussion with a co-worker, was that it takes a certain level of confidence to pick an answer and move on (as opposed to ruling out all others) which a younger person may be more inclined to do than an older person. Holding things constant and assuming older people are more prone to over-analysis. Overall, I have no qualms about the LSAT and I think it's a pretty complicated test which tests a number of things. This is good. But to equate it with intelligence and assume success in Law school is dependent on one's score on the LSAT is a bit misguided. After a certain threshold, it becomes a matter of educated guessing with respect to capabilities at best.


I really like your explanation here. I know I keep harping on this idea of "stereotype threat," but I think it's a powerful theory. That ability to be confident, know when to cut loose, and not doubt yourself on standardized tests is a skill and a result of social conditioning.

The LSAT is a huge psychological game. The decisions you make within a 30 second time frame can have a huge impact on your score (as I discovered during the June LSAT...sigh...). A student who doesn't second guess himself/herself and doesn't panic is going to make better decisions on the test. However, if you've been told that your race/gender/age is dumb, not intelligent, and slow, you're going to have far more self-doubt in those 30 seconds and mess up.

As Claude Steele explains in most of his findings, many minorities/women have the added pressure of feeling like they have to disprove negative stereotypes about themselves, which -- surprise surprise -- causes them to underperform. Ironically, students who tend to do BETTER academically were more likely to succumb to stereotype threat -- probably because a large part of their identities are based around being "smart."

This doesn't just apply to minorities either. White engineering students who were taking math tests in the same room as Asian students and were told the tests measured intelligence tended to underperform (I found this lol-worthy for some reason...maybe because I'm Asian? haha).


The stereotype threat seems to make sense as a reason why some people score lower on the LSAT. However, the LSAT still retains about the same amount of validity for minorities and women in predicting first year law school grades. Essentially, the LSAT is just as good in predicting the performance of both non-URM's and URM's. I suppose people would still feel a stereotype threat in law school and would maybe perform worse because of it, but at what point do people stop feeling the threat, if at all?

Also, the stereotype threat might be a good thing to take into account for admissions, but how should employers feel about this for hiring and promotions?

User avatar
Blessedassurance
Posts: 2081
Joined: Mon Jun 27, 2011 3:42 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby Blessedassurance » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:33 am

NYCLSATTutor wrote:
PDaddy wrote:I'm selling. As the above poster indicates, this smells of another race-biased rant cloacked in false "concern" for URM's and their refusal to take advantage of their abilities. While it is true that URM's can do much better when we apply ourselves, the LSAT still has many problems. In other words, the major flaw in your argument is not that it makes untrue assertions - indeed, I agree with most of your premises but not the conclusion drawn from them - but in its assumtion that two (true) propositions either cannot coexist or are mutually exclusive.

You assume that we as (1) URM's do not always apply ourselves fully to the process and (2) that the LSAT formatting, content and administration are in no way "culturally biased" (fwiw, almost nobody here will assert "racial bias"). The second assertion does not have to be true, nor does it necessarily lead to your conclusion. URM's should apply themselves more to preparation and writing, and the entire application process as a whole, but the LSAT is a highly flawed test whose dynamics give certain students advantages over others. Those advantages, though inherent, are not intractable; so there are no excuses for poor performance (or lack of effort) barring learning disabilities and the like. URM students who rest on their hopes of receiving some kind of "boost" are really embarrassing to me. However, I would still not venture to say that the alleged boosts are unwarranted when given.

Nevertheless, a more culture-neutral (some may say "race-neutral") exam can and will be forthcoming very soon, and rightfully so.


I take it from this that you see the LSAT as racially or culturally biased. Can you articulate why? I think it is an appealing explanation as to why the differences exist between minority/white test-takers, but I've never seem a compelling explanation about the test itself to explain why someone thinks its not race-neutral.


