The 4.0 Law Student: How to Start And End at the Top

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Beginning with the Fall semester, part-time students will be considered for a Continuing Merit Scholarship at the end of their third semester using either the scholarship matrix or an equivalent method, depending on the number of eligible part-time students. If there are twenty or more eligible part-time students combining day and evening part-time students , the award in the matrix below will be the scholarship awarded upon continuing studies at TJSL into the fourth semester:.

From Pre-Law 4.0 GPA Student to The Bad Girls Club

The award will be renewed for a maximum of six part-time semesters provided the student remains eligible to continue enrollment and remains enrolled. A transferring student is guaranteed to retain his or her scholarship as long as he or she remains eligible to continue enrollment and is enrolled at the law school. There is no need to submit a separate scholarship application. The matrix listed below will be your scholarship upon transferring to TJSL. This is based on your class rank at end of your first year at the law school from which you are transferring.

A quality point is almost always on a 4. For example, in the U. Depending on which school you attend in the U. The number that you get is your Grade Point Average. Your grades for these courses are:. If we multiply the grades you took by the number of credits for each course, we see you have 4 grade points for Biology, 6 for Mathematics, and 12 for English.

In total, 22 grade points. This is how we find out your GPA is 3. How to calculate an unweighted GPA? See the example above. GPAs are normally calculated on an unweighted scale, from 0 to 4. This means that the difficulty of your courses will not be considered. Whether you take an A in an easy class or a more challenging one, it will always be a 4. Weighted GPAs are a more accurate evaluation of your academic efforts.

They also use a different scale, from 0 to 5. However, sometimes, context does afford some benefit, so you should weigh carefully whether you want to bring up your grades or test scores, and what you will say when you do.

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Holistic admissions means that a school does not solely look at your grades or LSAT to determine whether you are admitted. It does not mean that a school ignores or subsantially reduces the importance of grades or LSAT when deciding on applications. It does mean that having extraordinary experiences, background, education, or other "soft" factors may push a mediocre application into the pile of stronger applications.

This, in itself, does not guarantee admission either, just a "better chance" of getting admitted. Holistic admissions does not mean that low stats can be offset by extra-curriculars or a well-written personal statement. Law students are typically active, "type-A" individuals and, as a result, are involved in many extra-curriculars that afford them the opportunity to use and improve their skills.

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This means that most law school applicants have substantial extra-curricular repertoires, making the baseline for "strong" extra-curriculars much higher. Anything beyond this may be considered a "strong" extra-curricular, but bear in mind that deciding whether an extra-curricular is strong is highly subjective and therefore would be difficult to measure with any certainty.

The best bet is to focus on doing what you enjoy, rather than attempting to build a resume tailored to "impress" an admissions committee member. Generally speaking, nearly no extra-curricular activity can offset any grade or LSAT score that would normally preclude you from getting admitted to law school. The largest factor in receiving admission to law school is strong academic ability, as demonstrated by a high GPA, and a competitive score on the LSAT.

There are few, if any, substitutes for this, barring exceptional circumstances , such as illness or other significant life event. Generally, demonstrating that you are a "real person", by engaging in activities that are important to you or that you are passionate about, is preferable to being involved in clubs or organizations that you think will give you a leg up over other law school applicants by virtue of the name or position of the organization alone.

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In other words, don't become president of the pre-law club because you believe law schools will be impressed by the fact that you are the president of the pre-law club. Instead, only become president if you passionate about the club and want to help others on their law school application journey. Usually, the former is very transparent to members of admissions committees.

Generally, no particular kind of activity, club, or other extra-curricular is seen as particularly favourable to your application. Not usually. You should only take pre-law courses if you are generally interested in the subject matter, as it is unlikely to help convince an admissions committee if your application is otherwise unimpressive.

