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Author Topic: LSAT doesn't determine quality  (Read 2049 times)

cp4three2

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LSAT doesn't determine quality
« on: October 13, 2006, 06:36:13 PM »

HaciM36

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Re: LSAT doesn't determine quality
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2006, 07:07:20 PM »
I disagree completely. Although I have worked my ass off in undergrad to obtain as high as GPA as I possibly can, and knowing that 4 years of hard work won't matter nearly as much as one LSAT score, I still agree with the bias towards the LSAT. What if you have an english major with a 2.0 GPA and a kinesiology major with a 4.0? No offense, but I think all of us can agree that some majors in college are much more difficult than others. The LSAT process is one way of determining who has the skills and abilities to understand complex reading material/arguments that you will encounter every day in law school.

In addition law school itself is very demanding and someone who slacked off in undergrad and was saved by a high LSAT score will undoubtedly have to rethink their work ethic or simply won't last in law school. Also, undergraduate colleges have no real system of standardizing themselves in relation to one another. A hard working student can cut some corners by doing extra credit or group work or what have you that will definitely not be available in law school. These types of strategies one uses in undergrad could give them a really high GPA, but does it fairly assess their intellectual ability? Either way in law school, and finding a job, someone who works hard but doesn't have the intellectual ability still has a chance but law schools and employers first one to make sure you're competent enough to handle the task. Those who lack a solid work ethic won't be able handle the work load of law school or actual legal work when they graduate, if they do.

It may seem unfair but I think favoring the LSAT is a brutally honest way of saying people have different intellectual abilities and this is a way for them to measure it. Besides, someone with a good work ethic should be able to study hard for the LSAT and achieve a reasonable score. Most likely these people who have worked hard in undergrad will have at least a basic intellectual ability to score fairly on a test they know is extremely important for their future.
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.zone.

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Re: LSAT doesn't determine quality
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2006, 07:17:28 PM »
I don't think the LSAT should count as much in the admissions process it does, for many of the same reasons the author lists.  It doesn't take into account someone's work ethic, which would be very important in law school.  AND...it's ONE test...imagine people that don't test well...I don't think ONE test should be as important as FOUR YEARS of hard work in college.  You can have great RC skills and solve games really fast & walk into the LSAT and grab a 176, but if you never do your coursework, how will that ever help you?  Also, I think placing an emphasis on tests like these gives an unfair advantage to wealthier people, who can afford multiple prep. classes, time off work, numerous prep. books, retake fees, etc.  That being said, I think the LSAT should matter somewhat.  Most importantly, it provides a good way to level people out coming from different schools.  A 4.0 from one school is a lot easier at some schools (especially those that pass out 4.3's all the time...you could get Bs all the time & still get near a 4.0!) versus other schools with more rigid & competitive grading standards.  The test is a good blanket way to compare everyone...
So, my opinion is that it definitely shouldn't make up half of the admissions decision, it should be taken into consideration.
I also think the author exaggerates a bit...he seems to imply that a great LSAT score is all one needs to jump into a good school, but even someone who aces the LSAT probably won't have a great cycle if they have a 2.0.  

survivor07

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Re: LSAT doesn't determine quality
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2006, 07:30:30 PM »
I haven't even read the entire article, but this kid seems to be off his rocker. LOL!  Ok, so I do believe that law schools place ENTIRELY TOO MUCH emphasis on LSAT, however, this kid is making it seem as though law schools ONLY look at your LSAT score. Maybe I'm being naive, but I'd like to think that adcomms will also look at my GPA (oops, maybe they shouldn't because mine isn't so stellar), work history (always kept a full-time job in school), LOR's, and PS. Whether this cat wants to believe it or not, people with not so stellar LSAT's can GO TO LAW SCHOOL....
(Ok, now I'm done reading the article)

...but on another note, I think the argument that the LSAT allows everyone to be viewed fairly or equally or whatever, is full of crap.  What if the person is a stellar student and a poor test taker?  What if the student is a good student and a poor test taker? What is the student is dedicated and driven, but simply not a good test taker  NOR can they afford to take a $1500 prep class, as let's say a more financially abled student? I won't say the test is biased because it does serve a purpose, HOWEVER, it doesn't really offer a level playing field, as the LSAC wants us to believe.  

But back to this kid...he needs to do some more research.  :o
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survivor07

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Re: LSAT doesn't determine quality
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2006, 07:34:34 PM »
I don't think the LSAT should count as much in the admissions process it does, for many of the same reasons the author lists.  It doesn't take into account someone's work ethic, which would be very important in law school.

I think the threads on LSD about studying refute this

AND...it's ONE test...imagine people that don't test well...I don't think ONE test should be as important as FOUR YEARS of hard work in college.

People who don't test well probably won't test well in law school or on the bar.

