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Author Topic: Wrong Cumulative GPA on LSAC  (Read 4249 times)

MEMEMEME

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Wrong Cumulative GPA on LSAC
« on: December 02, 2010, 10:47:17 PM »
Ok- I have a personal copy of my full UG transcript and it clearly states my GPA on it. LSAC has come up with some completely different GPA,  which is of course, lower. I don't get their calculations but I have heard here and there people mention that LSAC says their GPA is one thing, but it is actually something different. Can someone tell me why this happens? I had to medically withdraw senior year and I am thinking that perhaps that my withdrawal and then return may have made a difference in LSAC's calculations, but again, my cumulative real GPA is clearly stated on the transcript. I am going to call LSAC anway, but I was wondering if anyone can give me insight into why LSAC calculates my GPA lower than my alma mater.

MEMEMEME

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Re: Wrong Cumulative GPA on LSAC
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2010, 11:29:24 PM »
I found another thread that answered my question, but I have another one: does LSAC send the schools my actual transcript or do the schools just look at my academic report? I hope they look at my transcript...

MeganEW

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Re: Wrong Cumulative GPA on LSAC
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2010, 05:27:59 PM »
They'll receive your actual transcript as well.

I also listed my transcript GPA on my resume.  LSAC only dropped it by .012, but of course my transcript GPA is a 3.X0 so the LSAC GPA looks that much lower.
Acceptances: UIUC, IUB, Fordham, W&L, OSU
WL: Notre Dame
Rejections: NYU, Northwestern

BikePilot

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Re: Wrong Cumulative GPA on LSAC
« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2010, 10:25:28 PM »
The whole point of the LSAC gpa is to more or less normalize gpa's across schools and majors and stuff.  I don't think it works really well, but its probably usually in the right direction.  As far as I'm aware they have never released their methodology.  The school will get your LSAC data and your actual transcript, I've no idea which they prefer to look at.  My guess is they'd look straight to the real transcript if its a school they know well and the LSAC data if its a rather generic or unheard-of school. Luckily my GPA went up after LSAC worked their voodoo.
HLS 2010

MEMEMEME

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Re: Wrong Cumulative GPA on LSAC
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2010, 03:35:54 AM »
I believe the main thing (now that I have done my research) is that if your college allowed you retake F grade classes and dropped your F and replaced with the new grade for GPA, LSAC calculates both. So if you have 120 good credits but attempted 130 (for example), all 130 credits with all of those F's are calculated in. I had to medically withdraw my senior year and come back and in some cases, it was easier to take an F than make up the work. So that's part of my problem.

The other thing is they give different point levels to each grade category than your UG institution may have given you. I think they give 3.66 for A minuses and my UG institution gave me 3.75. The last thing, which is what I am so against in this process is they give you 4.3 for A pluses. I am against this because my college and other colleges don't give A pluses. A is the highest grade. Had there been A plus grades, I would have gotten a bunch and probably raised my GPA.

Anyway, this is just what my research has revealed and it all seems to make sense. So, I assume it is true. I think it is not necessary for LSAC to recalculate GPAs and that they are trying to equalize something that could never be equal and thus making things more unfair. Oh well. I am over it. Thanks for your input about looking at transcripts- I am applying locally so hopefully everyone including the law school which is actually my undergrad college looks at the transcript. I am starting to think soft factors aren't as unimportant as everyone says because otherwise the schools wouldn't waste their time reading LORs and personal statements. Maybe this is wishful thinking.

MEMEMEME

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Re: Wrong Cumulative GPA on LSAC
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2010, 03:37:45 AM »
By the way, LSAC dropped my GPA .23 points. Ugh. Thanks BikePilot and MeganEW

SaraJean

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Re: Wrong Cumulative GPA on LSAC
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2010, 12:14:29 PM »
MEMEMEME:  PPS have given you some good information.  There are only two things I'd add.

First, I found that even though my college didn't figure "satisfactory/unsatisfactory" grades into my GPA, LSAC counted "unsatisfactory" as if it were an "F."  (I neglected to drop a sight-singing course that I'd stopped attending.)  Though this didn't affect me, if my college had used the "withdrawn - failing" notation, that also would have counted as an "F."

Second, if you log into your LSAC account, go to the "Apply" tab, "Credentials" sub-tab, and select "Transcripts", you'll see the "Academic Summary Report Key."  This document contains a fair amount of information on how they calculate GPA.  (From your remarks, I suspect you may have already seen it.)

BikePilot

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Re: Wrong Cumulative GPA on LSAC
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2010, 02:29:09 PM »
My college didn't give out A+s for my first two years and my lsac gpa still went up.  I've been told that part of the calculation is normalizing the gpa curve across the school to account for varying levels of difficulty and grade point inflation - I kinda doubt that they work directly off letter grades, but who knows?   My guess (and its only a guess) is they compare gpa to lsat and sat scores across schools and adjust gpa up and down so that the ratio stays about constant. I imagine it gets even more complicated if you study at multiple institutions - particularly when one or more don't use letter grades and have a very different grading scale. 
HLS 2010

MEMEMEME

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Re: Wrong Cumulative GPA on LSAC
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2010, 05:50:07 PM »
http://www.ehow.com/how_4823316_calculate-gpa-law-school-admissions.html

Not exactly the Reuters or CNN of LSDAS GPA calculation sources, but this is consistent throughout the web of how people say they calculate it. I highly highly doubt that they rank difficulty. Even they know that's impossible and I am guessing that they gave you higher point values for certain grades than your  college gave you.

I mean, how could they possibly know how difficult a program is or is not? US News? Princeton Review? They can't and plus my college is in the first tier and unless the majority of people who apply to law school went to Ivy League or slightly below that would make no sense. But actually, that would be great for me if they did actually decide to calculate GPA on some commercial ranking of difficulty. Plus, if they really wanted to calculate it based on difficulty, they would have to take into account the difficulty of individual courses and 80 percent of my classes for my major were 400 level. Oh well. I'm over it. I work for a lawyer, I got almost straight A's in an ABA approved paralegal program, etc. The law schools will either like me or not at this point...

By the way, sorry to play devil's advocate above, but again, even they aren't overreaching enough to attempt to calculate based on difficulty. Lastly, the law school knows where you went for college anyway.