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sensrock20

How difficult is it to get accepted after 3rd year?

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Hello All,

I’m considering applying for law school during my third year of university, I have very good work experience and a competitive LSAT score of 163 and a GPA of 3.8. 

However, I’d like to know if law schools place serious consideration for third year applicants. Would anyone happen to know the likelihood of being accepted during my third year? 
 

The more opinions, the merrier!

[mod edit: OP has clarified that the stats in this post are hypothetical.  -WJ]

Edited by whereverjustice
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This is a bit of a more complicated question than it may seem at first glance.

The tl;dr version is that, yes, it is possible to get into law school in 3rd year, and your GPA/LSAT is good enough to do so.

Considerations:

First of all, it depends which school you are applying to. U of T, for example, looks at your B3 (best three years) and is also the most competitive school in Canada. On the other hand, Ryerson looks at your B20 (best 20 courses in total) and therefor will be more accepting of a person with a decently consistent GPA over three years. If you don't care what school you get into, then you can probably get an acceptance in 3rd year.

If you are serious about this, you need to take a hard look at each of the law schools you are considering individually. Would you be looking at schools all across Canada?

Additionally to point #1, the same student who would get an acceptance to a law school in 3rd year would get more acceptances after completing the entire 4 years of undergrad. So you might literally be depriving yourself of going to the law school you want to go to just because you feel motivated to rush the process right now.

The next factor is whether you want to cut your undergrad experience short just to get into law school earlier. Most threads I have read on this forum encourage you to enjoy your undergrad while you can, since it is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Thirdly, it makes a difference if your university allows for a degree to be completed after 3rd year (sometimes known as a general BA) with a 4 year degree being known as an Honours BA (not to be confused with a BA with Hons). Some law schools that accept three year degrees still want that degree to be completed and not merely consist of three years towards a 4 year degree.

One factor in favour of applying in third year is that doing so does not prevent you from applying again the following year if your law school admissions offers are non-existent or not appealing to you. However, this does cost significant money and effort (to apply to law schools two years in a row).

My overall opinion is that you should complete your 4 year BA before applying to law school.

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4 hours ago, sensrock20 said:

Hello All,

I’m considering applying for law school during my third year of university, I have very good work experience and a competitive LSAT score of 163 and a GPA of 3.8. 

However, I’d like to know if law schools place serious consideration for third year applicants. Would anyone happen to know the likelihood of being accepted during my third year? 
 

The more opinions, the merrier!

UBC has no problem accepting 3rd year candidates provided you have the requisite credits. Are you sure you don’t want to finish your degree? I know some people who’ve expressed regrets about not finishing their degree but it’s not otherwise a hindrance in getting a job, all things being equal. 

Edited by Psychometronic
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8 hours ago, SNAILS said:

This is a bit of a more complicated question than it may seem at first glance.

The tl;dr version is that, yes, it is possible to get into law school in 3rd year, and your GPA/LSAT is good enough to do so.

Considerations:

First of all, it depends which school you are applying to. U of T, for example, looks at your B3 (best three years) and is also the most competitive school in Canada. On the other hand, Ryerson looks at your B20 (best 20 courses in total) and therefor will be more accepting of a person with a decently consistent GPA over three years. If you don't care what school you get into, then you can probably get an acceptance in 3rd year.

If you are serious about this, you need to take a hard look at each of the law schools you are considering individually. Would you be looking at schools all across Canada?

Additionally to point #1, the same student who would get an acceptance to a law school in 3rd year would get more acceptances after completing the entire 4 years of undergrad. So you might literally be depriving yourself of going to the law school you want to go to just because you feel motivated to rush the process right now.

The next factor is whether you want to cut your undergrad experience short just to get into law school earlier. Most threads I have read on this forum encourage you to enjoy your undergrad while you can, since it is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Thirdly, it makes a difference if your university allows for a degree to be completed after 3rd year (sometimes known as a general BA) with a 4 year degree being known as an Honours BA (not to be confused with a BA with Hons). Some law schools that accept three year degrees still want that degree to be completed and not merely consist of three years towards a 4 year degree.

One factor in favour of applying in third year is that doing so does not prevent you from applying again the following year if your law school admissions offers are non-existent or not appealing to you. However, this does cost significant money and effort (to apply to law schools two years in a row).

My overall opinion is that you should complete your 4 year BA before applying to law school.

Thank you so much for your advice. I greatly appreciate it.

