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Author Topic: Any MFAs out there?  (Read 6338 times)

papercranes

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Re: Any MFAs out there?
« Reply #10 on: January 14, 2009, 11:14:06 PM »
Put your evidence up

http://chicago.lawschoolnumbers.com/stats/0708/?whichCycle=0809

You've really been giving horrible advice.  For the sake of people who don't know better, please stop.

I have not...and like I said, it's the job of the respondent to put up. Since you said my advice is horrible, prove it and I will give my proof. I have not been talking out of my azz. I have books and page numbers with quotes. I have beaten so many people in online debates because they have no evidence. And not from one school...that won't work because mine comes from a consensus.

Go! Where's your evidence. If you give up? I'll cite mine.

It is axiomatic that the primary concern of admissions committees is maintaining or improving their schools' positions in the USNWR rankings.  The primary determinants of rankings are LSAT and UGPA.  Graduate GPAs do not figure into the rankings at all.  I am sure that graduate GPA can be a good tiebreaking factor between two people with similar scores and UGPAs, but it is not generally something that law schools weigh heavily.  Another reason they don't weigh graduate GPA heavily is that most fine arts and liberal arts graduate programs give students As for any proficient work.  (I of course don't know anything about the OP's grad program in particular.)

anecdotal concurring point:

I have MFA grad work.
last year some people with my numbers (median) were wait listed at my school. some were admitted. I'm assuming the grad stuff helped make me a median admit instead of wait list but nothing more. my numbers certainly weren't below the 25% percentile.
university of southern california 2011

LawDog3

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Re: Any MFAs out there?
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2009, 02:11:33 AM »
Put your evidence up

http://chicago.lawschoolnumbers.com/stats/0708/?whichCycle=0809

You've really been giving horrible advice.  For the sake of people who don't know better, please stop.

I have not...and like I said, it's the job of the respondent to put up. Since you said my advice is horrible, prove it and I will give my proof. I have not been talking out of my azz. I have books and page numbers with quotes. I have beaten so many people in online debates because they have no evidence. And not from one school...that won't work because mine comes from a consensus.

Go! Where's your evidence. If you give up? I'll cite mine.

It is axiomatic that the primary concern of admissions committees is maintaining or improving their schools' positions in the USNWR rankings.  The primary determinants of rankings are LSAT and UGPA.  Graduate GPAs do not figure into the rankings at all.  I am sure that graduate GPA can be a good tiebreaking factor between two people with similar scores and UGPAs, but it is not generally something that law schools weigh heavily.  Another reason they don't weigh graduate GPA heavily is that most fine arts and liberal arts graduate programs give students As for any proficient work.  (I of course don't know anything about the OP's grad program in particular.)

anecdotal concurring point:

I have MFA grad work.
last year some people with my numbers (median) were wait listed at my school. some were admitted. I'm assuming the grad stuff helped make me a median admit instead of wait list but nothing more. my numbers certainly weren't below the 25% percentile.

If I am giving horrible advice, the deans at the top law schools are giving horrible advice, because that is where I get my info...in addition to working for three years in admissions.

First, everyone here agrees that Graduate school grades do not factor into the GPA's and are not calculated for admissions purposes. And you should concede that I never said they did. I will address the grad school issue in much more detail later, but I have so much evidence from the deans' mouths that say, for the most part, that it can and often does make a difference. Alternative majors can also be a significant plus. In fact, Andy Cornblatt from Georgetown says that, not only does Georgetown not care about major, the school doesn't sweat the courses either!


Good observation on the maintenance of the stats for the rankings. Now, let's delve into that a little further, shall we?

