3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

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emmybee
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3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby emmybee » Wed Jul 03, 2013 7:16 pm

Hey guys,

3.78 / 168
strong softs

I know myLSN.info and Law School Predictor can give me a decent idea of my chances, but I would like TLS expertise in this matter (especially considering medians are going down at most schools and the general decline in apps).

I am pretty convinced Duke is my first choice but do I have to ED in order to have a strong shot at getting in?
I would prefer not to ED so I can have a normal admissions cycle and see where the cards fall (ie, if I have a microscopic shot at Berkeley or UVA) and so I can compare financial aid offers and negotiate.

While we are at it, do I have a strong shot at everything outside the T14?

Other info:
UG is top public
I may be able to bump my GPA to a 3.81
I have two LSAT scores 164 --> 168 (does this hurt me at all? or do deans not actually average?)

I suspect the resounding advice will be to retake but I want to submit my apps the first week in September. I haven't completely ruled out a retake in October but please give me substantive advice based on my current stats not just a choir of "retake" "retake".

Thanks in advance! :D

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sinfiery
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby sinfiery » Wed Jul 03, 2013 7:28 pm

They may have their median drop to 169 but definitely not 168. With your GPA and a.strong Why Duke?, you have a solid 50/50 chance of getting in RD.

Honestly, retake the LSAT and try to break a 170. You've done the legwork, a third retake should not take near as long of a commitment whilst the rewards could be huge.

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soj
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby soj » Wed Jul 03, 2013 9:10 pm

Under lsat median and barely above GPA median? I'm more pessimistic than sinfiery. You could very realistically be shut out of t14 even if apps continue to decline. people with better stats than you have been shut out.

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WokeUpInACar
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby WokeUpInACar » Wed Jul 03, 2013 9:14 pm

The value of one single additional LSAT point would be FAR greater than the value of applying in September vs. November.

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Clearly
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby Clearly » Wed Jul 03, 2013 9:22 pm

these are always fun, what are your good softs?

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whosonfirst
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby whosonfirst » Wed Jul 03, 2013 9:34 pm

I agree with SinFiery that you have at least a 50/50 chance. Applying in Sept. definitely increases it. I think you have time to take the Oct. LSAT and get your score back before Duke gives you a decision as this year, lots of people applied early but were left waiting for a long time anyway. So do both. Apply with your current numbers in Sept (with a detailed Why Duke). Let them know you're taking the Oct. LSAT. Crush the Oct. LSAT. Update Duke and get that acceptance. If you're accepted before then, great. I doubt you'd be outright rejected though, at the most put on a waitlist. And again if you score higher in Oct, update them and you're in.

It is true though that one more point and you're in with money. And to answer your question, schools don't average LSAT scores, they only take the highest. Retaking and scoring higher puts UVA in play for sure. Not sure about Berk and their holistic process.

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emmybee
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby emmybee » Wed Jul 03, 2013 11:15 pm

Thanks for the input everyone!

Just to better inform this discussion (from the ABA fact sheet):
Duke's 25th -50th - 75th
166 - 169 - 171
5.58 - 3.76 - 3.85

Looking at Law School Numbers and reading threads on TLS seems to support the fact that applying very early (first week in September) can help one's chances. A few questions:
Do others agree with WokeUpInACar about 1 point higher on the LSAT being FAR more valuable than 2 months earlier app submission?
Or can I have the best of both worlds and apply to schools in early September without telling them to wait for an October score and then retake and update when the new score comes (assuming I haven't had a decision from them yet)? Basically, I don't want to lose the two month earlier advantage (which seems tangible at several schools) because schools hold my file until early November.

As for retaking, I was PTing in the low 170s (highest ever was 173), and left the June test expecting a 169 from my estimates of how many questions I got wrong and a -10 curve (the curve ended up being even more generous). LG isn't a problem for me (almost always go -0), however nerves on test day and RC seem to consistently make me score about 4 points lower than my PTs. Because of this, I'm at a loss as to how to improve my chances on a October retake, which could potentially waste 2 months of applying early.

