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I have an extremely low undergraduate GPA, should I even apply to law school?

rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
edited June 2019 in Law School Admissions 78 karma

Hi everyone,
I graduated in 2016 from XULA with a 2.3 GPA due to taking on many responsibilities at home. For example, I helped supplement the income in my household in which I worked full-time for most of my career. This is my regular GPA and not my LSAC gpa which I terrified about. I knew I wanted to be a lawyer since I was 11 years old but I have been through so much life wise. Is there hope for me and if so what are some tips I could use to improve my chances

Comments

  • Eric25Eric25 Legacy Member
    720 karma

    of course there is hope! I've seen people with similar GPAs go to law school. You're biggest factor will obviously be the lsat, and killing it with an awesome score will give the biggest boost to your application. Writing an addendum explaining your GPA will also really help as well. Do you have any ideas about where you want to go? I'll be honest, I don't know how likely it is that you would be able to go to a top-20 school. I hope I'm wrong, but there are certainly law schools that would accept you if you get an awesome lsat score! This community will help you in any way we can, I'm sure someone will comment with more advice/stories.

  • JerryClarke242JerryClarke242 Alum Member
    602 karma
  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    edited February 2018 23929 karma

    @"ronikastewart.rs" said:
    Hi everyone,
    I graduated in 2016 from Xavier University of Louisiana with a 2.3 GPA due to taking on many responsibilities at home. For example, I helped supplement the income in my household in which I worked full-time for most of my career. This is my regular GPA and not my LSAC gpa which I terrified about. I knew I wanted to be a lawyer since I was 11 years old but I have been through so much life wise. Is there hope for me and if so what are some tips I could use to improve my chances

    There's always hope... Always.

    https://media.giphy.com/media/blo9dTWCvXBFC/giphy.gif

    But whether or not you should pursue law school will partly depend on your LSAC calculated GPA. If it's < 2.0, I'd suggest forgoing law school. Your life seems like it was already tough financially. And many people think that once they get into law school or become attorneys that it will all fall into place. Often, it's the exact opposite.

    What school(s) are you aiming at and what are your career goals? I think that should play into the calculus too.

    Tips:

    -It's really going to come down to your LSAT score. If you can score well on that, I think there's always going to be hope. A 2.0/170+ will have some decent options. I would sign up for an LSAT course (I'm obviously fond of 7Sage, especially since it's the highest rated/most affordable) and take as much time as I need to get my LSAT score where it need to be. If that takes 6 months or a year, so be it. After all, your dream is to become a lawyer.

    -I would see if there is a possibility of retroactive withdraws from classes you did poorly in. If you can even bump your GPA up by a few tenths, it would put you in a much better condition.

    -Get some work experience to separate yourself from your GPA. I think with 5 years work experience admissions would care significantly less about your low GPA and more about your LSAT/work experience.

    -Write an addendum explaining your low GPA. Having to work through undergrad is tough. Admissions personnel understand that.

    -Work with a reputable admissions consultant. It will make all the difference when applying with a low GPA.

    -Don't give up. If you want something bad enough and are willing to work hard enough for it, I don't think there's much that can stop you. Even a poor GPA. Focus on what you can change, like your LSAT and work experience.

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @estouten25 I have a few schools that I'm interested in going to which are: UNT Dallas, Southern University Law Center, Florida Coastal Law, ATL John Marshall, University of Memphis with my target schools being Loyola New Orleans, LSU, Mercer, and Texas Tech.

  • LSATcantwinLSATcantwin Alum Member Sage
    13286 karma

    I've been summoned!

    I am applying this cycle with a 2.83 and a 171 LSAT.

    Hey - So you can get into law school with a 2.XX GPA. You can even get into a decent T-20/T-14 school with that GPA.

    The catch? It will not be easy. If you are committed to being a lawyer, and you want to shoot for the big schools, there are some serious considerations you need to take.

    Things to seriously consider;

    • Separate yourself from your grades. Only time can do this. Get a job, get work experience, and volunteer. As an example, my bad grades almost all occurred 6-10 years ago. I joined the Marine Corps, I've worked at law offices and courts, I have a fairly built up resume. I even went back to school and got a 4.0 for two years. This shows them that you are not the same person you were. This will also help them to "look past" the GPA a bit.

