Columbia: using cross-registration to gun for Kent/Stone?

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strightning
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Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2019 11:20 pm

Columbia: using cross-registration to gun for Kent/Stone?

Post by strightning » Sun Feb 24, 2019 11:18 pm

So I noticed that only law grades count for Kent/Stone, and that up to 12 non-law credits can be counted toward the JD.
I also know that grad-level engineering departments at Columbia have rampant grade inflation, with medians often in the B+/A- range. Assuming one can write a convincing petition to count a non-law course toward their JD, would one feasible strategy for those wanting Kent/Stone honors be to try to take an engineering [or insert other grad division here, but I don't know anything about how the B-school/SIPA/Journalism curves] course and do the bare minimum in that course, riding the curve and expecting at least a B/B- (which won't count for Kent/Stone), thus freeing up more time to devote to law courses?

Reasons I think this might work for some people:

1. Law courses have heavier workloads toward the end of the semester because the final is the whole grade, while Engineering/quantitative classes have a significant portion of the grade determined by homework/midterm. So one can spread out one's workload more and have an easier finals season.

2. Engineering/quantitative classes are less work the stronger your math/science background is: While law classes are a lot of work no matter if you're a 1L or 3L and no matter if you're an above-average law student or a below-average one, engineering classes are substantially less work the stronger your quantitative skills are and the more quantitative classes you have taken since the mental muscles you flex in one class tend to help immensely in another class, even if there is no overlap in domain knowledge.

3. There are many classes that have a significant portion of the grade determined by group-work (I'm thinking in the Computer Science department specifically). One would have to be careful with this because the Law School only counts courses that are "evaluated by written examination or term paper," but one could conceivably find courses where you are mostly being carried by undergrads who are obsessively trying to maximize their GPA (and hey, we're only shooting for anything above a C here). And yes, many of the lower-level grad classes here at composed of at least 50% juniors/seniors in undergrad.

Reasons this could be a complete clusterfruk:

1. You're a law student and therefore are so clueless in a quantitative class that getting a C is not feasible.
2. No space in the classes that this would work with because grad students and engineering undergrads are prioritized.

I have no information about how this might work with the B-school, SIPA, or Journalism school so would appreciate any input on that front. I also get that this is kind of an out-there idea so would welcome any thoughts.

Ilike2read
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Re: Columbia: using cross-registration to gun for Kent/Stone?

Post by Ilike2read » Mon Feb 25, 2019 2:16 pm

strightning wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 11:18 pm
Assuming one can write a convincing petition to count a non-law course toward their JD
Since the course must be directly relevant to your legal training, I am doubtful someone could pull this off for more than one course. Also, there may be a requirement (such a passing a preliminary exam) to enroll in a grad-level engineering course...which would make this idea not worth the hassle.

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Nony
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Re: Columbia: using cross-registration to gun for Kent/Stone?

Post by Nony » Mon Feb 25, 2019 2:26 pm

This seems REALLY overcomplicated and speculative. Also your transcript would look really weird unless you have some good reason to take engineering classes (in which case it would look better not to have Cs in them).

1515
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Re: Columbia: using cross-registration to gun for Kent/Stone?

Post by 1515 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:15 pm

Why would you do this with engineering--take B school classes, which would be easier and seem less random/questionable to future employers.

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Nebby
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Re: Columbia: using cross-registration to gun for Kent/Stone?

Post by Nebby » Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:52 pm

Why not just get good law grades

BrainsyK
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Re: Columbia: using cross-registration to gun for Kent/Stone?

Post by BrainsyK » Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:50 pm

Only 2L/3Ls can cross-register. Honors only matter for 1L. Over half the class gets Stone in 2L/3L. I guess if you desperately want the RBG award and are really good at math, this might work, but most people who get Kent in 1L won't really have a massive problem replicating that performance in 2L/3L if they tried. Who is this plan targeted to?

strightning
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Re: Columbia: using cross-registration to gun for Kent/Stone?

Post by strightning » Mon Feb 25, 2019 9:00 pm

BrainsyK wrote:
Mon Feb 25, 2019 7:50 pm
Only 2L/3Ls can cross-register. Honors only matter for 1L. Over half the class gets Stone in 2L/3L. I guess if you desperately want the RBG award and are really good at math, this might work, but most people who get Kent in 1L won't really have a massive problem replicating that performance in 2L/3L if they tried. Who is this plan targeted to?
In that case nevermind, lol. I was thinking about it partly because I couldn't sleep last night and partly because I have a decent technical background while law classes is more of an unknown factor for me as a 0L, but my effort would probably be better spent trying to be a good law student. All points above make sense, it does seem a bit too complicated and I suppose risking low B's and C's on the transcript isn't worth the marginal benefit.

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