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Q: Should I Take LSAT or Postpone ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: Should I Take LSAT or Postpone
Category: Reference, Education and News > Education
Asked by: georgep6506-ga
List Price: $40.00
Posted: 25 Nov 2005 16:33 PST
Expires: 25 Dec 2005 16:33 PST
Question ID: 597598
I am 37, and I would like to attend law school.  I have a B.S. in
Accounting with a 3.53 gpa and I graduated Magum Cum Laude because of
my extra work in the Honor's College at my university.  I passed my
CPA the first time and I have my licence.  I am a controller for a
company as well.

I am scheduled to take the LSAT next Saturday.  I live in New Orleans
and as a result of Katrina, I am being forced to make this decision at
the last minute.  I have been studying for two weeks off and on.  My
LSAT test practise score as of today is 153.  I believe I can drive
higher by a few points.

My question is this, Do I take the LSAT next Saturday or do I postpone
until February?  Will a 150-157 severely hurt my chances of getting
into a decent law school?  Would I be in a much better position if I
had a 160 - 165?

I would love to go to the Levin School of Law in Florida because they
have an excellent tax law department. (However, if I can't go there,
my wife is insisting on a school in Florida.) However, if I postpone,
I cannot go until 2007, and another year at my age isn't good. Please
note, if it is better for me to wait I will. What should I do and
where do you think I should go to school?
Subject: Re: Should I Take LSAT or Postpone
Answered By: answerguru-ga on 26 Nov 2005 01:27 PST
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hi georgep6506-ga,

I have considered your dilemma and there are two questions that need
to be addressed:

1. What are the top law schools in Florida?

2. What types of LSAT scores merit entry into these institutions?

Question #1: has ranked the top 100 law schools in the country for 2006.
Among this list there are three schools from Florida that made the
list. Each school has listed "middle of the pack" admissions data for
their previously admitted class (25th-75th percentile).

Option A: University of Florida (Levin), Rank: 42

Fall 2006 Admissions Information
Application deadline: 01/15
Application fee: $30 

Fall 2004 Admissions Statistics (Full-time Program)
Acceptance rate: 13.3%
LSAT scores (25th-75th percentile): 156-162

Levin also lists more current data at their Admissions site. You may
also be interested in noting that they are in the process of phasing
out Spring admissions after next year:

"Levin College of Law officials are phasing out Spring admissions. As
a result, 100 of Fall 2005 applicants will be selected to enroll in
January, 2006, to be known as the Fall 2005 Accelerated group. Thanks
to special scheduling, this group will be classified as second-year
students by the beginning of Fall 2006 classes."

*Profile of Fall 2005 Enrolled Class
75th Percentile UGPA: 3.86 
Median UGPA: 3.66 
25th Percentile UGPA: 3.40 

75th Percentile LSAT: 164 
Median LSAT: 161 
25th Percentile LSAT: 157 

*Not selection criteria

Option B: Florida State University, Rank: 56

Fall 2006 Admissions Information
Application deadline: 02/15
Application fee: $30 

Fall 2004 Admissions Statistics (Full-time Program)
Acceptance rate: 19.6%
LSAT scores (25th-75th percentile): 156-161

There is additional information at the FSU Law admissions site:

"Applications are accepted between October 1 and February 15 for
admissions the following August. The College of Law enrolls only one
class in the fall of each year. We do not offer a part-time or evening
program. Submit and complete law school applications as early as
possible, preferably by December 1. Files must be complete by April 1
to receive full consideration.

Factors considered by the admissions committee include numerical
credentials (LSAT and GPA), exceptional personal talents, interesting
or demanding work or service experience, leadership potential,
rigorousness of the undergraduate course of study, maturity, a history
of overcoming economic or other social hardships, ability to
communicate effectively, and other factors. Decisions on applicant
files are made as early as November.

The students of the College of Law are one of its greatest strengths.
Last year the College has received over 3700 applications for
approximately 250 seats in the first year class.

Admission to the College of Law is a competitive process. The median
GPA for applicants admitted for our 2005 entering class is 3.41, and
the median Law School Admission Test (LSAT) score is 159."

"Admission to the College of Law is a competitive process and
applications with the strongest records are given priority. A majority
of admissions decisions are made primarily on the basis of combining
LSAT scores with undergraduate grades. In addition, the personal
statement, resume, recommendation letters and strength of
undergraduate program are reviewed for all applicants."

Option C: University of Miami, Rank: 73

Fall 2006 Admissions Information
Application deadline: 07/31
Application fee: $50 

Fall 2004 Admissions Statistics (Full-time Program)
Acceptance rate: 35.2%
LSAT scores (25th-75th percentile): 155-160

The University of Miami also publishes additional details on their admissions site:

"Although we accept applications on a seat-available basis until July
31, you are strongly encouraged to begin the application process early
in the preceding fall. Applications received after February 6, 2006,
will be processed on a seat-available basis. Applicants wishing to be
considered for scholarships should complete their files prior to
January 6. "

"In evaluating your file, Miami, like most schools, will carefully
review your undergraduate record and Law School Admissions Test (LSAT)
score(s). However, we also give careful consideration to your personal
information, such as obstacles overcome, graduate studies, job
history, and significant extracurricular and community activities.
Special care is taken in the review process to ensure that the
entering class is a highly talented and select group, representing a
wide variety of cultural, racial, ethnic, and geographic backgrounds."

"The 75th percentile LSAT score and grade point average of the 2005
entering class are a 160 LSAT and 3.64 G.P.A. The 25th percentile LSAT
score and G.P.A. for the same class are a 156 LSAT and 3.22 G.P.A.
Note that multiple LSAT scores are averaged in the admissions process.
The attrition rate is approximately 5 percent, and students who
withdraw usually do so for nonacademic reasons."

Question #2:

From your question, it is safe to make your decision on the basis of
getting an LSAT of 155. As you can see from the statistics provided
for the three schools above, an LSAT of 155 would place you at
approximately the 25th percentile (or slightly below). Notice that
none of these institutions specify their absolute max/min LSAT scores
- this is due to the fact that, particularly on the low end of the
scale, a few students are eventually admitted on the basis of their
other credentials (letters of reference, undergraduate grades, etc.).

Although you won't get a definitive response to this question from the
schools themselves (they would likely encourage you to apply), I
believe you would be admitted with an LSAT of 155 at Miami and FSU;
Levin is questionable because the LSAT scores of it's classes appear
to have been increasing in recent years.

If you are to proceed with the LSAT, I believe you have a few
questions to ask yourself that will ultimately drive your decision:

1. Am I confident that I can obtain a score of at least 155 on the LSAT?
2. Am I comfortable being admitted to a school where I am ranked in
the lowest quartile of the admitted class?
3. Will I be discouraged from enrolling at FSU or U of M if I do not
get my first choice (Levin)?
4. What additional benefit will I have by waiting another year to apply?

I hope the information above has been helpful and will allow you to
make an informed decision. If any of the above information is unclear,
please post a clarification and I will respond promptly.

Good luck!

georgep6506-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Excellent Answer.  I think I will postpone.  Thanks for your help.

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