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About loopholethereitis

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  1. Awesome! Good luck on your test If you're feeling it, go for it. One caveat: I hope you don't take this post as a guarantee that two months will be enough time for you to prepare for your test. What worked for me may or may not work for you. If you're writing in June, that means you will be applying for 2020 entry at the earliest, so there's no rush. Writing later in the year won't affect your chances significantly, and I don't think there's any reason to be afraid of the digital test.
  2. Hey everybody! I thought I would write a post discussing my study habits in preparation for the LSAT, since similar posts really helped me create a study plan myself. I sat the most recent exam in January 2019 and was happy with my score of 168. As some of you may have seen, it was enough to get me accepted into UBC for this September, where I will be attending in the fall. I started studying about December 1 last year. I know this is a short timeline and many people recommend you start studying a year or more in advance. This is not bad advice; obviously, the more you study the better you are likely to do. If you know that you will be taking the exam well ahead of time, start as early as you can. Personally, I had been considering applying for JD admissions for fall 2020, and only made the decision to start applying for the 2019 academic year at the last minute. This was for personal reasons, like when my husband would be finishing his doctorate, whether we would have to be long distance, etc. (We will likely have to do long distance for the first year of my JD, but that's beside the point). All this to say that I did not have much time to prepare. Luckily (?) I was unemployed for that two month period, so I was able to dedicate most of my remaining time to studying. With that in mind, I did break one cardinal rule of studying for the LSAT: I burned through a lot of practice tests in a short time period, averaging about half a test per day during the 60 days I leading up to my test date. I wouldn't recommend doing this if you have six months or a year to study, but I felt that the best way to make use of my limited time was to simply do the task that would be required of me on test day, learn from my mistakes, and rinse and repeat. Not knowing how many tests I would be able to get through in my-two month time frame, I started from the most recent, assuming (correctly) that the recent tests would be different in some way from the earlier ones, and worked backwards. (I've since heard one horror story from a friend who started with the earliest tests and found that the LSAT he eventually wrote was very different from the ones he had been practicing for. He's happily graduated from law school now though, so don't worry). I left the two most recent tests untouched, saving them for a final run-through in the days leading up to the exam. I identified early in the process that my biggest challenge was going to be timing. One of the reasons that I decided to take the LSAT early (and indeed, that encouraged me to consider law school at all) was that I realized it was testing for aptitudes I already felt I had in some capacity. I've always scored very high on standardized tests for reading comprehension, and in a way analyzing arguments just felt like a variation on a reading comprehension test. From the outset, I was able to do relatively well on these sections, so long as I let myself take as much time as I wanted. And I wanted to take a lot of time. Initially, I didn't "time" myself, but observed how much time each section took me: usually, it was upwards of 1.5-2 hours. I forced myself to not let that worry me and focused instead on thoughtfully reading and answering each question, trusting that as I adjusted to these new styles of questions and got back into the habit of careful reading, my time would come down naturally. After a few weeks, it did. I started reliably getting higher scores (maybe 1-3 wrong per section, sometimes perfect) in less than an hour without hurrying myself. So, I started putting 50 minutes on the clock to see what I could do under that constraint. My scores dropped, but I was able to finish each section reasonably well, and slowly adjusted the time limit until I was getting scores I wanted in the prescribed 35 minutes. Although I focused on timing closer to the test date, I think the early period of working through each question at my own pace was really valuable because it let me make an honest attempt at each question and gave me a learning opportunity with each mistake.You can only learn so much from making a mistake on a given question if you only got the