Admissions > Frequently Asked Questions About the Waiting List
What is the waiting list for? Admissions is not an exact science. We know from experience approximately how many offers we should make to fill our entering class, but in some years more applicants than we expect accept offers of admission to the Texas Southern University, Thurgood Marshall School of Law (TMSL); in other years, fewer do so. That's when we accept students from the waiting list.
When can I expect to hear something? We have asked admitted applicants to make a $150 deposit postmarked by April 1, 2008, if they wish to accept our offer of admission. By the middle of May, we should know whether we will make offers immediately from the waiting list. If we have spaces available, we will make the first round of offers to wait-listed applicants in May. If we do not have places available after the initial confirmation deadline, we will not make offers in May but will wait until entering students notify us that they no longer intend to enroll. All entering students are asked to pay a second confirmation deposit of $100 by June 1, so it is possible that additional places in the class will become available at that time.
Once the class is filled, whether with those who are initially accepted, or with applicants accepted from the waiting list, we will notify some wait-listed applicants that the class is full and release them from the list. We will retain a smaller number of applicants on the waiting list throughout the summer months. If you do not hear from us, you may assume that you are still on the waiting list.
Do people ever drop out later in the summer? We retain a smaller waiting list throughout the summer just in case some of those who have made deposits decide not to attend. It is difficult to predict the "drop-out" rate; in recent years it has become quite common for applicants to make deposits at more than one school and delay a final decision until they have a chance to visit different schools during the summer. Applicants may also be waiting for law schools to make financial aid awards before making a final decision. The drop-out rate also will be affected by movement on waiting lists at other law schools.
If I receive an offer of admission, how long will I have to decide? Not long. We will telephone you if we have a space available for you, and you will be asked to make a commitment within a couple of days. We do not want to prolong the process by waiting a week or more for a letter to reach you and for your deposit to make its way back to us. You should be prepared to make a decision fairly quickly if a space opens up for you. That is why it is critically important that you keep us up to date on your current address, e-mail, and phone number over the summer. You will need to make the $250 confirmation deposit to accept an offer and, if it is after June 1, the full deposit is still due.
What's the latest I could be offered admission? A week prior to the first day of class.
How will waiting-list admission affect my chances of receiving financial aid or finding a place to live? If you qualify, getting federal or private educational loans should be no problem. You should make sure that your FAFSA and supporting documentation have been received by the Financial Aid Office, so that we can begin to process your loan application as soon as you have been accepted. If you require assistance with locating an apartment, please call Karen Reichek of Apartment Locators at 713-826-6527 cell.
If I am offered admission from the waiting list, may I defer my enrollment? No, the deferral option is not available to candidates admitted from the waiting list.
Where am I on the waiting list? There is only one waiting list. There is no order or priority with regards to this list.
How many candidates are on the waiting list? The number will vary throughout the summer, from several hundred at the beginning of the summer to only a few dozen at the end. Candidates may drop off the waiting list during the summer as they begin to make financial or housing commitments to other schools, and we will periodically release candidates from the waiting list if it appears that we will be unlikely to be able to offer admission.
What are you looking for in a wait-listed applicant? Just as in the initial admissions process, we will be evaluating a variety of factors to try to select the best applicants. Among many things, we assess the strength of your undergraduate or graduate academic record, trends in your grades, the rigor of the curriculum you selected, your score(s) on the Law School Admission Test, your letters of recommendation, community service, extracurricular activities, work experience during school or after graduation, and any other information you provided in your personal statement or attachments to your application.
How many do you usually accept? There really is no typical number accepted from the waiting list.
Is there anything I can do to enhance my chances? Short of eliminating those who have accepted offers, probably not. You are certainly welcome to supplement your application. If you are currently in school and can provide your spring grades, this is the most helpful information you can give us. We suggest that you submit your spring grades in two ways: first, directly to the Admissions Office via an unofficial transcript or copy of your spring grade report, and second, through the Law School Data Assembly Service (LSDAS), which will update your Law School Report for each of the schools to which you have applied. Quite honestly, additional letters of recommendation will probably make little difference unless they provide new substantive information.
What about an interview? Unfortunately, we simply do not have the resources to offer interview opportunities to wait-listed candidates. We understand that you are anxious about an admissions decision, and we'll let you know as soon as we can whether a place will be available for you.