And, if pre-law courses are not your forte, the poor grades you get in them may end up hurting your application. The same goes for being involved in pre-law clubs or undergrad moots. Probably not. Law schools are generally not interested if you would be a good lawyer ; rather, they are interested in your ability to engage in legal academics.

Most Impressive Harvard Law Students - Business Insider

While there is a practical skills component of most law schools' JD programs, it is incidental to the main priority, by virtue of the fact that law schools are first and foremost university faculties: critical thinking skills, research and writing ability, and ability to engage with the material. These aspects are best demonstrated by strong undergraduate grades, or in some cases, a graduate degree. It's not usually advisable that you go abroad to get a law degree if you want to work as a lawyer in Canada. Foreign graduates face significant barriers to entry to the profession, and going to a foreign school is likely going to be much more expensive than staying in Canada.

My A+ Study Routine - Law School / Masters / University

If you can avoid going to a foreign school, you absolutely should do so. That includes trying to apply, multiple times, to Canadian schools, and looking to out-of-province schools as well. Improving your stats, such as retaking the LSAT, or taking "upgrading" courses, are likely better options than going to a non-Canadian school.

Foreign graduates, in addition to typically having to pay substantially more to go to a foreign school and incur costs such as a loss when converting Canadian currency to the foreign equivalent , must take the National Committee on Accreditation NCA exams when they return. They must also find an articling position or enrol in the Law Practice Program in Ontario to get licensed. All of these steps take time the NCA exams themselves can take up to a year to complete and cost money.

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Additionally, foreign-trained lawyers face a significant stigma that usually results in difficulty finding an articling position or getting hired as an associate. You can , but you likely shouldn't. If the considerations above don't convince you, then a gander around the US and other Foreign Schools forum of lawstudents. Many foreign schools capitalize on Canadians that did not get admitted to a Canadian law school and offer enticing programs to lure them overseas.

What those schools don't tell you is the problems their graduates generally face when they return to Canada and seek to get licensed.

Grading systems and GPA scores

They also don't discuss the substantial cost of going to a foreign school over a Canadian school. Lastly, you should strongly consider whether law is right for you at this time if you are having trouble getting admitted to Canadian law schools over multiple cycles. You will need to secure an articling position or enrol in the Law Practice Program.

Statistically, yes. Most significantly, foreign-trained lawyers face the stigma of not having graduated from a Canadian unversity. Earned or not, this reputation comes from the fact that most foreign schools that attract Canadians to their law programs tend to have very low admission requirements and are therefore not seen as particularly strong institutions for legal training or critical thought.

Aside from this, all Canadian law school graduates possess a reasonable understanding of Canadian legal principles, which you will likely not learn to the same degree at a foreign institution. Foreign graduates who attend the Law Practice Program instead of securing an articling position tend to continue facing the stigma that they are not as well trained as their Canadian-graduate counterparts, and will likewise continue to have difficulty securing an associate's position.

Foreign graduates will likely also find it difficult to build a network from scratch which many law students spent years building locally that they can leverage to help them find employment or other assistance. Usually, much more expensive than going to school domestically. Sometimes, tuition fees themselves add up to be "less" than the ones charged by many Canadian schools most of the time due to the fact that you will be getting a two-year LLB instead of a three-year JD , but most applicants fail to realize associated expenses such as: loss when you convert currencies; health insurance; travel between Canada and the foreign country; room and board; increased cost of living in the foreign country; and lack of eligibility for many scholarships and bursaries due to international status.

Often times, applicants also do not factor in the costs associated with returning to Canada and getting licensed, such as NCA exam fees and materials, and possibly being required to enrol in the Law Practice Program in lieu of articling because of difficulty finding an articling position. Usually, these aggregate costs add up to substantially more than if one went to a Canadian law school. It can, but that makes a number of assumptions, including your success at finding a job that "[makes] lots of money", which the majority of foreign graduates do not succeed in obtaining.

If you believe you will be the exception to this statistic, you're invited to peruse this explanation of optimism bias in the hopes that you might reconsider.