chance to skim it in the first place. Whether or not you have a natural aptitude for the subjects tested on the LSAT should be a serious consideration for whether law school is the place for you, but it should not define your decision in and of itself. If you find the content of the LSAT difficult or tedious, but know you want to attend law school for other reasons, you can still do it. At least, this is the belief I have to hold given my experience with the logic games portion of the test. My first time taking the test, I remember growing hesitantly more and more optimistic and confident until I hit this section; when I realized how difficult it was for me, I cried and almost gave up on law school altogether. My poor husband had to pick me up out of my anxiety spiral (and off the literal floor - he puts up with so much) and encourage me to try again, which I did. I muddled through, formulating my own strategies for each set of questions without much progress until I found 7sage. They have great explanations for the logic games section of each available LSAT. Their strategies for solving different types of problems, for setting up the "game board," and for developing a simple, clear notation helped me incalculably. I only discovered them about three weeks before my test; I hope this post will help turn you on to them sooner. I went through and watched all the explanations for all the practice questions I had done up to that point, and started watching their videos for all the subsequent practice exams I took. This probably wound up being my worst section of the test (I don't know because my test was unreported), but I guess still good enough for me to have a high average overall. This is where not having enough time to practice probably affected me the most. Aside from being sure to do my final "dress rehearsals" in the two days before the exam, that was pretty much my study plan. One thing I do think helped was that I was intentional about disconnecting myself from the internet and other distractions while studying. I would get up, go to a coffee shop, and, leaving my phone and all other devices in the car, plant myself firmly in a window seat with a nice latte and refuse to move until I had finished a whole test. Without having to constantly discipline myself to stay off the internet, the experience of studying for the LSAT was actually really enjoyable. I was free to get absorbed in the process of reading, learning, and solving problems in cozy, comforting atmosphere. I think I'll look back at that time fondly. (Obviously, buying a latte every other day really adds up. It was an investment I chose to make in my LSAT prep. You don't have to do the same thing! Go to the library, or have a roommate change the wifi password and not give it back until you've finished. Or find some other way to limit distractions. Everyone's life suits a different strategy. Also, I had Starbucks gift cards out the wazoo and figured this was the most meaningful way to use them). I hope reading my experience was helpful to you in some way. Like I said, reading about other people's strategies was really helpful for me. Keep in mind that everyone's aptitudes and learning styles are different. What worked for me may not work for you! That said, I hope you can find some take away here that you can use in your own studying. My biggest piece of advice: take practice tests, if not as often as I did. You can develop logical analysis and reading skills in many ways, but the test has a specific format that is worth your time to get good at. And use the free videos that 7sage has on their Youtube channel! They made all the difference for me. Good luck to you guys on your test day! Let me know how it goes, and if you use any of the strategies I talked about here Happy lawyering!
  3. Thank you so much! I've really appreciated people following my story and being supportive This community is one of the most positive and respectful that I've ever come across on the internet.
  4. Thank you! And thanks for the heads up. I think I'm comfortable with all this info being public though.
  5. I got accepted into UBC as well, which was my #1 choice. I know I want to practice law in BC, so there's that. But I also didn't even realize that UBC was a realistic option for me when I started the application process. Looking at the entrance statistics, a lot of schools seem to have a GPA cutoff around 3.5 for acceptance in the regular category. This made me feel like any law school was a long shot for me, let alone the more prestigious ones, and I may have limited myself. That's part of why I wanted to make this post, to encourage other people that GPA does not have to be the limiting characteristic of your application if you are strong in other ways.
