What is the Role of LSAT in Law School Admissions? | BCGSearch.com

What is the Role of LSAT in Law School Admissions?

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Law School Admissions Test (LSAT) is an integral part of the application process for law schools in the United States, Canada, and an increasing number of other countries. The LSAT tests the skills necessary for success in the first year of law school. The test results provide admission decision-makers and candidates alike with valuable insights into candidates' ability to succeed in law school. The LSAT predicts first-year law school performance even better than undergraduate GPA, as studies have shown repeatedly. A holistic admission process is important, taking into account a candidate's skills and experiences as part of a holistic assessment of their application.


Three areas are tested in this half-day test: logical reasoning, analytical reasoning, and reading comprehension. There are 35 questions in the LSAT sections. A section of 35 sample questions for future exams is included along with the scored portion. The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) administers the exam at its testing centers worldwide seven times per year.
 

How is the LSAT scored?


On the LSAT, three out of five sections contribute to the final score. The “raw score” of a test taker is not penalized for incorrect answers, like in some standardized tests. On a bell curve, raw scores are distributed from 120 to 180, with a median of 150. As a result, a score of 151 would place the tester in the top half of all test takers. Testers scoring 165 would be in the top 90th percentile. Only one percent of test-takers score higher than 173.
 

Is the LSAT required for law school admissions?


There are 205 law schools accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA) that accept the LSAT for admission. The LSAT is, however, increasingly being replaced by the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). In either case, ABA-approved law schools require some standardized testing as these test scores are a major indicator of a law school graduate's ability to pass the Bar Exam, which is a requirement for anyone wanting to practice law. The majority of jurisdictions require a law degree to practice law.


See Also: The LSAT Is No Longer Required At These And Other Law Schools: Why Law Schools Are Ditching The LSAT
 

How significant is the LSAT for admissions?


Among the factors considered for law school admission are your LSAT score, your undergraduate academic record, your undergraduate major, as well as your recommendations and prior experience. US News & World Report ranking of law schools heavily factors in the LSAT for admissions. Most schools consider the LSAT score to be the most important determinant of admissions. Due to its emphasis on logic and reasoning (instead of memorizing subjects), the LSAT is likely to give a better indication of a student's success in law school, particularly when they begin their first year of traditional law school.
 

Is it possible to take the LSAT more than once?


A law school applicant may take the LSAT three times in a single testing year, five times over five years, and no more than seven times in a lifetime. Schools typically consider the score applicants report as their highest. Some schools, however, consider the average of the two highest scores. When the difference between two scores is greater than five points, the Law School Admission Council recommends averaging the scores that are within five points of each other.
 

What should I do to prepare for the LSAT?


Considering that LSAT scores are important in the admissions process, ensuring the best score possible requires adequate preparation. Practice taking sample questions from all three sections is the best preparation. The LSAC offers sample questions. For those who prefer self-study, there are also companies that offer comprehensive LSAT prep courses. In addition to traditional courses, students can also take online LSAT prep courses at their convenience.
 

What are the 4 sections of LSAT?


Getting a decent score on the LSAT requires you to know the test. If you have never taken the LSAT, just showing up at a test center cold and expecting to ace the questions is not something you can expect.

On the other hand, if you find standardized tests challenging in general and the LSAT especially so, you probably need to spend more time practicing in order to improve your scores. Regardless of your situation, stay motivated and prepare with the certainty that you will improve with dedicated practice.

The LSAT consists of four parts:
 
  1. Analytical reasoning section
  2. Logical reasoning section
  3. Reading comprehension section
  4. Writing sample section

The LSAT writing samples are the only sections not subject to multiple-choice questions, and they always come last. Multiple-choice questions may appear in any order. There are six sections in the test: two scored sections of logical reasoning, one scored analytical reasoning section, one scored reading comprehension section, one writing sample, and one unscored section that may be any of the three multiple-choice sections.

There is no indication of which section is unscored, and the unscored section looks just like any other section of the LSAT. Each section lasts 35 minutes.

The unscored variable section you take consists of questions that the LSAC is considering for use on a future LSAT. LSAC wants to see how well these new questions work when presented to actual LSAT takers. Observation, logical reasoning, or reading comprehension are all possible sections that are not scored.
 

LSAT Prep Timeline


The LSAT registration deadline is about a month in advance of each test date:
 
  • January: Take a  free LSAT practice test to calculate your diagnostic score.
  • February: Start thinking about an LSAT prep course (strongly recommended in-person or online courses).
  • March: Check upcoming LSAT test dates, registration deadlines, and the logistical information you will need to know for the big day.

 

Where can I find practice LSAT questions?


Preparing for the LSAT involves familiarizing yourself with the mechanics of the test:
 
  • What does it look like?
  • What is being asked of you?
  • How do you physically provide answers to the test questions?

If your test will be administered in the same format, you should become familiar with the LSAT. You can also estimate how much time you can spend on each question by taking the official practice tests under time constraints. In addition, you will be able to determine which types of questions require more practice.

When you understand the test instructions and the nature of the questions, you will be able to plan your time wisely on the day of the test and handle distractions efficiently.
 

Official LSAT Prep on LSAC’s LawHub


With the Official LSAT PrepSM available through LawHub, you can immerse yourself in a simulation of taking the four-section or the LSAT-Flex. Everything that you can do during the test will be available on the practice test - ruling out answers, marking passages, setting screen preferences, and more. You will be able to build skills and confidence by practicing these tests.

Through LSAC's LawHub, two LSAT PrepTests (including a bonus LSAT-Flex version) and an Official LSAT-Flex Sample test are available free of charge. For just $99, you can access more than 70 full Official LSAT PrepTestsTM for one whole year with Official LSAT PrepPlusSM.
 

Paper-and-Pencil LSAT Prep


On the LSAC website, you can find a free sample LSAT if your LSAT is being administered in paper-and-pencil format.

Other test preparation resources include Official LSAT Prep books and eBooks. There are three full practice tests with explanations for every question in the Official LSAT SuperPrep and SuperPrep II. There are also dozens of additional Official LSAT Prep tests available for purchase.
 

What month should I apply to law school?


In addition to your application materials, your personal statement should be carefully mulled over and revised multiple times. Make sure your personal statement is a reflection of your character by asking someone who knows you well and has good critical eyes to read it. Clearly demonstrating your interest in law and the field you are considering will appeal to admissions officers.
 
  • September: Start working on your law school applications and personal statements around September.
  • November: Aim to submit all your law school applications, regardless of the official deadline, by late November or early December.

See Also: The Law School Admission Test: How Will The Change In LSAT Reporting Affect Students?
 

Conclusion


A law school applicant can only determine whether law school is a good fit for them by taking the LSAT, which is the only test accepted by all ABA-accredited law schools. Students who want to maximize their chances for admission and be prepared for law school should take the LSAT. Law schools may accept other tests for admission, but students who want to maximize their chances for acceptance should take the LSAT.

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