Let's take a look at some possible scenarios based on real numbers...begining with the (schools' 25%-75%) LSAT:

Berkeley 163-169
UCLA 162-169
Chicago 169-172
Columbia 169-174
Cornell 166-168
Duke 165-169
Georgetown 167-171
Harvard 169-175
Michigan 166-170
Northwestern 166-172
NYU 168-172
Penn 167-171
Stanford 167-172
UVA 167-171
Yale 170-176

(Page 163, How to Get Into the Top Law Schools, Richard Montauk (4th ed.)

http://www.amazon.com/How-Get-Into-Top-Schools/dp/B001DISRAS


What do these stats mean? Well...for one, it means that 50% of the accepted applicants had LSAT scores between the 25th and 75th percentiles, while 25% fell below (sometimes far below those numbers) and 25% fall above the middle range. And that is ALL it means. Law candidates often fail to understand the full meaning of this concept. You should also concede that the same dynamic exists with GPA's. 1/2 of all accepted students will fall within the range and 1/2 will not, with 25% above that range and 25% below that range. 

To begin with, I know of many candidates (of all ethnicities) whose LSAT's fell well-below the 25% mark at these schools.

Think about it. Let's pick a school like, say...Penn, with the following 25%-75% ranges

3.46-3.88; 167-171

http://www.law.upenn.edu/prospective/jd/classstatistics.html

We must concede that 25% of the accepted students had GPA's below 3/46 and 25% had GPA's above 3.88...correct?

Let's say the medians, above which a total of 50% of students fall and 50% of students fall below are 3.65 and 169, just for arguments sake. In fact, these are probably very close to the actual medians; they are often somewhere close to the midpoint between 25% and 75%, but not always.

So we have Penn with the following:

3.46-3.88; 167-171 with medians at 3.65/169

First question. Does this mean that the AVERAGE student at Penn has the median numbers? NO!

What it means is somewhat opposite. 1/2 of all students will likely have a high GPA or a high LSAT score, but not both. If you understand statistics, you know this leaves a gaping hole of opportunity for outliers.

What is the range of GPA possibilities for those below 3.46 (1%-25%)? 2.2 - 3.45 (the floor will probably be more realistically 2.6 and above for 99% of those with GPA's in that range).

What is the range of possible 1%-25% LSAT's? Let's say, realistically 155-167.

Here's a scenario:

5828 applicants for a class of 250, with 932 (16%) offered admission...

233 fall below 25% in each category (but not necessarily "both"), 233 fall above 75% in each (but not necessarily "both"), while 466 (or 50%) fall between 25%-75% in each.


Question #2. How many people must have both High GPA's and High LSAT's? Answer? Only 1/2...466

The rest need one or the other. Meaning that Penn can admit 233 people with, say 2.8-3.4/172-180 and the medians would stay intact. The Penn adcom could also admit 233 people with 3.88-4.0/155-160, and the medians would stay intact. The adcom could even admit 116 students with 2.8-3.2/176-180 and 116 with 3.9-4.0/155-160 (233 total students total between those to metrics), and the medians would stay intact.

That's at least 233 admitted students with at least one metric far below the medians. That's a significant number.

And if you admit another 116 with 3.35-3.46/172-173 and another 116 admited students with 3.21-3.34/174-175, everything is still intact.

466 down, 466 to go.

With these numbers, the school could theoretically still admit 466 students whose GPA's both fall between the 25%-75% ranges in both numbers with about 116 looking like this: 3.46-3.55, with the upper-end GPA of 3.55 being at 37.5% (so the GPA range is 25%-37.5%). The congruent LSAT's for that group could be between 62.5% and 75%, for a range of 170-171. Another 116 could be 37.6%-50% GPA range of 3.55-3.65 (3.65 is our median, remember) and the LSAT range for that group could be something like 169-170, for a range of 50%-67.5%.

699 down, 233 to go:   

We could further assume what actually does happen in real admissions, 1/4 of the class, or 233 students all fall really close to the medians in both categories.

Thenote that "averages" are not reported. At Yale, the average would be much closer to the median, but at schools like Duke, where the 25%-75% ranges are wider, the averages would be somewhat lower than the medians.

This scenario explains how a significant number of students who don't meet the traditional numbers in both categories, and a select few extreme outliers (1-10%GPA, 1-10% LSAT and 99.9% GPA, 99.9% LSAT) and still have its numbers intact.