I was thinking that if I get accepted into law school after third year, I’d simply graduate with a general BA, so that's what’s largely influencing me to do so. 
 

I also failed to mention that I deferred one year of school to work for a 2 members of parliament, so I’d be the same age as everyone apply if I were to apply after third year. 
 

 

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9 hours ago, Psychometronic said:

UBC has no problem accepting 3rd year candidates provided you have the requisite credits. Are you sure you don’t want to finish your degree? I know some people who’ve expressed regrets about not finishing their degree but it’s not otherwise a hindrance in getting a job, all things being equal. 

Personally, I have no problem of not finishing my degree as long as I get accepted into Law School. Also, my university offers a general BA for my degree (3 years). I'm thinking to just graduate with that if given the beyond amazing opportunity of getting accepted into law school during my third year. 

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9 hours ago, SNAILS said:

This is a bit of a more complicated question than it may seem at first glance.

The tl;dr version is that, yes, it is possible to get into law school in 3rd year, and your GPA/LSAT is good enough to do so.

Considerations:

First of all, it depends which school you are applying to. U of T, for example, looks at your B3 (best three years) and is also the most competitive school in Canada. On the other hand, Ryerson looks at your B20 (best 20 courses in total) and therefor will be more accepting of a person with a decently consistent GPA over three years. If you don't care what school you get into, then you can probably get an acceptance in 3rd year.

If you are serious about this, you need to take a hard look at each of the law schools you are considering individually. Would you be looking at schools all across Canada?

Additionally to point #1, the same student who would get an acceptance to a law school in 3rd year would get more acceptances after completing the entire 4 years of undergrad. So you might literally be depriving yourself of going to the law school you want to go to just because you feel motivated to rush the process right now.

The next factor is whether you want to cut your undergrad experience short just to get into law school earlier. Most threads I have read on this forum encourage you to enjoy your undergrad while you can, since it is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Thirdly, it makes a difference if your university allows for a degree to be completed after 3rd year (sometimes known as a general BA) with a 4 year degree being known as an Honours BA (not to be confused with a BA with Hons). Some law schools that accept three year degrees still want that degree to be completed and not merely consist of three years towards a 4 year degree.

One factor in favour of applying in third year is that doing so does not prevent you from applying again the following year if your law school admissions offers are non-existent or not appealing to you. However, this does cost significant money and effort (to apply to law schools two years in a row).

My overall opinion is that you should complete your 4 year BA before applying to law school.

My goal is to get into Osgoode, Queens, Western, or Ottawa. Would you say there's a decent chance at any of those universities?

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Hey there! I'm a third year applicant in this cycle, and coincidentally I've applied to all the schools you've listed here! Hahahaha 😂

I have a 3.93 cGPA and a 162 LSAT, for stats. I will be graduating this year with a 3 year general BA. 

So far I've gotten into Queens and Western, the latter of which offered me a large scholarship. I haven't heard yet from Osgoode and Ottawa. 

As far as I can see, they seem to treat third-year applicants the same way as everyone else. That being said, I think some schools look at third year applicants later in the year before sending them offers (e.g. Western appeared to offer me and a few other third years admission on the same day in early Feb, and from what I can remember I don't think there were any other third years that had gotten offers before that point in the cycle). I am a little surprised that I haven't heard from the other two yet, but I'm really happy with my Western offer (it was tied for my top choice) so I'm not overly worried! 

One important caveat though - any acceptances you'll get as a third-year will likely be conditional, wherein they can take away your offer if you don't meet the requirements that they give you when they accept you. For example, my offer to Western was accompanied by the condition that I finish this year with a cumulative average of minimum 80% in order to still be accepted. As far as I can tell, all of the third-year applicants that were also accepted got the same condition and none of the non-third years did. I think my Queens offer was unconditional, though. 

You've got great stats and I have no doubt you'll get into at least one of those schools. However, I would recommend you at least come away with a 3-year degree if you decide to apply early, so you can have something to show for your years of hard work. There are many compelling and valid arguments in favour of staying for the fourth and final year of an Honours degree, and I think it's also a solid and good idea that's worth considering.

However, if this is something you really want to do, and you feel that going in your third year is the way you want to do it, I say go for it. Like @SNAILS said, it won't affect any decisions you may have to apply in later years should you choose to, it'll only really affect the amount of money and effort you spend on applications (warning: quite a bit of both is required) and the possibility of getting in at certain schools (but if you don't have a specific, hard-to-get-into dream school in mind, then I guess that's not so much of an issue). 

