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Author Topic: Fire alarm went off during LSAT  (Read 5018 times)

ladivina

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Re: Fire alarm went off during LSAT
« Reply #10 on: December 03, 2007, 02:42:48 PM »
So, has anyone spoken to LSAC yet?  I am going to call in a few minutes, and I'll let you know what happened.  Ugh.
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rohan

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Re: Fire alarm went off during LSAT
« Reply #11 on: December 03, 2007, 06:34:40 PM »
So, has anyone spoken to LSAC yet?  I am going to call in a few minutes, and I'll let you know what happened.  Ugh.


Yes, I spoke with them today. They are aware that a fire alarm disrupted our test and that a number of test takers discussed the exam during the disruption and that a number of these students had ample time to change answers after discussing the exam.

Although they are aware of the situation, WE have to write our letter and ask for an investigation which will almost definitely delay the release of our scores. There is no automatic notation in our file, no letter explaining the circumstances under which we gave the test. The investigation will take longer than 6 days, so we will have the option to cancel our scores at the end of the investigation. However, if we choose to cancel, it will count as 'one of the three' we can take. It is possible that a letter will end up in our file, placed there by LSAC, but we have to request the investigation and there is no guarantee that this will happen. Also, if I request an investigation and you do not, and LSAC determines that it is appropriate to place a letter in my file, then you will NOT also receive a letter because you did not request an investigation.

I'm faxing my letter tonite. I am requesting a letter in my file that all adcomms will see explaining the unusual circumstances. I want this in there regardless of whether or not I cancel -- also, the suggested that I not cancel until I request the investigation and hear the results. I want to avoid writing an addendum.

So, get your letter together and fax it off! Let me know if they tell you something different. I also mentioned to them the horrible proctor and they were quite appalled that the proctor interrupted students during the timed portion of the test. I'll mention this in my letter as well.

ladivina

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Re: Fire alarm went off during LSAT
« Reply #12 on: December 04, 2007, 11:30:39 AM »
I also spoke with them yesterday and faxed my formal complaint this morning. Let me know what you hear, and I will do the same.  Good luck!
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jalex519

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Re: Fire alarm went off during LSAT
« Reply #13 on: December 04, 2007, 11:38:35 AM »
To the two of you who were affected by this, if you still plan on applying this cycle, include an LSAT addendum that explains your special circumstances to every school. I am sure it will be given some consideration...
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AkhilAmar

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Re: Fire alarm went off during LSAT
« Reply #14 on: December 04, 2007, 03:32:39 PM »
To the two of you who were affected by this, if you still plan on applying this cycle, include an LSAT addendum that explains your special circumstances to every school. I am sure it will be given some consideration...

Of course everything is in the eye of the beholder, but I am not so sure that is the wise path to follow.

Why dilute and distract from the positives in your brief moment with an adcomm with stupid whining about a moment that tripped you up?  Do you really think the people making the decisions have not faced $$hit that has created problems?  Do they tell everyone about that crap?  I would sell my strong points instead.

Whine and dine at will, but excuses by them selves carry very little weight.  "ohhh, poor me, it is so unfair..."

Welcome to it, get used to it or leave it.  It is your choice.   

(I do have envy for the guy at the mini mart I get chips from, all he has to do is punch in a few buttons and all is cool, I walk away with my bag of goddies and he stands for a few more hours at minimum wage.  Do the math.)


I completely disagree. I could understand your stance if the persons in question were merely inconvienced by the fire alarm (i.e. a brief disruption, nothing more nothing less). However, the fact that the proctors told them to work through it for some time, undoubtedly resulting in a score decrease, is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard of in regards to standardized testing. Work through it? I can barely hold my concentration with ms. chatter-foot behind me, let alone the eardrum bursting db level of a fire alarm sounding. As long as they convey their position in a concise, mature and professional manner it can only help them. 
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Slumdog Lovebutton

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Re: Fire alarm went off during LSAT
« Reply #15 on: December 04, 2007, 05:28:07 PM »
wow, awful.

I'm applying to a few PhD programs as well, and so I had to take the GRE...which really illustrated how terrible LSAC is compared to ETS.  Not only can you take the GRE any time of the week in one of several time slots and receive your score right away, but they also give you earmuffs and don't interrupt you during your exam :)
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AkhilAmar

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Re: Fire alarm went off during LSAT
« Reply #16 on: December 04, 2007, 05:33:48 PM »
To the two of you who were affected by this, if you still plan on applying this cycle, include an LSAT addendum that explains your special circumstances to every school. I am sure it will be given some consideration...

Of course everything is in the eye of the beholder, but I am not so sure that is the wise path to follow.

Why dilute and distract from the positives in your brief moment with an adcomm with stupid whining about a moment that tripped you up?  Do you really think the people making the decisions have not faced $$hit that has created problems?  Do they tell everyone about that crap?  I would sell my strong points instead.

Whine and dine at will, but excuses by them selves carry very little weight.  "ohhh, poor me, it is so unfair..."

Welcome to it, get used to it or leave it.  It is your choice.   

(I do have envy for the guy at the mini mart I get chips from, all he has to do is punch in a few buttons and all is cool, I walk away with my bag of goddies and he stands for a few more hours at minimum wage.  Do the math.)