  6. I just got accepted. I officially love you. One million ashleybucks. I was curious whether my position on the waitlist was in reference to the general pool or just Indigenous applicants, so I sent an email and asked. Yeah, turns out they have distinct waiting lists for each category, which makes sense as they are considered separately. Congratulations on your own acceptance as well! Starting university after working for a few years can be nerve-racking, but I feel it also helps give some perspective about potential career paths. Are you going to the NLCSP? I might see you there
  7. Hey everyone! I'm a little late, but I'm happy to share that I've been accepted into a few law schools! I know the requirements can be a little uncertain for Metis and Indigenous students as there aren't thorough statistics published for our admissions category, so posts like this were really helpful for me when I was deciding which law schools were realistic. So without futher ado: My statistics: CGPA 3.3, LSAT 168 Major: English (with some courses in the sciences from before I changed my major) Schools applied to: TRU, UVic, UBC Schools accepted: TRU, UVic Watilisted: UBC Some aspects of my application that may have been persuasive: - I discussed my history of depression, with accompanying documentation in the form of therapist notes and prescription for antidepressants, how it affected my performance during my undergraduate degree, and how I have learned to manage it in the 3+ years since I graduated. -I had extensive volunteer experience demonstrating that I care about improving the communities in which I live -I discussed my professional experience since graduating, including teaching and running a business. The business I run has a unique model designed to help provide low-income housing, again contributing to my assertion that I am community-minded. -I am English/French bilingual References used to UBC and UVic: My first reference was an academic reference from a professor at my undergraduate college. She was the chair of the English department there. I was really nervous to ask her for a reference letter because my undergraduate performance wasn't great and I haven't been in contact with her in the years since I graduated. I don't know if I would have been able to do it weren't for my husband, whose parents are professors and who is much more comfortable in the culture of academia than I am. He assured me that writing reference letters is an expected part of a professor's job description and that they are generally happy to do it. She wound up being so kind and supportive throughout the process, more so than I could have ever imagined. If you're a nervous wreck like I am, just send your professor an email and ask!! You aren't putting them out unduly, and the worst they can do is say no. My second strong reference came from a family friend and lawyer I know from Alberta. I don't really know her in a professional capacity, which isn't ideal, but she has been involved some activism in the Alberta Metis community that my family and I have been working on, so she was able to address my pride in my identity, etc. I first had the idea to ask her for a letter because UVic specifically asked for a reference discussing my involvement in the Metis community, but she wound up writing such a persuasive reference that I decided to use it for my UBC application as well. References used for TRU: TRU spelled out very clearly in their application that all references must be either academic or professional, so I decided against using the letter from my lawyer friend of the family. I asked a woman who ran a volunteer program I had been involved with in Houston, TX, where we taught English to refugees. I was a little concerned using this letter because the program was run through a church, so it may not have been considered really professional even though it was intended to provide education, not evangelize. I asked the woman who wrote the letter to emphasize the connections it had to strictly secular programs such as Refugee Services of Texas, and I guess it worked, because I got in. Sorry if this is a lot of text for a simple acceptance post, but I wanted to include any information I thought would be helpful for people in the position I was in a year ago. I really didn't think I had the credentials to get into law school, and I needed lots of encouragement and direction before I felt confident enough to write the LSAT and apply. I hope this post can give some encouragement to people who felt like I did then. I've also attached a table I found which gives more stats for Metis students that have been accepted into Canadian law schools. Feel free to respond back with any questions if you need some help. I will post an update if I end up being accepted to UBC. I'm apparently second on the waitlist so it's not such a long shot. If there are any Indigenous students out there reading this post who are currently accepted to UBC but have decided to go elsewhere, I would greatly appreciate you letting Allard know as UBC is currently my #1 choice of school and I am stressssiiiinnnnggggg out. My gratitude will be redeemable in a personalized meme or one million Ashleybucks. More stats: https://imgur.com/yzHMbEF?fbclid=IwAR3PNpmjAvIG0fpO4pSe2-1u5gNqjU48qJo4rS6Lw_Izj5riyVcgOGx3pfA
