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So what's priority number one for law school?

yaintime21yaintime21 Registered User Posts: 225 Junior Member
edited November 2012 in Law School
It seems like there's a debate for whether GPA, major, or "eliteness" of college is most important. I've seen claims that a Dance major with 4.0 will fare better than an English 3.5 (which seems implausible to me).

So what do I need to get into law school, CC? What's most important? GPA, major, or the name of your school? And what importance do extracurriculars have?
Post edited by yaintime21 on

Replies to: So what's priority number one for law school?

  • bluebayoubluebayou Registered User Posts: 24,469 Senior Member
    GPA+LSAT = 95% of admissions.
  • NeonzeusNeonzeus Registered User Posts: 1,234 Senior Member
    You might be too conservative, BlueBayou. It might be 94%.

    And the soft factors come into play when the admissions committees are comparing candidates who all have the same GPA/LSAT. Soft factors are everything from school, major, recommendations, personal statement, resume, geographic diversity, etc.

    Many years ago there was someone on CC who actually claimed to have worked on an admissions committee. We can only base opinions on the admissions profile sites, school admissions profiles when posted, various forums, personal experience if applicable and all of the books on getting into law school.

    Take it for what it's worth, but if your GPA or below the school's 25%, the best personal story in the world is unlikely to make any difference at all. If you're at the 75% mark, you stand a better-than-even chance of getting admitted and even getting some money. If you're a splitter or a URM, the chances look a little different. If you have something hinky on your application or a truly awful personal statement, you might get rejected even if you're at the 75% mark. Lawschoolnumbers and the other predictor sites are accurate.

    I should note that my kid felt that many schools were disingenuous when he was applying. He went to law school conferences where admissions officers talked to applicants, and got a lot of encouragement to apply based on his soft factors & record. He also visited 2-3 schools before applying (should have waited), and received the same encouragement. At the end of the day, his soft-factors may have gotten him on a few waitlists... but then the waitlists filled slots based on GPA/LSAT so it didn't make a huge difference.

    My kid met with one Dean of Admissions of a school where he was on the wait-list. That Dean joked around with my kid, and at one point told him a story about a kid who visited and called the school repeatedly and was rejected since everyone in the admissions office hated him. Take that story for what it's worth, too.

    At the end of the day, it's not a lot different from the college admissions process.
  • bluebayoubluebayou Registered User Posts: 24,469 Senior Member
    At the end of the day, it's not a lot different from the college admissions process.

    With this I disagree. I think top undergrad admissions for the unhooked is much more holistic in that everyone has the numbers to begin with -- no splitters even considered (without a hook).

    A double high stat (gpa+lsat) applicant has a high chance of admittance to Harvard Law, but a high stat high schooler has a low chance of admission to Harvard Undergrad. (There just too many high schools and thus Vals/Sals. It may also be that the SAT/ACT is not as discerning at the top as is the LSAT, creating lots more high testers.)
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