Law School Discussion

Specific Groups => Canadian Law Students => Topic started by: piika on February 03, 2005, 05:25:11 PM

Title: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: piika on February 03, 2005, 05:25:11 PM
Is there anyone else around here who ran into major problems when their undergrad percentage grades in Canada got converted into a GPA according to LSDAS's scale?

I did my undergrad at Queen's University in electrical engineering. My cumulative average is in the high 70s, and I ranked about 20 out of 100. My transpcript only shows percentage grades, not letter ones. I'm thinking of applying to both U.S. and Canadian law schools. According to LSDAS's guidline, my percentage grade would convert only to a 2-point-something GPA, which is horribly low by U.S. standards. Queen's Applied Science Faculty absolutely refuses to convert my percentage grades to letter grades on my transcript.

What makes this even worse is that Queen's DOES issue letter grades for non-engineering students. So my GPA would look really bad on the LSDAS report compared to other Queen's applicants.

Has anyone else ran into a similar problem? Would anyone really care to read an addendum explaining this if my GPA is so low? I'm not exactly aiming for Harvard or Yale, but I won't even try applying to law schools if I can't get into a reasonable one.
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: Cheeks on February 04, 2005, 10:04:13 AM
I've talked to a lot of people who are applying to the US, and pretty much everyone had no problem with their GPA being converted.  That said, the best way to find out is send your transcripts to LSAC.
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: piika on February 05, 2005, 11:49:45 AM
Thanks for your reply! I understand that if my transcript shows both letter and percentage grades, then the GPA will be calculated using only the letter grades. But my transcript ONLY shows percentage grades. My faculty refuses to issue letter grades. So according to LSDAS's scale, I would only have something like a 2.5 GPA (my cumulative average is in the high 70s). Is there no way of getting around this?

Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: Cheeks on February 05, 2005, 03:46:05 PM
yes - but LSDAS knows canadian GPA's are different, and can't be converted using that scale.  As far as I know, you need not worry.
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: piika on February 06, 2005, 09:36:55 AM
That's a great relief to hear. I did call LSAC last week but the person who spoke to me didn't have a clue about the Canadian system and wouldn't let me explain anything. She said the U.S. conversion system is "fair" and must be followed. Thanks a lot for your information - sounds like I still have hope! I will send in my transcript and see.
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: J2K on June 24, 2007, 12:42:34 PM
Hey guys,

I'm applying to schools in the US starting September 2007, has anyone else had any experience with the LSDAS Canadian conversions?

Thanks!
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: MorningStar on June 24, 2007, 05:46:47 PM
I believe that in cases of percentage grades, each class grade is calculated into a letter grade and they are added up to form a cumulative GPA. 85%+ A, 80-84% A-, etc.  LSAC should have a chart somewhere that shows you how to convert each one of your grades and then you can put them into a GPA calculator and it should give you your overall GPA. 

The good news is you have a valid reason to write an addendum helping to explain your GPA. 

The bad news:
"but LSDAS knows canadian GPA's are different, and can't be converted using that scale.  As far as I know, you need not worry."

This is incorrect.  While SOME schools might understand, or be made to understand by your addendum, that your Canadian grades in this case have been calculated differently, they must none-the-less report your LSAC GPA for statistical purposes (U.S News rankings) which will make it difficult to be admitted to a top-tier school. 

I would contact LSAC and see if there is anyone there who can help you with the specifics of your case.  This isn't to say you're completely screwed.  A strong LSAT, softs and a good addendum can still give you a fighting chance.

Good luck   
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: rpk8785 on June 30, 2007, 04:29:52 PM
Buddy with high 70's from Queen's, you've got a B - it would be the same from any other faculty at the university.  Face it, those marks are not going to get you into a reasonable law school in the US unless you're a URM or have an incredibly sick LSAT.
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: J2K on October 15, 2007, 01:31:37 PM
Hi everyone,

This is just an update for anyone who is concerned about their GPA as their transcript goes off to be evaluated in the black-box process @ LSAC...

My University of Waterloo transcript was evaluated last week, and my GPA out of 4.0 ended up fairly close to what I predicted according to the Ontario standards.

This might be a different result from what your own school, but it may be of some comfort to know that we get marks out of 100 here, with no letter grades.

Good luck all, in the next few months!
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: ace0260 on March 03, 2008, 03:13:40 AM
Buddy with high 70's from Queen's, you've got a B - it would be the same from any other faculty at the university.  Face it, those marks are not going to get you into a reasonable law school in the US unless you're a URM or have an incredibly sick LSAT.

high 70s will convert roughly to a 3.3-3.5. This gives the OP a great shot at a number of schools. And I know that Queen's eng has the no letter-grade problem on the transcripts. I would assume they would just handle it the way they handle non-eng Queen's. Just send it in and dont worry about it.
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: JumpTheMoon on June 11, 2008, 05:17:37 PM
So they do adjust at LSAC once they get it in? Cause I have a 70 avg, which I thought to be about a 2.9-3.0 and with a high enough LSAT score I should be okay for middle-range schools, but then when I looked at LSDAS that's a 1.33 according to them  :D I am better off taking a job at McDonalds if that's what they send out to the schools.