The bottom line with retaking is: what if I do worse? (which could be a real possibility for me).

Despite your slightly antagonistic tone Clearlynotstefan I'll humor you:
My softs are student body president and a senator for a year prior, 5+ years of volunteer work and 2 years of WE in relevant field.

Thank you Whosinfirst and others for your detailed responses.
Keep the input coming! It's all very helpful. I'm considering a retake more strongly than before :shock:

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Clearly
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby Clearly » Thu Jul 04, 2013 1:31 am

You could fairly safely do just that, apply early and update with score because it's unlikely they will have made a decision, however I don't see a benefit..i believe schools are updated when you register, and I know they are updated when scores are released. They will hold a decision and base it on your updated score, so submitting early isn't really a boost anymore, or they will render a final decision before scores come out, and retaking won't be a boost anymore, so it's not like it's the best of both worlds either way.

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sinfiery
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby sinfiery » Thu Jul 04, 2013 6:41 am

One point on your LSAT is infinitely more important than applying 2 months early. 5 months even.


For Duke, I don't think applying 2 months earlier will have any effect even. I know they are processing only those that apply through their fast track process (usually above both medians) first and will likely not read your file at all before rendering those decisions.


You have so little to lose applying in Nov instead of Sept and so much to gain.

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emmybee
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby emmybee » Fri Jul 05, 2013 3:54 am

Thank you for the advice Clearlynotstefan and sinfiery! I am strongly leaning towards a retake in October and applying as soon as the score is released.

Can anyone weigh-in on the nightmare scenario of having your third LSAT score drop below your highest? That possibility is the only deterrent I can see from retaking. I would assume that looks pretty bad to adcoms. Thanks!

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WokeUpInACar
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby WokeUpInACar » Fri Jul 05, 2013 5:26 pm

emmybee wrote:Thank you for the advice Clearlynotstefan and sinfiery! I am strongly leaning towards a retake in October and applying as soon as the score is released.

Can anyone weigh-in on the nightmare scenario of having your third LSAT score drop below your highest? That possibility is the only deterrent I can see from retaking. I would assume that looks pretty bad to adcoms. Thanks!

The data shows that schools outside of HYS do not care at all about anything but your highest LSAT score. The only thing you have to lose is time and 160 bucks. Every LSAT point you're able to improve by up to 174 would be worth tens of thousands in the long run. I cannot emphasize enough how clear your decision to retake October should be.

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JamMasterJ
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby JamMasterJ » Fri Jul 05, 2013 5:31 pm

no one cares about a drop in LSAT score except for schools that you're not getting into given your current stats

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emmybee
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby emmybee » Sat Jul 06, 2013 12:27 pm

Thanks WokeUpInACar and JamMaster J for the input!
I am planning on an October retake now and sending apps in as soon as I receive my score. Another win for TLS convincing someone to retake :lol:

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twenty
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby twenty » Sat Jul 06, 2013 12:42 pm

What's stopping you from EDing to Duke and retaking regardless?

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emmybee
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby emmybee » Sat Jul 06, 2013 1:37 pm

Twentypercentmore, I don't want to ED anywhere until after I get the October score. On the (admittedly very slim) chance that my score jumps 5+ points I wouldn't want to already be committed to a school. If my score improves by 1 or 2 points, which is the realistic aim, then I can chose if I still want to ED or let the admissions cycle play out and negotiate scholarships, etc. The more I think about it, it doesn't make sense to ED anywhere when one is waiting on a final score. Your thoughts?

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sinfiery
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby sinfiery » Sat Jul 06, 2013 2:01 pm

Definitely don't ED til you get your score back. Applying in Nov is early and locking yourself into sticker debt blindly should be avoided if possible. Which, here, it can depending on your new score.

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twenty
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Re: 3.78 / 168 -ED to Duke?

Postby twenty » Sat Jul 06, 2013 4:10 pm

Ah, so to be more clear, when you say Duke is your top choice, that doesn't mean you wouldn't consider a different school with a large scholarship.

I got the vibe that you had an SO in Durham or something -- my mistake. Yeah, don't ED.




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