3.35/175 Chances?

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Soilus
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3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Soilus » Fri Jan 21, 2011 2:50 pm

Hi everyone,

I graduated from Dartmouth in June 2010 with a 3.35 as an Econ major. I've been studying for the LSAT and I've taken three practice tests under lab settings (administered by professional test prep people) with the following scores: 176, 177, 176. I know that people always test worse when it counts - call my score a 175.

My 3.35, unfortunatley, means that there are C's on my transcript. Since graduating I've been working at a top management consulting firm, working on both strategy projects and private equity deals (I mention this to indicate that I have "serious" work experience - 80 hours a week, top firm, etc). I have two solid professor recs, but both are from non-econ professors (my bad grades were in econ - the story of my invovlement in the econ major is like the story of America in Vietnam: a quagmire I should never have gotten into).

I plan on applying for either 2012 or 2013 intake, meaning that by the time I apply, I'll have 2-3 years of solid work experience. My bosses love me and I'm doing really well at work, so I think I can count on a couple of good recommendations from partners at my firm. I don't know if that matters at all but I figure it can't hurt.

What are my chances at a T14 school? I realize that my chances at HYS are pretty nil. What about Columbia, UChicago, NYU, Berkeley, UPenn, UMich, and Northwestern? I obviously want to go to the best law school I can get into. Can someone tell me what my chances are?

Thanks

pballer
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby pballer » Fri Jan 21, 2011 3:04 pm

In before the "come back with a real score".

Soilus
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Soilus » Fri Jan 21, 2011 3:09 pm

Yeah, I know that practice test scores don't count for much, but I'm trying to plan early and take a long-term approach to applying to law school. I'm planning on taking the LSAT next year, not in the summer/fall (I hear scores skew a bit higher in the "off-season" because all the gunners take it early). So take my scores with a grain of salt: sure, they're pratice scores (albeit at a very real-feeling test), but I also have several months left to keep studying.

For the sake of argument, can we call my score a 175? :)

Curry

Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Curry » Fri Jan 21, 2011 3:12 pm

Nope. Come back with a real score.

HowdyYall
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby HowdyYall » Fri Jan 21, 2011 3:19 pm

With a 175/3.35, id say you have pretty good chances at most of the schools you mentioned as long as the recs and PS are great.

Advice: try and take 25+ LSAT practice tests before you go into the real thing; will really help out with your confidence and let you get that 175. Also, taking your LSAT in June will allow you to retake if necessary in Oct or Dec and really takes alot of pressure off you. Make sure to send in most of your applications in Sept/early October. IF you do get 174+ throw out some apps to HYS, chances arent too good, but who knows, maybe an adcom might like your PS enough to overlook your GPA

trudat15
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby trudat15 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 3:26 pm

Dont know why the animosity towards not having a real score when OP clearly states he knows it's not real and is just using a hypo 175.

OP - 175 or higher will give you a shot at a lot of schools. Depends on your goals (scholly vs t14 vs best school possible). Think HYS are out, but CCN (especially with an ED) come into play. Not as much Columbia as Chicago or NYU. You'll snag NU and UVa with ED as well, even if you score a few points below the hypo 175.

Soilus
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Soilus » Fri Jan 21, 2011 3:32 pm

HowdyYall wrote:With a 175/3.35, id say you have pretty good chances at most of the schools you mentioned as long as the recs and PS are great.

Advice: try and take 25+ LSAT practice tests before you go into the real thing; will really help out with your confidence and let you get that 175. Also, taking your LSAT in June will allow you to retake if necessary in Oct or Dec and really takes alot of pressure off you. Make sure to send in most of your applications in Sept/early October. IF you do get 174+ throw out some apps to HYS, chances arent too good, but who knows, maybe an adcom might like your PS enough to overlook your GPA


Thanks for the advice. As I said, I'm going to be applying to get in for 2012 or 2013 - meaning I'll apply in Sept 2011 or 2012. I'm hoping to take the LSAT either this winter or next winter, with the possibility of retaking it in June if needed (that's the nice thing about being out of college - I'm no longer constrained by the academic calendar).

I've taken over 50 practice LSATS so far. The three I mentioned were proctored tests. What are my chances at the schools at the higher end of my list (Columbia, UChicago, NYU)? Any advice about the PS? My current draft reads like a paper I might have written for a college phil class (the role of existentialism in helping me overcome my fears about switching out of my current career and pursuing law).