The point? When a school reports the medians listed above, it DOES NOT MEAN that MOST of the students have numbers near the median in both categories; it means just the opposite...most do not, and a significant number of them have higher GPA's and lower LSAT's or vice versa.

This is why I am more optomistic than most people. I know how the stuff works. It's mostly crunching numbers, but not the way you may think.

I'd like you to view a quote from page 101 of How to Get Into Law School, Susan Estrich. She speaks to this issue.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/1594480354/ref=sib_dp_pop_fc?ie=UTF8&p=S001#reader-link


Page 10 of Law Essays that Made a Difference, by Eric Owens, explains that 160 or above is an "elite" LSAT score. The averages have gone up, so now 50% of test-takers score between 147 and 162 now, whereas it used to be 145-159. But some people act as though a 165 score is something to sneeze at...IT ISN'T. Neither is a 163. Anmd that's for any applicant, regardless of background.

As far as graduate school and its effect(s) on admissions and alternative majors, Owens speaks to this issue (with the help of several top deans (on pages 56-58). Most of the deans are affirmative on the positive effects a masters degree can provide, particularly for applicants with lower undergrad numbers.

In general, one's major is not as important as one's course selection. They also take great pains to advise applicants that additional academic work of any kind, so long as it is rigorous, can be helpful, and even compensate entirely for a bad undergrad record.

Read pp 156-160 in Montauk for discussions on "majors" and what deans look for. Pages 203-206 discuss specific marketing considerations for different backgrounds.

According to page 163 of Montauk, minority candidates get anywhere from a 5-10pt positive adjustment on LSAT scores at top schools. Page 218 offers some explanations for this. 

My home city is relatively huge, and I interned in undergraduate admissions, and at our Center for Career Services, so I know a bit more than you may think.

There's a little bit. We can go much deeper if you still want to debate the issues.







   

papercranes

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Re: Any MFAs out there?
« Reply #12 on: January 15, 2009, 12:39:37 PM »

no offense to any MFA holders (least of all cranes), but the fact that you think that MFA's are considered rigorous academic work shows exactly how much you know.


no offense taken, tm. I was only pointing out that I absolutely agree with you. MFAs mean nothing in law school. It's not a type of work that LS admissions will care about above and beyond your UGPA and LSAT. I do think it's possible, like Miss P said, that it will be used as a tie breaker when two applicants have numbers that, on their own, would have been sufficient for admission, one candidate has no graduate work and the other does, and there is only space for one, but that's just speculative at best.
university of southern california 2011

LawDog3

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Re: Any MFAs out there?
« Reply #13 on: January 15, 2009, 01:34:03 PM »
this was mildly entertaining first thing in the morning.

Alternative majors can also be a significant plus. In fact, Andy Cornblatt from Georgetown says that, not only does Georgetown not care about major, the school doesn't sweat the courses either!

read over this carefully.  first you say that majors matter.  then you cite someone who says that GULC does not care about major or courses.

and thanks for your stats for beginners rundown, but you're not telling us anything that we don't already know.  also, with regard to this:

The point? When a school reports the medians listed above, it DOES NOT MEAN that MOST of the students have numbers near the median in both categories; it means just the opposite...most do not, and a significant number of them have higher GPA's and lower LSAT's or vice versa.

it means nothing of the sort.  using your own numbers, 3.46-3.88 and 167-171, it is perfectly plausible that the bottom 25% of admitted gpas at penn range from 3.44-3.45 and that the bottom 25% of admitted lsats are all 166's.  there is no reason to conclude from this data how far down the the 0-25% gpas and lsats go.

Page 10 of Law Essays that Made a Difference, by Eric Owens, explains that 160 or above is an "elite" LSAT score.

this is nonsense.  if eric owens says this, he is spewing nonsense.  160 is not an elite LSAT score.  maybe if you define "elite" very loosely, you could get away with it, but probably not even then.  a 160 will barely get you into a tier 1 school.  tier 1 is not "elite".

As far as graduate school and its effect(s) on admissions and alternative majors, Owens speaks to this issue (with the help of several top deans (on pages 56-58). Most of the deans are affirmative on the positive effects a masters degree can provide, particularly for applicants with lower undergrad numbers.

by claiming that a 160 is an elite score, owens has already demonstrated himself to be full of crap, so i don't really count his word for much here.