I completely disagree. I could understand your stance if the persons in question were merely inconvienced by the fire alarm (i.e. a brief disruption, nothing more nothing less). However, the fact that the proctors told them to work through it for some time, undoubtedly resulting in a score decrease, is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard of in regards to standardized testing. Work through it? I can barely hold my concentration with ms. chatter-foot behind me, let alone the eardrum bursting db level of a fire alarm sounding. As long as they convey their position in a concise, mature and professional manner it can only help them. 

Don't you see?  You have available options to deal with this type of thing.  Follow the dictated procedure and wait to see what happens. 

Do you want un breakable promises in your life? Please don't be a fool fixed on idealizations of how it "should be"  That is a lost cause.

Work with what you have and move forward. (and keep true goals on top)

It is rather simple in those terms.

It's better than bitching about how the circumstances at each moment did not add up to the ideal scenario you wanted.  Get used to that part. 

It is called life.


It has nothing to do with pointing out less than ideal situations.

The time the alarm was sounding can basically be seen as those test takers having less time to finish their section.

Just as LSAC reports anomolies in test conditions (i.e. time extensions) to law schools, the affected persons should inform them of their's.
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MHLM

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Re: Fire alarm went off during LSAT
« Reply #17 on: December 04, 2007, 05:37:01 PM »
wow, awful.

I'm applying to a few PhD programs as well, and so I had to take the GRE...which really illustrated how terrible LSAC is compared to ETS.  Not only can you take the GRE any time of the week in one of several time slots and receive your score right away, but they also give you earmuffs and don't interrupt you during your exam :)

Dude, I know!!! LSAC is so behind the times. I heard they were planning to have the exam computerized by 2000...that went well. And only offering it 4 times a year is such a problem in my opinion. This fire alarm story is the perfect example: let's say you take the exam relatively early--the October administration--but don't score too well. Then you retake in December but you have the fire alarm snafu. Now what? You kinda have to wait until the next cycle to give yourself a decent shot. Isn't it the only graduate-level test that is offered so infrequently?

Slumdog Lovebutton

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Re: Fire alarm went off during LSAT
« Reply #18 on: December 04, 2007, 05:44:18 PM »
wow, awful.

I'm applying to a few PhD programs as well, and so I had to take the GRE...which really illustrated how terrible LSAC is compared to ETS.  Not only can you take the GRE any time of the week in one of several time slots and receive your score right away, but they also give you earmuffs and don't interrupt you during your exam :)

Dude, I know!!! LSAC is so behind the times. I heard they were planning to have the exam computerized by 2000...that went well. And only offering it 4 times a year is such a problem in my opinion. This fire alarm story is the perfect example: let's say you take the exam relatively early--the October administration--but don't score too well. Then you retake in December but you have the fire alarm snafu. Now what? You kinda have to wait until the next cycle to give yourself a decent shot. Isn't it the only graduate-level test that is offered so infrequently?

Yeah, I agree.  The computerized part was a bit intimidating because the difficulty of the questions changed depending on whether you were doing well or badly, but I'll take that any day over a panicked, three-week wait.

Not sure about the frequency question.  The MCAT isn't offered very often, is it?
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rohan

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Re: Fire alarm went off during LSAT
« Reply #19 on: December 05, 2007, 08:50:59 PM »
While I really appreciate the indignation, I see this much the same way as Jeffort. While it's really an unfortunate circumstance, I most certainly do not want to include an addendum explaining that the fire alarm went off. What would I say? "Dear Sirs and Madames, Please know that my LSAT score most certainly would have been higher were it not for the fact the fire alarm went off during the exam." I think this (or anything basically communicating the same sentiment) sounds whiney and immature, IMO. And since I'm older, with A LOT of WE, it will really stand out as poorly planned.  If I were an adcomm, I'd think. "Hm.. well, why did you wait until December to take the admissions test for this cycle? That's not the best planning on your part. You should anticipate potential problems and mitigate them before the occur."  And then I could say, "Well, I had a baby at the end of June, and then I was diagnosed with a neuro disorder in August, I had another surgery in Nov. and well, dang. I just couldn't get my shite together to take Sept. in time." And while that's true, and would most certainly garner some sympathy for my situation of being a busy new mom who is always in and out of the Dr's office, it's not really relevant to my admissions cycle. Life gets in the way of your best plans. It happens all of the time, but everything has it's way of working out. I can't control everything.

What I do want is for LSAC to place a note in my file stating, "Applicant took the LSAT at a test site where fire alarms went off during the timed portion of the exam and all test takers were required to evacuate the building for at least 30 minutes."

In short, life happens. LSAC does not guarantee that any of us will get to take the LSAT under ideal or even best conditions. They can't guarantee it, even if they wanted to.  At most, if we follow the directions, show up at the appropriate time with the right pencils in hand, we are permitted to take the test. But really, while I'm sure they feel real badly about it, there isn't much they can do to guarantee that these things don't happen. They do seem to be pretty reasonable about looking into it, tho.

Ladivina - What about you? Are you doing an addendum?? I'm faxing my letter tonite. I didn't get a chance earlier this week.