To an extent, the test itself is race-neutral with regards to the language of the question etc. I did not grow up in America so I cannot speak for the average URM but I don't find anything wrong with the questions except a few, the answers to which I still insist, are ambiguous. I can however see why some US-born URM's will find issues with the language. I had to learn English from a text book, so I was privy to certain intricacies of the language. I speak my native tongue faily well, but I will be considered terrible by connoisseurs of my native tongue because I use language that is perfectly acceptable in the urban environment within which I grew up but are unacceptable grammatically in the hinterlands. I can see how a URM growing up in urban America may have issues with formal language in the 'twisted' fashion that LSAC is wont to employ. Besides, a fair number of questions on the LSAT rely on the subtlety of language. Books and or prep-programs can alert the student to these issues so I think the issue may revert back to the availability of resources. I think a study that measures URM's with respect to performance on the Logic Games (with enough prep) vis-a-vis the other sections may yield more clues in this regard.

I think the cultural argument is plausible, but only for a certain type of URM. The vast majority of URM's who have decided to go to Law School can be said to have overcome these "cultural" issues.

Edit: Then again, the LG section is easy to master. It will however, lay to rest the "intelligence", "motivation" and "capacity to learn" questions.
Last edited by Blessedassurance on Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:36 am, edited 1 time in total.

sarahlawg
Posts: 1001
Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2010 5:59 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby sarahlawg » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:36 am

RobMD wrote:Also, the stereotype threat might be a good thing to take into account for admissions, but how should employers feel about this for hiring and promotions?


URMs get a boost in hiring as well.

User avatar
Blessedassurance
Posts: 2081
Joined: Mon Jun 27, 2011 3:42 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby Blessedassurance » Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:58 am

To add, an emphasis on GPA will be problematic too. Besides the issues that the professor in the video raised, there are students in Universities which do not give an A+ competing with students whose Universities do and so on and so forth. In addition, there is the issue of the strength of the curriculum etc. Any given measure is going to have flaws and a holistic approach is warranted. This URM issue would be inconsequential except that most often, the anger stems from the fact that, people feel that URMs have taken their spot (so to speak) which is not necessarily true. The reasoning assumes, they would have gotten in if no URM with worse numbers had been accepted (which may or may not be true) and assumes no non-URM's got in with worse numbers. Furthermore, how do you asses two contenders who beat each other in alternate parts of the main factors (i.e. GPA and LSAT)? I have had people berate me over my 165 even when I have significantly better numbers in the GPA department. Naturally, they tend to think GPA's are arbitrary and the LSAT isn't.

In the end, people with relatively lower GPA and high LSAT scores tend to think the LSAT should matter more because "they didn't take college seriously etc" and people with lower GPA's think the GPA should matter more because the "LSAT doesn't accurately measure their capabilities etc". There are good and bad arguments, for and against both,

User avatar
Quan292
Posts: 283
Joined: Sun May 22, 2011 2:03 am

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby Quan292 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:00 am

jmjones wrote:ACCESS.

I'm a black man at a top ten university. Yet, before the summer of my senior year in high school, I could not tell you what Harvard was or even how to pronounce Yale. My grades (and some of my friends for that matter) were always high. But to us, college was college. We did not know difference between Stanford and the local community college. Mostly, because we did not know what Stanford was.

Funny story--first time I heard about Stanford; it was through some movie in which Jack Black plays a bum and his brother/friend or something is trying to get into Stanford.

Anyway...

What was an ivy league? What is prestige? What does ACTing have to do with college?

You have to understand that these are not common place discussions in a "URM" home. Even if the parents wanted their kids to go to good schools, they did not know how to help their kids because they were also in the same situation.

I could not even find a credit/debit card to pay the online registration fee for the ACT. I had to give some random neighbor cash so I could use his card.

And now, I go to school with students whose parents AND grandparents were students at the same University. You think their parents did not craft their personal lives and their resumes to reflect a successful applicant for this particular school.

As mentioned earlier, there is something about the hood. It's a place where people lack access to information, success is discouraged as is seen "acting white" because achieving success (law school/standard English/eating salad) requires you to distance yourself from 'the hood.'

