Law School Waitlists: Advice for the Nervous

•February 21, 2017 • Leave a Comment

In the increasingly long season of law school admissions, waitlist season has gotten longer, too, and waitlists keep expanding. My advice: don’t worry but do what you can to improve your position. Don’t do too much, you don’t want to risk irritating law schools by peppering them with unnecessary information—you are not the only applicant to be waitlisted and you shouldn’t act as it you are.

Waitlists are necessary because many applicants are accepted at many places but can only attend one—and some take a long time to make their decision. So, if you’re waitlisted, you’re still in the running. How many people are accepted off waitlists varies by year and by school—more desirable schools will have more of their offers accepted, so there will be fewer admits off the waitlist (but their waitlists are often smaller, too). But if you’re on it, you have a chance, you just don’t know how good a chance. Don’t drive yourself crazy by trying to see into the crystal ball.

So, what do you do? The first thing is to promptly send a nice letter or e-mail to schools thanking them and accepting your spot (if you’re not interested, you should tell them that promptly, too, so they can offer that slot to someone else).

You should emphasize (one to two paragraphs total length) both the things that attract you about the school and the contributions you’ll make while you’re there. Many people omit the second but it matters—a letter that emphasizes only advantages to you tells law schools something, and it’s not generally something that makes you look good.

If a school is among your top choices, say that. If they are your first choice, say that; If you’d simply accept their offer of admission, say that (but you can only say those to one school).

You may also want to schedule on-campus visits at a few schools, not only because it puts you in front of them but because visits can help make your decision. Visiting various schools, all of which were great, was still important in my decision to go to Yale Law.

Finally, if you have updated information that bears on your application (a new job, promotion, academic achievements, for example), you can update all schools on that and at the same time note your continuing interest in their law school. Law schools don’t want to hear from people willy-nilly or randomly (they’re busy people), but if you have something to tell them that might make a difference, you should tell them. Then, relax, you’ve done your job, and you have to give them time to do theirs.

FROM THE NEW BLOG: An Analytical Reasoning (Logic Games) Primer: Part IV

•March 12, 2014 • Leave a Comment

More on our primer on the types of Analytical Reasoning (logic games) questions you might encounter on the LSAT…

Read more at the NEW Advise-In Blog…

FROM THE NEW BLOG: An Analytical Reasoning (Logic Games) Primer: Part III

•March 6, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Continuing our primer on the types of analytical reasoning (logic games) questions you might encounter on the LSAT…

Read more at the NEW Advise-In Blog…

FROM THE NEW BLOG: An Analytical Reasoning (Logic Games) Primer: Part II

•February 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment

To recall the foundational points I discussed in my previous entry: this is only meant to be a brief introduction to get you started, and should not serve as a substitute for a comprehensive LSAT preparation program – even if you are a fan of written LSAT prep materials, which I am not. But all caveats aside, I will begin my short, simple “primer” on LSAT analytical reasoning (logic games) questions…

Read more at the NEW Advise-In Blog…

FROM THE NEW BLOG: An Analytical Reasoning (Logic Games) Primer: Part I

•February 25, 2014 • Leave a Comment

People often ask me about the different “types” of questions on the LSAT. For example, without getting too in-depth, I’ve commented that there are 7 distinct types of questions you may encounter in the Analytical Reasoning (better known as the “logic games”) section. But before giving a quick summary of my answer about the “types” of Analytical Reasoning questions you might encounter, I want to emphasize a few things…

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FROM THE NEW BLOG: A Long Winter Might Lead to…Law School

•February 12, 2014 • Leave a Comment

It’s that time of the year in the Northeast: deep winter.  Even our friend in Punxsutawny went back to bed last week after poking his head out for a moment in the weather we’ve been having lately, and another big storm is on the way.

Read more at the NEW Advise-In Blog…

FROM THE NEW BLOG: Law School, Without the LSAT? Not on the American Bar Association’s (Selective) Watch

•December 19, 2013 • Leave a Comment

Two weeks ago, news broke that Rutgers School of Law–Camden was publicly censured and fined by the American Bar Association for utilizing standardized tests (such as the GRE, the GMAT, or the MCAT) rather than the LSAT to admit a percentage of several incoming classes since 2006.

This made headlines, of course, because it doesn’t happen very often. First of all, admission without the LSAT is actually allowed under certain circumstances, provided a school seeks and is granted a variance from the ABA’s accreditation Standard 503 showing the “validity and reliability” of the alternate test as it applies to getting a juris doctorate. But this Rutgers-Camden failed to do…or at least failed to do for all the years it continued the policy. Second, the ABA doesn’t censure schools all that often. In recent memory, there were two other incidents: when they fined University of Illinois College of Law for “fudging” reported LSAT scores and GPAs in order to boost rankings, and in 2011 when they censured Villanova Law for misreporting admissions data.

That Rutgers–Camden violated ABA regulations doesn’t seem to be in doubt. What’s striking about this story, however, is that with all the energy the ABA expends on policing LSAT violations by law schools, it can’t spare some on the task of compelling law schools to provide employment data that actually mean something to prospective law students.

Read more at the NEW Advise-In Blog…

 
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