Law School Discussion

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Author Topic: New Non-Trad, Unaccredited School - What to say/What not to say?  (Read 805 times)

dk3

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I'm a newbie here and need some advice regrading my non-traditional background. First, I will lay out my background before I ask questions.

Immediately following high school, I moved by myself accross the country to attend a non-accredited Christian college. I accumulated about 48 semester units there with a LSAC GPA of about 3.65, all while working full-time to support myself. I was very disappointed with my GPA there, and I found the grading methods to be exceptionally subjective and based on non-academic criteria. For example, one class (Personal Evangelism) graded me on the basis of leading someone to pray to be "born again". Today, I called the LSAC and they said I should have this school forward the transcripts, adding that it will be included as part of my overall LSAC GPA.

However, due to my subsequent academic performance, and my aspirations of getting into a T-14 law school, I am uncertain as to whether sending this transcript is indeed required. From everything I looked at, sending in non-accredited transcripts is not listed as a transcript requirement on the LSAC website. At the very least, I feel I need to present this transcript/experience in a way where law schools will understand it in perspective.

Immediately after my 3 semesters at the non-accredited school, I went to community college, where I received a 4.0 GPA on 63.5 semester units. From there I transferred to UC Berkeley to attend the Haas School of Business.

I am currently a Junior at UC Berkeley, and I plan to apply to law schools this fall for admission in Fall 2010. My Cal GPA fell last semester to 3.43 on 17 units. Also, I'm unsure as how to best explain this drop in my GPA. I worked around 20 hours a week and missed several important classes and review sections. My reasonable expectation is that I will get about a 4.0 LSAC GPA this semester (I am counting on one A+ and one A-), and will be able to raise my overall Cal GPA to about 3.7 by the end of this semester.

What should I do about my Christian college transcripts/experience?
Given that I can raise my Cal GPA to at least 3.65 this semester by getting all A's or A-'s, is it worth providing an explanation (that I had to work to support myself) for why my GPA fell my first semester at Cal?
Should I just provide addendum's to my applications?

How do law schools view community college grades?
Given that I spent more time at community college than at Cal so far, if I can get a very strong recommendation from a professor/President at my community college, is this worth pursuing?