In general, one's major is not as important as one's course selection. They also take great pains to advise applicants that additional academic work of any kind, so long as it is rigorous, can be helpful, and even compensate entirely for a bad undergrad record.

no offense to any MFA holders (least of all cranes), but the fact that you think that MFA's are considered rigorous academic work shows exactly how much you know.

If I am giving horrible advice, the deans at the top law schools are giving horrible advice, because that is where I get my info...in addition to working for three years in admissions.

...

My home city is relatively huge, and I interned in undergraduate admissions, and at our Center for Career Services, so I know a bit more than you may think.

you think you know something.  that's the problem.  you have that idea so affixed in your head that you can't accept the possibility that you are actually completely wrong.

please tell me that your three years in admissions were spent interning in undergraduate admissions, because that would seriously make my day.  so, were they?

You know what? The proof is in the doing. I have helped so many people get into law school. And I have gotten into law school myself. People pay me for help on personal statements, I actually make quite a bit of money doing it. I really don't need your affirmation, as I already know I have it from others. You Barneys are arguing with me because you saw who I was before I changed my Avitar. I pulled a little experiment, just to see what would happen. Nobody called me on anything I said until they saw my picture...then I changed it to a dog after I started getting flack.

Typical weak-asses who cannot admit when YOU are wrong. I gave you a numbers sceniario that tells you your wrong statistically because you guys all act like every student at Penn needs to have a 3.8 GPA and a 170 LSAT. And you get online telling people without such stats that they have no shot, it's absolutely ridicculous. Every year, so many students are shocked when their one dream application actually comes through. My friend got into Penn with a 3.8/158. Another guy I know got into Duke with a 2.9/170 (I think it was 2.9).

Now you want to argue with me about MFA's. Every rule has exceptions...every rule. And even if I were to concede that a performance MFA was generally not that helpful (which I am not necessarily doing here), there are still two points of contention: One, we spoke of masters degrees in general to begin with, and two, you have no idea what actual coursework was undertaken. You see buddyboys (and ladies), one can have a generally weak major, but attend a really good school and take difficult courses outside of one's major. Which would disguise the course load. So looking at one's major and GPA and saying, "You have no shot", or "Dude, you are so in." is irresponsible, albeit to a much lesser degree. And we have all done the latter. An MFA can be very helpful as long as it's in a good program and the courses were demanding. AND BTW, WAS IT A DRAMATIC WRITING MFA?

Here's some things you need to think about: Even when someone comes to LSD or TLS and says I have an xyz gpa in xyz major from xyz school, and "decent softs", there are still way too many unknowns. Fist, what is "soft' at one school is "hard" at another (see work experience at Northwestern and increasingly more top schools). You don't know if their "softs" are really decent or not, the applicant could be underestimating or overestimating his/her profile. You also have absolutely no idea what the strength of the relative programs are, and that's even if you look up the rankings, most of the time you wouldn't immediately know the rank of the programs the applicants come from, you have not looked at their transcripts, so you do not know their courseloads, and you would never know what effect an adcoms' familiarity would have on how it viewed the program because many adcom members have specific schools and programs they are more familiar with. Remember, they went to college and have friends and colleagues they communicate with. Some are former undergrad teachers. SO YOU ARE THE ONES WHO ARE MISTAKEN AND YOU ARE THE IRRESPONSIBLE ONES.

I know what I know. I did not contradict myself on majors. In general, majors DO matter if they are inherently challenging, like English, a hard science, philosophy, psychology or history; those are the notoriously challenging majors because of the natural course progression involved in them. But do not fool yourself into believing that you can look at a GPA, LSAT score and read an applicant's own opinion of his/her softs and give a well-informed assessment of their chances at any school, because you can't.

And, one other thing i notice, you ignore the fact that I often temper my comments and advixce with "conditional statements"...done on purpose, because I know that under any additional circumstances, the statements may/may not hold true.