    • LSAT score. Your GPA will be below every schools 25% mark So you need the LSAT to be above the target schools 75%. They're going to take a hit for your GPA so you need to give them a boost with your LSAT score. Think of it as a trade off. "You take me with a 2.XX and I'll give you a huge LSAT score." The LSAT is EXTREMELY important to people like us. So get studying!!

    • Cost/ben - Law school is extremely expensive. As a splitter scholarships might not be as easy to get. Think about the debt you will be getting yourself into. Do you have a way to pay it off? Is it worth putting yourself into a hole? Is there a way to mitigate it?

    • @"Alex Divine" is also correct. I didn't know about this until I had already submitted - and it is DESTROYING me right now. But some programs will help remove past mistakes/change bad marks into W's etc. It is encouraged to look into these before you apply!

    Most of all it will take dedication and determination. You need to show them that you are not your GPA. It has taken me almost 7 years to show the schools that I am capable, and if you really want to be a lawyer, you might have to invest that much time.

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @"Alex Divine" How do I go about the retroactive withdrawals process?

  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    23929 karma

    @"ronikastewart.rs" said:
    @"Alex Divine" How do I go about the retroactive withdrawals process?

    You need to contact your registrar at your undergrad. They will help you and inform you of what options you may have.

  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    23929 karma

    @"ronikastewart.rs" said:
    @estouten25 I have a few schools that I'm interested in going to which are: UNT Dallas, Southern University Law Center, Florida Coastal Law, ATL John Marshall, University of Memphis with my target schools being Loyola New Orleans, LSU, Mercer, and Texas Tech.

    What type of law are you interested in practicing? Some of those schools may be decent for some goals and not for others.

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @"Alex Divine" I am interested in Entertainment Law. I know that Southern, LSU, and Loyola don't have a program for it but they have a few classes. Even though I am really interested in entertainment law, I am open to exploring my options.

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    edited February 2018 78 karma

    @LSATcantwin As far as work experience goes, I think its one of the strongest areas of my application. I was an intern at Louisiana State Bar Association when I was 16 for a summer. I worked as an intern at the Louisiana Supreme Court my last two years of college and I worked at the sheriffs office here in New Orleans.

  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    edited February 2018 23929 karma

    @"ronikastewart.rs" said:
    @"Alex Divine" I am interested in Entertainment Law. I know that Southern, LSU, and Loyola don't have a program for it but they have a few classes. Even though I am really interested in entertainment law, I am open to exploring my options.

    Do you know anyone who practices entertainment law that went to those schools? If so, reach out to them and see what advice they have. If not, maybe do some more research into the schools and goals you may have.

    Entertainment law doesn't actually exist as it's own field of law; it's technically the name given to lawyers in the entertainment industry who do a range of work from intellectual property, contracts, business law, employment law, and a few other predominant areas. Oftentimes, entertainment lawyers have industry connections before law school. For instance, many were agents in the industry before law school.

    Also, don't worry about what schools have entertainment law programs. Many of these programs are little more than marketing tools that are meaningless when it comes time to find a job.

    I think the next few years could be a really awesome time for you to explore other options and prepare for the LSAT. Get experience working in some of the fields you'd be open to and see how you like it. I was really set on one type of law until serendipity led me to find something I'm even more interested in!

  • LSATcantwinLSATcantwin Alum Member Sage
    13286 karma

    @"ronikastewart.rs" said:
    @LSATcantwin As far as work experience goes, I think its one of the strongest areas of my application. I was an intern at Louisiana State Bar Association when I was 16 for a summer. I worked as an intern at the Louisiana Supreme Court my last two years of college and I worked at the sheriffs office here in New Orleans.

    Good, don't be scared to keep boosting it either. This is a good way to help with the application. It wont replace the GPA, but it'll put a patch on it at least.

  • Trust But VerifyTrust But Verify Alum Member
    427 karma

    My GPA sucks and you and I are both going to law school. Don't even let negativity rent space in your head.

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @"Alex Divine" I will take all of your advice, I also have another set of questions for you? I am going to purchase the 7sage course soon but do you have any other lsat prep materials that you recommend? I have an older version of the lsat trainer and 3 prep books. Should I invest in the newer version of the lsat trainer?
    @LSATcantwin do you have any lsat resources that you can recommend?

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @"Trust But Verify" Okay I'm not ! We can do this!

  • kshutes13kshutes13 Legacy Member
    edited February 2018 634 karma

    The answer you're looking for is in your own post:

    I knew I wanted to be a lawyer since I was 11 years old

    If this is something you've wanted this badly since you were a kid, then yes, you should still consider applying to law school.