  8. A bit of a late reply to your comments, but I sent them an email asking these very questions! Here was the thread: Dear Sir or Madam, I am in the process of applying to the 2019 NLC Summer program. There are some discrepancies between the application form itself and the information listed on the NLC website. On the website, it says unofficial transcripts are acceptable and only one academic reference is required, but the application form includes official transcripts and two academic references as part of the checklist. Which set of requirements is more up to date? If two academic references are indeed required, would I be allowed to substitute a professional reference for one of them? I have been out of school for a number of years, so the professional reference feels more relevant to me at this point. I only used one academic reference to apply to law school, so to find a second one I would have to reach out to another professor who has not been a part of my application process so far. Finally, what format should I use to upload my LSAT score? Should I take a screenshot of my score as it is listed on the LSAC website? If you have my LSAC test taker number, will you be able to access my official LSAT score like the law schools I applied to were? Any clarification you could give me would be greatly appreciated. Regards, loopholethereitis Good morning loopholethereitis, We will accept two references, and it will be acceptable if one is a professional reference. A Screenshot of your LSAT score will suffice, or forwarded the email you received with your LSAT score. It is your responsibility to ensure that your application is complete and includes the following: Submission of online application form Copy of notification of acceptance to law school (you can forward us a copy of the email you received from the Law School) Current résumé Copy of your LSAT score (you can forward us a copy of the email you received from LSAC) University transcripts (unofficial copies will suffice) Personal statement describing the degree to which you identify with and are connected to an Indigenous community (the purpose of this statement is to help us understand your connection to Indigenous culture and community and/or how colonization has impacted on you as an Indigenous person) Evidence of acceptance by an Indigenous community One academic letter of reference One community letter of reference which fully describes your connection(s) to the Indigenous community All of the above are required for us to consider your application for admission to the NLC Summer Program. Anything pertaining to your application can be sent through email to [email protected] To secure your seat, please arrange to have your application package completed as soon as possible. Hope that answers your questions!
  9. I think Onepost made some great points, so I don't see any reason to restate what was said in that post. I would just like to add that I am also applying to law school with a history of depression. I'm certainly nervous about it, especially since it affected my performance in undergrad. I've made the decision that I don't want my mental illness hold me back from pursuing my goals in life, and I hope that in the end it won't hold you back either. However, I second Onepost that suicidal thoughts are very serious, and that it may benefit you to take some time to address mental health concerns before actually accepting any offers. One final consideration is that it is often easier to access mental health resources as a student. If you are having difficulty paying for a therapist or getting the appropriate medication, the campus wellness center may be able to help out. You may have to weigh the benefits of having reliable access to good care against the difficulty of placing yourself in a stressful environment. I wish you all the best for the future and that you are able to find fulfillment whatever you decide.
  10. I calculated what my index score was earlier, but I'm not at home right now and don't have it on me. I'll report back
  11. That's a super helpful table, thank you. And so encouraging!!! Based on this data I almost think I should have applied to U of T. I'll be sure to report back with my acceptance status at the end of this process to help out future aboriginal applicants.
  12. Thanks man! But I'm not totally sure what you mean by UBC%? Do you mean my index score?
  13. Hey guys, I'm an aboriginal student applying to law schools in BC (UVic, UBC, and TRU) for fall 2019. I wrote the most recent LSAT in January and got a 168, which I'm super excited about, but my undergraduate GPA is bad. Like 3.3 bad. This was due in part to a severe depression I experienced in my 3rd year for which I have documentation (notes from therapy sessions and prescriptions for antidepressants). I think my reference letters and personal statement are good enough. Can anybody comment on the probability of my being accepted? I have no idea if it's even realistic to imagine applying for law schools with an undergraduate GPA as bad as mine is. I have no idea how much leeway is given to aboriginal students, or to what extent the application committee will consider my depression. Your honest but sensitive feedback would be appreciated. This is my dream, so if you think I have no chance, please let me down gently Ash
  14. Hey guys, I'm an aboriginal student applying to law schools in BC (UVic, UBC, and TRU) for fall 2019. I wrote the most recent LSAT in January and got a 168, which I'm super excited about, but my undergraduate GPA is bad. Like 3.3 bad. This was due in part to a severe depression I experienced in my 3rd year for which I have documentation (notes from therapy sessions and prescriptions for antidepressants). I think my reference letters and personal statement are good enough. Can anybody comment on the probability of my being accepted? I have no idea if it's even realistic to imagine applying for law schools with an undergraduate GPA as bad as mine is. I have no idea how much leeway is given to aboriginal students, or to what extent the application committee will consider my depression. Your honest but sensitive feedback would be appreciated. This is my dream, so if you think I have no chance, please let me down gently Ash
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