3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

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sbdxaric

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3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby sbdxaric » Tue Dec 05, 2017 1:43 pm

Hey all,

I know this is my first post, but I promise to be an active member here at TLS! I just did not know where to start.

I really wish I found this community earlier. TLS is the main reason I even learned how to do grouping games the night before my December LSAT, but unfortunately I do not think I mastered them fast enough and kind of screw up the LG section, so I am expecting the worst. My September LSAT went poorly as well, as I got in a car accident driving to the test center and didn't finish the test, so I may consider yet another retake (please let me know if you think I should.)

I have a 3.08 GPA from BU, where I majored in Mathematics and Business Administration (focused in Finance). I also minored in Computer Engineering.
I have about 2 years full time work experience between consulting and in HFT/VC firm, where I am currently employed. I also just started working as a law clerk directly under the partner of a firm. He has given me all sorts of interesting, crazy, and (most importantly) intellectually challenging projects that have reaffirmed my desire to go to law school and forgo my previous materialistic, meaningless pursuits.

I am not going to try and make excuses for my GPA. I have never failed a class, but I do sometimes withdraw from classes I find uninteresting or refuse to attend altogether. Overall, I can confidently say that I know the material of every course I have completed very well, and have never come close to receiving so much as a B- on an exam. I think I did my job as a student, but some may disagree (looking at you law schools).

My personal statement is pretty good IMO, and my diversity statement should be super interesting as I've lived an unusual life.

Just wondering what my chances were in the T20, specifically if I blanketed them. I am hoping for T14, of course, but I am realistic.

PS. I wish you guys had an Introductions topic, or somewhere I could express my gratefulness for this sites existence. I wish I had found it before I hired an admissions consultant who has been less of a critic/resource and more of a yes-man type. She actually believes I have a shot at NWU, and I don't buy it, so I would like the opinion of TLS instead.

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downing

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby downing » Tue Dec 05, 2017 1:48 pm

The world of law is materialistic and probably just as vacuous as whatever other goals you were pursuing.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby SomewhatLearnedHand » Tue Dec 05, 2017 1:52 pm

If you got a 170 with those mistakes you really should sit this cycle out and retake until you max out your score. You have a good shot at T20 right now, but a couple points on your lsat may move you into T13 and gets you money at T20 level. Unfortunately with that gpa its unlikely you'll get significant money at T13, so the question becomes if its worth it to pay sticker there or take a scholly at a T20. That will ultimately depend on your career goals, but I believe a significant portion of people here would agree sticker at a T13 is still very risky/not necessarily worth it when compared to scholly at a T20.

The link below allows you to enter your stats and shows admission statistics of others with those same stats from past cycles.
http://mylsn.info/r/pre-law/admissions/search/

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby olympia » Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:06 pm

I’m in a similar situation as you, but with a 3.1 and no LSAT score yet. I’m hoping for a 172+. I have a very unique personal statement as well (one very few if any will write) and several years of work experience. I have an upward trend GPA-wise, and it bums me out that LSAC counts every class since my GPA would have been a 3.5 if LSAC would not have counted the D classes I retook and got A’s in. Sigh. It is what it is.

I’ll be interested to see how your admissions process goes. I’m shooting for Cornell since I want to work in NYC, if not, UCLA, USC, Georgetown, or Northwestern.

Good luck!

sbdxaric

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby sbdxaric » Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:11 pm

downing wrote:The world of law is materialistic and probably just as vacuous as whatever other goals you were pursuing.

If that is the case, than at the very least it is more applicable than the skills I gained in my previous pursuits. At the very least, vacuous > insidious.

SomewhatLearnedHand wrote:If you got a 170 with those mistakes you really should sit this cycle out and retake until you max out your score. You have a good shot at T20 right now, but a couple points on your lsat may move you into T13 and gets you money at T20 level. Unfortunately with that gpa its unlikely you'll get significant money at T13, so the question becomes if its worth it to pay sticker there or take a scholly at a T20. That will ultimately depend on your career goals, but I believe a significant portion of people here would agree sticker at a T13 is still very risky/not necessarily worth it when compared to scholly at a T20.