You have proven that you do not know what you speak of and I will not engage you anymore. I have done my research, you haven't.

Can you tell me what courses the OP took? Do you know what her program's strength is? Do you know where she intends to apply? Do you know who's on the committee? Do you know who has been admitted this year so far? How many females are needed at given prpograms to balence out the classes at particular law schools? Do you know whether they have anyone from the arts (as they will look to at least a little at every school for diversity)? Do you know what the makeups of the previous year's classes were at different law schools? Because that matters also. Too many females in 2008's class means the law schools are looking for more females in 2009, period! Ask any adcom.  

No...you don't know any of that.

So I have a right to tell the applicant to be optomistic. Rather than listen to your eilitist butts! Just shut up. You can't even admnit your mistakes when I bring info out of well-regarded books. The OP has a shot...a chance, if she puts together a good profile and gets a 164+ on her LSAT. How many performing arts majors are in Duke's current class?  

LawDog3

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Re: Any MFAs out there?
« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2009, 01:48:34 PM »
I just read more of the OP's post. She has eight years doing public interest work at a non-profit, a 4.0 in her MFA, which you still know nothing about, and her undergraduate GPA is 3.38, which, while not stellar, is solid. And you still do not know what her undergrad major or courseload looked like. You haven't read her statement, and you don't know what schools she's interested in.

And I already pointed out that you have no knowledge of the relative strength of her program, her trend in grades, what the adcoms at her prospective schools are/are not familiar with, nor what last year's or the current class makeups at her prospective schools are.

You guys are waaaaay out of your league arguing with me on this.

Like I said I-R-R-E-S-P-O-N-S-I-B-L-E OF YOU to make so many assumptions.

She should get that top LSAT score and write a primo essay and go for it.

It's checkmate! I will not engage, like I said. OVER and done with on this topic.

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Re: Any MFAs out there?
« Reply #15 on: January 15, 2009, 05:40:12 PM »
This thread makes me



Lawdog is checking off another online battle won

'blueskies

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Re: Any MFAs out there?
« Reply #16 on: January 15, 2009, 06:16:43 PM »
I would like to make some citations of my own.  From The Ivey Guide to Law School Admissions, written by Anna Ivey, Dean of Admissions at the University of Chicago Law School (a T14, mind you), page 21:  “You’ll never hear an admissions officer tell you that you don’t stand a chance, or that you shouldn’t apply.  If they reject you, they’ll never tell you that you shouldn’t reapply.  They’ll tell you that even if your numbers stink, you can basically still write your way into law school.  I appreciate the pressure they’re under- it’s their job to generate as many applications as possible- but it’s just not realistic to say that you can write your way into law school if your numbers aren’t in the ballpark.  The numbers matter much more than admissions officers let on.” [emphasis added]

Yes, there are exceptions to people being more than their numbers.  Most notably, URMs are given a closer look, and also some Veterans (http://lawschoolnumbers.com/drew82abndiv), Olympic athletes (there are a few people who were competing in Beijing that are applying this cycle), and some special cases: http://lawschoolnumbers.com/lazylawyer312 (who has a unique soft that is not my place to disclose).  But overall and in relation to this thread, graduate degrees do not necessarily push a law applicant above their numbers. (Is everyone clear on what this means?)

Which is why you are giving the OP bad advice.  Having a 164 LSAT with a 3.38 GPA and no outstanding softs will not get a person into a T14 school.  Duke is one of the few T14s that posts a grid of the numbers of accepted applicants.  For the GPA range of 3.25-3.49 (which is where the OP falls), accepted students in the 160-164 range is 11/270 (or about 4%) and in the 165-169 range only 23/266 students are accepted (a mere 8.6%).  LawDog, feel free to peruse lawschoolnumbers.com for the best view available of the softs the people had in this range (or any other).

fwiw:  Ms. Ivey’s comment on graduate work (page 27 for those following along): “…admissions officers do take your graduate work into consideration.  The nature of the graduate work will influence how seriously they take those grades.  For example, almost no one gets bad grades in a PhD program in the humananities, so a 4.0 there wouldn’t be treated as a superstar grade.  (Master’s degrees can be a different story- grading practices vary more widely than they do in PhD programs, and you should educate admissions officers about your program.)”


