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Author Topic: good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?  (Read 1979 times)

wrhssaxensemble

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good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?
« on: June 06, 2008, 11:10:54 PM »
My school has a B-/C+ curve  for 1L that the teachers at least supposedly follow and the school's guideines at least assume they will follow them... any idea what a "good" GPA would be on that scale? I have looked at general class rankings idea and just trying to detertime where I would be on there.... the site I looked at seemed to say that I ranked into the top 20% or so

However, the numbers are based on GPAs at graduation and while it is a B-/C+ curve for 1L,for 2L, the curve is bumped up to a 3.0 and for 3L/4L the professors largely are given discretion as to how to grade. If given the discretion,do professors tend to grade more generously for 3Ls? Any idea what Top 15% would be (needed to walk onto one of the lesser journals)? Do GPAs tend to bump up a lot after the 2nd year? I know the curve moves up so there will be some adjustment but is 2L really easier than 1L? Tax etc. look harder but then again I did better second semester than first

big - fat - box

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Re: good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2008, 10:21:20 AM »
My guess is you look at the nalp law schools site, which is useless for determining your rank while in law school. As you know, those rank estimates are based on numbers at graduation, not ranks on the 1L curve.

MANY profs, thought not all, will give out more "good" grades when allowed to, even if the school has a harsh 1L curve. The reason for this is that it is easier to find students jobs when they have decent GPAs at graduation. Note that at most lower ranked schools (the same schools that curve harshly) the majority of graduates do not have jobs lined up at graduation - they find work after bar passage results come in. So, GPAs at graduation become very important. At the school I attending 1L year, we had a 2.5-2.8 grading curve. Yet, most of the graduating students (about 70% of them) ended up with GPAs at 3.0 or above.

In my opinion, 2L is not easier than 1L. It seems easier to some people because they've got the hang of things and have a game plan for studying, etc. Again, if you are at a lower ranked school your school probably has some "required" courses beyond 1L. You might want to check to see if some of these "required" courses are graded on a 1L - like curve. That's a pretty common occurrence. Also, chances are your school doesn't offer a lot of fluff seminar course where 50% of the class gets As ("Law and Medieval Literature", etc.) but instead, fills its course catalog with practitioner type courses. SOME of those courses will more difficult than anything you took as a 1L (i.e. Tax, Evidence, etc.)

For now, forget about your class rank. Your school will release the official ranks eventually. If you need it now for some reason, ask the registrar to give you an estimated class rank based on last years 1L ranks.

wrhssaxensemble

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Re: good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2008, 12:02:16 PM »
thanks

My guess is you look at the nalp law schools site, which is useless for determining your rank while in law school. As you know, those rank estimates are based on numbers at graduation, not ranks on the 1L curve.
yeah, that is where I was looking... I know they are for graduation but part of my issue was whether 3Ls are graded on a much more favorable curve. It seems to go from B-/C+ in 1L to B/B- for 2L courses and then the professors have discretion for 3L.. I guess my question is whether the professors are largely generous or largely stingy in giving out good grades as 3Ls. If it is the first, then does that mean my gpa now on the 1L curve is higher ranked than it would seem based on those numbers since the 2L and 3L grades are usually higher, or if they (2L and 3L grades) are somehow lower whether the 1L grades don't fit well in comparison

For now, forget about your class rank. Your school will release the official ranks eventually. If you need it now for some reason, ask the registrar to give you an estimated class rank based on last years 1L ranks.

Yeah I guess that is all I can do for now.... waiting is just so aggrevating... anyways, thanks again

wrhssaxensemble

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Re: good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2008, 11:16:50 AM »
I just got back an email from the registrar and she said that it is generally around top 25% of the part-time 1Ls. But I am full time... would that make much of a difference? I know some PT students who work FT and do it PT but there are also those who either didn't get into the FT program or dont want to deal with the additional stress so they do it PT. I figure the people working FT would generally have a lower GPA while those who do it for other reasons, particularly those who just didnt want to do FT would have higher ones since generally less stress. So would that mean in comparison a ranking among part time would be higher among full time?

I could email her back but she seems pretty busy. The part time and full time students are ranked together so why would she signify part time?

Also, why rank PT and FT together? doesn't that mean that one PT student who took say 20 credits but put off the hardest classes until next year will at least temporarily have a higher rank (assuming the harder classes would hurt their GPA like it would most) than a FT who took 30 including the harder classes? Or do they go by Grade Points rather than GPA? If it is the latter though, doesn't that put the PT at a huge disadvantage because it effectively ranks them at the bottom of the class regardless of their GPA only because they took less classes than everyone else?

Also, do you have any prospects at all for being about top 25% at at school at the top of Tier 3? (108 on USNWR, up from 116 last year and 125 the year before)

sami

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Re: good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?
« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2008, 12:45:38 PM »
Sure you'll have prospects, but just keep your expectations realistic so you don't get surprised and upset. You should be able to get work as an associate as some small firm, but the pay will probably be around 60k, just like jobs you get right out of undergrad.