There are all types of sociology books on this type of mentality and it is not limited to the American Blacks. Read and you might understand.

Another important consideration is when all this is happening. We're talking about teenagers and young adults, people that can be easily swayed by peer pressure. Not too many teenagers go on soul searching missions.

I remember when Harvard and Columbia came to interview me and I also remember how lightly I took it. Not because I did not want to go to those schools but because I did not understand the magnitude of these interviews. Why? Because no one was there to tell me.

The career services office was tucked away in some small corner of the building where none of my friends kicked it. So why would I ever go there? . . .Unless I needed to print something and it happened to be the nearest room with a computer and then I saw an ACT booklet (remember those) on a shelf and then just happened to inquire about it and then . . .well you kinda know the rest.

Remember my friends from high school, those with the good grades, well they went to community college because they did not know better. Their families did not understand the value of sending them to distant schools for their FUTURE when their help with the bills was needed at home, NOW.

And me? That summer before my senior year, I happened to get a phone call from an uncle that I did not know existed. One of those uncles who some in the family consider "white washed" and chose to live in some random state away from the community and become a dentist. He knew I had no parental support and, at the time, I was living alone in some low income apartment.

He was my access to information. My ticket from that environment. He challenged me to gain acceptance into a top ten school. It was the first time anyone had taken an interest in my academics. But it would be a long time until I fully came to appreciate my new environment of opportunities and white people and ass kissing professors for recommendations. In fact, my first year in college, I did not speak to a single professor towards the end of the year. They weren't extending a handshake to me and I was too busy wondering "where the fuck I'm I" to do so.

I specifically remember in one of my classes, the TA kept giving me Cs on my papers. I never said a word. I just assumed I was doing C work. Until one day, she gave me a 67. I took all my papers to her and asked her to explain to me why I was getting low grades. She couldn't. She simply changed them all to B+ and A-s (I still think they were As :evil: )

We (my friends and I) grew up hiding from authority figures. Cops were always harassing. Principals were always hating. We only got to deal with white people when they summoned you.

So what the fuck is office hours?

Despite all the randomness in this post, I hope it conveys the message that a minority student from a disadvantaged background may need several lucky moments in his/her life to get to where a majority (i generalize) of TLSers knew they were going from the get-go.

Get it.


Great freaking post. TLS irks me with how little this site truly understands the experience of many black americans. In my experience the language of the test is entirely different from the language I grew up around. However I do have white friends and I have seen them with their family members using language similar to the exam. Now It is always terrible to use yourself as an example and form that into a rule but their is definitely a difference.

SchopenhauerFTW
Posts: 1793
Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2010 10:22 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby SchopenhauerFTW » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:05 am

Quan292 wrote:Great freaking post. TLS irks me with how little this site truly understands the experience of many black americans. In my experience the language of the test is entirely different from the language I grew up around. However I do have white friends and I have seen them with their family members using language similar to the exam. Now It is always terrible to use yourself as an example and form that into a rule but their is definitely a difference.

Seriously? This has not been a widespread trend as far as I'm concerned.

User avatar
Helicio
Posts: 483
Joined: Wed Aug 11, 2010 5:22 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby Helicio » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:11 am

Quan292 wrote:Great freaking post. TLS irks me with how little this site truly understands the experience of many black americans. In my experience the language of the test is entirely different from the language I grew up around. However I do have white friends and I have seen them with their family members using language similar to the exam. Now It is always terrible to use yourself as an example and form that into a rule but their is definitely a difference.


Dude, that culture argument is such a lame excuse.

I do not benefit from URM, yet I grew up in a family where English was NOT even my first language.

My family is poor, barely functional, and the country we came from is probably on the brink of another war. Yet since I have less melanin than other people, and since Affirmative Action is purely based on race and does not take economic status into account, I don't benefit from AA.

If your argument for affirmative action is that blacks/Hispanics grew up in different cultures, you need a reality check.

Many other people--many of whom are poor--grew up in families that are from the Middle East, India, East Asia, or Eastern Europe. Many people from these areas are extremely poor and could use a helping hand or two in their lives, just like the helping hand that African-Americans and Hispanics get.

