LSN numbers on scholarships and financial aid is a bit unreliable. Is Boalt pretty generous when it comes to merit-based scholarships? Do they match awards from peer schools?
Yeah, LSN isn't very reliable when it comes to analyzing Boalt's financial aid.
Overall, it's hard to say how generous Boalt is when it comes to merit-based aid. Here are some points to consider:
1) Yes, Boalt does have a matching awards program that will match offers from the other T14 schools (minus Northwestern). However, if you submit an award to be matched, there is no guarentee that it will be. I don't know what percentage of people who request them are actually granted a matching scholarship, but my advice is to submit your request ASAP if you are considering one.
2) Overall, Boalt's tution is less expensive than other schools. This is especially true when you consider the fact that everyone can qualify for in-state tution after their first year. So to a certain degree, I think this affects how much aid they give out.
3) Boalt is a public school. They have less money to throw around than some private schools do.
4) Boalt has a very generous Loan Repayment Assistance Program (for those going into low-paying jobs after graduation), as well as public interest summer stipends.
5) Boalt considers "merit" to be more than just those with the highest numbers.