Thanks again

Soilus
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Soilus » Fri Jan 21, 2011 3:35 pm

trudat15 wrote:Dont know why the animosity towards not having a real score when OP clearly states he knows it's not real and is just using a hypo 175.

OP - 175 or higher will give you a shot at a lot of schools. Depends on your goals (scholly vs t14 vs best school possible). Think HYS are out, but CCN (especially with an ED) come into play. Not as much Columbia as Chicago or NYU. You'll snag NU and UVa with ED as well, even if you score a few points below the hypo 175.


Thanks for the response. Not sure why people are hostile to my hypothetical score either. My understanding so far is that I might have a good shot at Northwestern because they care about work experience, of which I have both quality and quantity.

Could you clarify what you mean by scholly vs. t14 vs. best school? I'm unclear on what scholly means.

Curry

Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Curry » Fri Jan 21, 2011 3:39 pm

Soilus wrote:
trudat15 wrote:Dont know why the animosity towards not having a real score when OP clearly states he knows it's not real and is just using a hypo 175.

OP - 175 or higher will give you a shot at a lot of schools. Depends on your goals (scholly vs t14 vs best school possible). Think HYS are out, but CCN (especially with an ED) come into play. Not as much Columbia as Chicago or NYU. You'll snag NU and UVa with ED as well, even if you score a few points below the hypo 175.


Thanks for the response. Not sure why people are hostile to my hypothetical score either. My understanding so far is that I might have a good shot at Northwestern because they care about work experience, of which I have both quality and quantity.

Could you clarify what you mean by scholly vs. t14 vs. best school? I'm unclear on what scholly means.


Hostile because this thread is about as useful as you saying i'm going to score a 190.

Soilus
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Soilus » Fri Jan 21, 2011 3:47 pm

Curry wrote:
Soilus wrote:
trudat15 wrote:Dont know why the animosity towards not having a real score when OP clearly states he knows it's not real and is just using a hypo 175.

OP - 175 or higher will give you a shot at a lot of schools. Depends on your goals (scholly vs t14 vs best school possible). Think HYS are out, but CCN (especially with an ED) come into play. Not as much Columbia as Chicago or NYU. You'll snag NU and UVa with ED as well, even if you score a few points below the hypo 175.


Thanks for the response. Not sure why people are hostile to my hypothetical score either. My understanding so far is that I might have a good shot at Northwestern because they care about work experience, of which I have both quality and quantity.

Could you clarify what you mean by scholly vs. t14 vs. best school? I'm unclear on what scholly means.


Hostile because this thread is about as useful as you saying i'm going to score a 190.



Understood, and I'm not trying to waste anyone's time, but look at things from my perspective: I'm trying to gather data so that I can make a well-informed choice and be best-equipped when I apply. Isn't that the advice people usually give anyway? Start studying early, get your PS/other stuff done early, don't wait until the last moment to ask the kinds of questions I'm asking - this all sounds like textbook good advice on applying to LS. And I know the score isn't real, but I'm not pulling it out of thin air either. I can reasonably expect to score within a few points of what I've indicated. So I just want to know what I should be thinking about in terms of schools I should focus on. I'll come back with a real score eventually, but I find it hard to believe that my best course of action until I have a real score is to be totally in the dark about these questions. If that sounds reasonable to you, I think it follows that your hostility is misplaced.

trudat15
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby trudat15 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:09 pm

Curry wrote:Hostile because this thread is about as useful as you saying i'm going to score a 190.


To you it's useless, but as OP stated below, it's useful for him in collecting data for him to make an informed decision. It's not like he's forcing you to check and recheck the thread.


Soilus wrote:Could you clarify what you mean by scholly vs. t14 vs. best school? I'm unclear on what scholly means.


By that , I mean what are your goals for schools? Are you very debt averse, and would take scholarship offers at lesser schools? Or do you just want to go to the best (highest ranked) school you get into, even if it's at sticker? I ask because depending on how debt averse you are, you might have a shot at CCN with ED, which means you would be paying sticker. Some people dont want to ED because they want to take into consideration all of their $$ options at the end of the cycle.

With your 175, I would say you are WL at all three CCN RD (then riding out the WL - maybe out at Columbia, potential WL in at Chicago and NYU). If you ED'd though, you have a decent shot at NYU and Chicago.

Curry

Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Curry » Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:11 pm

trudat15 wrote:
Curry wrote:Hostile because this thread is about as useful as you saying i'm going to score a 190.


