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Author Topic: LSAT...again?  (Read 1604 times)

Principled.

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LSAT...again?
« on: January 18, 2008, 01:50:41 PM »
I need some insight.

Here's my numbers story:

GPA: 3.1
Majors: Economics and Mathematics from a tier 1 private univ.
LSATS: 144, 146 (studied for 3 months for the latter score)
work:  policy research (full time, 2 years and counting...)
GRE: V-480 (55%), Q-650 (61%), A-3.5 (18%) (only putting this up there because I'm pursuing dual degree study: JD + MPP [masters of public policy]

So, from a numbers perspective, I'm not really qualified to attend most law schools. And a bottom-of-the-barrel (non ABA approved) law school simply won't do, (since only tier 1 and tier 2 schools have the JD/MPP program). So, I've applied to both the grad and law school programs, per school, and have (as you might expect) gotten rejections from most of the law schools (too soon to hear response on grad apps, considering I recently took GRE).

I've decided to take the LSAT for a third time. Scheduled for June 2008, only this time, I've planned to take a prep course (blueprint). This is not my preference but is my last shot at proving I'm worthy of a law school education.

My question is, do you think this is a good idea, to take it a third time? The odds that I'll get a higher score (however meager) are high, but even a REALLY high score will be averaged down toward my much lower scores. How do you think top law schools would view such a change?

Some things I've considered:
Because I have such low numbers, I won't qualify for any merit scholarships even if I did get into someone's law school in this round. But Would a higher June LSAT convince them to give me some money?

I could attend any law school in which I was admitted, have my June 2008 LSAT score (hopefully higher) on my report, and transfer in the next term. But isn't it a lot harder to get into top schools as a transfer? Would I really want to place myself back a year in my studies (since some credit don't follow you)?

If accepted, I could start the grad program and then apply for the law program (at the same school) in the next round with a higher LSAT score and grad school credentials. I think this option is what has propelled me to put this whole 3rd LSAT plan into motion.

Has anyone taken the LSATs three times? any insight?

All suggestions are certainly welcome.
"(s)he's arguing...(s)he's making an argument."

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RexRegnat

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Re: LSAT...again?
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2008, 02:01:32 PM »
I don't see anything wrong with taking the LSAT again, however, if you do decide to take it again I think your approach has to be much different than the first two times. You really need to consider a private tutor or someone who can diagnose area where you need the most help in improving your score. This might be an expensive route but this is your only choice if you truly have your heart set on attending law schoool. 

You're also going to have to consider when you do improve your score how are you going to explain away the lower scores. I think that you can come up with an acceptable explanation but you need to start working on that now.

I would go to grad school now just to get the GPA boost.

Basically, if you're heart is set on law school take the test again with proper outside instruction and see what happens. If you don't improve maybe you have to consider it just isnt' right for you right now.

Principled.

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Re: LSAT...again?
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2008, 02:24:57 PM »
Thanks a lot, Rex.

I agree on your point that I need to do everything I can to get a better score this time around, as it would be pretty indicative (if I couldn't do better) that perhaps law isn't the field I should study at all, given the circumstances.

Private tutoring would be very steep for me right now, but it is worth considering. My downfall on the test is reading comp. Overall, I could probably improve my score considerably if I could get to the last 5 questions of each section. I always run out of time.

Also.. I think any improvement I may see in my score could easily be explained given the personal statement I already have in place for this current round. fixing up my application will probably be the easiest part of this entire process.
"(s)he's arguing...(s)he's making an argument."

"...I'm so ready to promise my all & I'm so ready to give 'til the day that my life is no more... I'll be everything that this woman could possibly be...cause I'm ready to be like the olden days when commitment was golden" ~Chrisette Michele

UNAS

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Re: LSAT...again?
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2008, 02:33:53 PM »
I don't see anything wrong with taking the LSAT again, however, if you do decide to take it again I think your approach has to be much different than the first two times. You really need to consider a private tutor or someone who can diagnose area where you need the most help in improving your score. This might be an expensive route but this is your only choice if you truly have your heart set on attending law schoool. 

You're also going to have to consider when you do improve your score how are you going to explain away the lower scores. I think that you can come up with an acceptable explanation but you need to start working on that now.

I would go to grad school now just to get the GPA boost.

Basically, if you're heart is set on law school take the test again with proper outside instruction and see what happens. If you don't improve maybe you have to consider it just isnt' right for you right now.

