How many Ws are *too* many?

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How many Ws are *too* many?

Post by heynow317 » Tue Sep 28, 2021 8:37 am

Hi everyone. For transparency's sake, I also posted this elsewhere online but want to get as many opinions as possible.

I am a non-trad student in that I have a lot of work experience and took a while to graduate undergrad with a bunch of false starts in between. Last year I found out from a classmate that I could retroactively withdraw from some earlier courses from almost 10 years ago during my first stint at undergrad. At the time I was dealing with a then undiagnosed medical issue which not only left me in almost constant pain but was also physically visible (!) and made it hard to concentrate on school. Fast forward a few years and I found out I actually have a rare and debilitating auto-immune disease (which is being managed now thanks to that diagnosis and does not inconvenience me).

I ended up showing medical proof and got 11 withdrawals which were spaced out during my first three semesters of school for courses I stopped attending halfway due to chronic pain (and for which I had originally received punitive withdrawals; I simply asked the school to turn them into non-punitive Ws); during that time there were other courses whose work I kept up with because the professors allowed me to work from home (in those courses I got As and Bs). Then, I attended two more semesters in person and got all As and Bs because my condition subsided. After that, I had a horrible relapse and enrolled and un-enrolled in two consecutive semesters and just eventually quit undergrad for 5 years altogether. At the same time, my mom was diagnosed with cancer and that coupled with my illness was just too much for me.

After my mom's passing and my correct diagnosis I successfully re-enrolled in undergrad. My last three years of undergraduate were literally all As. My lowest grade was an A-. Before converting the punitive Ws to non-punitive my LSAC GPA was a 3.53, but it is now a 3.96.

Assuming I do well on the LSAT (170+), will the bonkers amount of Ws hurt my application? Or is law school truly a numbers game and it doesn't matter? Should I write an addendum? Do I have to go into specifics about my disease? Looking for any advice.


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Re: How many Ws are *too* many?

Post by Slytherpuff » Tue Sep 28, 2021 4:50 pm

I would write an addendum to be safe - the Ws obviously won't look great on your application, but as long as they're non-punitive and as long as your addendum is halfway decent, I think you should be okay. I don't think you have to go into specifics on your disease, I would just say that you had a medical issue that is now under control.

Definitely study as much as you can for the LSAT, getting a 170+ will do a lot to help here.

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Re: How many Ws are *too* many?

Post by Stranger » Tue Sep 28, 2021 6:53 pm

The most important things are the numbers, and it's not even close. Yes, that large a group of W's will give admission pause, but a decent addendum should ease any concerns. That and a 170+ LSAT should mitigate any risk from non-punitive W's.

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Re: How many Ws are *too* many?

Post by Story » Tue Sep 28, 2021 7:30 pm

Be sure to confirm that the Ws are “nonpunitive.” You may have already seen this, but here it is just in case: ... marization

You don’t want the Ws to affect your LSAC GPA.

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