The link below allows you to enter your stats and shows admission statistics of others with those same stats from past cycles.
http://mylsn.info/r/pre-law/admissions/search/


Thank you for your assessment! This is exactly what I was looking for. Currently, the price-tag is not a huge concern for me, but it is always nice to save some money. Do you think I have any shot at T13 right now? I really value time atm and desperately need a change of pace, so I did not want to wait another year. Do you think a 173/174 would be good enough? I think I can accomplish that with the December test if I did not screw up LG too hard, but I certainly could do even better on a retake.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby sbdxaric » Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:14 pm

olympia wrote:I’m in a similar situation as you, but with a 3.1 and no LSAT score yet. I’m hoping for a 172+. I have a very unique personal statement as well (one very few if any will write) and several years of work experience. I have an upward trend GPA-wise, and it bums me out that LSAC counts every class since my GPA would have been a 3.5 if LSAC would not have counted the D classes I retook and got A’s in. Sigh. It is what it is.

I’ll be interested to see how your admissions process goes. I’m shooting for Cornell since I want to work in NYC, if not, UCLA, USC, Georgetown, or Northwestern.

Good luck!


Thank you! I have given up hope on NYC, but I think you could probably do it with your LSAT and work experience. I don't know how much they look at PS; I feel like they skim them at the most, but it sound slike that will be more than enough time for yours.

Good luck! Who knows, maybe even NYU or Columbia are in the cards.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby olympia » Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:30 pm

sbdxaric wrote:
olympia wrote:I’m in a similar situation as you, but with a 3.1 and no LSAT score yet. I’m hoping for a 172+. I have a very unique personal statement as well (one very few if any will write) and several years of work experience. I have an upward trend GPA-wise, and it bums me out that LSAC counts every class since my GPA would have been a 3.5 if LSAC would not have counted the D classes I retook and got A’s in. Sigh. It is what it is.

I’ll be interested to see how your admissions process goes. I’m shooting for Cornell since I want to work in NYC, if not, UCLA, USC, Georgetown, or Northwestern.

Good luck!


Thank you! I have given up hope on NYC, but I think you could probably do it with your LSAT and work experience. I don't know how much they look at PS; I feel like they skim them at the most, but it sound slike that will be more than enough time for yours.

Good luck! Who knows, maybe even NYU or Columbia are in the cards.


Thank you. I think both Columbia and NYU are impossible because of my GPA. I still have yet to take the LSAT. How long did you study for the LSAT? I've been studying for several months now, but it's difficult since I work full-time. I'll be taking the June test and most likely September, and then submitting my apps ASAP.

I think you have a chance at Cornell with at least a 172.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby SomewhatLearnedHand » Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:31 pm

sbdxaric wrote:
Thank you for your assessment! This is exactly what I was looking for. Currently, the price-tag is not a huge concern for me, but it is always nice to save some money. Do you think I have any shot at T13 right now? I really value time atm and desperately need a change of pace, so I did not want to wait another year. Do you think a 173/174 would be good enough? I think I can accomplish that with the December test if I did not screw up LG too hard, but I certainly could do even better on a retake.


Really I don't have too much more to add to the analysis other than what the mylsn numbers show. Even at a 174, the T13 doesn't look great with the exception of Northwestern, which by all means would be a fantastic outcome. Also, you really should care about the price tag as law school is an enormous investment and 200k is a shit load of debt (unless you are that wealthy- then good for you).

My opinion, and I think many others here would agree, is to take the time to study and crush the lsat, then apply day 1 next cycle. The year of law firm work will be viewed favorably as a soft on your application as well.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby wmbuff » Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:56 pm

olympia wrote:Thank you. I think both Columbia and NYU are impossible because of my GPA. I still have yet to take the LSAT. How long did you study for the LSAT? I've been studying for several months now, but it's difficult since I work full-time. I'll be taking the June test and most likely September, and then submitting my apps ASAP.