    Your GPA is albeit a disadvantage, but I've seen people come out on top despite the worst circumstances.

    1. If you really dedicate your time to studying for the LSAT, I think law school is still a huge possibility. You really need to put in the effort though. Especially for a top school - be aiming for 170+.

    2. What are your softs (work experience, volunteer work, extracurriculars, any major accomplishments)? Additionally, are you considered a diverse applicant? If you are stronger in your softs, that could help make up for a low GPA in some schools.

    3. Your life experiences will aid in your application process. Clearly, you are hard-working and extremely dedicated if you were able to stay in school while supplementing the income for your entire household. The responsibilities and learning opportunities you have taken on at home could not only be a part of your PS but also serve as an addendum.

    4. As Alex Divine noted, it sounds like life has been tough financially. You need to consider the cost of law school, the cost of prepping, the cost of your time etc. The cost of law school itself in the US is astronomical. And as @LSATcantwin mentioned, you probably won't be a great candidate for a scholarship.
      In addition to that, if you had to work throughout undergrad to support family and yourself, will you have to work throughout law school to do the same? Considering working full time affected your grades in undergrad, will it do the same in law? Law school is nothing like undergrad and you will likely feel overwhelmed juggling full-time work and law. If you feel like you are going to get into law school only to work 24/7 and be miserable and not be able to achieve good grades, is it worth it to you?
      The entire process from prepping to application to attending law school is very expensive.

    5. Agree with others in that you should separate yourself from your GPA. Here's a positive story about a low GPA:
      My good friend did poorly in his undergrad, no excuses -- just super lazy lol. Also had no extracurriculars. I think he graduated with a 2.3. He realized after he graduated that he wanted to seriously pursue investment banking. He knew that his GPA put him at a huge disadvantage, so he stepped away for a bit. Got a job in the finance industry (not a great job), worked his way up. Got a summer job in private equity through a friend of a friend. All throughout these experiences, he studied his ass off for his CFAs. Passed all three levels of his CFA in like 2 years which is absolutely nuts. Studied his ass off for his GMAT and got a 720. Applied for the best MBA program in Canada with a 2.3 and got in. He applied to Columbia as well, and although they rejected him, he spoke to an admissions person and they said "Get 2-3 years more work experience and we'd saw off a leg to have you here." LOL. Life can be good sometimes!!

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @kshutes13 Thank you so much for your post! I believe most of my softs are pretty strong! I am really nervous about how my application will look overall.

  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    edited February 2018 23929 karma

    @"ronikastewart.rs" said:
    @"Alex Divine" I will take all of your advice, I also have another set of questions for you? I am going to purchase the 7sage course soon but do you have any other lsat prep materials that you recommend? I have an older version of the lsat trainer and 3 prep books. Should I invest in the newer version of the lsat trainer?

    Glad to hear it!

    I would recommend 7Sage, The LSAT Trainer, and Manhattan's LSAT guide trilogy. I use all 3 and I've found them each to be very helpful.

    No, you don't need to invest into a newer version of The Trainer. The only downside is that the older versions from 2013-2014 have some typos. Here is a link to a list of typos.

    http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=216646

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @"Alex Divine" Again Alex with the save! lol Thanks so much for everything!

  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    23929 karma

    @"ronikastewart.rs" said:
    @"Alex Divine" Again Alex with the save! lol Thanks so much for everything!

    Of course, girl! You got this!

    Stay in touch while you study :)

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @"Alex Divine" I will!

  • tringo335tringo335 Alum Member
    3679 karma

    Absolutely you should!

  • Gladiator_2017Gladiator_2017 Yearly Member
    1332 karma

    @LSATcantwin how did you go about changing certain classes to Ws?

  • louise.jesselouise.jesse Alum Member
    61 karma

    Hey @"ronikastewart.rs" Have you checked out law school numbers yet? I think some people with 2.5 GPAs do get into Loyola, but as other people here have pointed out a lot will depend on your LSAT score.

    It sounds like you've got your heart set on entertainment law but Loyola is great for public interest law if you are planning on staying in Louisiana/New Orleans area. I work for a legal aid organization here in Nola, I know a ton of people who went there. PM me if you want me to put you in contact with some of them.

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @"louise.jesse" Okay I will!

