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Author Topic: 159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA  (Read 9825 times)

uncrebel11

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159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA
« on: January 20, 2011, 05:14:21 PM »
First off, I'm not planning on applying this late for the fall '11 term.  I'm taking a year off and applying for the fall '12 start.  As stated in the subject line, I got a 159 on my LSAT on my second attempt (not satisfied after all the practice tests I took with Powerscore; just couldn't cut it on test day I guess) and graduated with a 3.6 GPA in Political Science from the University of Mississippi.  Plenty of extra curricular activities and and ample community service record with solid recs.  Looking for some insight into my possible chances at any of the following schools and what, if any, scholarship or grant $ I could expect if I applied right when they begin accepting applications.  Thank you in advance for any replies.

1. University of North Carolina (good recommendation from a prominent alumnus)
2. University of Alabama (same as above)
3. University of Florida (listed because I want to pursue tax law)
4. University of Colorado
5. University of South Carolina
6. Wake Forest University

Also, I would currently be classified as a South Carolina resident for tuition purposes (which is why I listed South Carolina as an option), although I'm not terribly interested in going there or working in South Carolina.  Thank you again for any help.

bigs5068

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Re: 159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2011, 05:50:32 PM »
lawschoolnumbers.com is a great way to answer all of the questions you listed. You can see what schools people with your exact numbers attended and how much scholarship money they received.

uncrebel11

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Re: 159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2011, 06:53:35 PM »
Thanks.  Helpful site...

Framboise

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Re: 159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA
« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2011, 08:27:30 PM »
1. University of North Carolina (good recommendation from a prominent alumnus): Out (your LSAT is extremely low and the school is about 3/4 in-state, which means your numbers need to be well above median)
2. University of Alabama (same as above): Out
3. University of Florida (listed because I want to pursue tax law) WL-In
4. University of Colorado - Out
5. University of South Carolina - In with $$
6. Wake Forest University - Out

What were you scoring on practice tests?  If you're taking a year off, there's time to re-take, and scoring a few more points would be totally worth it and make you much more competitive.  Otherwise, you definitely need to apply to some safeties.  Given that you will be applying for 2012, this will definitely help you and you might get some pleasant surprises.  But in the meantime if you don't re-take, you have to be realistic, because you don't have Tier 1 numbers.  Good softs and LOR's are good, but won't help you when you're far below the LSAT median and still below the GPA median.

Where do you actually want to work?

uncrebel11

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Re: 159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA
« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2011, 11:13:08 PM »
I appreciate your reply.

I don't know if "extremely low" is the characterization I'd chose to describe that score, but to each his own.  79th percentile, while not superb, is simply not extremely low.  Certainly not what I was aiming for considering I averaged a 165 on over 20 previous LSATs that I took.  At this point I've ruled out taking the LSAT a third time and the schools I listed above are reach schools.  From reading your other posts, I think what you're saying about people not getting above a 160 "barring serious anxiety issues" is a bit misguided for someone who hasn't sat for the test yet.  At any rate, I hope you do well and wish you the best of luck on test day.

I went to University of Mississippi for undergrad and will apply there as well as other safety schools.  I've lived in South Carolina for a little over a year now, have good contacts in the legal field and other professional areas.  What I'm concerned about is how tight the legal market in the state is (but I guess you could say that about plenty of states right now) and the fact that I may be stuck there long term if I don't get offers from out of state firms.  I do have a definite interest in tax law and USC has a dual degree JD/MaCC, which is appealing.

louiebstef

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Re: 159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA
« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2011, 11:47:32 PM »
OP,

Try using this link for Law School Predictor, yet another "swami" program that uses the median admit stats to predict:

http://www.lawschoolpredictor.com/wp-content/uploads/Law-School-Predictor-Full-Time-Programs.htm




It says USC is a no-go with your stats, unfortunately.

Some Tier 1 schools you do have a shot at are:

#26 Iowa
#27 Indiana Univ (Bloomington/Maurer)

It also says--contrary to Framboise--that you have an outside shot at both UNC and Wake Forest.  I'd shoot them an app anyway....

I hope this helps.

"Why be a lawyer? I'm already an ass.  Might as well go professional!"

uncrebel11

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Re: 159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2011, 11:57:28 PM »
Thanks for the link.

USC = University of South Carolina.  I used to get irritated when people referred to it as USC, always thinking of Southern Cal instead.  Live around people long enough, you start to talk like them I guess.  At any rate, they have fallen in US News' rankings this year due to what seems to be shoddy leadership and below average facilities.

Regarding UNC.  Frambiose is correct about the school's clear preference to applicants who are North Carolina residents (upwards of 75% of each incoming class, I believe).  I grew up in NC but, unfortunately, I believe I've lost my North Carolina residence this past year because I've been living in Myrtle Beach, SC for the past 11 months.