I think you have a chance at Cornell with at least a 172.


Have you checked mylsn.info yet? NYU looks more like "longshot" than "impossible" if you can get a 173+. At least some people with your GPA get in within that score range.
Last edited by wmbuff on Sun Jan 28, 2018 8:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

sbdxaric

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby sbdxaric » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:10 pm

SomewhatLearnedHand wrote:
sbdxaric wrote:
Thank you for your assessment! This is exactly what I was looking for. Currently, the price-tag is not a huge concern for me, but it is always nice to save some money. Do you think I have any shot at T13 right now? I really value time atm and desperately need a change of pace, so I did not want to wait another year. Do you think a 173/174 would be good enough? I think I can accomplish that with the December test if I did not screw up LG too hard, but I certainly could do even better on a retake.


Really I don't have too much more to add to the analysis other than what the mylsn numbers show. Even at a 174, the T13 doesn't look great with the exception of Northwestern, which by all means would be a fantastic outcome. Also, you really should care about the price tag as law school is an enormous investment and 200k is a shit load of debt (unless you are that wealthy- then good for you).

My opinion, and I think many others here would agree, is to take the time to study and crush the lsat, then apply day 1 next cycle. The year of law firm work will be viewed favorably as a soft on your application as well.


I really like your pragmatism. I guess you have a fair point, and to be honest I know I can boost this score much higher with real practice and two months. I can also apply this cycle and retake the LSAT, and make my decision thereafter. My only concern: Do law schools look unfavourably towards this practice?


wmbuff wrote:
Have you checked mylsn.info yet? NYU looks more like "longshot" than "impossible" if you can get a 173+. At least some people with your GPA get in within that score range.


That is super optimistic. I have looked at the numbers, and there isn't a huge sample size. I'd bet those applicants actually had extraordinary circumstances to explain their GPAs, while mine just come off as excuses. I also take historical data, specifically post-2008 cycles, with a grain of salt, as I think admissions has become more competitive each following year.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby SomewhatLearnedHand » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:22 pm

sbdxaric wrote:I really like your pragmatism. I guess you have a fair point, and to be honest I know I can boost this score much higher with real practice and two months. I can also apply this cycle and retake the LSAT, and make my decision thereafter. My only concern: Do law schools look unfavourably towards this practice?


Law school isn't going anywhere. I know you feel like you need rush into it and start asap- I felt the same way- but in hindsight, its far better to take the time to max out your lsat and get into a T13 if you can.

I believe you can do that, but schools won't consider your application ready for review without an lsat score, or in your situation, probably won't review your file until you receive your new score anyway (provided you let them know you want to update your score after submission). Furthermore, people who are marginal candidates at a school and submit early in the cycle tend to do better than people with identical stats who submit later, as there are less seats and scholarship money available later. It absolutely makes sense to max your lsat and apply next cycle.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby sbdxaric » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:26 pm

olympia wrote:
Thank you. I think both Columbia and NYU are impossible because of my GPA. I still have yet to take the LSAT. How long did you study for the LSAT? I've been studying for several months now, but it's difficult since I work full-time. I'll be taking the June test and most likely September, and then submitting my apps ASAP.

I think you have a chance at Cornell with at least a 172.


I myself took several practice tests to prepare for the LSAT the first time around and slowed down once I consistently started scoring 175+. However, quickly I learned that practice tests are not the best indicators for actual test day. I was working full-time myself, so if I could do it over, here's what I would have done:

-Read at a reasonably high level every day for 35-40 minutes at time. I consider myself a great reader and have no problem with RC sections, but definitely could improve my "stamina." Thinking about my poor car, the pressure to perform, the anxiety about previous sections; these are all things that caught up to me by the time I took the last section, which was RC. I did not finish, and it is solely because I was not prepared for test day.