It's so dumb that our grading system is so different. A 3.5 on the LSDAS scale is almost a 90% avg, I think that's pretty much impossible up here. Well at least at my school, I don't know ANYONE with those kinds of grades. A 79 avg is pretty respectable to me!
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: meggo on June 14, 2008, 08:27:56 AM
yeah high 70's will not convert to a 3.5. It will convert to whatever high 70's is according to LSAC scale. From what I understand, I'm pretty sure American law schools are familiar with the fact that grading systems are different here. They are also different in the UK for example, where getting a first (pretty much the equivalent of an A) is considered a 70 and above and getting above a 70 is for the most part, a really good mark. Our transcripts also go with the LSDAS application so I'm presuming (hoping!) american schools look at this as an indicator more than the GPA scale since it's really not relevant to us. I have an 84 average, and am in the top 10% of my department, and my gpa would convert to  a 3.0 so.....they better look at my transcript! :D
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: CTL on August 26, 2008, 11:38:28 AM
An average of 84% is almost an A-average (in Canada).  It would probably convert to a 3.8, NOT a 3.0.  They don't convert percentages to GPAs - they convert letter grades to GPAs. 

Here is how you can convert your grades to a LSAC GPA:

-covert your percentage grades into letter grades, then GPA grades
 
 63-66 = C  = 2.00
 67-69 = C+ = 2.33
 70-72 = B- = 2.67
 73-76 = B  = 3.00
 77-79 = B+ = 3.33
 80-84 = A- = 3.67
 85-89 = A  = 4.00
 90-100 = A+ = 4.33

-sum those numbers
-divide by the total number of classes you took
-the result is your LSAC GPA
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: meggo on August 26, 2008, 12:38:49 PM
yeah, that was my big question. All my UG classes at my degree granting institution are A grades, thus I have a 4.0 there, and my first year grades (from another school which were poorer) have brought my overall gpa down
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: IHeartNewYork on October 04, 2008, 02:30:53 PM
I was pretty worried when I sent my transcripts in since at my school, like many in Canada, an 80% is an A (which would be a 4.0) but for LSDAS an 80 is like a 2.7 I think haha...

However my transcript had both letter grades and percentages listed, and LSAC converted from the letters in that case (ex., for a class I got a 85/A in, LSAC counted it as a 4). I've got mostly 80's/A's and ended up with a 3.78, so it worked out fine.

Just thought I'd share in case anyone else is in a similar situation  ;D
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: meggo on October 04, 2008, 02:33:59 PM
ah glad it worked out so high for your I heart NY! I got my final summer transcript in and right now I'm sitting with a 3.63 LSAC GPA and a 4.00 UGPA so it's not too bad, and I think since I have 4 years in between, my UGPA will hopefully carry more weight
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: cdninoc on January 23, 2009, 06:57:42 AM
I'm Canadian and recently relocated to Orange County to work but now, I'm thinking about applying to law school here.  I converted my grades from Western and here is what I got:
OMSAS 3.78
LSDAS 2.72
According to comotellamas' scale, I would get 3.86!!!  How true are these numbers?  Please help!  I really hope it's going to be 3.86 GPA that will be counted.   :'( ???
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: CTL on January 23, 2009, 07:09:31 AM
I don't know what OMSAS is, but the LSDAS GPA is what counts. 

Which OC are you working in?  Cali?  NY? 

How do you like the States?
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: cdninoc on January 28, 2009, 02:21:33 AM
hey,
I live in sunny California of course.  LOL.  If I wanted the winter, I might as well stay put in Toronto.  Anyhow, where did you get that scale that you posted, comotellamas?  And yes, I love it here although always miss the friends and family back home. 
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: CTL on January 28, 2009, 06:50:54 AM
Go to LSAC.org and you'll find it.
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: cdninoc on January 28, 2009, 12:24:42 PM
the lsac.org only provides their standard scale...the one that everyone has been complaining about.  i could not find the scale you posted, is it really from lsac.org?
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: CTL on January 28, 2009, 12:26:43 PM
http://lsac.org/pdfs/2008-2009/InformationBook08web.pdf
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: Anonymousjeet on October 18, 2009, 03:26:00 PM
I was just wondering about the conversion method from a school like UofA which already offers letter grades into the LSDAS GPA. Like it shouldn't vary at all should it??
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: beakerboy on October 19, 2009, 01:04:46 AM
I really hope I get the same treatment as IheartNewYork.  I'm checking and there's a huge discrepancy in my gpa if it goes from the percentage scale vs the letter scale.  Like a 1.5 gpa swing. 

I wonder if the LSAC takes into account that my school includes the class average on the transcript and the average for my major was still under 3.0.

Here's hoping being old and having work experience is useful for something!
Title: Re: Canadian percentage grade to GPA conversion problem
Post by: !закон и право! on October 19, 2009, 07:09:39 AM
I really hope I get the same treatment as IheartNewYork.  I'm checking and there's a huge discrepancy in my gpa if it goes from the percentage scale vs the letter scale.  Like a 1.5 gpa swing. 

I wonder if the LSAC takes into account that my school includes the class average on the transcript and the average for my major was still under 3.0.

Here's hoping being old and having work experience is useful for something!

Hehe. The American and Canadian grade systems are wholly different. LSAC recognizes this and they will use the letter grade for Canadian marks.

I never really understood the American rationale for using marks 10% higher to represent full letters grades lower than the Canadian system.