  • _oshun1__oshun1_ Alum Member
    3652 karma

    Maybe check out Pepperdine. I haven’t really looked into them but the flyer I got from them in the mail said “entertainment law” really big. Seems like they’re marketing themselves to people who want to work in entertainment.

  • LCMama2017LCMama2017 Alum Member
    2134 karma

    @"Alex Divine" said:
    -I would see if there is a possibility of retroactive withdraws from classes you did poorly in. If you can even bump your GPA up by a few tenths, it would put you in a much better condition. .

    Hey @"Alex Divine" What do you mean by "retroactive withdraws"? You mean, if you have a W on your transcripts?? or if you have an F in your transcript? Are you saying we should check to see if those can be removed?

  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    edited February 2018 23929 karma

    @LCMama2017 said:

    @"Alex Divine" said:
    -I would see if there is a possibility of retroactive withdraws from classes you did poorly in. If you can even bump your GPA up by a few tenths, it would put you in a much better condition. .

    Hey @"Alex Divine" What do you mean by "retroactive withdraws"? You mean, if you have a W on your transcripts?? or if you have an F in your transcript? Are you saying we should check to see if those can be removed?

    You absolutely should. You'd be surprised at what you can do to fix a low GPA, even years later. Worst they can say is no, and there's no question it's worth the time and effort to find out. My roommate who is applying to business school was able to get 3 retroactive withdraws from classes he didn't do so well in. His GPA went from a 3.6x to a 3.7x as a result.

    Definitely look into it!

  • LCMama2017LCMama2017 Alum Member
    2134 karma

    @"Alex Divine" said:

    @LCMama2017 said:

    @"Alex Divine" said:
    -I would see if there is a possibility of retroactive withdraws from classes you did poorly in. If you can even bump your GPA up by a few tenths, it would put you in a much better condition. .

    Hey @"Alex Divine" What do you mean by "retroactive withdraws"? You mean, if you have a W on your transcripts?? or if you have an F in your transcript? Are you saying we should check to see if those can be removed?

    You absolutely should. You'd be surprised at what you can do to fix a low GPA, even years later. Worst they can say is no, and there's no question it's worth the time and effort to find out. My roommate who is applying to business school was able to get 3 retroactive withdraws from classes he didn't do so well in. His GPA went from a 3.6x to a 3.7x as a result.

    Definitely look into it!

    @"Alex Divine" wow, never even though of asking. So, I guess the thought is that a W is not counted by LSAC then? I think that's the case, just not sure.

  • AlexAlex Alum Member
    23929 karma

    @LCMama2017 said:

    @"Alex Divine" said:

    @LCMama2017 said:

    @"Alex Divine" said:
    -I would see if there is a possibility of retroactive withdraws from classes you did poorly in. If you can even bump your GPA up by a few tenths, it would put you in a much better condition. .

    Hey @"Alex Divine" What do you mean by "retroactive withdraws"? You mean, if you have a W on your transcripts?? or if you have an F in your transcript? Are you saying we should check to see if those can be removed?

    You absolutely should. You'd be surprised at what you can do to fix a low GPA, even years later. Worst they can say is no, and there's no question it's worth the time and effort to find out. My roommate who is applying to business school was able to get 3 retroactive withdraws from classes he didn't do so well in. His GPA went from a 3.6x to a 3.7x as a result.

    Definitely look into it!

    @"Alex Divine" wow, never even though of asking. So, I guess the thought is that a W is not counted by LSAC then? I think that's the case, just not sure.

    Non-punitive W's that is.

  • Cant Get RightCant Get Right Alum Member Sage 🍌
    26362 karma

    Yeah, no reason you can't go to law school. It looks like you're covered and the main thing is you'll just have to give them an LSAT that will make up for it. I know a 2.9/170 that went to Northwestern with a scholarship.

    Your application is a narrative, and it should read:

    Undergrad was tough. Despite your low GPA, you're a stronger, more mature, and better rounded person for the experience. Your GPA doesn't reflect your true academic capabilities.

    The last part about your academic capabilities really is critical. And it's the LSAT score that is going to either sell that claim or else make it fall flat. Have you started studying for the LSAT yet? What's your diagnostic? What all have you done so far?

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @"Cant Get Right I'm re-starting this week so Saturday is going to be the day I take my first diagnostic since 2016.

  • westcoastbestcoastwestcoastbestcoast Alum Member
    3788 karma

    Yes you would need substantive work experience and a high LSAT score. What are your goals as a lawyer? What was your diagnostic?