Six figure jobs are probably out of the question for now. When even students from the top 30 schools are having trouble finding work, things are looking pretty bleak for everyone else as well.

wrhssaxensemble

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Re: good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?
« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2008, 01:18:35 PM »
Sure you'll have prospects, but just keep your expectations realistic so you don't get surprised and upset. You should be able to get work as an associate as some small firm, but the pay will probably be around 60k, just like jobs you get right out of undergrad.

Six figure jobs are probably out of the question for now. When even students from the top 30 schools are having trouble finding work, things are looking pretty bleak for everyone else as well.

So then what exactly is the point of the next 2-3 years (including the year  for my MBA) and this past year then if i am going to make the same as I did if I didnt go to law school but am now $100,000 in debt? I mean I love reading the law stuff but I could just buy a few casebooks or something if I really wanted to.... or is the economy really that bad now? I know the gas prices are out of control which in turn increases food prices etc. which rely on transportation but I didn't know it had such an impact on law jobs

I actually dont know much about pay for attorneys... it seems to vary so much... does going to a lower ranked school ever pay off or is it just in bad shape now because of the state of the economy?

PSUDSL08

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Re: good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?
« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2008, 01:41:07 PM »

So then what exactly is the point of the next 2-3 years (including the year  for my MBA) and this past year then if i am going to make the same as I did if I didnt go to law school but am now $100,000 in debt?

To do something you love to do as opposed to just making a lot of money and waking up every day wanting to hang yourself with your tie.

At my T2, the career services lady told me that she's amazed at how many people walk into her office and say something like "I wont accept any job that pays less than $80K per year." Far too many people head into lawschool with a feeling that they're "entitled" to make 6 figures quickly just because they're going to become a lawyer. 

wrhssaxensemble

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Re: good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2008, 02:16:37 PM »

So then what exactly is the point of the next 2-3 years (including the year  for my MBA) and this past year then if i am going to make the same as I did if I didnt go to law school but am now $100,000 in debt?

To do something you love to do as opposed to just making a lot of money and waking up every day wanting to hang yourself with your tie.

At my T2, the career services lady told me that she's amazed at how many people walk into her office and say something like "I wont accept any job that pays less than $80K per year." Far too many people head into lawschool with a feeling that they're "entitled" to make 6 figures quickly just because they're going to become a lawyer. 

I am not doing it for the money but my point is that I am worried about the debt. I am at an internship right now and I absolutely hate it. Granted I have no desire to do this kind of law but if I get stuck with a job like this one, am $100,000 in debt and still making the same as I would have with only a BA, it seems pretty pointless to me. I guess my problem is the debt and the part of finding a job you would love because the ones I have been shown for lower tiered law school graduates seem to suck pretty bad. And like I said, if it is just to learn the law because I am interested in it then I could concievably just buy a bunch of case books and teach myself.

sami

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Re: good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?
« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2008, 02:29:22 PM »
Please, what else are people going to law school for? Except for the odd ones out, very few people are going to find law to be something they "love". Nothing glamorous about sitting at a desk pushing papers. Nothing intellectually stimulating about defending a DUI in court. Unless you're doing a high profile case, it simply isn't exciting. People are in the career of law for the money. We're here to work and provide for ourselves, not have fun. Guaranteed 90% of people hate their jobs regardless of what they're doing, might as well make some cash in the meanwhile.


So then what exactly is the point of the next 2-3 years (including the year  for my MBA) and this past year then if i am going to make the same as I did if I didnt go to law school but am now $100,000 in debt?

To do something you love to do as opposed to just making a lot of money and waking up every day wanting to hang yourself with your tie.

At my T2, the career services lady told me that she's amazed at how many people walk into her office and say something like "I wont accept any job that pays less than $80K per year." Far too many people head into lawschool with a feeling that they're "entitled" to make 6 figures quickly just because they're going to become a lawyer. 

wrhssaxensemble

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Re: good GPA on a 2.45ish curve?
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2008, 03:06:07 PM »
Please, what else are people going to law school for? Except for the odd ones out, very few people are going to find law to be something they "love". Nothing glamorous about sitting at a desk pushing papers. Nothing intellectually stimulating about defending a DUI in court. Unless you're doing a high profile case, it simply isn't exciting. People are in the career of law for the money. We're here to work and provide for ourselves, not have fun. Guaranteed 90% of people hate their jobs regardless of what they're doing, might as well make some cash in the meanwhile.

My comments the last 2 posts or so have been more general "you" or "I" as representative of law students in general. If you are right that it is just to make the money, then why do it? If you read the post above, you only make the same amount as you would have made if you went to work right after getting your BA.... what is the motivation then for putting a ton of money in the hole to get the JD? Given the salary quoted, it would mean that the benefits with or without a JD are the same even though the costs of getting the JD are of course much higher than not. It would seem inefficient and illogical to get a JD then.... is it potential for future growth then? Is it just this way because of the terrible nature of the current economy?