How LSAC Calculates Your GPA

The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) calculates your likelihood of attending law school by examining your LSAT scores and your undergraduate GPA. Here is some great information on how the LSAT is scored. There are a number of websites that allow you to enter your GPA into their virtual calculators. While each law school typically does not adhere to a strict minimum for LSAT results and GPAs, there are general thresholds that programs desire. Your testing date, professional experience, and ethnicity are not taken into consideration when determining your personal index score. Here is are 6 tips to help you excel in law school, which you my find useful in the future.

How is my LSAC GPA determined?

The official LSAC GPA calculator provides applicants with an estimated score for their admissions index (an index score). While each law school calculates this “admissions index” differently, the LSAC official calculator is an ideal place to begin, as it maintains a number of potential index formulas.

The LSAC grade scale is somewhat different from that of many undergraduate schools. An A+ (98-100) is worth 4.33. While the scale is based upon the normative 4.0 GPA scale, it allows for an A+ grade. It does not, however, award credit for an E or F.  Non-punitive withdrawals on your transcripts are not included as failing grades within your LSAC GPA. All other withdrawals are noted as failing marks (0.00). Note that passing grades in a pass/fail class will not be calculated in the LSAC GPA. If you enrolled in a course twice, both the original and “retake” result count, even if your undergraduate school only utilized the second score in your GPA. If your study-abroad courses do not appear on your domestic transcript, they will not be counted. Here are 3 ways extracurricular activities help your law school application as well. 

Generally, if a grade is present on your transcript, it is likely to be included in your GPA. This is true only of classes prior to earning your first Bachelor’s degree. If you have completed coursework after this stage, it will not be taken into account when calculating your index score. 

What should I do with my index score?

With your score in hand, there are a number of sources that offer “matching” services between your index result and various law schools. Several focus solely on top-tier programs. Not all services are reliable, so ensure you do sufficient research when investigating these matches. With luck, they will guide your application process to law schools within your reach, as well as save you money and time in determining which programs are best for you. Consider limiting reach schools to just one application. Also keep in mind also that if you have sat for the LSAT multiple times, law schools receive every score report. Prepare accordingly, and good luck!