A LIST OF SOME MINOR ADMISSION FACTORS: ADDENDUM DEAN'S APPRASAL DIVERSITY STATEMENT EXTRA-CURRICALAR ACTIVITIES RESUME (CURRICULUM VITE) STUDY ABROAD
A LIST OF OTHER ADMISSION FACTORS
Be vary of efforts that may prevent you from maximizing your LSAT score and UGPA.
On a typical undergraduate's application, the LSAT score and UGPA are paramount. However, most law schools will tell you [and for some law schools it may even be true] that the student's entire application is reviewed and considered. As a result, it could be to your advantage to engage in with activities that demonstrate leadership, initiative, creativity, responsibility, analytical skills and research ability [assuming neither your LSAT score nor GPA will be negatively affected]. University of California, Merced Law School Information
At some law schools, some of the following factors may play a role in borderline cases: Colleges attended Community activities Difficulties Overcome Extracurricular Activity Geography Graduate or Professional Steady Improvement in grades International Applicant LegacyLeadership skills Minority Applicant Public Service Reason for interest in law State of residency Study Abroad Undergraduate course of study Volenteer work Writing skills Work experience Some public service groups are: AMERICORPS, CITY YEAR, HABITAT FOR HUMANITY, PEACE CORPS, and TEACH FOR AMERICA.
An addendum is usually used to explain something negative in your application.
The following is based on the websites of New College (of Florida) Office of Career Services, the Career Center at the University of California at Berkeley, and the University of Chicago Pre-Law InfoCenter. There may be something negative in your application that requires a damage-controlling explanation. This explanation should be in an addendum, not in your personal statement. The addendum is simply a separate sheet which should be labeled ADDENDUM and attached to your application. An addendum, if necessary, should be articulate, brief, clear, concise, persuasive, and sincere. When offering explanations for weaknesses, offer a sympathetic explanation, not an excuse, and assure the law school admissions committee that a similar weakness is unlikely to occur again. Try to keep your addendum to under one page and attach supporting documentation as necessary.
SOME APPROPRIATE TOPICS FOR AN ADDENDUM.
An LSAT score that does not accurately reflect your potential for success in law school.
An exceptionally low grade in a course. .
A semester (or an academic year) with a much lower grade point average that usual..
An overall grade point average that does not reflect your true abilities..
A gap (not a summer semester or summer quarter) in your college attendance..
A disciplinary history.
EXPLAINING A LOW LSAT SCORE: If you've experienced a demonstrable history of underachievement in standardized tests (the LSAT and either the SAT or ACT), you should include an official copy of your SAT/ACT score along with an addendum setting forth the discrepancy between your SAT/ACT scores and your undergraduate academic performance. The obvious argument in these cases is that the SAT/ACT did not accurately predict your undergraduate academic success and that the LSAT will do no better at accurately predicting your law school performance.
EXPLAINING A LOW UGPA: Most prelaw students, by inclination or design, chose a major in the humanities (e.g. English, history) or social science (e.g. political science, economics, psychology). In the humanities and social sciences excluding economics, grade inflation has been rampant; this is not the case for mathematics, the natural sciences, and engineering. If your low UGPA is due to bad attitude, bad effort, or bad genes, we offer no advice. If your low UGPA for a semester or two is due to bad luck (e.g. serious accident, death in the family), an explanation in your addendum may be appropriate. If your low GPA is due to your choosing a "bad" major (that is, a major that has not succumbed to grade inflation), we can only offer you our sympathy. Note that the GPA of the members of a law school's entering class may make the law school look bad aven if this low GPA is because of admitting applicants who had serious majors.
A deans appraisal, required by approximately 25 law schools. .
The Career Center at the University of California at Berkeley answers the question "What is a Dean's Appraisal" as follows: "Some [law] schools require a Dean's Appraisal, sometimes called a 'Dean's Letter' or a 'Letter of good standing.' It is a form provided by your undergraduate institution(s) that provides information on the conferral of your degree and any disciplinary records. Only provide Dean's Appraisals to law schools that specifically request them." Contact your Prelaw Advisor to see who prepares this form. You will probably "need to provide a pre-addressed, stamped envelope for each appraisal requested. ... If Dean's Appraisals are required from all undergraduate institutions you attended, you will need to contact each of your colleges or universities to find out who prepares their Deans' Appraisals."
Georgetown University Career Education Center states that "If your ethnicity, family, religion, socioeconomic background, or any similar factor may motivate you to succeed in law school, be sure to highlight it. This can be done in the personal statement itself or in a separate diversity statement. If you are writing a personal statement and a diversity statement, make sure the two essays address different topics."
If your diversity would be of interest to a law school addmission committee and if your diversity is not mentiioned in your personal statement, then a diversity statement would be relevant.A diversity statement should be on a separate sheet labeled DIVERSITY STATEMENT and attached to your application. A diversity statement should be articulate, brief, clear, concise, persuasive, and sincere.
Be wary of efforts that may prevent you from maximizing your LSAT score and UGPA.
Rice University Prelaw Advising says that the importance of extracurricular activities in admission policy "varies from law school to law school but they are not a major consideration in admission to most law schools. However, reasonable participation in campus activities can help you develop valuable communication, social, and logical skills."
Johns Hopkins University The Law School Option notes that "Law schools neither require nor are impressed by long lists of extracurricular activities. However, admissions committees are looking for significant leadership ability and activity, and a commitment to something other than a high undergraduate G.P.A. Whatever the activity, it needs to indicate meaningful community involvement, leadership, and responsibility in order to have a significant impact on the admissions process."
University of Notre Dame Prelaw suggests that you "Don't neglect extracurricular activities that will help to separate you from other applicants with similar numbers. Any responsible leadership role you have taken helps to show admissions committees you have varied talents beyond your academic ones. Study abroad, honors you accumulate, work experience, internships--all enhance your application
The University of Florida PreLaw Handbook indicates that, "One important thing to remember is that over-involvement in students activities will not compensate for poor academic performance. In other words, never sacrifice your grade point average [or LSAT Score] for your extracurricular activities. Also, do not forget to let law schools know if you have held a leadership position in any of the organizations to which you belong. A leadership position may provide you with skills you would not necessarily learn in the classroom such as organization, time management, delegation of authority and public speaking."
Johns Hopkins University The Law School Option says that "Students frequently ask what effect, if any, study abroad for a semester or year will have on their admissibility to law school. Some resources indicate that although foreign study itself will not contribute significantly to a candidate's acceptance or rejection, law schools are interested in recruiting students with diverse and enriched educational backgrounds. Students are cautioned, however, to apply to reputable, academically strong study-abroad programs."