  You can have great RC skills and solve games really fast & walk into the LSAT and grab a 176, but if you never do your coursework, how will that ever help you?  Also, I think placing an emphasis on tests like these gives an unfair advantage to wealthier people, who can afford multiple prep. classes, time off work, numerous prep. books, retake fees, etc. 

I agree somewhat, but I spent almost no money studying, but was able to get materials from the library, and if I needed it, could have gotten an LSAC fee waiver

I agree with the rest of what you said.

BUT, not everyone can self-teach.  Sometimes people (like myself) need a structured environment and a person with skill and knowledge to answer their questions...show them what they are doing wrong, explain HOW to get the correct answer, and things of that nature.  You can buy/take out on loan all the books you want, if you don't understand the material, it's not going to help you one lick.  However, I do see what you are saying, and I didn't even know you can get those books on loan from the library, thanks for that.  ;)
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survivor07

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Re: LSAT doesn't determine quality
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2006, 07:43:02 PM »
BUT, not everyone can self-teach.  Sometimes people (like myself) need a structured environment and a person with skill and knowledge to answer their questions...show them what they are doing wrong, explain HOW to get the correct answer, and things of that nature.  You can buy/take out on loan all the books you want, if you don't understand the material, it's not going to help you one lick.  However, I do see what you are saying, and I didn't even know you can get those books on loan from the library, thanks for that.  ;)
True, but resourcefulness will help in law school just like on the LSAT. Things like finding LSD, the library, friends, and other free resources or using money to get an edge (honorably) are skills that will help in school.

I was going to add that in, that a board like this is really helpful with questions concering the LSAT questions. Everyone is always willing to help.  And yes, all the other resources you mentioned are a good source of help.  However, I still feel you (not you per se) are at a disadvantage if you are a bad test taker and need actual help from an instructor.  I could be biased because I'm one of those people that test poorly and really need that one-on-one help.
But, these are all very resourceful ways to get started on getting a higher score, I do agree there.
-"Outstanding people have one thing in common: and absoulte sense of mission."

-"Patience, Persistence, and perspiration make an ubeatable combination for success."

-"Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better."

HaciM36

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Re: LSAT doesn't determine quality
« Reply #6 on: October 13, 2006, 07:53:16 PM »
Being a poor test taker is not a solid reason that the LSAT is a bad way to measure one's ability. After all, law school performance is based usually on one final at the end of the year. If you're a poor test taker you better rethink law school or accept the fact that it's the best way to measure you're  understanding of the material along with every other student in your class.

I'm sick and tired of people complaining about being a poor test taker. Is it the pressure? Too little time? If you are well prepared and know the material in depth you shouldn't really have a problem with "tests". Through high school, undergrad, and law school, tests have and will always be the priority measure of performance. I say GET USED TO IT!
And shepherds we shall be, for thee my Lord for thee, power hath descended forthfrom thy hand, that our feet may swiftly carry out thy command. We shall flow a river forth to thee, and teeming with souls shall it ever be. In nomine Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sancti.

President_Baccaga

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Re: LSAT doesn't determine quality
« Reply #7 on: October 13, 2006, 08:58:15 PM »
Being a poor test taker is not a solid reason that the LSAT is a bad way to measure one's ability. After all, law school performance is based usually on one final at the end of the year. If you're a poor test taker you better rethink law school or accept the fact that it's the best way to measure you're  understanding of the material along with every other student in your class.

I'm sick and tired of people complaining about being a poor test taker. Is it the pressure? Too little time? If you are well prepared and know the material in depth you shouldn't really have a problem with "tests". Through high school, undergrad, and law school, tests have and will always be the priority measure of performance. I say GET USED TO IT!

Solid argument, IMHO.  I haven't closely followed this thread, but I believe that the most significant advantage of the LSAT has already been mentioned: It standardizes and subsequently classifies all potential applicants regardless of academic background, as does the SAT for high school students.  There are just too many variables for GPA to be a reliable indicator of potential or even past achievements.  Furthermore, there are many LS applicants that have been out of school for several years.  For example, I'm almost 26.  I don't see much relevance for a GPA from when I was 17 or 18 years old. 

Socraotes

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Re: LSAT doesn't determine quality
« Reply #8 on: October 13, 2006, 09:41:39 PM »
You know what would be useful? A study that shows how LSATs correlate with legal "success." You know what wouldn't be useful? Some college kid shooting his mouth off.

boco0302

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Re: LSAT doesn't determine quality
« Reply #9 on: October 13, 2006, 09:48:29 PM »
Well neither of the correlations are very good between either UG grades and performance in law school or lsat score and law school performance.  However, the lsat does have a higher correlation value: 0.3 higher (out of 1), so it is the best indicator of sucess (however with both the lsat and gpa correlation values being what they are, neither method is very good @ determining success in law school).  So, it essentially comes down to a crapshoot as to who will perform well.