To you it's useless, but as OP stated below, it's useful for him in collecting data for him to make an informed decision. It's not like he's forcing you to check and recheck the thread.



Actually its useless to him too... because he doesn't have a 175. If he gets a 174, everything changes. If he gets a 176, everything changes. Hell even if he gets a 175, things may be different.

Soilus
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Soilus » Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:18 pm

trudat15 wrote:
Curry wrote:Hostile because this thread is about as useful as you saying i'm going to score a 190.


To you it's useless, but as OP stated below, it's useful for him in collecting data for him to make an informed decision. It's not like he's forcing you to check and recheck the thread.


Soilus wrote:Could you clarify what you mean by scholly vs. t14 vs. best school? I'm unclear on what scholly means.


By that , I mean what are your goals for schools? Are you very debt averse, and would take scholarship offers at lesser schools? Or do you just want to go to the best (highest ranked) school you get into, even if it's at sticker? I ask because depending on how debt averse you are, you might have a shot at CCN with ED, which means you would be paying sticker. Some people dont want to ED because they want to take into consideration all of their $$ options at the end of the cycle.

With your 175, I would say you are WL at all three CCN RD (then riding out the WL - maybe out at Columbia, potential WL in at Chicago and NYU). If you ED'd though, you have a decent shot at NYU and Chicago.


Scholarships aren't a factor. I'll have a considerable amount saved up by the time I go, and I plan on doing corp biglaw for at least a few years (5-7) before considering other careers, such as govt/public service. Parents may also kick in a bit if I go into a school that they think is "worth it" (meaning upper half of T14). Does this change the calculus? How much do law schools weigh an ED app over a RD app?

Thanks

09042014
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby 09042014 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:20 pm

ED to NYU or UChi.

trudat15
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby trudat15 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:21 pm

Curry wrote:
trudat15 wrote:
Curry wrote:Hostile because this thread is about as useful as you saying i'm going to score a 190.


To you it's useless, but as OP stated below, it's useful for him in collecting data for him to make an informed decision. It's not like he's forcing you to check and recheck the thread.



Actually its useless to him too... because he doesn't have a 175. If he gets a 174, everything changes. If he gets a 176, everything changes. Hell even if he gets a 175, things may be different.


Yes, but most of the time it's people that arent very well informed asking this, in which case telling them to come back with a score is reasonable. Though OP seems very aware of the fact, and is just making cursory plans on a reasonable assumption. Though doesnt change the fact that even if it's useless for him, he'd like the info and again, no one is forcing you to waste your time rechecking a thread you deem useless. A 174-176 doesnt change much as far as chances below CCN are concerned, and CCN he would be above median at all three (though a 176 would put him above 75th at all)

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Older Chest
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Older Chest » Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:27 pm

OP - Please visit Law School Numbers. It will give you the best idea of what T14 schools you have a shot at with your numbers. After a quick glance, I would venture to guess that your GPA will be a problem if applying regular decision to the top schools. If you are set on a certain school, say CCN, then you could always ED and keep your fingers crossed.

One thing you will learn throughout the application process is that 'soft' factors cannot overcome a low LSAT/GPA. Also, undergrad school doesn't play as big a part as you think in the application process. I say this not to be rude but simply so that you can set realistic expectations.

Best of luck to you.

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starrydreamz3
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby starrydreamz3 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 4:31 pm

Checking out last year's applicants with a lsat range of 174-180 and gpa below 3.4 on lsn, none got into NYU or Columbia, and a handful got into Chicago. So realistically you're looking more at the lower T-14 no matter what.

http://michigan.lawschoolnumbers.com/ap ... ,8&type=jd

Click here and change the school to peruse last years applicants in your range.

Soilus
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Soilus » Fri Jan 21, 2011 5:22 pm

Older Chest wrote:OP - Please visit Law School Numbers. It will give you the best idea of what T14 schools you have a shot at with your numbers. After a quick glance, I would venture to guess that your GPA will be a problem if applying regular decision to the top schools. If you are set on a certain school, say CCN, then you could always ED and keep your fingers crossed.

One thing you will learn throughout the application process is that 'soft' factors cannot overcome a low LSAT/GPA. Also, undergrad school doesn't play as big a part as you think in the application process. I say this not to be rude but simply so that you can set realistic expectations.

Best of luck to you.