Framboise

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Re: 159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA
« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2011, 08:41:48 AM »
I appreciate your reply.

I don't know if "extremely low" is the characterization I'd chose to describe that score, but to each his own.  79th percentile, while not superb, is simply not extremely low.  Certainly not what I was aiming for considering I averaged a 165 on over 20 previous LSATs that I took.  At this point I've ruled out taking the LSAT a third time and the schools I listed above are reach schools.  From reading your other posts, I think what you're saying about people not getting above a 160 "barring serious anxiety issues" is a bit misguided for someone who hasn't sat for the test yet.  At any rate, I hope you do well and wish you the best of luck on test day.

I went to University of Mississippi for undergrad and will apply there as well as other safety schools.  I've lived in South Carolina for a little over a year now, have good contacts in the legal field and other professional areas.  What I'm concerned about is how tight the legal market in the state is (but I guess you could say that about plenty of states right now) and the fact that I may be stuck there long term if I don't get offers from out of state firms.  I do have a definite interest in tax law and USC has a dual degree JD/MaCC, which is appealing.

I don't mean that a 159 is an extremely low score, by itself, but it is for the schools you are applying to and your GPA is also often below or just about median.  To get accepted to those schools with that GPA, you definitely need a higher LSAT, especially if you want money.  With Alabama, UNC, and Wake Forest you are def shooting uber-high.  At Alabama, your LSAT is below the 25th percentile (the median is 163) and your GPA is below the median (3.68).  Unless you're a URM, your chances are extremely low.  It's definitely a reach school.  The same goes for UNC,, whose medians are 162 and 3.60.  In reality, however, you need to aim well above that.  UNC had a 14.7% acceptance rate last year, especially because once again about 3/4 of each class is reserved for in-state students, and so those medians apply more to them, than to an out-of-stater like you.  They will only accept out-of-staters with truly exceptional numbers.  Wake Forest's medians are 163 and 3.6.

Even at Florida you are below both medians (161 and 3.67).  Basically, if those are the schools you truly want to go to, then a gain of a few points on the LSAT is totally worth it.

Louie, I didn't say not to apply to UNC and Wake, just that he's not likely to get in.  And read my explanation, that the lower scores are reserved for the 70-75% in-state students at UNC.  It's like Texas, where you can't just apply on median or even just slightly above and expect to get in if you're not from Texas.

Wait, uncrebel11, did you live in NC 11 months ago and for how long were you there?  Because if you did, that would definitely work in your favor.  And unfortunately, Wake is private.

As for my statement that a 160+ is attainable for any reasonably smart person, I stand by it.  I started studying at the beginning of Oct and plan to sit the June LSAT and my diagnostic was in the upper 150's, so I'm pretty confident that yes, I will get that 160+, even if I really mess up and don't get it the first time.  Once again, I never said anything about people who have scored below 160.  I'm just talking about how most serious law applicants do have the ability to break the barrier, if they put their mind to it, and I have no idea what kind of reasonable person would disagree with that.  Even you said you PT-ed at 165 20 times.  With that in mind, since you didn't hit a 162 on game day and you're waiting a year before applying you really, really should re-take.  It could be the difference between getting rejected and getting in with money to a dream school, really.  You can obviously make the grade.  What's your reason for not re-taking?

uncrebel11

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Re: 159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA
« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2011, 04:53:43 PM »
Frambiose,

I spent the first 18 years of my life in NC, then went to college in Mississippi.  My residency has always been North Carolina, but I moved to Myrtle Beach, SC last October and worked there until about 3 months ago.  I'm a bit unclear about North Carolina's position on residency at this point because my father has maintained domicile at the address I lived at for several months after college before moving to SC and still maintains that residence.  Since I paid SC state income taxes for almost a year, but never leased an apartment there I don't know how this works.  I still have an NC driver license, am registered to vote in Forsyth County, NC and am there currently.  Somewhere I had read that if you are under 26, then your parent's residence is prima facie your own residence in the eyes of the state for tuition purposes (if you are still classified as dependent for tax purposes, as I am), but I've been unable to get a clear answer about that if one had been working out of the state for less than a year but still may have maintained permanent residence at the home of a parent.  As you said, I think NC residency would have great impact on my application and I think it may be enough to get accepted or waitlisted.

Regarding retaking the LSAT, from people I have talked to it is not considered a prudent move to take the test 3 times (in the eyes of admissions comms). 

louiebstef

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Re: 159 LSAT, 3.6 GPA
« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2011, 06:39:32 PM »
OP,

The easiest way to answer whether you are still considered a NC resident for tuition purposes would be to contact UNC itself.  You don't need to speak to the law school, the undergrad finance office would suffice.  There's probably no need to provide your name, either.


 
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