Take lots of time to think this decision over - you've got time on your side here.

Good luck!

Edited by navyblue11
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6 hours ago, navyblue11 said:

Hey there! I'm a third year applicant in this cycle, and coincidentally I've applied to all the schools you've listed here! Hahahaha 😂

I have a 3.93 cGPA and a 162 LSAT, for stats. I will be graduating this year with a 3 year general BA. 

So far I've gotten into Queens and Western, the latter of which offered me a large scholarship. I haven't heard yet from Osgoode and Ottawa. 

As far as I can see, they seem to treat third-year applicants the same way as everyone else. That being said, I think some schools look at third year applicants later in the year before sending them offers (e.g. Western appeared to offer me and a few other third years admission on the same day in early Feb, and from what I can remember I don't think there were any other third years that had gotten offers before that point in the cycle). I am a little surprised that I haven't heard from the other two yet, but I'm really happy with my Western offer (it was tied for my top choice) so I'm not overly worried! 

One important caveat though - any acceptances you'll get as a third-year will likely be conditional, wherein they can take away your offer if you don't meet the requirements that they give you when they accept you. For example, my offer to Western was accompanied by the condition that I finish this year with a cumulative average of minimum 80% in order to still be accepted. As far as I can tell, all of the third-year applicants that were also accepted got the same condition and none of the non-third years did. I think my Queens offer was unconditional, though. 

You've got great stats and I have no doubt you'll get into at least one of those schools. However, I would recommend you at least come away with a 3-year degree if you decide to apply early, so you can have something to show for your years of hard work. There are many compelling and valid arguments in favour of staying for the fourth and final year of an Honours degree, and I think it's also a solid and good idea that's worth considering.

However, if this is something you really want to do, and you feel that going in your third year is the way you want to do it, I say go for it. Like @SNAILS said, it won't affect any decisions you may have to apply in later years should you choose to, it'll only really affect the amount of money and effort you spend on applications (warning: quite a bit of both is required) and the possibility of getting in at certain schools (but if you don't have a specific, hard-to-get-into dream school in mind, then I guess that's not so much of an issue). 

Take lots of time to think this decision over - you've got time on your side here.

Good luck!

Congratulations on your acceptance! I can only imagine the feeling of relief and excitement when you first saw the offer. 

Also, thanks for the surplus information, I really do appreciate it. If I am blessed with acceptance during my third year, I will leave with a general BA as my program provides me with that option. 
However, I do have to ask, as a third year applicant, did you apply under general or access? I’m assuming it’s be safe to apply under access since it’s uncommon to apply during your third year? 

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31 minutes ago, sensrock20 said:

However, I do have to ask, as a third year applicant, did you apply under general or access? I’m assuming it’s be safe to apply under access since it’s uncommon to apply during your third year? 

The Access category is for people who have compelling (often medical, I assume) reasons for their comparatively poor performance who wish to demonstrate that their potential is higher than that performance. To apply under this category, you need to supply corroborative documents. If this doesn't describe you (and I can't imagine it does, given that you have a 163/3.8), definitely don't apply Access. 

Edited by masterofnut
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51 minutes ago, sensrock20 said:

Congratulations on your acceptance! I can only imagine the feeling of relief and excitement when you first saw the offer. 

Also, thanks for the surplus information, I really do appreciate it. If I am blessed with acceptance during my third year, I will leave with a general BA as my program provides me with that option. 
However, I do have to ask, as a third year applicant, did you apply under general or access? I’m assuming it’s be safe to apply under access since it’s uncommon to apply during your third year? 

I applied general!

Edited by navyblue11
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24 minutes ago, masterofnut said:

The Access category is for people who have compelling (often medical, I assume) reasons for their comparatively poor performance who wish to demonstrate that their potential is higher than that performance. To apply under this category, you need to supply corroborative documents. If this doesn't describe you (and I can't imagine it does, given that you have a 163/3.8), definitely don't apply Access. 

Great, thanks for the information! 

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14 hours ago, sensrock20 said:

My goal is to get into Osgoode, Queens, Western, or Ottawa. Would you say there's a decent chance at any of those universities?

Having those two years working with members of Parliament is an added bonus, the significance of which is proportional to the nature of your role.

You should get one or two acceptances from those law schools provided you keep your grades up.

You seem like the type of person who will make the right decision about this. Good luck!

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