Despite the cultural differences that I have compared to your average American--and these differences are much greater than those that American minorities share with mainstream America--I have been able to learn English well enough to be scoring 170 + on my practice tests for my LSAT. I've been able to do this through hard work and studying, despite having to work another job all my life.

I know I'm made fun off on these forums a lot, but I've been able to get what I've got in life through hard work. I'm as liberal as they come, and I grew up in a majority-black neighborhood. I'm probably one of the few light-looking people who is telling the truth when I say that I probably have more black friends than white friends. But I've always hated affirmative action as it is now; I wouldn't mind it if it was socioeconomic and took people like me into account, but as it is now it screws poor people over if they aren't black, Hispanic, or Native American.

To use the culture argument is stupid, unless you are going to include Asians/Indians/Middle Easterners like me who do NOT benefit from affirmative action. Instead we have to work our asses off with no 8-point-boost.

User avatar
Quan292
Posts: 283
Joined: Sun May 22, 2011 2:03 am

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby Quan292 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:13 am

SchopenhauerFTW wrote:
Quan292 wrote:Great freaking post. TLS irks me with how little this site truly understands the experience of many black americans. In my experience the language of the test is entirely different from the language I grew up around. However I do have white friends and I have seen them with their family members using language similar to the exam. Now It is always terrible to use yourself as an example and form that into a rule but their is definitely a difference.

Seriously? This has not been a widespread trend as far as I'm concerned.


I mean I havent been here for long but most of the comments don;t seem to take into account other factors that may play into decisions made by URM's and treat lifestyles as if they are all the same which I don't believe is true at all.

User avatar
Helicio
Posts: 483
Joined: Wed Aug 11, 2010 5:22 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby Helicio » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:15 am

Quan292 wrote: However I do have white friends and I have seen them with their family members using language similar to the exam. Now It is always terrible to use yourself as an example and form that into a rule but their is definitely a difference.


Also, I don't know what white people you hang around, but I seriously doubt they use language similar to the exam. No one in their right mind uses language similar to the exam except the test makers and in some cases lawyers.

Stereotyping white people is just as bogus as stereotyping black people; not all white people are rich dictionary-dorks. Actually, a large amount are poor.

Some, like me, are poorer than most URMs (or people in general, for that matter). Unforuntately, I don't get AA.
Last edited by Helicio on Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

SchopenhauerFTW
Posts: 1793
Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2010 10:22 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby SchopenhauerFTW » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:15 am

Quan292 wrote:
SchopenhauerFTW wrote:
Quan292 wrote:Great freaking post. TLS irks me with how little this site truly understands the experience of many black americans. In my experience the language of the test is entirely different from the language I grew up around. However I do have white friends and I have seen them with their family members using language similar to the exam. Now It is always terrible to use yourself as an example and form that into a rule but their is definitely a difference.

Seriously? This has not been a widespread trend as far as I'm concerned.


I mean I havent been here for long but most of the comments don;t seem to take into account other factors that may play into decisions made by URM's and treat lifestyles as if they are all the same which I don't believe is true at all.

Ah okay. I think a lot of people here understand or at least try to, but I think the people who don't go out of their way to give their opinion.

SchopenhauerFTW
Posts: 1793
Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2010 10:22 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby SchopenhauerFTW » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:18 am

Helicio wrote:Some, like me, are poorer than most URMs (or people in general, for that matter). Unforuntately, I don't get AA.
Then get a high LSAT score.

shoeshine
Posts: 1241
Joined: Wed May 04, 2011 10:58 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby shoeshine » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:18 am

Helicio wrote:...

AA isn't perfect but the poster he was quoting was making that argument that cultural and societal differences do play a role in academic success. In other words some people are set up to succeed and other are setup to fail.