-Actually take the time to learn the types of games and play them like they are puzzles. They will become almost fun. At first, you will actually get slower on the LG section and might even get more wrong, but that is because you are learning how to do them properly. After a bit more practice, LG should be a gimme section. Just take preparation seriously(I hate myself).

-As for logical reasoning, this all came down to my reading stamina as well. After a while, you will naturally narrow down the choices by eliminating the one or two "off-topic" choices to each question. But, if you really want the 180, you need to go a step further and just understand exactly what they are asking, and exactly how it should be answered. This is easy to do for the first 20 questions, but after 4 sections, can be difficult on test day.

That's all I got, and take practice tests on the weekends just to see your progress! Try to simulate the test time and environment tot he closest of your abilities. I was only getting 2-4 wrong on my LSAT practice tests leading up to December (mostly on Logic Games), but as you can see, it did not matter.


That's just my personal experience, please take it with a grain of salt. Good luck, I hope you kill it! Shoot me a message if you have any other questions.
Last edited by sbdxaric on Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:35 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby sbdxaric » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:31 pm

SomewhatLearnedHand wrote:
sbdxaric wrote:I really like your pragmatism. I guess you have a fair point, and to be honest I know I can boost this score much higher with real practice and two months. I can also apply this cycle and retake the LSAT, and make my decision thereafter. My only concern: Do law schools look unfavourably towards this practice?


Law school isn't going anywhere. I know you feel like you need rush into it and start asap- I felt the same way- but in hindsight, its far better to take the time to max out your lsat and get into a T13 if you can.

I believe you can do that, but schools won't consider your application ready for review without an lsat score, or in your situation, probably won't review your file until you receive your new score anyway (provided you let them know you want to update your score after submission). Furthermore, people who are marginal candidates at a school and submit early in the cycle tend to do better than people with identical stats who submit later, as there are less seats and scholarship money available later. It absolutely makes sense to max your lsat and apply next cycle.


Argh. Okay, thanks for your help. I will definitely retake and let my useless admissions consultant know. She did bring up the possibility of transferring at one point, and I guess I will look into that as well.
Last edited by sbdxaric on Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby barkschool » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:33 pm

What do you make at your current job?

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby chargers21 » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:44 pm

sbdxaric wrote:
SomewhatLearnedHand wrote:
sbdxaric wrote:I really like your pragmatism. I guess you have a fair point, and to be honest I know I can boost this score much higher with real practice and two months. I can also apply this cycle and retake the LSAT, and make my decision thereafter. My only concern: Do law schools look unfavourably towards this practice?


Law school isn't going anywhere. I know you feel like you need rush into it and start asap- I felt the same way- but in hindsight, its far better to take the time to max out your lsat and get into a T13 if you can.

I believe you can do that, but schools won't consider your application ready for review without an lsat score, or in your situation, probably won't review your file until you receive your new score anyway (provided you let them know you want to update your score after submission). Furthermore, people who are marginal candidates at a school and submit early in the cycle tend to do better than people with identical stats who submit later, as there are less seats and scholarship money available later. It absolutely makes sense to max your lsat and apply next cycle.


Argh. Okay, thanks for your help. I will definitely retake and let my useless admissions consultant know. She did bring up the possibility of transferring at one point, and I guess I will look into that as well.

Yikes, an admissions consultant shouldn't mention transferring as a real viable option

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby sbdxaric » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:45 pm

barkschool wrote:What do you make at your current job?


Are you asking to see if I need to check the financial aid box (I was wondering if this affected admissions chances considerably).

Uhh, well, as a law clerk I do not make much. I usually just invest my entire salary in risky assets or just buy clothes haha.