Got it - this is my understanding as well. Ivy undergrad, work experience at a top consulting firm, blah blah only helps a bit. So I can obviously focus on my LSAT and try to get it higher than it is right now. Beyond that, what else can I do? Truth of the matter is that I underperformed my potential in UG, which I was hoping that steller recommendations from my bosses would help counteract a bit. The logic is that Grades = Work Ethic, so low grades may be made up for by spectacular work experience and letters that emphasize how hard working/capable I am?

That's probably just hopeful thinking on my part. If so, what else can I do to hedge against my bad grades?

Thanks

Soilus
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Soilus » Fri Jan 21, 2011 5:32 pm

Also - what about UPenn? Not as highly ranked as these other law schools, but has the upside of the JD/MBA program with Wharton (this is also why I'm leaning heavily toward Columnia, UChicago, NYU, Northwestern, Michigan, Berkeley, etc - since B-schools typically care less about grades and WAY more about work experience, so I can get into a better B-school than LS, all things equal. So for instance, Northwestern's program is attractive to me because it is a top B-school but a much more forgiving LS - ditto on UPenn).

trudat15
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby trudat15 » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:18 pm

Soilus wrote:Also - what about UPenn? Not as highly ranked as these other law schools, but has the upside of the JD/MBA program with Wharton (this is also why I'm leaning heavily toward Columnia, UChicago, NYU, Northwestern, Michigan, Berkeley, etc - since B-schools typically care less about grades and WAY more about work experience, so I can get into a better B-school than LS, all things equal. So for instance, Northwestern's program is attractive to me because it is a top B-school but a much more forgiving LS - ditto on UPenn).


Have heard it is hard to backdoor into Wharton, much more so than Booth or maybe Stern (which I hear is easier to do). But I imagine you are in or WL-in at Penn.

Northwesterns you have to apply for the accelerated joint program from the start.

Dont know much about the other programs. Columbia just introduced a 3 year program as well, I think.

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JG Hall
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby JG Hall » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:42 pm

Soilus wrote:and I plan on doing corp biglaw for at least a few years (5-7) before considering other careers

lol

Soilus
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Soilus » Fri Jan 21, 2011 7:56 pm

trudat15 wrote:
Soilus wrote:Also - what about UPenn? Not as highly ranked as these other law schools, but has the upside of the JD/MBA program with Wharton (this is also why I'm leaning heavily toward Columnia, UChicago, NYU, Northwestern, Michigan, Berkeley, etc - since B-schools typically care less about grades and WAY more about work experience, so I can get into a better B-school than LS, all things equal. So for instance, Northwestern's program is attractive to me because it is a top B-school but a much more forgiving LS - ditto on UPenn).


Have heard it is hard to backdoor into Wharton, much more so than Booth or maybe Stern (which I hear is easier to do). But I imagine you are in or WL-in at Penn.

Northwesterns you have to apply for the accelerated joint program from the start.

Dont know much about the other programs. Columbia just introduced a 3 year program as well, I think.


Yeah, I wasn't planning on back-dooring into Wharton. If anything, based on the fact that my firm is full of Wharton MBAs (therefore Wharton MBA recommendations), I'd be using Wharton to backdoor into UPenn Law. *sigh*... who would have guessed that slacking off during college would screw me over so badly? (answer: everyone)

Thanks for all of your advice Trudat. Do you have any advice on what I can do (besides keep studying for the LSAT) to bump my chances?

paulinaporizkova
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby paulinaporizkova » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:00 pm

I studied for the LSAT for 4 months ad nauseum and i scored 4 points higher on the actual test than i EVER scored on a PT (from mid-lower 160s to upper 160s) so don't say with such certainty that everyone scores lower on the actual test. in my case i thought a lot of it had to do with luck, so you might surprise yourself. plus, if you work well under super stressful conditions, i also think that helps a lot

Soilus
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby Soilus » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:04 pm

paulinaporizkova wrote:I studied for the LSAT for 4 months ad nauseum and i scored 4 points higher on the actual test than i EVER scored on a PT (from mid-lower 160s to upper 160s) so don't say with such certainty that everyone scores lower on the actual test. in my case i thought a lot of it had to do with luck, so you might surprise yourself. plus, if you work well under super stressful conditions, i also think that helps a lot


Thanks! So rare to hear optimism when asking for chances on the internet.

tommynobody
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Re: 3.35/175 Chances?

Postby tommynobody » Fri Jan 21, 2011 8:06 pm

Just curious... what makes you want to go back to law school? Seems to me you've got a pretty sweet gig with the consulting. Especially the "no debt" part.




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