I don't think an explanation is needed for a higher score. I mean its not like you can cheat. At least not that I know of anyway. Bottomline, get the higher score and worry about the rest later.

tweety63

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Re: LSAT...again?
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2008, 11:22:45 PM »
Alright chico this is strictly my opinion.  I personally am also taking the lsat for a third time in February.  I dont know why you dont just take it in February too and study like crazy these last two weeks.  If you do it will be better for you because a lot of law schools still take February regardless of what anyone says simply because they want a minority student and if you have good soft factors they might be inclined to wait especially if you tell them to by writing a cover letter.  There is also the option of CLEO which u can also use to get the schools to wait for the lsat score and not just rejecting you outright.  The point is for them to stall the decision as much as possible so that when the score does come they will see the improvement.  Brooklyn College actually sent me a letter entitled "Some Candid Advice" stating to take it again because most people on average improve two to three points and they would accept me and wait for my lsat score if I decided to do this.  Or simply just applying for CLEO which all you have to have is above a 2.7 gpa and a 140 lsat.  They have an excellent recruiting program and you can prove you are "worthy" of a law degree by doing well in the six week program and after the program the directors will try as hard as possible to find you a school and they are 90% successful.  My friend had a 145 got rejected into all of the law schools then went CLEO did great and got into St. Johns, crazy right.   
  If your taking it in June.....then I suggest you just wait an extra year and apply early for 2009 because it truly is not worth it financially or practically unless u are wait listed for the summer to some schools you actually want to go to.  Regardless hope I helped somewhat and I wish you the best of luck.

Principled.

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Re: LSAT...again?
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2008, 09:56:02 AM »
Thanks Tweety. I actually have already applied for CLEO Summer Institute. I'm waiting for their response. I should know something in the next few weeks.

But after seeing that their programs are wayyy on the west side of the country this summer, I'm not too sure how feasible the program would be for me. I live in NYC, with a full time job and rent, and on the off chance I do have to wait another round, even after getting into the program, I'd have a lot to try to fix, having been gone for 6 weeks.

If I get into grad school, I'm prepared to apply for the 2009 law program. This isn't a huge deal because for the dual degree program I am seeking, students can either start the grad portion the first year or the law program and still finish in 4 years. So I wouldn't be behind any, as long as I wasn't transfering from a school who didn't have any such program.

Within the next few weeks I hope to have a few more answers, padded by either an acceptance or rejection from several places, to facilitate my final decision on how helpful cleo would be. I also have to get accepted into that too...but Iknow that soon after that acceptance comes, I'd have to throw them some non-refundable money to hold my seat. And even that's something to consider.
"(s)he's arguing...(s)he's making an argument."

"...I'm so ready to promise my all & I'm so ready to give 'til the day that my life is no more... I'll be everything that this woman could possibly be...cause I'm ready to be like the olden days when commitment was golden" ~Chrisette Michele

Smokey

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Re: LSAT...again?
« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2008, 11:31:09 PM »
Alright chico this is strictly my opinion.  I personally am also taking the lsat for a third time in February.  I dont know why you dont just take it in February too and study like crazy these last two weeks.  If you do it will be better for you because a lot of law schools still take February regardless of what anyone says simply because they want a minority student and if you have good soft factors they might be inclined to wait especially if you tell them to by writing a cover letter.  There is also the option of CLEO which u can also use to get the schools to wait for the lsat score and not just rejecting you outright.  The point is for them to stall the decision as much as possible so that when the score does come they will see the improvement.  Brooklyn College actually sent me a letter entitled "Some Candid Advice" stating to take it again because most people on average improve two to three points and they would accept me and wait for my lsat score if I decided to do this.  Or simply just applying for CLEO which all you have to have is above a 2.7 gpa and a 140 lsat.  They have an excellent recruiting program and you can prove you are "worthy" of a law degree by doing well in the six week program and after the program the directors will try as hard as possible to find you a school and they are 90% successful.  My friend had a 145 got rejected into all of the law schools then went CLEO did great and got into St. Johns, crazy right.   
  If your taking it in June.....then I suggest you just wait an extra year and apply early for 2009 because it truly is not worth it financially or practically unless u are wait listed for the summer to some schools you actually want to go to.  Regardless hope I helped somewhat and I wish you the best of luck.


Red the bolded:  This is awful advice.  He already has two scores in the 140s.  There's no way in hell he should try to take the February test in a few weeks.  He needs months of intensive prep because he really needs a much better score otherwise all of this will be for naught.  He should definitely apply next cycle though. 

Principled.

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Re: LSAT...again?
« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2008, 10:08:07 AM »
not too worry...I wouldn't waste the money on the Feb test, even if I wanted to cram for 2 weeks (which I don't), because I need to give my best effort on the test, which I believe I can do with months of organized, rigorous preparation.


and by the way..I'm a girl :-)
"(s)he's arguing...(s)he's making an argument."

"...I'm so ready to promise my all & I'm so ready to give 'til the day that my life is no more... I'll be everything that this woman could possibly be...cause I'm ready to be like the olden days when commitment was golden" ~Chrisette Michele

aano285

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Re: LSAT...again?
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2008, 10:49:49 AM »
I do think that you should give it another shot. Regarding studying, a lot of people 'think' they're studying hard and love to convince themselves that they're studying hard. Really objectively reflect on your studying patterns to see what you could be doing more of. I literally lived in the library before the lsat, its not like studying for an exam, its really a muscle u have to develop.

anyway regarding applying with 3 scores, i think most places are taking the higher score now-a-days. and u can speak to your dedication to improvement as illustrated by a huge jump in the lsat.

good luck!!! u can do it!!!

tweety63

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Re: LSAT...again?
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2008, 10:50:13 PM »
well i studied for two weeks straight, six hours a day with a tutor, and got six points higher so it worked for me but everyone is different.  Sorry I said chico.