What are "softs" and how are they classified?

LSAT score and GPA are "hard" data. Softs refer to everything in your application that isn't "hard" data.

Softs are inherently unquantifiable. That's why they're called softs.

The tiers below are very rough guidelines for putting a number on something that really can't be quantified. Don't take the tiers too seriously when comparing yourself to other applicants on LSData. Holistically valuing softs is the admissions committee's job.

The soft tier system is copied from an old reddit post by /u/whistleridge.

@adcoms - is this information out of date? Email us at admissions@lsd.law and tell us how we can improve!

Soft tiers

Please do not consider under represented minority (URM) status when classifying your soft tier.

Tier 1 (extremely rare)

  • High decorations for valor (Congressional Medal of Honor, DSC/Navy Cross, Silver Star)
  • Rhodes Scholarship
  • Started multimillion-dollar company/innovative service that is household name
  • C-level executive in publicly traded/Fortune 500 company
  • Professional athlete/college athlete who was a lock for professional except for injury
  • Widely published author/heavily cited academic
  • Prior high expertise in field (surgeon who invented technique, etc.)

Tier 2 (rare)

  • Decorated military service (Purple Heart, Bronze Star)
  • Fulbright/other prestigious scholarship
  • NCAA athlete in standout position, e.g. household basketball name, led water polo team to 3 titles, etc.
  • Overcome extraordinary physical/mental handicap (ALS, blind & deaf, etc.)
  • High level (director, etc.) position in prior employment
  • Prior demonstrations of high expertise (patents, etc.)

Tier 3 (uncommon)

  • Commissioned military service
  • Prestigious undergraduate scholarships and/or research awards
  • NCAA athlete
  • Overcame extraordinary adversity (childhood poverty, physical/mental handicap, etc.)
  • Published academic
  • Peace Corps/Americorps/other public service
  • Prior employment in legal field or otherwise pertinent area (engineer for IP, etc.)
  • Disadvantaged status: LGBTQ+, first in family to attend college, single working parent, etc.

Tier 4 (common)

  • Any military service
  • Legal internships
  • Congressional internships
  • President/officer of clubs/frat/etc.
  • School newspaper/yearbook/etc.
  • Honors societies
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Monkeymammoth
11:59
im so mad rn
Monkeymammoth
11:59
my BC status just changed just now
Monkeymammoth
11:59
to say "in the next few weeks:"
asymmetric
11:59
poll: do we think @MrVet2020 is a veteran or a veterinarian?
roSTEM566
12:00
Same...I just wanna hear back from any school. Cornell was real quick with their R but have had radio silence from everyone else lmao
puglover24
12:00
when did u apply
puglover24
12:00
for bc
SickMinorLawDog
12:00
nooo
Monkeymammoth
12:00
the day their app opened.
puglover24
12:00
oh damn
puglover24
12:00
well congrats!
HungarianHorntail
12:00
@roSTEM566: how many schools you apply to?
Monkeymammoth
12:00
why lmao
roSTEM566
12:00
@Monkeymammoth: that might mean you have to wait for a decision lmao
roSTEM566
12:00
@HungarianHorntail: 17
Monkeymammoth
12:00
im so mad right now
GoDawgsLaw1980
12:00
lmao
Monkeymammoth
12:00
they updated me 3 days ago to say january....
roSTEM566
12:00
Bro thats foul. You applied in September and they just updated yours
HungarianHorntail
12:01
@roSTEM566: i applied to 19. heard back from Cornell Harvard, Yale all R
puglover24
12:01
oh wait
puglover24
12:01
it said jan before
HungarianHorntail
12:01
@roSTEM566: applied early nov
puglover24
12:01
sorry i thought u meant it changed to that
puglover24
12:01
my b
SickMinorLawDog
12:01
mine says in the next few weeks too
Monkeymammoth
12:01
god these Adcoms don't do anything for 4 months and then they do one thing and its a giant mistake.
wowwww what a slow day so far
SickMinorLawDog
12:01
so ridiculous
roSTEM566
12:01
@HungarianHorntail: applied late Nov...so frustrated