  • LSATcantwinLSATcantwin Alum Member Sage
    13286 karma

    @Gladiator_2017 said:
    @LSATcantwin how did you go about changing certain classes to Ws?

    California community colleges have something called "academic forgiveness" if you can show the school you are able to get and maintain good grades, they remove the credits from your failed grades. I was able to get 3 F's and a D removed from my transcript this way.

    This is actually what is causing me issues with the LSAC right now. I have the F's and D on my transcript, but they are worth no credit. According to the LSAC that means they should not be included. The LSAC still included them however, so we are in the process of trying to figure it all out...it's killing me!

  • _oshun1__oshun1_ Alum Member
    edited February 2018 3652 karma

    @LSATcantwin said:

    @Gladiator_2017 said:
    @LSATcantwin how did you go about changing certain classes to Ws?

    California community colleges have something called "academic forgiveness" if you can show the school you are able to get and maintain good grades, they remove the credits from your failed grades. I was able to get 3 F's and a D removed from my transcript this way.

    This is actually what is causing me issues with the LSAC right now. I have the F's and D on my transcript, but they are worth no credit. According to the LSAC that means they should not be included. The LSAC still included them however, so we are in the process of trying to figure it all out...it's killing me!

    For those in California looking into this, it's also known as "academic renewal"
    @LSATcantwin -- Thank you so much for posting about this as I had never heard of this. Do you think you could make an update post when you get it all figured out? I am going to see if I can get a D from my college transcript removed and would like to know what steps I should take to make sure it's also removed from my LSAC transcript.

    I'm wondering what the difference is between this and doing a "repeat" course. The class I got a D in was not calculated into my college transcript GPA. It's listed as a D (R) on the transcript but it did not effect my GPA, only the grade I got when I repeated the class was calculated in. In my LSAC transcript, the D is calculated into my GPA.

  • LSATcantwinLSATcantwin Alum Member Sage
    13286 karma

    @"surfy surf" said:

    @LSATcantwin said:

    @Gladiator_2017 said:
    @LSATcantwin how did you go about changing certain classes to Ws?

    California community colleges have something called "academic forgiveness" if you can show the school you are able to get and maintain good grades, they remove the credits from your failed grades. I was able to get 3 F's and a D removed from my transcript this way.

    This is actually what is causing me issues with the LSAC right now. I have the F's and D on my transcript, but they are worth no credit. According to the LSAC that means they should not be included. The LSAC still included them however, so we are in the process of trying to figure it all out...it's killing me!

    For those in California looking into this, it's also known as "academic renewal"
    @LSATcantwin -- Thank you so much for posting about this as I had never heard of this. Do you think you could make an update post when you get it all figured out? I am going to see if I can get a D from my college transcript removed and would like to know what steps I should take to make sure it's also removed from my LSAC transcript.

    I'm wondering what the difference is between this and doing a "repeat" course. The class I got a D in was not calculated into my college transcript GPA. It's listed as a D (R) on the transcript but it did not effect my GPA, only the grade I got when I repeated the class was calculated in. In my LSAC transcript, the D is calculated into my GPA.

    I will. Biggest piece of advice I can give right now is to CAREFULLY REVIEW YOUR TRANSCRIPTS.

    The only reason I caught this was because of the required deans cert letter. When I went to get it the dean told me something was wrong and we had to undergo this entire process

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    edited August 2018 78 karma

    Hey everyone! I have an update! So I decided to go and get a paralegal certificate first so I can add more experience to my resume. I will be starting the program this fall. At the same time, I am starting to study for the LSAT with the hopes of taking the test for next January and June. Has anyone ever taken the paralegal route? If so, would it be hard to study for both paralegal classes and the lsat?

  • _oshun1__oshun1_ Alum Member
    edited August 2018 3652 karma

    @"ronikastewart.rs" said:
    Hey everyone! I have an update! So I decided to go and get a paralegal certificate first so I can add more experience to my resume. I will be starting the program this fall. At the same time, I am starting to study for the LSAT with the hopes of taking the test for next January and June. Has anyone ever taken the paralegal route? If so, would it be hard to study for both paralegal classes and the lsat?