As a HFT trader/developer, I've made a good amount. I am working remotely now as a family emergency required me to move back home, and will probably quit soon so I can focus on law. However, I will be making commission even after I quit, so money isn't and won't be a problem now or in the forseeable future.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby wmbuff » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:46 pm

sbdxaric[quote="wmbuff wrote:
Have you checked mylsn.info yet? NYU looks more like "longshot" than "impossible" if you can get a 173+. At least some people with your GPA get in within that score range.


That is super optimistic. I have looked at the numbers, and there isn't a huge sample size. I'd bet those applicants actually had extraordinary circumstances to explain their GPAs, while mine just come off as excuses. I also take historical data, specifically post-2008 cycles, with a grain of salt, as I think admissions has become more competitive each following year.[/quote]

Yeah, it's optimistic, and given the low odds, you need to approach it with the understanding that you'll probably hit the waitlist or reject pile (and I only looked at the most recent few years on mylsn.info). But you don't know if you don't try, and the improvement in your outcome with one of these high-end acceptances can be tremendous (even if you go to a school further down the list and just use the top one for scholarship negotiation). Get the best LSAT score you can, put together the best applications and PS you can, and try to get fee waivers. I'm a fellow 0L super-splitter, with an even worse GPA, so I can't claim authority on this working, but applying broadly is the prevailing wisdom around here, and I find the reasoning behind it sound. You don't know what the admissions committee will be looking for/think is special, so you show them your best look and see if it works.
Last edited by wmbuff on Sun Jan 28, 2018 8:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby SomewhatLearnedHand » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:47 pm

sbdxaric wrote:
SomewhatLearnedHand wrote:
sbdxaric wrote:I really like your pragmatism. I guess you have a fair point, and to be honest I know I can boost this score much higher with real practice and two months. I can also apply this cycle and retake the LSAT, and make my decision thereafter. My only concern: Do law schools look unfavourably towards this practice?


Law school isn't going anywhere. I know you feel like you need rush into it and start asap- I felt the same way- but in hindsight, its far better to take the time to max out your lsat and get into a T13 if you can.

I believe you can do that, but schools won't consider your application ready for review without an lsat score, or in your situation, probably won't review your file until you receive your new score anyway (provided you let them know you want to update your score after submission). Furthermore, people who are marginal candidates at a school and submit early in the cycle tend to do better than people with identical stats who submit later, as there are less seats and scholarship money available later. It absolutely makes sense to max your lsat and apply next cycle.


Argh. Okay, thanks for your help. I will definitely retake and let my useless admissions consultant know. She did bring up the possibility of transferring at one point, and I guess I will look into that as well.


I'm not saying you have to bail on this cycle completely. Obviously wait it out and see how the chips fall. I'm just saying I think the right move for your best shot at T13 is to retake and reapply. With regards to a planned transfer, that is usually a bad move for a number of reasons. Generally speaking, you need to be at the top of your class to transfer, and there is no guarantee that will happen given the nature of the law school curve. For that reason, it is unwise to go to a school you wouldn't be happy graduating from. Not saying planned transfers are impossible, just very risky.

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Re: 3.08/170 (Took the December LSAT as well but unsure)

Postby sbdxaric » Tue Dec 05, 2017 3:54 pm

chargers21 wrote:
Yikes, an admissions consultant shouldn't mention transferring as a real viable option


Yeah, well, it was her initial strategy for me at first. I hired her because I was working ft and dealing with a lot at home and in the markets (thanks bitcoin!) and hoped I could get some guidance. Instead, I got almost no editing suggestions on my PS, no guidance for the DS, no answer for whether I should include an addendum etc. Worst of all, she has a cap on how many schools she will help me with; and the ones shes choosing are all T12 and out of my reach.

Sorry, just venting.

wmbuff wrote:but applying broadly is the prevailing wisdom around here, and I find the reasoning behind it sound. You don't know what the admissions committee will be looking for/think is special, so you show them your best look and see if it works.


You are right, and I will blanket the top 20 certainly. I just don't like hope I guess, thank you though



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