But I guess none of this matters since you already declared your self the winner.


awkward follows you like a beer chasing a shot of tequila.

LawDog3

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Re: Any MFAs out there?
« Reply #17 on: January 16, 2009, 03:50:50 AM »
Naw...that's just me being combative. I actually like you guys.

Folks, I have seen it time and time again where an applicant - and I mention this in my earlier post -  believes he/she has no outstanding "softs"...and he/she is almost always mistaken.
People tend to be their own worst critics and do a lousy marketing job as a result. A law school application is nothing but a marketing campaign, but people do not approach it that way. This is what separates the great applications from the average or bad ones. 

The weak applicants devalue experiences that could be amazing if illustrated in the right way. They send in disconnected applications that do not create a memorable "persona" for the adcoms ("the problem-solver", "the skateboarding chess-master", etc). There's no consistent "theme" (not STORY) throughout their profiles. Remember, an applicant should not "repeat" things mentioned in other parts of their applications...unless they are used to illuminate otherwise unknown aspects of their background or personality.

The repeated info should provide a "twist" that shows something new and connects to the resume, application, and other essays and addenda. They should think of the parts of their application as points in a web connected by strings. The "spokes in a hub" analogy works, too.

This recycling of info is (typically) poorly, if ever, done, because applicants take the rule about repeating info too literally.

Their personal statements are poorly written because they are too lazy to list all of their background info from birth to college grad and beyond. They fail to interview their family, friends, peers, co-workers and profs...or even the man at the corner deli. They write their essays twice and then send them in, instead of revising at least 20 times. They fail to infuse Ethos, Pathos, Mythos and Logos into their essays. They do all of this and wonder why they, not only get rejected by top schools, but schools in their ranges. They are poor marketers!

And like I said, no one knows the OP in-depth or has looked at all of her info, and she's not going to be able to tell us anything here that will really help. So I am telling her that, IF, she does this and that, she has a chance. That's all.

You are also very wrong on the URM assertion; many whites and Asians get into top law schools just by meeting one or the other, (i.e., high GPA OR high LSAT, but not necessarily both), and Susan Estrich says this almost verbatim in her book. But you should know this just based on the stats I mentioned, because there aren't enough minority applicants even applying to law school for their admissions numbers to explain the dynamic. It's impossible.

Some stats rule out URM's as an explanation. Another example of this is the shoplifting statistics. Do you have any idea how many salespeople and store clerks believe African-Americans account for most shoplifting? Talk to any statistician and he/she will tell you that, with 30M Blacks in America, it would be statistically impossible for Blacks to commit even 1/5 of the thefts. Remember, by the time you perform regression analysis on the genral population and account for children, the elderly, those who do not reside in the U.S., and consider the Blacks who are incarcerated, it's downright ridiculous. But people still follow Black shoppers in the stores, while white, teenaged girls (who, at least in the state of Washington, account for most of the shoplifting arrests) rip them blind. 

URM admission does not explain how you get at least 10% of a class with numbers far below BOTH medians at the law schools, and the fact that only an average of about 25% of admitted students have numbers at BOTH medians. 

And for the last time, I advised the OP to score ABOVE 164, not meet it.

Do you realize that only 3% of LSAT takers score above 170? The middle 50% of test takers has been 149-159, until this year.

That means only 25% score above 159, so that you are in roughly the 80th percentile by reaching 160.

Only 17% of examinees score between 160-169, which amounts to about about 32,000 examinees out of 160,000. And many of those test-takers will decide against law school or apply only to schools near their homes. Thus a student like the OP can increase her chances of admission by spreading around more applications, writing an excellent personal statement, and highlighting what is unique about her background.

I stand firm on my assertion. I am not saying she's a slam dunk at Yale or anything like that. I am telling her to be optomistic, put her best foot forward and apply to some top schools...and not only to top schools, of course.