    I highly recommend against this if you are certain about law school. When I was considering getting a paralegal certificate as a "back up," every attorney I spoke with told me not to waste my time. The amount of time and money you are spending on getting the paralegal certificate, could instead be spent on working as a legal assistant (and you'll be making money!). The paralegal certificate won't help you at all in law school. You can learn about what it's like to be an attorney with any job at a law firm. What is your reasoning behind getting a paralegal certificate?

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @"surfy surf" I wanted to take additional classes to show that I am can be a great student and wanted to use it as an option,but if it doesn't make sense, how could I show admission committees my potential as a student?

  • _oshun1__oshun1_ Alum Member
    3652 karma

    @"ronikastewart.rs" said:
    @"surfy surf" I wanted to take additional classes to show that I am can be a great student and wanted to use it as an option,but if it doesn't make sense, how could I show admission committees my potential as a student?

    I'm not sure how a certificate course would be anything more than a soft factor. Certificate courses are not graded as rigorously as university courses. and it's also more of a trade-school/technical school...I don't think it would even be considered an "academic" school so I don't think it would show anything about academic talents. I haven't heard of a certificate course making someone's GPA appear better to adcoms but maybe someone else has input...

  • PadawanPadawan Legacy Member
    91 karma

    My UGPA is not that low, but I've been out of school for a substantial amount of time, and decided to add a paralegal degree with a 4.0 GPA. I know it doesn't count in the stats but I know it should show them my commitment and love of the law and my aptitude for law school. Just an idea for you.

  • rstew2016rstew2016 Alum Member
    78 karma

    @Padawan That's exactly what I want the admissions committee to see with my application.

  • Chipster StudyChipster Study Yearly Member
    888 karma

    I would not give up one bit with a C average. I was once told by an admissions dean for medical school that she was looking for a circus performer. If someone applied to her school with that background and they were not an ax murderer, they were getting in.

    You could try for law school in your mid 30s and spend the next 15 years putting your financial security in the bank, memorizing all 8400 questions in the LSAT archives, and doing something to really distinguish yourself by getting awesome softs that you are really interested in. Examples are running for elective office, becoming nationally ranked in a sport like curling or archery that is largely effort-based, not athletic talent-based. Or, become a ranked Scrabble player, learn one new language a year for 15 years, start a career in film directing and win some awards. Trust me, if you are 35, on the Olympic team for archery, and have a 174, most schools are not going to care so much about your C average.

    BTW, eleven years after I had that conversation with the medical school dean, lo and behold, there was a guy from Cirque du Soleil who tore up his knee and realized he actually wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon. But, to his credit, the good doctor only has one small circus photo of himself in his office.

  • LivingThatLSATdreamLivingThatLSATdream Alum Member
    500 karma

    @LSATcantwin said:

    @"surfy surf" said:

    @LSATcantwin said:

    @Gladiator_2017 said:
    @LSATcantwin how did you go about changing certain classes to Ws?

    California community colleges have something called "academic forgiveness" if you can show the school you are able to get and maintain good grades, they remove the credits from your failed grades. I was able to get 3 F's and a D removed from my transcript this way.

    This is actually what is causing me issues with the LSAC right now. I have the F's and D on my transcript, but they are worth no credit. According to the LSAC that means they should not be included. The LSAC still included them however, so we are in the process of trying to figure it all out...it's killing me!

    For those in California looking into this, it's also known as "academic renewal"
    @LSATcantwin -- Thank you so much for posting about this as I had never heard of this. Do you think you could make an update post when you get it all figured out? I am going to see if I can get a D from my college transcript removed and would like to know what steps I should take to make sure it's also removed from my LSAC transcript.

    I'm wondering what the difference is between this and doing a "repeat" course. The class I got a D in was not calculated into my college transcript GPA. It's listed as a D (R) on the transcript but it did not effect my GPA, only the grade I got when I repeated the class was calculated in. In my LSAC transcript, the D is calculated into my GPA.

    I will. Biggest piece of advice I can give right now is to CAREFULLY REVIEW YOUR TRANSCRIPTS.

    The only reason I caught this was because of the required deans cert letter. When I went to get it the dean told me something was wrong and we had to undergo this entire process

    @LSATcantwin did you ever get this figured out? I also went to California schools and have 3 courses under "academic renewal". They are non-punitive but LSAC is counting them against me. Everything I've heard from the schools (CSUF, FullColl) is that there is nothing that I can do. The grades still will show on my transcript and they don't calculate them against me but other schools and graduate programs might calculate differently. Basically I was told there was nothing I can do. Have you figured out something different?

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