User avatar
Blessedassurance
Posts: 2081
Joined: Mon Jun 27, 2011 3:42 pm

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby Blessedassurance » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:18 am

flexityflex86 wrote:
PDaddy wrote:I'm selling. As the above poster indicates, this smells of another race-biased rant cloacked in false "concern" for URM's and their refusal to take advantage of their abilities. While it is true that URM's can do much better when we apply ourselves, the LSAT still has many problems. In other words, the major flaw in your argument is not that it makes untrue assertions - indeed, I agree with most of your premises but not the conclusion drawn from them - but in its assumtion that two (true) propositions either cannot coexist or are mutually exclusive.

You assume that we as (1) URM's do not always apply ourselves fully to the process and (2) that the LSAT formatting, content and administration are in no way "culturally biased" (fwiw, almost nobody here will assert "racial bias"). The second assertion does not have to be true, nor does it necessarily lead to your conclusion. URM's should apply themselves more to preparation and writing, and the entire application process as a whole, but the LSAT is a highly flawed test whose dynamics give certain students advantages over others. Those advantages, though inherent, are not intractable; so there are no excuses for poor performance (or lack of effort) barring learning disabilities and the like. URM students who rest on their hopes of receiving some kind of "boost" are really embarrassing to me. However, I would still not venture to say that the alleged boosts are unwarranted when given.

Nevertheless, a more culture-neutral (some may say "race-neutral") exam can and will be forthcoming very soon, and rightfully so.

If you think the LSAT is flawed in what it's measuring, you should look at the GMAT and GRE.


The GMAT is not to B-Schools, what the LSAT is to Law Schools.

User avatar
Quan292
Posts: 283
Joined: Sun May 22, 2011 2:03 am

Re: URM and the LSAT Observations

Postby Quan292 » Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:24 am

Helicio wrote:
Quan292 wrote:Great freaking post. TLS irks me with how little this site truly understands the experience of many black americans. In my experience the language of the test is entirely different from the language I grew up around. However I do have white friends and I have seen them with their family members using language similar to the exam. Now It is always terrible to use yourself as an example and form that into a rule but their is definitely a difference.


Dude, that culture argument is such a lame excuse.

I do not benefit from URM, yet I grew up in a family where English was NOT even my first language.

My family is poor, barely functional, and the country we came from is probably on the brink of another war. Yet since I have less melanin than other people, and since Affirmative Action is purely based on race and does not take economic status into account, I don't benefit from AA.

If your argument for affirmative action is that blacks/Hispanics grew up in different cultures, you need a reality check.

Many other people--many of whom are poor--grew up in families that are from the Middle East, India, East Asia, or Eastern Europe. Many people from these areas are extremely poor and could use a helping hand or two in their lives, just like the helping hand that African-Americans and Hispanics get.

Despite the cultural differences that I have compared to your average American--and these differences are much greater than those that American minorities share with mainstream America--I have been able to learn English well enough to be scoring 170 + on my practice tests for my LSAT. I've been able to do this through hard work and studying, despite having to work another job all my life.

I know I'm made fun off on these forums a lot, but I've been able to get what I've got in life through hard work. I'm as liberal as they come, and I grew up in a majority-black neighborhood. I'm probably one of the few light-looking people who is telling the truth when I say that I probably have more black friends than white friends. But I've always hated affirmative action as it is now; I wouldn't mind it if it was socioeconomic and took people like me into account, but as it is now it screws poor people over if they aren't black, Hispanic, or Native American.

To use the culture argument is stupid, unless you are going to include Asians/Indians/Middle Easterners like me who do NOT benefit from affirmative action. Instead we have to work our asses off with no 8-point-boost.


While I agree that from your experience Affirmative Action fails for you but as you said you grew up in those neighborhoods and you saw the ethnicity of those around you. Having programs based for those races seem plausible in this regard. While it isnt always perfect you obviously see the disadvantages you were born with and it's similarities to those around you so there is obviously something going on

Congrats on your success tho.




Return to “LSAT Prep and Discussion Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: cianchetta0, dontsaywhatyoumean, DumbHollywoodActor, iwoeps, neptunian and 12 guests