I think you guys put words in my mouth.

BTW, I have seen many applicants literally "write themselves a ticket" to law school, as I said before. Anna Ivey has to sell books, and she can only do so by spitting out alternative information. And, admissions is getting tougher, so even URM's are going to have to get better numbers. But I have read much of Ivey's book, and that portion of it holds true at some schools, and not so true at others. I do agree that a 2.8 145 student needs not apply to Yale unless he's GWB, no matter how stellar a writer he/she is. I have not indicated any other belief. And Ivey's assertions in general do nothing to dispute the general tenor of what I am saying.

Remember, few applicants, by comparison, meet the medians in both stat categories at their target schools, so, statistically speaking, they have to stand out from the competition some how? It's essays, and so-called "softs". So, Ivey is giving bad advice on that one.

For the record, Duke and Cornell, Berkeley, Northwestern and now Michigan are the easiest schools to squeak your way into without meeting the numbers.

Duke and Cornell actually live by the policies Anna Ivey claims don't exist. Remember my friend at Duke with the 2.9/170? Softs and essays have to matter.

Berkeley is the only top school that values GPA MORE than LSAT, so that opens the door for a lot of people. Softs and essays have to matter.

Northwestern uses a B-School approach and puts a heavy premium on older students AND work experience, which are supposed to be "soft" factors. This is a trend that deans at many top schools say will increase. Softs and essays have to matter at NU Law, if for no other reason than to ensure that people do not fluff their resumes. The softs and essays would be used to check against an applicant's other claims.

Michigan has just become a GPA whore by instituting a new policy that allows admission to UM students with GPA's above 3.8, without sitting for the LSAT! Goergetown has had a similar policy in place for several years, now. Softs and essays have to matter here, too.

And if schools like this have self-tailored their admissions policies to allow softs to play a bigger factor, you know the lower-ranked schools do, because everything in law admissions has a trickle-down effect. 

Oh, and my point on majors, once and for all: A good one with built-in rigor is a big positive. But a traditionally soft major will not necessarily rule you out. It will depend on what courses you have taken, what your grade trend looks like, whether your school's program is relatively strong, and whether grade inflation is rampant or not at your school.

And, whether you have a masters degree in a challenging program. I already mentioned that the "nature" of the masters degree program made a difference. I said that below. Do you remember my asking whether her masters "was in dramatic writing"?

So you are preaching to the choir on that one. I already mentioned that. Every admissions book mentions the grade inflation in masters programs, even Montauk does that. So, another point I already knew. But the rigor of the program makes a difference. It's probably worth about .3 of a grade-point in undergrad GPA, in theory, so that a 3.38 student might look like a 3.68.

Maybe more at some schools, maybe less at some others. Her essays and letters will have to determine that, which is why i mention all of the unknowns.

Look, no doctor hears your symptoms over the phone and makes a diagnosis and gives a prescription, which is essentially what you and many other posters are doing when they rule out admission for a student after hearing, whay? five or six details of their backgrounds. I am not necessarily ruling them "in", but you hear a few details and rule them out. How is that responsible?

Okay...let's put this to bed, now. I have given sound advice. 

Miss P

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Re: Any MFAs out there?
« Reply #18 on: January 16, 2009, 11:26:50 AM »
. . . you get at least 10% of a class with numbers far below BOTH medians at the law schools, and the fact that only an average of about 25% of admitted students have numbers at BOTH medians. 

Where do you get these numbers?  Just curious.  I am not saying you're wrong.  I just have never seen anything like them before.
That's cool how you referenced a case.

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'blueskies

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Re: Any MFAs out there?
« Reply #19 on: January 16, 2009, 01:29:49 PM »
. . . you get at least 10% of a class with numbers far below BOTH medians at the law schools, and the fact that only an average of about 25% of admitted students have numbers at BOTH medians. 

Where do you get these numbers?  Just curious.  I am not saying you're wrong.  I just have never seen anything like them before.

I would also like to know this.  It's mathematically possible, but realistically doesn't make sense (especially that this would be the case in every law school). 
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